Your Guide to Finding Serenity in +62
December 30, 2016
This isn’t a Batam spin-off of Eat, Pray, Love but here are four religious sites for you to find a peace of mind if you ever hop on a ferry ride and speed off to seek some adventure, 20km south of Singapore.
1 – Masjid Raya Batam
Also known as The Grand Mosque, Masjid Raya Batam stands tall and adjacent to Bukit Clara’s iconic “Welcome to Batam” sign; designed in a Holly Wood fashion to catch the eye even before one reaches the shores of the island.
The biggest mosque in Riau Archipelago, Masjid Raya Batam has been the pride of Batam’s Muslim community and a prominent landmark in Batam City Government Center since its construction in 1999.
Visitors who may have missed its grand, Middle Eastern flair in the day would not be disappointed by the majestic view of Masjid Raya Batam in the evening.
Designed by Indonesian architect Ir. Achmad Noe’man, Masjid Raya Batam was built without the iconic decorative domes that adorned many mosques around the world. Instead, it features a three-tiered equilateral pyramid above the prayer hall, minimising the usage of pillars and maximising the space for worship.
Masjid Raya Batam is an eight-minute walk and a five-minute drive away from Batam Center Ferry Terminal.
Address: Jl. Engku Putri, Teluk Bering, Batam Center, Batam, Indonesia 29444
Opening Hours: 8.00am – 8.00pm
2 – Adhi Vinayakar Temple and Pura Agung Amertha Bhuana Temple
A distinctive Hindu temple ensconced in the quiet of Sei Ladi Hills, Adhi Vinayakar Temple is a sacred place of worship for the Hindu community in Batam. The Hindu God of Wisdom, Adhi Vinayakar is also known as Nara Mukha Vinayakar.
Built in 1999, the temple shares the same compound with the open-air Pura Agung Amertha Bhuana, a Balinese Hindu temple that houses an 18-metre tall Padmasana – a lotus throne for the God Almighty.
Padma in Kawi language (Old Javanese) refers to “lotus flower” while asana means “to be seated”.
While non-Hindu visitors may not gain access to Adhi Vinayakar Temple, Pura Agung Amertha Bhuana is open for all. Non-Hindu visitors are advised to clarify which compound are off limits before proceeding to explore the serene vicinity.
Planning to visit the Sei Ladi Hills during lunch hour? Visit Kak Dadut vegetarian restaurant (Pondok Santai Kak Dadut) for a Balinese dining experience in Batam! Kak Dadut Restaurant is located just below the flight of stone steps that lead to Adhi Vinayakar Temple and Pura Agung Amertha Bhuana.
Address: Sei Ladi, Batam, Riau, Indonesia. Located next to Kak Dadut Restaurant.
Opening Hours: 8.00am – 6.00pm
3 – Maha Vihara Duta Maitreya Temple
Established in 1991, Bukit Beruntung’s (Mount Lucky) Maha Vihara Duta Maitreya Temple is home to many exquisite sculptures of the Laughing Buddha. One of Southeast Asia’s largest Buddhist Temples, the Duta Maitreya Temple also houses devotion halls for Guanyin (Goddess of Mercy), Guan Gong and Gautama Buddha.
Did you know Maitreya is a bodhisattva prophesied as the successor to Gautama Buddha? With a joyous face and a full belly, The Laughing Buddha is a Chinese depiction of Maitreya based on a benevolent, eccentric Chinese monk who lived over a thousand years ago!
Nicknamed “Pu-Tai” or “Budai” (Cloth Sack), the Laughing Buddha carries his few possessions in a cloth sack while spreading joy.
Visitors of Maha Vihara Duta Maitreya Temple would discover this serene compound is not only home to is home to a vegetarian restaurant, but also an auditorium, clinic, souvenir shop and even private school (kindergarten through high school)!
Built on 2 November 1991 and inaugurated on 23 January 1999, admission is free and Bahasa Indonesian speaking tour services are available at no cost!
Address: Kompleks Maha Vihara Duta Maitreya, Bukit Beruntung, Sei Panas, Batam Center, Indonesia 29456
Opening Hours: 8.00am – 8.00pm
4 – Tua Pek Kong Temple
Otherwise known as Vihara Budhi Bhakti Temple, the vibrant Tua Pek Kong Temple in Nagoya is the oldest Taoist temple in Batam.
Popular amongst devotees from Malaysia and Singapore, the Tua Pek Kong features an open-air devotion hall folklore-centric wall murals as well as two magnificent seven-tier pagodas adjacent to the temple entrance with open braziers for devotees to burn joss paper as offerings.
While the temple’s principal Taoist deity is Tua Pek Kong, one might spot a prayer corner for Buddha Sakyamuni.
Visitors looking for photo spots would be surprised by the number of statues scattered around Vihara Budhi Bhakti’s courtyard; featuring notable characters from ancient Chinese folklore!
Address: Jl. Imam Bonjol Kompleks, Windsor Central, Nagoya, Batam, Indonesia
Opening Hours: 6.00am – 6.00pm
Ready to let go of some shopping time for a few hours of tranquillity? Don’t forget to favourite these places and check them into your WOWgetaways itinerary!