I’ve always thought a vacation at a private island looks interesting so I jumped at a chance to celebrate my birthday this year at Telunas Private Island. Telunas has 2 properties, one being the beach resort which is more family oriented while the private island is prided as a more luxurious and intimate escape. We booked everything online and leave them with booking our ferry tickets as well since it’s a one-stop service. All we need is to collect our ferry tickets at Batam Fast and off we go!
The ferry was quite empty given we departed on a weekday and the 45 minutes ride to Sekupang breezed by quickly
Even passport control was empty, which was a stark contrast to Harbour Bay And when we exited we didn’t see anyone that looked like staffs from Telunas and wondered if they had forgotten about us. Lol. Eventually they turned up and we had to walk a short distance to the domestic ferry terminal where we caught our sampan to Telunas!
So your luggages go on to the van while..
We walk to the domestic terminal which is a short walk away
And we started singing dayung sampan. The staffs laughed at us. lol
But here’s the modified fisherman’s boat
Fruits and water was given to us when we boarded but given it was a 1.5 hour ferry ride, we decided less fluid will be ideal. The boat ride was uneventful though very windy and we caught sights of more islands and villages along the way
A wefie first!
Our direction man who looked really lonely out there
The guide told us this is a handmade fish trap where nearby fishermen will cast their nets over these sticks so when the current is strong enough to cast the fish over, they will be caught! So interesting
And soon enough we spotted our turtle-shaped island in view and we excitedly off boarded. We were welcomed by the staffs with towels and a refreshing welcome drink before we settled for lunch at their dining area which overlooked the swimming pool. But first of course, taking lots of photos of the place! Sense our excitement. Lol
Our refreshing welcome drink!
The Dining Area
The Reading Lounge
Everyone’s favourite spot – The Pool
The menu for lunch and dinner will be written on the blackboard each day so guests can look forward to what is being served. Lunch comprises of salad, soup of the day, a pre-determined main and desserts
Salad + Soup of the Day
First meal – Pepes Ayam or Steamed Chicken in Banana Leaves
I have to say it actually tasted not bad!
Though desserts were a little questionable. The fried fritters were a little tough while the (house-made) icecream crumbled
After lunch, we checked in before we were sent off to our villa. But of cos checking out the view along the way
This is the ‘Recreation’ centre where you can kayak, stand-up paddle, borrow their volleyballs (and other balls that are available for play as well). The centre closes at 5pm daily so if you can basically entertain yourself for most of the day
View from the first bridge where the villas are in sight
We went on walking for a long time and we causally asked the staff – our villa is at the end right? And he laughed. I kid you not, it’s a really long walk. The way they cater to guests is that families with young kids will be located at the nearer villas so that the kids do not need to walk too far
And finally! We spent a long time taking photos of the place / instastory-ing. As you know, the villa has no air condition so you rely on the sea breeze and fans at night to keep you cool, which is actually not THAT bad. I have friends who went ‘omg no aircon? In this heat?!’ when they learnt about it. Haha. You will survive, trust me.
The 2 beds on the upper floor
And the masterbed which I have all to myself! Well, cos I’m the birthday girl 😉
They also have this slip of paper where you can request from housekeeping, regardless to keep or borrow so as to reduce wastage and only provide what guests need. I thought it was a brilliant idea to stay environmentally friendly
And to show you our stash for the next few days. Telunas Private Island has no corkage charge (yay) so you actually buy these drinks from DFS at Singapore Harbourfront Centre. Indonesia limit is 1 litre per pax so you can max out the number of drinks you can bring in. We got the snacks from 7-11 in Singapore after security screening too which was the best decision ever. And of course games that we brought over to keep us entertained though we never had the chance to play. Ha
And we decided the weather was too hot to stay dry. So we changed out and decided to try some of their water sports but first, making a reservation for our massage for the next day
Bonfire area – one of the island’s activities
The massage place is located near the jetty where the open tents overlook the endless sea and the view is best during sunset (usually 5.30pm)
Moving on to kayaking which I haven’t try for the longest time ever! So I was a little apprehensive. Momentarily forgotten how to kayak. Lol
It was fun still and we had the high tide so we could kayak without moving our paddle and we went around our villa before coming back to where we started
And basically spending the next few hours lazing in the pool, taking lots of photos and just chatting. There’s a bar beside the pool area as well which is called ‘The Sand Bar’
Yeps – literally filled with sand. You can make your drinks order here, chargeable of course, though I think it’s at a very reasonable price
So one Long Island Tea for me!
