Monday, December 19, 2016

Langkawi - Island Hopping

Tour date: 23rd January 2016

I must say that Island hopping when in Langkawi is a must do activity. With Langkawi surrounded by the sea and the islet, there are various water-based activities to indulge in. You may opted for yachting, I mean for those that love cruises, there are various cruises that can accommodate for individuals that love the morning sun or individuals that would like to have dinner on a yacht while circling the islets of Langkawi. As for island hopping, tourists can choose a different options of hopping, i.e. fast or slow trip. A slow trip means traveling and spending time on selective private islands/beaches longer, whilst a fast trip is sitting on a speedboat for a quick spin around the various islands available in Langkawi and a quick stopover like what we chose that day.

The starting point
Beach sandals at the boat jetty for last minute shopper

Island Hopping is probably the most popular boat tour in Langkawi and also one of the cheapest ones. Hanum, being a local girl had arranged an exclusive speed boat for our group of 8 people. Apparently that is a standard tour that being offers by other tour companies too which usually starts at 9.00 in the morning and lasts for 3.5 to 4 hours. Because of its popularity, this tour is offered by virtually all tour operators, travel stalls and hotels in the island. It covers 3 spots that includes wonderful scenic islands to the south of the main island of Langkawi and eagle feeding where you can watch the marvelous spectacle of many eagles swooping down from the sky to catch their prey on the water.

Speed boat for 8 to 10 peoples

The other 2 islands offer plenty of activities including swimming in scenic fresh water lake, paddle boating, snorkeling from soft sandy beach, lounging and sunbathing, or just relaxing and enjoying the stunning scenery all around. The boat tours usually start from Teluk Baru Jetty located at the southern part of Pantai Tengah and before Resorts World or Star Cruise Jetty. So if you are staying at Pantai Tengah or Pantai Cenang areas, the tours would be very convenient. Most importantly, please bring along your swimming attire with you as to only dig your feet onto the soft sandy beaches and touches the coolest water ever would not justify a visit to Langkawi. You must swim and swim for the moments and the feelings to stays there, for a lifetime in your heart.  

On the way to the first stop

There are large and small boats. The larger ones can accommodate up to 20 persons whilst the smaller ones are for 8 to10 peoples. The tour operators usually choose and decides on sizes of the boats according to the demand and/or crowds that came to book. During high tourist season, you may find hundreds of tourists waiting at the jetty for their boats since all the Island Hopping tours mostly begin around the same time. Another important things to note is to not leave your sunblock away as you should apply and carry enough sun block lotion to avoid sun burns and also carry bottles of drinking water. We brought a little extra thing that day. The hotel has allowed us a packed breakfast that we stored away in a bag and had a wonderful break at Pulau Beras Basah, which was on our 3rd and last stop. 

Pulau Dayang Bunting Jetty

The first stop, Pulau Dayang Bunting

Pulau Dayang Bunting was the first stop that the speedboat operator drop us that day, the first island that we visited. It takes about 20 minutes to reach this fascinating island from Teluk Baru jetty. A total of 1 hour was given to us to spend there. This includes 10 to 12 minutes one-way walk up the long flight of stairs up the mountain and down from the other side to reach the wonderful Lake of the Pregnant Woman, and same way back. The boys and the 2 girls spent more than the allowed time playing with a wonderful scenic fresh water lake surrounded by mountains that are covered with dense forests. The lake was formed when a large underwater cave collapsed many years back. You will also see large limestone formations. I will made a separate entry about the lake of the Pregnant Woman.

Some activities at the Lake of the Pregnant Women

The boats that awaits their passengers at Lake of the Pregnant Women jetty

At the onset, Pulau Dayang Bunting is part of UNESCO World Heritage Geoparks. Tourist are most welcome to indulge into several activities like swimming at the lake, solar paddle boating (at extra charge), natural catfish spa at designated areas to clean up dead cells from your feet, walk through the forest and see the Miracle Border where the lake is separated from the sea by a thin rocky ridge, or just lounge on the wooden planks next to the lake. From the lake if you look at the mountains at the fringes, you can clearly see an outline of a woman lying on her back who is 6-7 months pregnant, and thus the name of the lake.

