Tag Archives: Malaysia

So how is Langkawi?

Different thoughts and comments about Langkawi through my eyes ๐Ÿ™‚

  • In the evening there are quite many mosquitoes flying around so use repellent or be ready to scratch! I’ve done the latter mostly…
  • Most popular car in here seems to be Proton which is logical since the brand is originated largely from Malaysia. And most of the cars are smaller compact ones, not pickups like in Thailand.
  • Smoking is really popular around here and the not so good part is that it’s allowed also in public places. One package of local cigarettes costs about 0,45โ‚ฌ
  • There are around 90000 people living on the islands of Langkawi but only 4 of the 99 islands are inhabited
  • English is really common around here and you even hear locals speaking it quite often amongst themselves. There are just so many different dialects that sometimes it’s easier to communicate in English it seems
  • Although snorkeling is supposed to be quite popular here we still haven’t found any place with nearly as clear water as in Phuket for example. Maybe it’s just like that this time of the year..
  • Walking around in the main tourist street is like walking in a huge duty free shop like ones found in airports. After every 20 meters there’s another shop. But the prices are mostly much cheaper ๐Ÿ™‚
  • Most reasonable method of transportation is renting a scooter. But if you don’t have an official A category license I’d stay clear from Jalan Pantai Chenang street since it seems to be a hotspot for police. Otherwise it’s rather quiet in the other places on the island. And from this year Uber is also available in Langkawi with very good prices!
  • When the sun sets a huge number of different bars open on the beach with fire shows, great music and hookah which is also really popular in here
  • There are a huge number of resorts on the island with some of them having private white sand beaches
  • BigMac in here is the best I’ve ever had :)! I don’t know why but it just is! Most of the time we eat local food or go to the market and make something on our own in the hostel kitchen but on some occasions we have also found ourselves in McDonalds and only because of that BigMac ๐Ÿ™‚ Sorry! ๐Ÿ™‚
  • Local radio stations play a lot of songs from 5, 6, 7 or 10 years ago. And it’s great to here these old hits again :). For some reason Akon is also really popular here..
  • Monkeys are to be found everywhere on the island. Sitting on the roadside, climbing on the trees or just chilling on the beach.
  • And one more time – it’s difficult to imagine more beautiful mountains, beaches and waterfalls then in Langkawi ๐Ÿ™‚

Langkawi Cable Car and Sky Bridge

So today we visited the most popular tourist attraction here in Langkawi – the cable car, sky bridge, oriental village and other related attractions. And I can tell you right now that this place is really really worth a visit. Entrance fee is 55 ringit per person and for that you’ll get a ride with the cable car, entrances to Sky Dome (where a space roller-coaster movie is projected to the ceiling), SkyRex ( a fun 4D attraction where you’re visiting the Dinosaur island) and 3D museum (you can find really beautiful artworks and 3D effect expositions there). There is some queuing involved so it’s recommend to visit as early in the day as possible. And if you’re going alone or in a company of 2 you’re also lucky while using the cable car. Since gondolas are for 6 people they very often let up to 2 people ahead in the queues so all places would be taken.

For additional 5 ringgit (when you decide to walk a short nature trail) or 15 ringgit (special lift to the bridge) you can visit the Sky Bridge and enjoy magnificent views from there. If you have already taken the journey to the top of the mountain I’d really advice you to visit the bridge also. But be careful if you’re afraid of heights since the bridge (and of course the cable car track) is located quite high above the ground. But all the scenery there and all over Langkawi is really breathtaking, no wonder it’s called the Jewel of Kedah (Kedah is a county in Malaysia).

Here’s a an overview of our adventures in Langkawi so far. It’s unfortunate that you really can’t capture all that beauty with the camera. So you have to come and see for yourself :). Feel free to follow me on YouTube to see all the other videos from our SE Asia trip + everything yet to come :)!

Driving around Langkawi

4 days ago we rented a scooter to have a proper look of the island. There are 2 bigger areas on Langkawi – one is the main city Kuah and the other is the tourist area Pantai Cenang near where we are located. And the rest of the island is full of smaller towns, villages, beautiful mountains, beaches, rice fields, forests and jungle. In some way (of course besides the mountains and jungle ๐Ÿ™‚ ) it reminds my of an island called Saaremaa back home. Beautiful scenery, laid-back atmosphere and just an overall relaxing place to be. Since for some reason accommodation is not so cheap here compared to many other regions of SE Asia our hostel is maybe not the dream place to stay but in the big picture it doesn’t matter. Because when you get on your scooter and start driving around then you have to be really careful to watch the road since you find yourself constantly in awe of the surrounding nature.

