Not the pasar malam we're expecting
The items are quite expesively priced..and they tell you that its already discounted heavily. I didnt buy much here except for the prawn crackers and a few souveniers(which is cheaper compared to the shop in Bintan Lagoon Resort). The other stuffs like shirts, dress...damn EX!
Pasar Ole Ole - could do better
It's a purpose built tourist village/collection of shops in Bintan Resorts. It's one of the few places to actually go and do any shopping up there so most people will end up there at some point.
Unique Suggestions: Although it's a bit of a naff place to go, prices for things like drinks and toiletries are cheaper than in the resort hotels, so if you want to stock up on drinks and snacks, it would be worth making the trip out there (S$6 return per adult from Nirwana - prices vary I think, depending which resort you're at). A can of beer at POO (as it is aptly nicknamed!) can cost as little as S$2, compared to $9 or more in the bars at some of the resorts.
Fun Alternatives: There isn't really an alternative, apart from going to the main town (Tanjong Pinang) which is a lot further south and would be about 2-3 hours round trip.
bring Spore Dollar when you're shopping
Eventhough Bintan Island is part of Indonesia, but dont get it wrong, when you visit Bintan resort area, you have to pay everything in Spore Dollar!!
otherwise if you still wanna pay in Rupiahs, they will convert the currency from SGD to Rp !
But I dont think this is happening if you go to other part of bintan like in Tanjung Pinang or Tanjung Uban
Unique Suggestions: bring your credit card!
Pasar Sayange is the place you can buy souvenirs, but they also charge in Spore rates, so if you dont bring cash, they take Credit Card
- Road Trip
travellers would usually changed their currency to local currency. But at bintan, there's no need to do so. They accept USD and SGD. Changed some ruppiah, but never get to used them as paid in SGD instead.
Unique Suggestions: Change some ruppiah if u are travelling to other indonesia islands.
Fun Alternatives: Bring SGD or USD instead.
Fake(??) Polo shirts
Pasar Oleh Oleh has a store. Bintan Lagoon Resort has a store. "Polo" brand shirts and apparels going for cheap at these places. Very popular among Singaporean holidayers. A long sleeve office shirt costs about S$10-S$15. However, unlike the same namesake, the quality is inferior and the shirt soon sags under the torture of washing.
Unique Suggestions: You can get this for casual outings, perhaps.
Fun Alternatives: Save the money. Don't buy.
- Spa and Resort
- Family Travel
- Budget Travel
Pasar Oleh Oleh
I guess most people will classify this as a tourist trap. But honestly, I like the place. The prices of the things at the minimart here are significantly cheaper than what the minimarts in the hotels and resorts are charging, and there is a much better variety available as well.
The restaurant here, Cafe Helo Helo, is also good and a meal here can be had for usually S$10 ~ S$20, depending on what you order. For example, while the fried rice is less than S$4, seafood dishes like chilli-crabs are easily above S$20 per serving.
The "tourist trap" part is probably because there are some souvenir shops and fashion stores which are really really "touristy". Forget the souvenir shops though because the artifacts sold seemed very mass market and do not look "authentic". They are quite ugly too....
Unique Suggestions: If you need to get gift items for friends and family and do not mind giving perishable items, I think the "Kueh Lapis" (layer cake) (S$10 each) makes a great gift!
The restaurant, Cafe Helo Helo, is actually quite okay, but if you are looking for cheaper fare, try the nearby Pujasera, which is a 5 minutes walk away.
Fun Alternatives: You can also visit Tanjung Pinang, which is the real deal. But for most travellers, a visit to Bintan is usually a 3 days 2 nights or 2 days 1 night affair, and somehow the cost (S$88) and time (1.5 hours) needed for the travel do not really justify.
Ole Ole market.
I think Ole Ole market is a tourist trap. It is just a market place designed for tourists to buy souvenirs. If you are interested in getting some normal tourists souvenirs, then this is the place. But I prefer something from Tanjung Pinang.
- Family Travel
- Budget Travel
Dont think that this place are free from hassle, it is just less hassle but still it's hassles though.
Guy who approached us and could speak english a little, give us a price for the boat to Pulau Penyengat. Beware a little as he try to rip you off. You could go direct to the pier with a good deal.
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