Sunday, 19 July 2015

A Long Due Family Holiday - Bintan - Part 1

Okay, so when you are gonna take a holiday with a toddler, even the planning stage, believe it or not, takes a whole lot of your time and efforts. We planned and planned, prepared ourselves mentally for the stress around our toddler’s eating sleeping and entertainment, settled on a destination, zeroed down on a hotel, decided the dates, and guess what! Weather in Bali had different plans. 




Bali, where we were gonna head to, had become inconvenient to travel to because of the volcanic eruptions. More so, cos with my two year old Master A, waiting endlessly for the flight to take off or land would’ve turned into a nightmare. I have a hard time whenever we take a flight, during ascent and descent. Getting fastened in a seat belt probably doesn’t fit into Master A’s definition of being a free soul, and so he vehemently protests being tied down with one!

Back to the main subject matter of discussion. Bali it wasn’t meant to be. So we moved our focus towards Bintan island in Indonesia. More out of frustration arising from the confusion between Vietnam and Thailand. We were running out of time (as the hubby’s block leave was going to end soon). Plus the fact that he so desperately needed a change, that he suggested a stay in Sentosa resorts if nothing worked out. It sounded like a warning to my ears, demanding fast action! (Though I must admit, that most of the action was the hubby’s effort :-))

A one hour ferry ride and your world being transformed from a routine schedule to an exotic resort break sounded appealing. Thats right, Bintan though in a different country altogether, is just an hour away from Singapore! Can it possibly get any more convenient than this! For a family with a kid, or even for a weekend break. The satisfaction of having travelled to a different land, experienced a different culture, and yet, just being next door. That's so much lesser than even a journey from the South to the North of Mumbai, my friend! 

A tad on the expensive side, but we decided that Banyan Tree Villa Resort it would be. We had had an experience with them in Thailand a few years back. Back then, thanks to my employer, the deal had been a steal. It’s one of those experiences where you feel pampered in every sense of the word. We were very clear in our minds. We just wanted to relax, not much running around or sightseeing. So this choice completely fit the bill. And I’m glad we did what we did.

As to why I was glad, I shall elaborate in my next post. Right now I leave you with some pointers.

1. It’s a cool weekend getaway if you are residing in Singapore. Even if you are just visiting Singapore, Bintan island can be an ideal destination to be combined with. Gives you a flavour of Indonesia in a short span!
2. Not much hassle, as visa’s on arrival! So when pressed for time, just do what we did. Shortlist a hotel, pack your bags and leave.
3. Further, if you book yourself on the Emerald Class of the Ferry, they do your visa enroute Bintan. So no queuing after the journey! And the premium is too small for the comfort and the service.
4. Just be sure what you are looking for from the trip. If just a relaxing holiday (with spa treatments :-)) is what’s on your mind, splurge on the resort and enjoy a luxury holiday. But if you are keen on sightseeing and outdoorsy stuff, you could choose a less expensive resort as you’d hardly spend time indoors anyways.
5. For a family with an infant or a toddler, this could be one of the ideal places for a quick break.



PS.  Along with Bintan and Banyan in the following post, a simple yet delicious recipe from the chef of Banyan Tree Hotels! In the meantime, here are a couple of pics :-)











18 comments:

Sumeet Nayak said...

After reading all this, i so need a break. Am working pretty much everyday.

Saloni said...

Bitan is now on my list

Leena Walawalkar said...

Yep Saloni, do visit....you'll enjoy!

Leena Walawalkar said...

Sumeet, everybody needs and deserves a break..don't tire yourself out...take a breaaaak :-)

Maitreni Mishra said...

Great post Leena.. Bintan is certainly in my bucket list now! :)

Sri Kri said...

Wow.Heard about Bali but not about Bintan.Adding to our wish-list.Planning a trip with the toddler needs a lot of planning.Great post and tips.Thanks for sharing.Waiting for your upcoming post.
Cheers,
Sriram & Krithiga

Leena Walawalkar said...

Thanks Maitreni...Glad to see you here..keep visiting :-)

Leena Walawalkar said...

Tell me about it Sriram & Krithiga! Oh the planning! But yeah, totally worth it :-)
I'm glad the post has made the place intriguing :-)
Thanks for visiting..keep coming :-)

sachin prabhu said...

beautiful :)

Leena Walawalkar said...

Thanks Sachin, for stopping by, and for the compliment :-)

Ashwini Sarnaik said...

Omg! I didnt knew you had to replan the whole vaccation...great you could manage it well wth the time running out..glad you enjoyed:-)

Leena Walawalkar said...

Yeah Ashu, it was fun indeed! And memorable, cos it was our first with Agastya :-)

Neena Prabhudesai said...

heard about Bintan for the first time.....im sure after reading your post there will be many more heading to Bintan for their weekend break :)

Leena Walawalkar said...

Yeah I hadn't heard about Bintan before moving to Singapore either!

Maniparna Sengupta Majumder said...

Beautiful place..so serene and peaceful... :-) The name of the hotel is also unique... :-)

Thanks for visiting my blog....that brought me here and I'm happy to find this wonderful blog of yours... :-)

Leena Walawalkar said...

Hey thanks Manipurna for the sweet words :-)

Am glad you dropped by..keep coming!

dilipnaidu said...

Gorgeous pics. Would love to savor the exotic beauty of this place. Cheers.

Leena Walawalkar said...

You should definitely try it!