The island of Batam is the largest city in Riau Island province. Riau Island province has around 3200 islands with its capital at Tanjung Pinang, south of Bintan Island. It is made up of Riau Archipelago (principal core group of islands in the Riau Island province), Tudjuh Archipelago and the Lingga Archipelago.
The Riau Archipelago is the principal core group of islands located south of Singapore in the Riau Island province. The main islands are Batam, Rempang, Galang, Bintan, Combol, Kundur, and Karimun.
The Tudjuh Archipelago is a large group of islands in northwestern Indonesia, off the west and northwest coast of the island of Borneo in the South China Sea. It consists of four main island groups, the Badas Islands, the Tambelan Islands, the Natuna Islands, and the Anambas Islands.
The Lingga Archipelago, south of the main Riau Archipelago, along both sides of the equator consists of Lingga, Singkep, Sebangka, Bakung, Selayar, Posik, Serak, Lalang, Temiang, Mesawak, Petong, Abang Besar.
Batam and Bintan is being separated by the Riau Strait. The island of Batam is located south of Singapore, west of Bintan Island, north of Rempang and east of Bulan Island. The island has a land mass of 715 km² with the populations of 1.15 million. The local governmental offices are in Batam Centre. The largest community on the island is Nagoya. Other residential areas include Baloi Garden, Sekupang, Nongsapura (Nongsa), Waterfront City (Teluk Senimba), Batu Ampar and Jodoh.
Being a tropical country, the average temperatures is between 26-32°C. Humidity ranges from 73% to 96%. The wet season is from November to April and dry season from May to October with an average annual rainfall of 2,600 mm.
Travelling to Batam
Batam is accessible by ferry and with around 8 ferry operators connecting from Singapore and Johor Bahru, Malaysia, travelling is made easy with hourly travelling schedule. The five ferry terminals on Batam island are Harbourbay, Nongsapura Ferry Terminal, Sekupang, Waterfront City and Batam Centre International Ferry Terminal.
Diving around Batam
Diving is generally better around the Lingga Archipelago, south east of Batam. A typical diving day starts with a land transfer from Batam to Pulau Galang, 40 km south east of Batam. A chain of 6 bridges, known as the Barelang Bridge, connect the islands of Batam, Rempang, and Galang. Pulau Galang belongs to a group of three islands called Barelang (abbreviation of Batam-Rempang-Galang) in the Riau Archipelago. Dive sites likes Petong and Pulau Abang Besar features nice drop off and plenty of sea fans. Average depth ranges from 10 to 35 meters with visibility around 10 meters. Ship wrecks are not uncommon in this region and some divers managed to locate a world war 2 Japanese zero fighter plane wreck a decade ago. Jetty dives are popular among the local divers and open water dive sites are easily accessible by boat provided by local operators. Scubapeople organize Batam diving trips departing from Singapore harbour front center on a daily basis. The locals and the tourists have a choice of a few dive operators located in Batam for diving around Batam.
Check out our video to get a better picture of what you can see in Batam
Click on ScubaPeople Batam Video