After nearly an hour, we walked back to the island jetty to get back to our boat for the next destination island, Pulau Singa Besar. We came to the island (without having to set a foot in the island, only at nearby water front) to watch a fantastic natural show, the Eagle Feeding. The name of the island means "Island of Big Lions", although there are no lions there. The name was probably given  due to the shape of the island. The water over in this area is surrounded by a lush forests. Not only us, other tourist actually do not get off and remain seated at the boat while watching the eagle feeding. So unfortunate that we arrived a little bit too late. Should we come earlier in the morning, we probably could see about 300 to 350 golden brown eagles swooping down from the sky and feeding on fish from the water area said to be present there.

Upon arrival, the boatman stop the engine and usually will throw some chicken pieces out into the water to invite the eagles. And in no time you will see eagles diving down just next to you and clawing up the chicken pieces and eating them as they soar into the sky. It's not happened to our boat. The boatman did not feed the eagles at all, hence what we saw basically some 50 to 60 eagles hovering around and diving for food. We gave signal to the boatman to proceed to the next stop, after 10 minutes.

Pulau Beras Basah is the last stop in the tour. The name literally means "Island of wet rice". This is a picture perfect island with far reaching views of the sea and wonderful soft white sands. It's a great place for the beach lovers and swimmers. There is a stall that offers banana boating, jet skis, and also beer and some snacks. We were overly excited seeing the clear bluest pastel beautiful colors of the cool seawater. The best ever place for swimming and photography. It was hot too as the sun was at its height. I couldn't stand too much sun, hence spending myself away from the beach and look after the food that easily get stolen by the island monkeys. We enjoyed the hotel food at this place, all 8 of us finished everything that we packed in the morning.

Tourist are advised to get or arrange your snorkel gears if you love snorkeling. This is an excellent snorkeling spot. I was overly excited being able to touch the softest sands and the cool water that welcome me to the island. Mostly people swam closer to the snorkeling spot as they get to see lots of fish and colorful marine life. Sometimes due to the passing boats the water gets murky and the water visibility could drop to a meter or so. The island is an excellent place to relax. We spent about an hour here where the boys all swam happily. As for me, after a tiring day under the scorching sun, I just want to lounge and relax at the spot that I found under the many shady trees and was enjoying the views as the gentle breeze flows. Before we depart, I took a stroll along the old pier at the island.

Just look at the clear water and the soft sands, you will definitely in love with this beach

I would suggest that you bring your own food and beach blanket if you plan to make a picnic here. Note that there are plenty of monkeys around who will be constantly targeting your food. So be careful and do not go near them or instigate them in any way. The monkeys often pull the rubbish out of the beans and make the area quite dirty. Due to heavy tourist flow, the island and the beach can get quite crowded at times. After about an hour at Pulau Beras Basah, you will head back to the Teluk Baru Jetty and then back to the hotel, feeling exhausted.

Please take note that per person rate for the Island Hopping tour varies from RM35 to RM50 depending on the season and also depending on the tour operator. If you book through your hotel, the rates are likely to be higher. The travel stalls in Pantai Cenang area are the cheapest. You will find plenty of them along the road Jalan Pantai Cenang. Usually hotel transfers in a mini van are included as part of the rate, provided you are put up in a nearby hotel like in Pantai Tengah or Cenang. But do verify this before booking. Or alternatively you can directly go down to Teluk Baru Jetty at the southern end of Pantai Tengah and book the tour with a boat operator directly. If you are in a group of 8 or more, you can book a full boat and the per person rate would turn out to be cheaper, like we did.

Remarks: Source of reference from local tour websites.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Langkawi - Sky Cab/Sky Bridge

Date: 24th January 2016

It’s amazing to see how an agro-based economy of paddy and rubber cultivation and fisheries of Langkawi is fast being overtaken by a tourism-driven economy. Coming back to the island for the third time, I could see vast changes that took place in an island that use to be a curse island of Mahsuri. The island is a perfect place for tourism, taking into consideration the island natural, unspoiled, ecological beauty and major governmental emphasis happened since Mahathir time. It was part of the Northern Corridor Economic Region (NCER) development program, of which a Malaysia Government initiative to accelerate economic growth in the north of Peninsular Malaysia encompassing the states of Perlis, Kedah, Penang and the north of Perak. The target for NCER is to achieve increased tourism receipts per visitor from MYR1.89 billion in 2005 to MYR3.034 billion by 2012. Annual tourist expenditure is targeted to increase from MYR9.0 billion in 2005 to MYR21.8 billion in 2012 and MYR64.5 billion in 2020.

