Bintan is an Indonesian Island that is located very close to Singapore .
This qualified it for a short Anniversary weekend break we were seeking(Nov 2015) .
Bintan has a plethora of resorts . It is currently at the same stage where Bali was about 5 years back. Infact , its International airport would be operational from 2017 , putting it directly in the international tourist circuit.
Groupon is full of deals on Bintan and we zeroed in on the newly opened Bintan Canopi Resort. We were quite excited about it since its a Glam-camp coupled with amazing water sports facilities. However , it was choc-a-bloc on our dates and for a month to follow. (A word of advice here , check on the availability with the tour operator first and then do the booking on Groupon ,unfortunately our money got blocked on Groupon due to resort being full on our dates). Hence we settled in on The Bintan Lagoon Resort , which is the oldest but a huge property(try to get a room in the new wing of the resort) .It was under an hour ferry ride from Singapore and pleasantly there is no requirement of visa for Indians .The ferry can be boarded from the Tanah Merah terminal.
The property is not very luxurious but has tones of activities to keep anyone busy . Right from Segway to ATV rides ,to Batik workshops, to Archery , Mangrove tours , spa , foot massage , hence , on our day 1, there were lot of bucket list ticks and not a single dull moment . Apart from this , we also spent time on the beach making castles????.There was nothing much to do outside the resort though . We did go to a mall for shopping, but it only had repetitive Polo shops .
I have been disappointed with food throughout Indonesia????
But , the highlight of this trip was Max Air Super Drifter 912 ,Sea-Plane. You can take a flight in this cockpit-less , two-seater ,open sea-plane at Air Adventure Flying Club and it is one of its kind in the entire South-East Asia . The pilot Stu ,is the owner and has been flying commercial for about 20 years. Getting through to them can get difficult as they don't have a land-line. Ours was the first slot of the day but was cancelled due to bad weather(or so we were told). Disappointed , we kept following up with them and finally got lucky as they managed to accommodate us in between 2 slots. (Since, that was our final day on the island) .
The entire experience was of me jumping with excitement and of getting lost in the dreams of flying even before we landed on the island. However once it was time, I was frozen by fear???? .I think I was more scared because there was neither any safety briefing nor were we given any safety gear ????(we did sign the indemnity bond, though).On checking with them , without even batting an eyelid everybody gave us verbal assurance that it was really safe ,would have preferred some safety gear though.
I guess the best way to overcome fear is to just get into the act without thinking too much and to not think even during the act.Though, the most exhilarating experiences are when you are completely consumed and drenched by fear and still you get into it and come out successful.
I followed the first approach.
Suspended 1000 feet above sea level , the view was breath-taking . The sky was clear that time and we could see 40 Kms both sides, so could see both Malaysia and The Bintan island.Next day when I woke up, the scenery was etched in my mind and I felt as if I was still in air ,staring at the point where the earth and the sea met.
One thing is for sure,such experiences definitely teach you more about yourself than anything else...... To more such experiences which widen my limit......
Disclaimer: the views expressed are solely mine and I do not have any affiliation to any person or organization.
Trip first published on Rachita's Travel Tales