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The Banyak Islands are a group of inhabited islands located between Simeulue and Nias off the western coast of Sumatra in Indonesia's Aceh Province. Surveys of the area approximate around 71 islands and additional mangrove stands in shallow off-shore areas, although locals count 99 islands.The largest island in the group is Tuangku, with the principal town of Haloban. Two other major islands located either side of Tuangku are Bangkaru and Ujung Batu. Tuangku is separated from Bangkaru by a fault line.

Banyak Islands
If you’ve ever dreamt about having a tropical island entirely to yourself, complete with palm trees, powdery white beaches and crystal-clear waters, the Banyak Islands is a great place to fulfil your Robinson Crusoe fantasy. A cluster of 99 mostly uninhabited islands, the Banyak (Many) Islands are situated about 30km west of Singkil. Remote they might be, but they are now very much on the radar of paradise-seeking travellers and surfers. As well as having arguably the finest beaches in Sumatra and a handful of quality surf spots, the Banyaks feature Sumatra’s best snorkelling, with beautiful underwater forests of colourful coral (at least where there has been no past dynamite fishing). (

What to do in Pulau Banyak :


There is shallow water and corals everywhere! Bring your own gear or rent it in the villages. You can see a lot of different sea life. At Sikandang you can even see whales and dolphins. Near Rago Rago you can see Dugongs (Sea cow) if you are lucky because they don't like disturbance. Also turtles, manta rays and much more species are available.


If you are an experienced kayaker you can go alone, but if you are new to kayaking, you should be accompanied by a guide. Costs more, but is worth the risk. Some tourist already disappeared because of missing experience.

Island Hopping

Many of the lonely islands are close to each other and many nice beaches are available. In one day you can visit several islands, either by kayak, or you charter a local boat and let you drop off on the islands you like.

You can camp on most islands. Best is Asok, because there are no mosquitos and also a small hut with shower is available. But also the very small islands are mosquito free and great locations for camping.

The islands are scattered with numerous coral reefs that are habitat to a diverse range of species including green and leatherback sea turtles, a variety of fish, octopus and lobster species, as well as other sea life. Although, the region has recently experienced some challenges with illegal hunting and environmental hazards, that are affecting its precious ecosystem.

Like other islands in the region, the Banyak Islands are perfectly situated to receive constant swell from the Southern Indian Ocean; waves come to the island’s shores with perfect form and consistency. Glassy conditions are produced by light winds and big waves are produced by large ground swell.

Jungle trekking

The big island on the middle is great for jungle trekking. You should start in Haloban, where you can find guides and equipment (as of equipment - not even machette needed if you can handle couple of scratches from the abundant vegetation). You can climb up the 260m high mountain, which takes around 3 hours. You can also visit the crocodile river with a guide. Furthermore, you can combine trekking with kayaking, start with the kayak, go up a river and do a 1-2 hours trek to a very long white beach. Also many caves and waterfalls available.


It is possible to go fishing with locals. Simply ask around and you are likely to find a fisher who takes you on his fishing trip.


With its lonely white beaches and fantastic scenery, the Banyak islands are a great place for just relaxing and sunbathing.