We wandered to the jetty to enjoy the sunset while also enjoying the best 3G connection you can find on the island. Lol yup the best connection is at the jetty!
It was a nice and slow enjoyable evening with the orange skies above us
Went back to shower before heading off for dinner which comprises of a 3-course meal
And here’s the menu this evening
Started with a chicken wanton soup, it was somewhat different to what we were expecting. You know how usually the meat is being minced first before wrapping with the wanton skin, the wanton here uses the whole chunk of chicken, which is well interesting
I had the Braised Beef with Mashed Potatoes. The amount of mashed potatoes was frightening and I thought the beef could be more tender
The friend had Garlic Prawn Skewer, Mushroom & Spinach Risotto which pretty much doesn’t take anything like risotto. Would prefer to call it prawns with rice though the combination did go very well with the belachan we requested for
And Green Tea Tiramisu which tasted vanilla sponge cake with a dash of green tea powder. It’s still quite edible just that expectations were a little mismatched. Lol
And then the staffs tried to surprise me with a birthday cake even though they asked me when to serve the cake instead of my friends. Lol. To side-track, I thought the cake tasted nicer than the dessert
Still, a happy photo together and yay, Happy Birthday to me!
The chef actually came around to say hello and wanted some feedback on the food. To be honest, I really wanted to tell her that the food can be improved but they left our table before I could finish saying what I wanted to say. Lol
And also after dinner the staffs will come around to take your breakfast order as part of their efforts to reduce food wastage as well. You can take your pick from any of the above. Well the menu is the same everyday, just FYI
We took a stroll around the island to gaze at the stars. Look at the insane amount of stars! It was really pretty to just enjoy the view at night
The highlight of the night was when we were all woken up by the thunderstorm. It was so loud and the waves were just crashing so badly one thought it was an earthquake, the other thought it was a tsunami and I thought the villa was going to sink. HA freaking hilarious. But the aftereffect of the rain was that the whole villa was covered by straw from the roof. Poor housekeeping
In any case, rise and shine the next day! And yeps the villa didn’t sink. The island life is that you carry a bottle everywhere you go. I’m kidding. But every morning, we will bring a bottle to the chiller so that we can have wine for lunch and every lunch we will bring one for dinner. I think other guests must be wondering how many bottles we have. Lol
We were the first for breakfast!
You can choose your blend of coffee from what is available, basically from strong, medium and slightly acidic. I went for the strong and they served it black for me which hey actually tasted not bad! They didn’t have any acidity in their coffee at all. I was impressed. And of course, a range of tea as well
And other things that were available – cereal and juices
Variety of bread, spread and pastries
My choice of breakfast – Nasi Uduk Komplit; Steamed Coconut Rice with Shredded Chicken, Egg, Fried Onions and Crackers
It reminded me of Nasi Lemak, and I wished they had a fried chicken in here too. Lol
And the friend had Omelette with Mushroom and Cheese
After breakfast we were just lazing around getting ready for the Daily Activity. Yeps the island has an activity everyday and it changes. It usually starts at 8.30am and ends around 10am so you can look forward to what is the activity for the day
Starting with a tour of the island
And we went in further to explore
Random Gift Shop
That’s the solar system
After walking for quite abit, we reached our destination!
The point of mangrove planting is to encourage marine life so that livelihood of fisherman can be sustained as well
Friends working very hard
A group shot with the hardworking friends and the eye-power me. Lol
It was more like a jungle trail/hike plus mangrove planting cos we were perspiring at the end of the activity. We passed by a secret spot that only staffs can have access to with the sign that says ‘4G here’ HAHA. It was like in the middle of forest!
So back to the pool we go
And for a long time..
