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Batam is one of the 3,000 islands, which make up the Riau Archipelago and is closest to Singapore, which is only 20 km away or twenty minutes by air-conditioned ferry. The 415kms island has a population of 700,000 most of whom are Malays (85%) and Chinese (14%). A few indigenous Orang Laut tribes still live in the island.

Batam can be reached by ferries from the islands of Singapore, Bintan and Karimun. 3 different ferry operators, Penguin, Batam Fast and WaveMaster, provide services between Batam and Singapore daily. Ferries from Singapore will drop off and pick up passengers from one of the 5 international terminals in Batam: Teluk Senimba (Waterfront City), Sekupang, Batam Center, Batu Ampar (Harbour Bay) and Nongsa Pura.

Batam's air travel is handled at the Hang Nadim International Airport. The Indonesian government is planning to build a bridge linking the islands Batam and Bintan.

In addition to the oil support industries of Batu Ampar and a fast growing electronics industry, Batam now attracts increasing numbers of tourists. Many come from Singapore for a short holiday with friends and family, duty-free shopping and great seafood. The visitors to Singapore hope over for a day or weekend trip.

from : http://www.millennium-tours.com