Discover a lake surrounded by boulders of kaolin clay, step foot on a disappearing island and book a stay at an eco-friendly private resort, all on a trip to Indonesia’s Belitung.
We all know and love a good Bali vacay. But what happens when you want a quiet retreat on a pristine, under-the-radar island? Enter Belitung, a beautiful island off the eastern coast of Sumatra, a lesser-known destination that’s an excellent place to discover untouched nature and island-hop to other hidden gems.
Belitung’s natural beauties
Before we get into the islands that you can hop to, there’s lots to check out on Belitung island. Head to Kaolin Lake and prepare to be wowed. This gorgeous lake was once a mining area and is now an attraction featuring turquoise waters and sandy white banks. The ashy white boulders by the water get their distinct colour from kaolinite, a clay mineral that former miners in the area extracted for industrial use.
Kaolin Lake, Perawas, Tanjung Pandan, Belitung Regency, Bangka Belitung Islands 33411, Indonesia
Many dub the Tanjung Tinggi Beach as a must-see when visiting the island, and it’s easy to see why. Striking granite boulders border the clear waters, with coral reefs and marine life waiting to be discovered once you get your snorkelling mask on. Stay for the sunset to see the prettiest colours in the sky.
Tanjung Tinggi Beach, Kecamatan Sijuk, Belitung Island, Indonesia
Island living… even if it’s just for a weekend
Island-hop from Belitung to explore other pieces of paradise. Leebong Island is home to mangrove swamps and a tropical forest, plus a special surprise at the coast during low tide: This time of the day reveals the marine life underneath, with starfish, crabs and all peeking out to say hi.
Leebong Island, Pegantungan, Badau, Belitung Regency, Bangka Belitung Islands 33452, Indonesia
This one is an incredible find! We recommend making a pit stop at Pasir Island in the morning, and returning (if you can locate it) when the tide rises. This island appears as a small beach with nothing but a bank of sand during low tide, and completely disappears in the arvo when the tide comes back up!
Pasir Island, near Kepayang Island (Keciput, Sijuk, Belitung Regency, Bangka Belitung Islands 33414), Bangka Belitung Islands, Indonesia
Plant yourself at a private resort
Only have a weekend to spare? If you just want to laze at a resort for a quick getaway with no planning needed, book a stay at the eco-friendly Arumdalu Private Resorts. This beachfront destination is conveniently located by a lush forest and white sand private beach, so you can easily do some nature exploration if you’ve had your fair share of sipping margaritas by the pool. The resort has your meals covered too, of course – think Indonesian, Chinese, Western and Japanese cuisines made with organic ingredients and the freshest catches.
Arumdalu Private Resorts, Jalan Batu Lubang, Padang Kandis, Membalong, Padang Kandis, Membalong, Kabupaten Belitung, Kepulauan Bangka Belitung 33452, Indonesia
How to get there
Fly AirAsia to Belitung via Kuala Lumpur Airport or from Jakarta’s Soekarno–Hatta International Airport: This carrier flies four times weekly from Kuala Lumpur to Belitung and seven times weekly from Jakarta.
This post is in partnership with AirAsia.