Utilising our stash plus a bottle of beer to go along. Okay well, maybe 2
Lunch is served
Balinese-style Grilled Prawns, Vegetables and Egg Noodles
I love their choice of local Indonesian food. I think the standard is definitely higher than the choices available at dinner
And this belachan. Every meal we will request for spicy belachan cos their default belachan is more accustomed to people who can’t take the heat. I kid you not, our belachan progressively got darker very meal. Lol
Steamed Cassava Mixture served with Mixed Fruit Drink
Though the dessert was a little too hard for my liking and the mixed fruit drink tasted somewhat like chendol
After lunch, we went to our favourite hammock spot which is near the jetty so we can have some connection as well and lazed the whole afternoon away
Yeps we basically took afternoon nap here because the wind was so inviting. And the staffs kindly tied the blinds for us so we could have some shade. #10pointsforservice
Headed for our appointed massage at 4.30pm so we can catch the sunset at 5.30pm. Lol now everyone who reads this gonna take the same inspiration. We took the 60 minutes Telunas massage which was one of their popular massages
And the oil you can choose from. Can’t remember the exact choices being offered but we all went for the sandalwood 🙂
And that’s our view!
The whole 60 minutes flew by quickly. Honestly, the massage was not bad but not fantastic
So we excitedly wait for the sun to set while taking lots of photos but I have to admit the sunset the previous day was much nicer!
But still photo-worthy!
So we went back to our hammock spot and realize the friend left her camera there all these while and we were like wow – this place is really safe. HA
And it’s dinner time again!
So after every lunch the staffs will come around to take your order for dinner. I was a little half hearted to find out I’m going to have the SAME mashed potato again I actually asked if I could just have maggie mee (like indo mie) for dinner. Lol unfortunately the answer is no. We even went to the extent of looking through the kids menu but nothing was interesting. I’m sorry but the mashed potatoes were a little strange for my liking and I have no confidence in their western cooking. But I was overjoyed to know I could switch my mashed potatoes out for fries!! And so I did!
Thai Beef Salad which well looked more like salad with 2 stripes of beef
So eventually I went for the Oven Baked Chicken with Fries instead and I must say wow this oven baked chicken actually tasted not bad! I’m glad I went for the chicken
The friend had the Grilled Aubergine Tower with Potatoes which I didn’t hear much feedback from her. Ha. I considered silence as passable but nothing notable
Caramel Custard for desserts
Which was too sweet for my liking
We had another joke when the staffs took our breakfast order cos we all picked omelette as choice of breakfast. And he went that’s all? Nothing else? And we were like you mean we can order more than one item?? LOL. We told him we felt so hungry that morning cos we didn’t have enough and he burst out laughing. Okay so point here is you can order more than one item. So we ordered everything else that is on the menu. Lol
Which were a little dry
Which looked very questionable
I concluded that we should just stick to rice and eggs
Then we were off for our activity of the day – Village Tour. The village we visited was about 20-30 mins boat ride away and Telunas has a sponsorship program that encourages the kids at these villages to continue their education till they graduate which I thought was a very nice gesture
It was a simple village life with kids running around. The villagers gave us mangoes to bring back too
It started to rain as we head back to the island so we spend the next few hours napping at our villa before heading out for lunch. Yup we literally eat non-stop
And here’s the menu for lunch
They will check with you after breakfast if you are okay with the choice for lunch but when we asked if there are other options – there is none. Lol (so what’s the point here if I may ask)
They had a full salad bar on our last day, which happened to fall on a Saturday and I was really happy so I can pick those veggies that I eat. HA
In any case, I had my rice changed to noodles not that I was trying to be different but since they had such options, I would gladly make use of it. And I’m glad I did cos I love their egg noodles!! It’s probably the second best meal I had at the island. And the belachan they served at our last meal was like reddish green in colour. Omg
Desserts came in the form of Sticky Toffee Pudding which tasted quite nice. Probably one of the more successful desserts thus far
And after lunch we were just waiting for our turn to depart. I was glad that when we arrived at the island there were only 5 villas that were occupied cos by the time we left, there were 12 new guests slated to arrive that day!
The island life was simple, leisure and back to basics. Definitely a good break from the busy city life and somewhere you can consider if you want to tell your boss and colleagues – sorry this island has no WIFI, I’m uncontactable. Lol. Jokes aside, it’s a place I don’t mind returning since it’s really just a short trip from Singapore