Located off the coast of mainland Sumatra, Bangka Belitung Island is famed for its idyllic beaches with blissful white sand, iconic granite boulders, and palm trees. But beyond the translucent water and hypnotizing sunsets, the locality is also home to impressive cultural and historical landmarks—many of which are heritage buildings from the colonial era—that suit the charming natural view. From this archipelago, tourists can also venture to the surrounding smaller inhabited islands for even more pristine natural beauty.
Although not as popular as Bali or Lombok, Belitung is blessed with some of the best beaches of the country. The sand is soft and as white as palm sugar, and some even argue that the sand here is even whiter than that in Bali. Belitung is also surrounded by more than 100 small islands. Almost all of them are decorated with white sand and granite rocks, and only a few are inhabited. One island in particular, the Lengkuas Island is the site of a 19th-century antique lighthouse. The Light House was built in Dutch colonial times and offers a beautiful overview of the area. Burung (Birds) Island, Babi (Pig) Island, Pengadaran Island, Lutung Island, Kera (Apes) Island and Jenang Island, are among some of the smaller islands that offer great experiences.
Belitung is small enough that some interesting points on the island can be reached in less than two hours from Tanjung Pandan. However, taxis are non-existant and public transportation on the island is hard to find, so the only practical way to move around is to rent a car or a motorcycle.
From Jakarta, the easiest way to get to Belitung is obviously by airplane. There are several daily Boeing 737 aircraft served by Sriwijaya Air leaving from Jakarta’s Soekarno Hatta airport direct to Hanandjoeddin Airport in Tanjung Pandan, Belitung. All flights from Jakarta to Belitung depart from Soekarno-Hatta Airport. The flight takes 45 minutes.
Alternatively, you can take the Sea route by PELNI passenger ship from the Tanjung Priok harbor, in Jakarta. Keep in mind that the ship only serves to travel to Belitung once every 2 weeks. The journey will take about 24 hours.
From the Provincial capital, Pangkalpinang, you can get to Belitung Island by taking the daily Bahari speed boats that will take 4 hours. This is by far the most convenient means of Sea transportation and comes complete with an air conditioner. Bahari Express leaves daily at 14:00 pm from Pangkalpinang, Bangka, to Belitung, and leaves at 07:00 am from Tanjungpandan Belitung to Pangkalpinang.