The Bangka-Belitung Islands are paradise on earth. The island group consists of Bangka and Belitung Islands, as well as a few other smaller islands. The main attraction of all these islands are undoubtedly the lovely, long, pristine and tout-free beaches lined with clear, turquoise waters that are surprisingly calm and shallow, making them perfect for snorkeling, diving, sailing, kayaking, and swimming.
Whether you stay in Bangka or Belitung Island, there are numerous islands just off shore – some so close, they can be reached by swimming – that make for perfect day trips. Here’s a guide to island hopping and beach exploration around the beautiful Bangka-Belitung Islands!
A Guide to the Beaches of Bangka Island
Bangka Island is home to some seriously beautiful beaches, but the tourism industry is not as developed here as on its sister island Belitung and some of the beaches are not so well maintained. Here’s a guide to some of the more popular beaches!
Parai Tenggiri Beach
This just might be the most beautiful beach on Bangka Island, but it is a bit commercial. There is a 25,000 IDP ($2.50 USD) charge per person to enter the beach. But apart from this – it’s paradise. Beautiful white sandy beaches with granite rock formations perched artistically in the shoreline.
The water is crystal clear, the sand is soft and smooth and empty of any sharp corals. And there are breezy palm trees providing shade. This beach will make you want to lie down and stay all day.
Tanjung Pesona Beach
Beautiful beach with pristine, fine white sands, crystal clear waters and an unobstructed view that seems to stretch forever into the horizon.
Matras Beach is often considered the best beach on Bangka Island and commonly referred to as ‘Heaven Beach.’ The beach is around 3 kilometers long – perfect for those long walks on the beach – and it’s nearly 30 meters wide, making it great for a number of beach sports. And it’s all unspoiled, fine white sand complete with coconut trees to take shade under.
Thanks to its location, Remondong Beach is the perfect beach to catch the sunset. But that doesn’t mean it’s not beautiful in the daytime – it’s a slightly sloping beach that stretches around 4 kilometers long, covered in sandy soft white sand.
There are wonderfully shaped granite boulders and white sand everywhere as well as that perfect breeze wafting through the palm trees here. At low tide, you can even walk straight out into the middle of the clear blue sea.
Tanjung Penyusuk Beach
Penyusuk Beach is close by Remondong and a very unique beach. It has a natural slope to it and the beach is scattered with colorful stones. Large stones hold back big waves, providing Penyusuk with a natural sanctuary. And of course, there are crystal clear waters, fine white sand, and charm galore.
Pasir Padi Beach
Pasir Padi Beach is a sloping white sand beach with lovely calm waves, but the beach is tends to be a little dirty. Still, this beach is worth checking out – preferably around meal time – for the delicious seafood restaurants that dot the shoreline.
Bangka does have some fantastic beaches, but Belitung is paradise – no trip to the Bangka-Belitung Islands are complete without exploring the beaches of Belitung! Here are the best ones:
The perfect north-coast beach to catch the sunrise.
Beautiful, pristine beach with fine white sand and water so clear you can see straight through. Amazingly odd granite stones adorn the beach like large, floating gemstones. Seru Beach is in Penyabungan village, a 45-minute drive from Tanjung Pandan.
Spend the day climbing atop the bigger rocks and gazing out into the deep blue sea.
Awan Mendung Beach
Awan Mendung Beach literally translates to ‘cloudy sky beach.’ The shoreline shows a row of broken trees, which lend a unique ambiance to this remote beach.
Pantai Tanjung Tinggi
This is going to be the beach most recommended to you while you’re in Belitung. It’s in the northwestern corner of the island and its claim to fame is that it was the beach featured in the famous Laskar Pelangi. The beautiful beach is stunning – white sands and turquoise waters are set off by two peninsulas with artistic granite boulders.
There’s also plenty to explore underwater here – the calm, clear waters make it an ideal snorkeling spot.
Panti Tanjung Kelayang
This is probably the longest beach in Belitung – measuring at around 1.2 kilometers long. Beautiful place to take in granite boulders on the southern end as well as explore several small nearby islands, which make the perfect snorkeling spots.
Thanks to its proximity to the nearby islands, Panti Tanjung Kelayang is used as the jump-off spot for island hopping trips.
Pantai Burung Mandi
Pantai Burung Mandi, aka ‘bird bath beach’ is on the northeast corner of Belitung and the site of an ancient harbor used by the Dutch and Chinese over 200 years ago. Now, as the site of an annual outrigger sailboat race, you’ll find hundred of picturesque Manggar outrigger boats parked along the beach.
This little-known beach is the perfect beach-side retreat. Located a little over 90km from Tanjung Pandan, Punai Beach is at the south end of the island. As of now, the people are are mostly fisherman looking for fresh fish. You can, of course, buy these fresh fish from the fisherman for a tasty lunch.
This is great beach for swimming, fishing, and snorkeling as well. Or just relax and contemplate the array of granite rocks decorating the shoreline.
All these beaches on the island of Belitung are lively, but no trip to Belitung would be complete without island hopping…
You’ll find both natural beauty and a wealth of culture on Lengkuas Island. The tiny island is a 30-minute boat ride from Belitung Island and once you arrive, you’ll find a beautiful island of white sands, turquoise waters as well as a Lighthouse that was built by the Dutch in 1882.
Wash your feet with fresh water and climb the 199 steps to get breathtaking views of the entire island. Cool down afterwards with a swim and some snorkeling. Walk around and chat with the locals while enjoying some local seafood afterwards – Lengkuas Island is the only island apart from Kepayang Island (below) on which people live so take advantage of it!
Batu Berlayar Island
Striking island full of those odd and wonderful granite rocks – huge, looming, and striking.
Pasir Island disappears at high tide so you’ll have to time it right – the entire island is just sand with turquoise waters all around.
This is our favorite island among a group of favorite islands around Belitung. Kepayang is the largest island among the handful of exotic islands along the northwestern coast of Belitung and is also referred to as Babi (‘pig’) island. This is the only island apart from Lengkuas Island where people actually live. You can reach Kelayang in around 10 minutes from Belitung, usually with a stopover at sandy Pasir Island.
Much like the rest of the Belitung islands, there are gorgeous beaches here – white sand, clear turquoise waters – but Kepayang elevates itself above the rest in a few ways:
- It is home to the Kepayang Island Conservation Center where you can tour a turtle sanctuary where baby turtles are bred and kept ’til they’re strong enough for the sea. There’s also a beautiful coral garden built and maintained here in an attempt to restore the coral reef that’s been threatened by the local fishing activity.
- Diving. Fantastic diving. Kepayang has a Dive Center that rents diving equipment and has qualified dive guides is necessary.
- Scenery: The granite boulder formation on this island is nothing short of stunning. You can make your way from Kepayang to a tiny island just off its southwestern coast – this little island is named Babi Kecil and it around twice the size of a tennis court. The entire island is full of coconut trees and granite boulders covering pretty much the entire surface of the island. It is an incredible sight. As for underwater, there are great coral reefs here – bring a snorkel!
- From in front of the dive center, there’s a white sand beach where you can see the Lengkuas Island Lighthouse and the sunset at the same time…perfection.
In case you get the urge to stay around on Kepayang Islands for awhile, here are some accommodations offered by the Conservation Center.