In this paper, optimal remote control strategies to a novel master-slave flexible manipulator (FM) are presented. The system contains a constrained tendon-driven serpentine manipulator (CTSM), the base platform, a microcontroller, a PC and the Novint Falcon haptic input device. The bending of the CTSM backbone is controlled by the tendons and the length of the bending section is controlled by a constraint tube. Compared with other FMs, the CTSM has an improved workspace and dexterity. The CTSM is controlled using the Novint Falcon haptic input device, and two remote control modes are implemented, one is direct mapping and the other is incremental mode. Two optimal remote control strategies are proposed for the CTSM, i.e., highest stiffness and minimal movement. Experimental results show that the direct mapping is appropriated for fast movements and the incremental mode is adequate for accurate tasks. In combination with the optimal control strategies, a set of different applications for the CTSM are presented.