After PSLE was over, I told hubby why not let’s do a PSLE celebration holiday at Club Med Bintan for my eldest. I have been seeing their ads so frequently about all-inclusive holidays, so I told him why not try it, since I’m so tired from planning our upcoming 2 holidays in December.
We had been to Bintan before, but still very excited because we were going to Club Med Bintan, a place we’d never been to before! Our kids eagerly packed their bags with excitement and we prayed to have the best family vacation ever because we did not bring our helper along.
In this blog, we want to tell you all about our adventure – how we explored, relaxed, and enjoyed our time. It was a special trip for us because it was the first time we had so much ME time during a holiday trip and the kids totally enjoyed themselves to the fullest.
More about Club Med Bintan and Booking
I booked without doing much research, to be honest. I had only read that everything was inclusive, including three meals, snacks, drinks, and activities. It was after making the reservation that I realized the kids’ club offers approximately 8 hours of supervised activities, which means my husband and I will have plenty of time to ourselves.
I made the reservation directly through Club Med, but, of course, you have the option to book through platforms like Klook or other third-party vendors. When booking directly through Club Med, you can also choose whether or not to include transportation. In my case, I opted for the all-inclusive package, which covers both the ferry and transportation to Club Med.
When booking directly, the displayed prices include access to the kids and teens club, except for children aged 2 to 3, who are accommodated in the Petite Club. The Petite Club is an on-demand service, and they go buy birth month not year. I happily paid $238 for a 4-day, 3-night stay. I have absolutely no regrets about this decision. In total, I paid SGD$3650.
The Club Med Bintan Room
As it’s a resort, I wasn’t expecting hotel-level standards. There were a few instances of peeling here and there, but, on the whole, the resort room and bathroom were clean and well-maintained.
One thing to note about staying at Club Med Bintan is that you should be prepared to do a fair amount of walking. Our room was relatively close to the main building, but due to the layout, it felt like a lengthy walk, especially considering there were no elevators in the building where we were accommodated.
Interestingly, even though I wasn’t able to secure connecting rooms during the booking process, upon check-in, we were pleasantly surprised to find out that they had arranged connecting rooms for us.
The Club Med Activities
The check-in time was at 3 pm, and upon our arrival, the GO (Gentle Organizer) informed us about a Candy show in which the kids could participate. The rehearsal was scheduled for 4 p.m., and we could pick them up at 4:45 p.m. Without hesitation, we enrolled our kids in the show and took the opportunity to explore the available activities for the next few days.
The drop-off time for all clubs begins at 8:30 AM, with the Teens club starting at 9:30 AM. You have the flexibility to pick them up during the lessons for family activities. Prior to dinner, you’ll have some quality time with the children, and you can then drop them off once more at the GO for dinner, allowing you to enjoy your evening meal with your spouse.
There are a lot of free activities for both adults and children. Some of the activities you see above are also available after the timing if you wish to pull your kids out for some family bonding.
Some of the free activities not shown above that you can do while your kids are in the club or you also can do as a family are snorkelling, sailing, kayaking, yoga, aqua exercise and so on.
Many fun activities are free for both adults and kids. Some of the ones you saw earlier can be done later too if you want to spend time with your kids. And there are more free activities you can do with or without your kids including things like snorkelling, sailing, kayaking, yoga, aqua exercise, wall climbing, tennis, golf and more.
This is one of the most popular activities at Club Med, but you need to book it an hour in advance. There’s also a swimming test you have to pass to participate in snorkelling. When my husband, two older daughters, and I tried, only my eldest passed the test. So it’s a good idea to learn how to swim before you visit Club Med!
And since Yi He is still a child, I have to follow her but I stay on the boat.
There are two types of yoga at Club Med Bintan, and we decided to try Ariel yoga because it takes place right after we’ve dropped the kids off at their clubs. Both yoga sessions are held outdoors. Booking needs to be done the night before.
Kayaking / Golf / Others
Some of the activities, such as kayaking and golf, don’t require any booking. If you’re interested in a one-on-one private lesson, you can get more information at the reception. There are also excursions you can join for an extra fee, and spontaneous activities like releasing baby sea turtles. We were fortunate to be there for the last release of the season this year!
The Food In Club Med Bintan
Club Med Bintan has three places to eat. The main buffet area serves three of our daily meals. There’s also a grill bar right by the beach and an à la carte restaurant for times between meals and dinner. You’ll need to make a reservation in advance for dinner. The great thing is that all three dining locations are part of the package, and this includes unlimited beverages, including alcoholic drinks. You can literally enjoy drinks throughout the entire day.
Don’t anticipate a buffet like the one you’d find at a fancy 4 or 5-star hotel. However, I’d describe it as quite good, offering a variety of dishes, including Western, Chinese, and Korean/Japanese styles. They even provide choices for vegans and vegetarians.
The Night Life
After dinner, there will be some kids’ performances, and it’s up to you whether you’d like to watch, as it can sometimes be a bit of a guessing game. Following that, at around 8:30 pm, there will be either another performance or a pool party. You can decide whether to dance with your kids or simply relax on the side.
We’re fortunate for our first night, as there’s a Candy Party with fireworks and a candy/snacks buffet. On that night, the kids also had fun with some water play and water polo challenges.
Please keep in mind that the nightly activities change every week, so I won’t know which day will be the best to visit Club Med.
Conclusion and Tips!
The entire trip went better than I thought. It might be because we didn’t know much about it beforehand, except that all the meals were included, and the kids’ club sounded good. It felt like a family vacation, but we didn’t get tired from taking care of the young kids, and my older daughter could do what she liked instead of always looking after her younger siblings. I want to share some tips if you’re thinking of going!
- Make sure to pack extra swimwear. Every day involves water play and activities. Just in case your swimwear doesn’t dry in time, you won’t want to put on wet swimwear again.
- Repellent and sunscreen. No need for me to explain! I packed repellent for my kids but not myself and ended up having a few bites at the yoga area.
- Bring along some sand toys and water toys. The beach is really clean! If your kids aren’t interested in the clubs, you can take them to the beach for some fun.
- If you’re sending your child to the club, make sure to bring a small bag. You’ll need it to pack their hat, swimwear, repellent, sunscreen, and even some spare clothes. Don’t forget a wet bag for their wet swimwear too.
- Before your trip, be sure to download the Club Med app. This way, you can see what activities are available during your stay. It will help you pack your clothes and shoes based on the activities you want to join.
- If you choose the transport option at Club Med Bintan, you can email them to ask if you can upgrade your ferry tickets to Emerald class. By default the standard tickets. I forgot to do this, and my 2 girls were not happy. Once they experienced the Emerald class service, there was no going back.
- For more details and sharing of my trip, you can watch my IGS highlights!