The sky deck that comes with a glass panel for viewing purpose

6 of them enjoying the view up there

I’m using Syahirah’s photos for this entry as I was with hubby and Nasrul exploring inside the 3D museum, seated adjacent to a point to take the cable car up to the top of mountain. It’s six of them exploring the Sky Cab and the Sky Bridge where Syahirah and Hanum are the only girl. Naim and his 3 besties were assigned to look after the girls. The Langkawi Cable Car, also known as Langkawi Sky Cab, is one of the major attractions in Langkawi Island. It provides an aerial link from the Oriental Village at Teluk Burau to the peak of Gunung Machinchang, which is also the location of the Langkawi Sky Bridge. The total length is 2.2 km, with a journey time from the base to the top took around 15 minutes. It was officially opened in 2003.

Look at the view at the Sky Bridge ... priceless!

The Langkawi Cable Car takes visitors up to the peak of Gunung Mat Chinchang, where the Langkawi Sky Bridge is located. The Sky Bridge was closed in 2012 for maintenance and upgrading, but reopened in February 2015, although work on the bridge is still ongoing as of September 2015. The start of cable car ride is located in the Oriental Village where there are a number of attractions, including a 3-Dimensional art museum known as Art in Paradise and shopping village. I would recommend a half day touring in Oriental Village should you want to cover both the Sky Bridge and the 3D museum. You may have lunch there too before heading to other attractions that Langkawi has to offer, island hopping is one of the non-resistible activities.

Some of the islands that can be viewed from the top

Langkawi Cable Car is located just north of Telaga Harbour, Pantai Kok, with the entrance within Oriental Village at the foot hill of the Mat Chincang mountain range. There’s an ample parking prepared by the Tourism Department for the tourist. It is located to the north-west of the Langkawi International Airport, on the west coast of the main island of Langkawi, approximately 30 minutes’ drive from Kuah town and 15 minutes’ drive from Langkawi International Airport. Knowing that they will took longer time than expected, we have let them joined us at the airport after collected the luggage from Aseana Resort & Spa Hotel. There are 3 stations as categorised by the operator, Base Station, Middle Station and Top Station.

Just layers of beautiful sky in the horizon

A pretty long bridge deck with a viewing glass panels to explore

The Base Station is located at the Oriental Village itself where it also a theme shopping centre housing with 30 individually designed buildings showcasing Malaysian and Oriental architecture. From this base, visitors can take the ride to the Machincang range via the Langkawi Cable Car on gondolas. The SkyDome, a 360-degree panorama screen dome theatre located at the Base Station, offers visitors free viewing while they are waiting for their ride on the Cable Car. The gondolas arrive at the station around every 30 seconds. The SkyDome entrance comes inclusive with all types of SkyCab tickets. But they did not enter the SkyDome due to time constraint, hence I do not have any photos inside the SkyDome to share it with you.

Bring some mineral water to avoid thirst

Inside the cable car, passing the middle station

Middle Station is an intermediate Cable Car station on the eastern ridges provides access to the eastern cliffs with its 3 vertical chimneys and the 360-degree views. The gondolas make a 45-degree turn at this “angle station” to reach the top. The journey from the Base Station to Middle Station covers 1,700 meters in length. The Middle Station is at an elevation of 650m above sea level, visitors can alight at the station and walk up to the viewing platform, or continue to travel on the gondolas for another 450 meters up to the Top Station. I was enjoying a pleasant walks at the wooden pathway in 2010 when I came for the 2nd time. You must try it as the ambiance, the breeze, the mountain lush green, the sounds of birds chipping and other animals are something really rare for us who resides in the city.

The Base Station, where the ride is about to begin

There are two circular viewing platforms at the top of Gunung Machinchang, which are both a short walk up the stairs from the top station and offer 360° views. The top station is located 708m above sea-level is about 5 °C cooler than the lowlands. The ride afford a view of the surrounding forest, the Telaga Tujuh (Seven Wells) waterfall, as well as the sea. From the top station there is an access route to the Langkawi Sky Bridge. There are two viewing platforms at the top of Machincang mountain, and an access point to Langkawi Sky Bridge (The Langkawi SKyBridge entrance tickets can only be purchased for RM 5 per person once you reach the top of the mountain).

