Monday 10 August 2015

Celebrating SG50 in Batam

Yes I know, we spent our nation's Jubilee birthday overseas like a lot of other travel-loving Singaporeans. But that doesn't mean I'm not patriotic. See this pretty girl and that cute boy that I pushed out of my youknowwhere? I'm nation-building right here! *laughs*

Anyway, we know better than to tackle the mammoth that is the causeway so we chose to head to Batam rather than Malacca. I feel for those of you who got stuck at the causeway for 8 hours (though I can't say that I'm surprised). Let's just say I was happy to have found a comfortable seat on the ferry.


At the Singapore Cruise Centre waiting to board our Batam Fast ferry
Baby Boy just woke up from his nap so he was in a hyper mood. Not good when he is confined in a small space -_-
Watching the world go by..

After a comfortable ferry ride, we arrive at Harbor Bay Terminal (different from our usual terminal at Batam Centre). We took a cab (cost us 50,000 rupiah) to Novotel Hotel, our accommodation for the trip.

Novotel Hotel Batam
We were in our usual matchy matchy wear! :)

As it was still early and we can't check-in yet, we had lunch at the hotel's restaurant, The Square.

Clockwise from left: Girl enjoying her food and colouring;
The Square placemat;
Four different kinds of chili!
Clockwise from left: Rice with eggs and chicken;
Lasagna with cheese;
Cordon bleu with fries

The food wasn't too bad, there were some hits but also a few misses. Overall, it was satisfactory.

Our rooms were ready by the time we were done with lunch.

Clockwise from left: Standard size bathtub in the toilet;
King size bed! More than enough space for all three of us if Baby Boy doesn't want to sleep in the cot;
Nice size room with balcony for star gazing.
We requested for a cot for Baby Boy. It was pretty low, which is probably not advisable if you're bringing an infant with you. I can imagine breaking my back if I were to put a 5 month old baby in and out of this thing!

We headed off to the nearest mall, Nagoya Hill Shopping Mall, by cab. We didn't like it when we visited previously but it was the nearest mall to the hotel. It didn't turn out as bad as I had expected (maybe I have low expectations! *laughs*).

Nagoya Hill Shopping Mall

We decided to let the kids play in a very old school arcade that still used tokens like the good ole days! Each token only cost 1000 rupiah (about S$0.10) and most rides cost only 2 to 4 tokens. Cheap and good =)

Dunia Fantasi Arcade
Variety of different rides
Choo choo! This ride only costs S$0.30! Very cheap!

The only problem is, the arcade allowed people to smoke inside so the air was smoky. My eyes were watering and I almost can't breathe after being inside for just 15 minutes. We had to get out of there after a while because the air was so bad =(

But my girl had a blast (my boy not so much; maybe he was just as affected by the air) so we continued to play on. Never thought I'd see the day where I'll be excited to find out that our tokens ran out!

We did some grocery shopping at the supermarket and discovered that they had a lot of shopping carts with cars on them! Girl had a lot of fun riding in one!

Pushing a kid-friendly push cart

We also bought a lot of die cast cars that not only have doors that can open, they have engine sounds and lights! I even found one that looked just like my MINIbee (my yellow MINI Cooper)! Baby Boy loves playing with them =)

My die cast cars

We ended a long day with dinner at a Chinese restaurant at the top floor (can't remember the name).

Clockwise from left: Chilli crab sauce and buns;
Delicious bamboo clams;
Fried noodles.

The food is not bad, cheap and good! Only problem is the staff can't really speak much English so be patient with them and speak slower. By the time we got back to our hotel, we were all fast asleep in our beds cos we were so tired!


It was raining when we woke up this morning so we had to go shopping at BCS Mall instead of our original plan of sea sports, in hopes that the rain would stop eventually. To get to the various places that we wanted to visit, we booked a private 7-seater car for S$90.

We visited BCS Mall previously and liked it because of the relatively cheaper prices as compared to Batam Megamall. Mum-in-law loved the supermarket! She said in Chinese, "I can't remember the last time I bought so many things for less than S$1 each!" Super! =)

We found a nice Indonesian restaurant (located next to Timezone) selling very authentic Indonesian food. Cheap and good.

Clockwise from top left: The dining area;
Pandan leaf chicken;
Delicious fried eggs;
Can't remember what this is called but it wasn't too bad.

We left the mall at 2pm, delighted to find that the rain has stopped! It was time for sea sports! =)

Monkey Beach Hut Sea Sport Centre

We decided to get the Jetski-Banana-boat-Parasailing package at about S$62 per person. It wasn't our first time on the banana boat or jetski (my first time was when we visited Batam in 2011) but it was a first experience for my mum-in-law. She gamely took on the challenge, though she did get freaked out by the fast speed of the jetski!

Mum-in-law on the jetski
The only activity that my girl could take part in = banana boat
(this time, they brought the boat all the way out to sea, which scared my girl a bit!)

As the hubby and I didn't get to do parasailing when we were in Batam last year due to the rain, we were praying so hard that we could do it this time! Thankfully, we were not disappointed!

All excited to go parasailing!

We decided that the hubby would go first, followed by me and then the brother-in-law.

Hubby's turn
My turn! Weeee!

We were quite scared at first because the parachute went really high! Turns out it wasn't scary at all. It was amazing actually! Felt like we were flying!! =)

After an amazing time at sea, we were famished and couldn't wait to get to Kelong Restaurant Citra Utama for our dinner. We loved the food here so much previously that we wanted to introduce it to my mum- and brother-in-law.

Going up and down a very steep road
Kelong Restoran Citra Utama
Watching the sunset from the kelong
Watch your babies. Baby Boy saw the wood and thought it would be fun to climb it (-_-")
Clockwise from top left: mixed vegetables;
My favourite fresh steamed fish;
Tasty crayfish cooked with salted egg;
Fried scallops with garlic.

Ahh, what a great way to end another day at Batam =)


The next day, we headed to Batam Megamall for final shopping, eating and massages! Massages are seriously good for the soul!

Black Pepper crab at D'Costi. Very nice =)

We found the shopping too expensive as compared to BCS Mall and Nagoya Hill Shopping Mall though. Everything was at least 1/4 more expensive. Even Timezone increased its prices, with rides that used to cost 2500 rupiah previously now cost 4500 rupiah (almost double)! Although the rides are still considered cheap as compared to Singapore, we finished using the credits a lot faster than the last time we were here!

Carousel ride with Baby Boy at Timezone

We caught the last ferry back to Singapore, just in time to wish Singapore, "Happy Birthday!" before the clock struck 12. Although it was a trip of ups and downs, overall we still enjoyed ourselves.

Looking forward to more trips to come! Happy SG50 to all my fellow Singaporeans! =)


Visit MADPSYCHMUM TRAVELS for the rest of my posts on Batam, Indonesia 
as well as other travel itineraries!

You can also follow my travel adventures on Instagram via the hashtag #madpsychmumtravels! =)
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