Travel Blog

A visit to the Sea Gypsys on Bintan

“Travel changes you. As you move through this life and this world you change things slightly, you leave marks behind, however small. And in return, life—and travel—leaves marks on you.”

Anthony Bourdain

My visit today to meet with and learn from a village of Sea Gypsys was so humbling- it’s a must do on Bintan.

The Sea Gypsys come from a long line of nomadic Indonesian fishermen. Entire families lived their whole lives on boats for generations before the government gave them land to settle on and homes on the sea. This was to keep them safe and give them the opportunity to work on the mainland if they want to.

Their skin is much darker and the children spend so much time outside their jet black hair becomes sun bleached. No religion, no birthday, no electricity during the day. they dont keep track of what day it is or even how old they are.

I’d read it was well received to bring things to the children that makes them happy. My guide Juni confirmed and was more than happy to help me make this happen at a local shop.

Meeting with these villagers today really filled my cup, the big things became so small when sharing conversation with village women about how they live, what they were cooking and even sharing some food- name unknown!

I ALWAYS take the time out while away to really engage with the locals, there’s nothing on earth more grounding!

Discover Your Next Travel Destination

contact us