Riau:: Natuna Islands

Riau Islands, Natuna Islands. Blue skies, a blue ocean and a tropical island. Southwest Natuna. Small island just north of Kalimantan, looking south. (Bjorn Grotting)

Riau Islands, Natuna Islands. Blue skies, a blue ocean and a tropical island. Southwest Natuna. Small island just north of Kalimantan, looking south. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)

Natuna is not among the most visited tourist destinations in Indonesia, and the access to these remote islands are not so straightforward. Natuna can however offer unspoiled beaches and a landscape and a culture that is absolutely worth a visit. The islands are known for lovely woven textiles and their traditional dance. The Natuna islands are spread over a wide area, located in the South China Sea between east and west Malaysia, Kalimantan and Singapore.

The main groups of islands are Anambas to the west, Natuna, south Natuna and Tambelan. None of the islands has much facilities for travelers, but this is an excellent destination if you like to explore areas outside the main “tourist highway”. One of the largest natural gas fields in the world has been found here, The Natuna gas field in the North and South Natuna archipelago is believed to have 222 trillion cubic feet of natural gas in reserve, 46 trillion of this can be recovered. In the future the Natuna Natural Gas Project will be very important for Indonesia’s economy. We can only hope that the oil and gas industry will not have too negative consequences for the environment here.

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