How to Get to Banyak Islands


Medan, and its international airport, is the transit place for most touristic places in North Sumatra.

After arriving in Medan, you can go directly to Singkil, or spend a few days wandering around the town... Medan is not a favourite place for tourists, but it has some old buildings (Maimoon Palace, Mesjid Raya, Tjong A Fie Mansion, Kesawan Street), and shopping areas where you can find cheap items.

How to get from Medan to Singkil

Before leaving Medan, be sure that you prepare your cash... The ATM machine in Singkil only serves Mastercard, and it's often offline or out of cash...

map of banyak islands

From Medan, there are 2 options to go to Singkil:

From Singkil to Sinkandang

To get to our island from the mainland, you can go directly or transit by Balai island (much cheaper)

From Singkil, you can reach Balai (the main village of Banyaks) by ferry, traditional wooden boat, or speed boat.

  1. Ferry

    Ferry operates 2 times a week (ask the schedule to Mr. Darmawan), the ticket costs around 25.000 - 60.000 rupiahs, depends on the class. It takes 5-6 hours to go to Balai from Singkil, but it's the safest option.

  2. Traditional wooden boat

    Traditional wooden boat operates every day around 9 am (ask people in the jetty if the boat is going to Balai.. sometimes it departs to another village called Haloban, far away from Balai). it's about 35.000 - 40.000 rupiahs/person. It takes around 3-4 hours to go to Balai. if there's storm, most likely the boat wouldn't depart and you will have to stay overnight in Singkil.

    traditional wooden boat in Balai
  3. Speed boat

    If you have a confortable budget and want to save time, speed boat is the best option. It just takes 1,5 hours from Singkil to Sikandang island, where our bungalows are located. The average price now is around 2.000.000 - 2.500.000 rupiahs. It's expensive as those boat suck gasoline like crazy.

The island of Sikandang lies about 1,5 hours away from Balai(the main village of the Banyaks) by traditional wooden boat, or just 15 minutes if you take a speed boat!

One night in Singkil

map of Singkil town

If there's storm and you have to stay overnight in Singkil, there are some hotels along the way to the jetty:

  1. Sapo Belen

    20 m from the main road, it's a traditional house equipped with antique furnitures. Visit for reservation.

  2. Bidadari Hotel

    Jl. Pelabuhan Ferry. Phone: +62 0812 6362 1213. 8 rooms with attached bathroom, TV; Price: with fan: Rp. 100.000. With aircon: Rp. 150.000.

  3. Island Hotel

    Jl. Bahari, Pulo Sarok. Ph: +62 0813 6221 8369. 16 rooms with Attached bathroom, aircon or fan: Rp. 70.000-150.000.

  4. Monalisa Home Stay

    Jl. M. Taher Ujung. Ph: +62 0658-21417, hp: + 62 813 9721 0778. 16 rooms, no attached bathroom, fan: Rp. 40.000-60.000. With restaurant.

  5. Melly Home Stay

    Jl. M. Taher Ujung Singkil. Ph: +62 0658-21453. 9 rooms, no attached bathroom, fan: Rp. 30.000. with restaurant and travel. Good information about boats to Pulau Banyak.

  6. Harmonis

    Jl. Merdeka, Pasar Singkil. Ph: +62 0658-21122. 12 rooms, with Or without attached bathroom, aircon or fan: Rp. 35.000-150.000.