Bangka: Off To a Hidden Paradise (Day 1)

Posted by Fico , Wednesday, March 3, 2010 5:25 PM

Right on valentine days February 14, 2010, where Chinese also celebrate lunar new year, the year of the tiger (miaww!) i wake up earlier. Rushing to get ready to go to Boom Baru, Palembang sea port.

Its been two night i spent my day in Palembang, staying at a friend from same office in BLK area.
Been very nice there and i already get my boat ticket to Bangka Island. I get it from a ticketing agent at Jln Lingkar no 20C/Lingkar street #20C (phone number: 0711-364581). I use "Sumber Bangka" fast boat. The ticket price is Rp 161.500,- and i also get shuttle bus (its cheaper if you get it with the boat ticket) from Mentok (Bangka harbor) to Sungai Liat town (where my friend live) with the price Rp 60.000,- All shuttle car price from Mentok to other destination have same price Rp 60.000,- (even to the other harbor-Pangkal Balam).

Good news is there are straight flight from Jakarta to Pangkal Pinang (Depati Amir Airport), Bangka. Direct flight from Jakarta to Pangkal Pinang, Bangka are: Sriwijaya Air (4 flights/day), Lion Air, Batavia Air, Mandala Airlines. If you want to start from Palembang, they also have a direct flight to this pretty island with Sriwijaya Air, its a very early flight at 06.00 am and only one flight/day.

I am quite lucky because i got the ticket at the Lunar new year day. Lots of chinese went to Bangka since two days before the owner said. I had to wake up at 5.20, did packing night before and go shower and double check my stuff. My friend family, already wake up and they want to take me to the harbor (luv yaaa all!!).



From BLK we went to "Boom Baru" harbor. Its Palembang port/harbor for passenger at 6.35 am. You will see boats-ferry from/to Jakarta and Medan here too. I just check in, the officer will take the "boarding pass" off the ticket and i have to pay Boom Baru Port Tax Rp 3.500,- to the officer.

There's actually two boat going to Bangka island. The other boat is "Express Bahari" but it leave Boom Baru Palembang on mid day (around 12-1pm). Express Bahari is cheaper than Sumber Bangka, but i don't know exactly how much the ticket is.




The boat is quite comfy. Its the same type like the one that i use crossing Batam to Singapore. The difference is its not well maintain and its more crowded. I could also see the life jacket under the seat, so its good. The AC work just fine not too cold. I also saw the same view of plastic chair for extra passenger, but thankfully there are no extra passenger but the seat are full (100-150 passenger?)! You could put your luggage at the compartment/checked luggage, but i choose to carry my backpack inside the boat and put that near the TV area, place where i could see it (its over 13 kgs!). There are economy class right on the top back of the boat. The economy seat had no AC and i think they had great view ! I cold also see lots of boxes, motorcycles, new bicycles, plants (dont ask! haha), even cupboard and bed (lol) tied on the back of the boat.

My boat leave Boom Baru at 7.05 am, its scheduled at 7.00 am. The weather is not so good the sly is grey and cloudy. Ive been prepare for bad weather and high wave as lots of people said to me. But instead of high wave its a very smooth sail. We had to go trhough Musi River for 2 hours and open sea for another 1 hour. During on the Musi River the boat have to go very slow, because there are plenty wooden houses along the river bank. And, bad news, no snack along the sail, only a cup of mineral water. But you could get instant noodle and bread sold on this ship.

The view that i got is almost identically with Batanghari river in Jambi. The difference maybe with the floating house. Jambi government not allowed people to build floating houses along the river bank since like 10 years ago, so the river bank would be wide and clean to ship to sail.


At 7.46 the boat amazingly went to full speed and i know we are right on the river mouth (muara) and yes i could feel the wave not long after that. Its not too big, that i still could walk inside the boat. The views is amazing, crytal clear blue sea seemed endless with the sky. And i could smell the fresh salty air!

From distance i could see Bangka Island with a RED LIGHT HOUSE, its so beautiful.

I arrive in Mentok port/harbor in Bangka Island at 9.55 am. Bring my backpack, some people call me Mr Bule for some reason (hahaha!), i walk pass to the passenger bridge to the main building, here we go the porter/people who offer to carry your bag, taxi guys, and i dont't know hahaha so many! but i am happy just consider them as people who pick me up (T.T)

I walk to the parking lot and ask a guy who walk where my shuttle car is. I saw on a white paper on my ticket said "Garuda 14"--shuttle number to Sungai Liat. He just walk by and said, "no i didn't see it, you better use bus over there".. yada ya yada ya... i know this game.. hahah! so i just ognore that guy and just look more intensively through the crowded parking lot.

I saw plenty white shuttle bus and there are numbers on it. Bingo! i just look up and find it!! #14 on 2nd last row of the parking lot! the driver seemed very busy so i ask if its the correct shuttle and he said yes jump in !

Hahahah!! so guys.. if you read this.. once again! ASK MORE PEOPLE!

I jump in and sit nicely between a lady and a young guy. The passenger include me are 8 people. I sit on the last row. The shuttle car leave Muntok Port at 10.10 am.

It took me another 3 hours to go to Sungai Liat. Pangkal Pinang is more further, it took 1 hr to go from Sungai Liat. We stop once at a Restaurant in Kelapa region. The toilets are much more cleaner than most of toilets i saw on my trip between Jambi and Palembang. The restaurant also clean. But i didn't eat, just get my self a fresh melon juice (oh its very refreshing!!) for Rp 15,000,-

I arrive at my friend house almost at 1.20 pm. Very hungry! get some rest and go for little sight seing around the small town of Sungai Liat, planning for next day destination.

I am in Bangka, yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay!



Total Expenses Day 1:
Fast Boat from Boom Baru, Palembang-Muntok, Bangka Island: Rp 161,500,-
Shuttle Car from Muntok Port to Sungai Liat: Rp 60,000,-
Boom Baru, Palembang Port Tax: Rp 3,500,-

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