May 7, 2019

BAWAH RESERVE: Explore a sustainable paradise in the Indonesian Archipelago

Words by Travel to change the world
Image: Luxury World Traveller

Bawah Reserve is one of the world’s most sustainable resorts. Here’s why it should be on your “must experience” list.

Bawah Reserve is an environmentally-friendly resort and a truly sustainable sanctuary located in the Anamba’s Archipelago in Indonesia.

Entwined in its roots, quite literally, and drenched in the sounds of native Indonesian fauna & rainforests, Bawah Reserve is the place you come to savour a real Indonesian experience while getting back to basics; to remember again what it means to be present and at peace with nature.

It’s out of this world in its natural design, with privacy that elicits a feeling of complete solitude to recharge and return home to yourself.

Pics: Nomadic People

What will you experience?

If you do get the pleasure of spending some time at the Bawah Reserve, you’ll soon realise that ‘escape’ is such an overused word in travel by comparison to the magical heights of this unprecedented place.

Cast adrift from the southern shore of the Malaysian peninsula and Borneo’s western coast – yet not close to either of them, Bawah is a haven of privacy and defines what that equally overused word ‘luxury’ should truly mean in 2019.

To get there, you’ll board the islands own seaplane, before taking off and soaring over pristine reefs and lush islands of all shapes and sizes, landing right in front of the resort on the calm water.

Once you step off the plane and kick your shoes off, you’ll be relaxing into an intimate retreat that features just 35 private suites & over-the-water bungalows that coexist in harmony with the island’s natural beauty.

Pic: Nomadic People
Pic: Nomadic People
Pic: This island life

TV? Forget about it. There aren’t any here.

Why would you need one anyway when you can spend your days unplugging and getting away from it all? Choose to glide over a kaleidoscope of fish in one of their glass-bottomed kayaks or paddleboards or get a little closer to the magical world below snorkelling.

Pic: Nomadic People

Trek through the island tropical rainforest and take in the insane views or learn something new on one of Bawah’s hands-on Indonesian gourmet cooking classes.

You’ll dine on island grown and sourced delights at probably all of the four restaurants and bars scattered throughout the small reserve at some stage and no doubt enjoy a private dining experience from the comfort of your own over-the-water bungalows or on a private beach.

These kinds of choices are indeed, a wonderful thing.

Pic: Nomadic People

Relax and unwind in an indulgent (and included) spa treatment at Bawah Reserves own Aura Spa and Wellness Centre or catch a movie on the beach on of Bawah’s open-air cinema nights.

One things for sure, it’s unlikely you’ll be thinking about leaving any time soon.

Pic: Nomadic People

What will the positive impact be?

When it comes to a complete sustainable experience, you won’t find many places that have done it as comprehensively as Bawah Reserve.

The Resort itself took six years to complete due to their stand on ensuring that no heavy machinery was used during construction. Everything was built by hand, preserving the natural environment and ensuring no unnecessary harm or deforestation occurred.

Bawah also hosted a new pilot scheme with REIDS (Renewable Energy Integration Demonstrator) at the Asia Clean Energy Summit in back in 2016 which made Bawah the 1st Indonesian island powered by renewable energy.

REIDS want to see 90% of Indonesia’s off-grid population provided with renewable energy through this new “micro-grid” technology.

The Bawah Anambas Foundation – Local single-use plastic workshop

Bawah Reserves approach to ecotourism involves a multitude of initiatives too large to include here.

But to list a few, the B.R team manage and protect all flora, fauna and marine life on the island, they also forbid any pesticides on the island and fishing within 500 metres from the house reef, all of which could lead to reef poisoning and destruction.

The Bawah Reserve team also founded the Bawah Anambas Foundation, which puts money back into the local community and focuses on the three main challenges in the Anambas Archipelago – marine conservation, forest conservation, & community development.

There is so much more to Bawah Reserve than what you see at first glance, and trust us when you tell you there’s still A LOT to see at first glance.

Their commitment to true holistic sustainability from the ground up is awe-inspiring.

Image: Live a little luxe

The details

To get there you’ll need to fly to Singapore, where you will be picked up from your hotel, airport or residence by the Reserve’s chauffeur.

A travel coordinator will escort you by ferry to Batam International Airport, where you will then board their private seaplane for an 80-minute journey.

Bawah Reserve is an all-inclusive experience, with the nightly rate of AU$1500 per night including all meals, spa treatments, and water activities during your stay.

Find out more at

How can you travel to change the world?

Congratulations! By reading this post and taking some of these insights on board, you’ve already made a difference.

Now you can easily create your impact by sharing your new-found knowledge with other friends who you think would also be interested.

Ultimately, responsible travel comes down to common sense – stay curious, keep yourself up-to-date with the challenges at hand and make yourself accountable for your actions on your travels.