Langkawi Sky Bridge and Langkawi Cable Car 5
Photos shared from, please click the link to read their architectural engineering review about the Langkawi Sky Bridge 

There is a 2.5 km walking trail, the SkyTrail, through the forest from the top station that goes down to the middle station, and then the Seven Wells (Telaga Tujuh) waterfall, although walking unguided through the trail is not advisable as the trail is not well-maintained and there is a risk of getting lost. Pre-arrangement with a naturalist guide is necessary. That's all for now. I hope I have sharing some helpful information with those who wish to visit my country. Do include a visit to Langkawi Island as it's a place where you can enjoy a sandy beaches, island hopping, jungle tracking etc etc.

Remarks: Facts obtained from the Langkawi Website

Monday, December 12, 2016

Langkawi - 3D Museum

Date of visit: 24th January 2016

Three of us, hubby, Nasrul and I were visiting the 3D museum on our last day in Langkawi, i.e. on 24th of January 2016. Hubby chose to tag along as he did not make it through to the final tennis matches. We drove towards the Oriental Village right after breakfast and made a few stopped at other places too. We thought that we could make it in time for our late evening flight. By the time we reached there, we decided to split due to time constraint and the fact that we haven’t collected our bag from the hotel. The rest opted to take a cable car to have a closer view of the glass sky deck. I had ride the cable car few years ago (in year 2010 if I’m not mistaken while on 2 days training in Langkawi with IJMer’s). Since Nasrul is studying in Graphic Design, we thought it would be best if we could accompanied him explored all beautiful arts inside the 3D museum.

Langkawi 3D Art Museum’s operation hours is from 9:00 am till 6:00 pm. The best suitable time to spend inside would be about 2 hours. It is located adjacent to the other 2 attractions, Sky Bridge and Sky Trex bearing an address of Oriental Village, Burau Bay, 07000 Langkawi. They can be reach at +(6) 013 509 1209 and/or send an email to to purchase an online tickets. Do not worry about foods and shopping as the village provides everything what the tourist need. You are most welcome to experience local foods and local souvenirs items as momentous.

The museum was custom built to exhibit the artworks of various sizes beyond our imagination. It is said to represents the largest 3D Art Museum in Malaysia and one of the largest in the world. All of the displayed artworks exhibited are artistically hand painted by 23 leading Korean Master Artists with an average age of 60 years old and the last of their generation, in collaboration with Malaysian local artists. These incredible artworks are presented in three dimensioned (3D) ways, offering all visitors a fun way to interact and blend in the artworks. We, Malaysian must thanked the Korean artist who has ensured success to our 3D museum. 

The Museum project was completed in record time of five months and houses various zones for the tourist to enjoy such as the Aquatic, Safari, Classic, Fantasy and Malaysian zones with more than 100 beautifully created artworks including famous masterpieces that combines fun, culture, education and history.

It is located at the Oriental Village (also known as Langkawi Art in Paradise). The Langkawi 3D Art Museum has become one of the most popular attractions in Langkawi. As the queue to purchase tickets could get long during weekends and school holidays, it is advisable to buy entrance tickets online. It was not so crowded on the day of our visit, so we got in without difficulties and troubles with that long queue.

For information, the ticket is valid for one year from the date of purchase as it was an open ticket. It is valid to be redeemed anytime including school and public holidays. Child tickets are for those from aged 2 till 12 years old whilst adult tickets are for those above 12 years old. For avoidance of doubt, admission is free to below 2 years old.

For those who had purchased a ticket through online, you are not required to print the ticket. What you are required to do is to present the QR code which will be emailed to the purchaser upon payment. Just use your phone with a save QR code to enter. Else, ticket can be redeem at 3D Art in Paradise counter, a dedicated online counter. As for Malaysian, just present your MyKad (Malaysian identity) to purchase and/or redeem your tickets at the redemption counter. Should you have any change of plans and require for any cancellation, you may made necessary arrangement by an email to

Hope you may have some ideas of what was inside the 3D museum from the photos of my family that I shared in this entry. Thank you.