To understand how Senggarang Village came to be occupied by mostly locals of Chinese descent, it’s necessary to understand how they ended up in the region to begin with. In the early 14th century, the Riau Islands where Bintan is situated was along the China-India maritime route, which means many Chinese and international merchants used to pass by Bintan, though many ended up robbed by the local pirates. However, later on in the 18th century, Bintan became a major trading centre for Chinese, Dutch, Arabic, British, and many other merchants, and this could be the time where some early immigrants settled down in Senggarang before also spreading out to other parts of the Riau Islands.
You can get to Senggarang village via boat or car, and when you arrive, you would be greeted by the sight of houses on stilts with walking paths alongside them, and most importantly, a variety of Chinese temples. The houses themselves have a quaint charm to them, making you feel like you’ve went back in time to an era where life was simple and village life was still the status quo. Of course, in the water, you’d also see boats that the locals use to go fishing in; fishing is one of Bintan’s economic activities in the past and also now. The scene here itself is great to add to your Instagram, but be sure to also communicate with the locals if you can! It helps if you know Mandarin, Hokkien or Teochew, but some locals also understand English, and all are used to having visitors to their village.
But the true reason to visit Senggarang is its Chinese temples, many which have been here for centuries since the early settlers arrived. Arguably the most famous temple here is the Banyan Tree temple; legend has it that it used to be the house of a kind village headman, and the villagers turned it into a temple to pay homage to him. However, to their surprise, the banyan tree on the property starting growing on and into the structure of the building, which now gives it its name. It’s likely that you will not see a similar sight in other places, so be sure to visit this temple.
Besides the Banyan Tree temple, be sure to visit the other old temples in the area, including Sun Te Kong, Tay Ti Kong, Ang Nio, Marco, and Vihara Dwi Sasana temples. At these temple sites, you will see many sculptures and paintings depicting Buddha and other types of Chinese deities; each deity being worshipped for a different purpose. Because of the mystique of these temples and the quiet village nearby them, the trip to Senggarang Chinese fishing village is certainly one Bintan activity you will treasure!
Club Med Bintan Island not only provides an excursion to Senggarang village, but we also have excursions to other interesting locations and activities in Bintan so you can truly dive into the essence of this beautiful island. Our all-inclusive packages also ensure that your dining, drinking, and accommodation needs are completely taken care of with one reasonable price, all so you can focus on relaxing and spending time doing activities that will enrich your mind, body, and soul. So, what are you waiting for? Book a stay with us now!