By now we have basically made a full circle around the island and discovered some very picturesque places. For instance I highly recommend to visit Gunung Raya mountain which is the highest peak in Langkawi and easily accessible with a scooter or a car. On top of the hill there’s a a viewing tower (RM 10 entrance fee) from where you can see magical 360 views of the whole island (since the mountain is situated right in the middle of Langkawi).

Secondly one of the most beautiful beaches we’ve ever been are just a bit north from the mountain at Tanjung Rhu. The sand is white, water is blue (although still not as clear as in Phuket) and there are not much people around due to it’s remote location. Of course there are still some top-notch resorts located there and some local villages but still it’s really quiet. The beach actually consists of 2 parts but I’d recommend to visit both of them. We will definitely go back there in a few days!

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Thirdly a must see place also located in the northern part of the island is Temurun waterfall where a small stream comes down from a rather high cliff into a beautiful clear water pool continuing it’s way through the forest. It’s actually quite easy to miss since there are not many signs around but when you look at the google maps you’ll find it.

By the way scooter rental here is 20 ringgit a day (about 4โ‚ฌ) and one liter of gas is around 2,3 ringgit (about 0,48โ‚ฌ) so driving around is really inexpensive! You have to be careful about the police though. Sometimes they like to put up roadblocks and check the documentation and as in Thailand to 100% legally drive a scooter you need a A category licence since scooters here are much more powerful.

Tomorrow we plan to visit Langkawi Cable car and Skybridge which are probably the main attractions on the island. More about that in the next posts :)!

First days at Langkawi

Here are first comments/thoughs about Langkawi during our 3 days in here:

  • The island is really clean. There is basically no garbage lying around and trash cans are plentiful. Quite often you can see signs about keeping Langkawi clean and no littering. They’ve done a great job in this matter ๐Ÿ™‚
  • As I wrote in the previous post it seems that the island is partly still under construction. Every once in a while you can see a huge area with a abandoned construction site and walls built around it. In some cases construction work has been resumed but if to look at the pace work is being done then I guess they’ll finish by 2050. There are beautiful pictures on the fences and walls about what is supposed to be built but if you look behind them all you see is a big hole and some pieces of early foundation. As I read the financial crisis hit this area quite hard and a lot of the companies went bankrupt without no-one taking over the projects and continuing the work. I really hope that in the near future they sort it out somehow since otherwise it’s really beautiful here ๐Ÿ™‚
  • The life in here is really laid-back. No-one is in a hurry, there are not so many people walking around outside the main tourist street, quite often you can see workers sleeping in the tree shadows, beaches are quiet and rather empty and so on. It’s actually pretty nice :). You can definitely relax here and just lay back on the beach watching the sunset. And sunsets are quite magical here. It’s just the combination of beautiful beaches, islands in the distance and that calming serenity that creates the perfect atmosphere. (This picture represents only about 1/10 of it ๐Ÿ™‚ )

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  • Although the beaches are beautiful and with white sands the water itself is actually not so clear as in Phuket. At least in this part of the island.
  • There are 3 very friendly dogs walking around in our Hostel area. They feel very much at home and sometimes join you while you’re sunbathing, just lying in the hammock or of course eating something good ๐Ÿ™‚20171204_173024
  • Watersports are hugely popular here. There’s a big variety of options to choose from starting with ski-jets up to parasailing. Although they’re still relatively expensive. Yesterday we watched as they were taking tourists to parasailing and every time one of the guys arranging this just jumps aboard to steer the parachute. But they were not attached in any way. Just holding on with their hands and afterwards sitting on a piece of rope. Well.. at least they seemed to enjoy it.
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  • Since Langkawi is a duty-free zone it means that alcohol, cigarettes and other similar things are really cheap here. For example a beer costs 2 ringgit which is about 0,4โ‚ฌ (I know that some of you reading this last line just bought a ticket to Langkawi ๐Ÿ™‚ ) and 1 liter bottle of Captain Morgan rum is about 35 ringgit (roughly 7โ‚ฌ). Nice ๐Ÿ™‚
  • They sell extremely delicious spongecakes here with different flavors. It costs only 3 ringgit (0,6โ‚ฌ) and is a really decent size. I really hope that we don’t consume too much of these cakes and beer here….. ๐Ÿ™‚

 

Until the next post!

Lauri