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).
|Photos shared from www.amazingworldplaces.com, 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