Langkawi, Kedah - 99 Islands

Posted by Tuan Rumah | 5:56 AM | | 0 comments »






Langkawi island is an archipelago of 99 islands lying in the north western coast of Peninsular Malaysia. The exact location of these tropical islands is at the site where the Straits of Malacca meets the waters of the Andaman Seas.The largest of these islands is called Langkawi Island and is bigger than the Penang Island.The other islands in this group are Island of Pregnant Maiden (Pulau Dayang Bunting), Lion Island (Pulau Singa Besar) and Beras Basah Island.The smallest of these islands are atolls roughly the size of an ordinary house!
Langkawi is coined from the Malay words Lang and Kawi. Lang is a brown eagle and Kawi is a local manganese stone.The ancient fishermen must have seen eagles flying clutching the manganese stones! A giant monument of a brown eagle clutching the manganese stone greets all visitors to Langkawi near the Kuah Jetty.The main tourist attractions of Langkawi Island is its virgin white sandy beaches.The beaches have very gentle continental slope and the water is crystal clear.
This island is unique in the sense that it has so many legendsand myths associated with it.Langkawi Island is therefore also called Pulau Lagenda or Legendary Island.The most talked about legend is that of Mahsuri who is said to have laid a curse on this island for seven generations.Luckily the period of this curse is over now and Langkawi Island is fast becoming an internationally recognised tourist destination. The government of Malaysia has declared the entire Langkawi Island as a duty free zone. Hence this island is also termed Duty Free Island.All goods sold in this island are exempted from government tax.Therefore this Legendary Island is a haven for the shoppers.You only need to stay in Langkawi for a minimum of 48 hours to take back home a reasonable amount of tax free goods.

Telaga Tujuh
Located in the north-western corner of Pulau Langkawi, Telaga Tujuh (Seven Wells) is a geological marvel. The waterfall is so named because its cascading water is broken by a series of seven natural pools. The lush green forest that surrounds the waterfall adds a mystical touch to the natural splendor. Legend has it that fairies used to come down to the waterfall to bathe and frolic.

Tanjung Rhu
Tanjung Rhu lies on the northern cape of Pulau Langkawi. Aptly named for its abundance of casuarinas, its enchanting beach affords magnificent views of nearby islands which can be reached at low tide on foot, an experience that is not to be missed.A short journey by boat from Tanjung Rhu brings you to the doorstep of Gua Cherita (Cave of Legends). As its name implies, the cave is steeped in a fabled tale of mystery and romance. On the walls of the cave can be seen ancient writing which has yet to be deciphered.

Beaches
Pantai Kok, Pantai Cenang, Pantai Tengah, Datai and Burau BayIdyllic beaches such as Pantai Kok, Pantai Cenang, Pantai Tengah, Datai and Burau Bay offer carefree sun-filled days and quiet evening strolls. First-class accommodation in modern hotels or captivating chalets is available. A wide range of exciting water-sports provides fun and thrills for the energetic. Restaurant outlets in the hotels and outdoors serve a variety of appetizing cuisine.




Tasik Dayang Bunting



Nestled amidst lush forested hill on an island south of Pulau Langkawi is Tasik Dayang Bunting (Lake of the Pregnant Maiden), the largest lake in Langkawi. The outline of hills and rocky outcrops on one side of the lake resembles the shape of a pregnant maiden lying on her back. However, the name of both the island and lake is attributed to the legend of a lovely fairy princess who married an earthly prince. Her first child died shortly after birth. She was so sad and depressed that she buried the child in the crystal clear waters of the lake. Before she returned to her celestial abode, she blessed the waters so that any childless maiden who bathed in the lake would conceive thereafter.Legend of Tasik Dayang Bunting - The favorite bathing pool of a celestial princess named Mambang Sari was said to be Tasik Dayang Bunting (lake of the pregnant maiden). A prince, Mat Teja, fell madly in love with her and tricked her into marrying him. It did not take her long to reciprocate his love and so could not bear to return to her celestial home. Sadly, their child died from a mysterious illness at the age of seven days. Distraught, the grieving Mambang Sari left the child's body in the lake and returned to her heavenly abode. Today, some believe barren women who bathe in this lake will be endowed with a child. Many have claimed to be successful.

Pulau Payar Marine Park
The Pulau Payar Marine Park is situated in the northern part of the Straits of Melaka, 19 nautical miles south of Langkawi and encompasses the islands of Pulau Payar, Pulau Lembu, Pulau Segantang and Pulau Kaca which are surrounded by coral reefs. The marine park teems with a fascinating diversity of marine life and vegetation.Many endangered species of fishes and marine organisms live within the sanctuary. Measuring 2 km long and ? km wide, Pulau Payar is the most popular of the islands as its sheltered waters are ideal for snorkeling, diving and swimming. Among the enchanting dive spots is the "Coral Garden", an area covered with bright, multi-hued soft corals.There are several sandy beaches on Pulau Payar Island for picnics as well as hiking trails for those who wish to explore the island. Just off the beach, one can indulge in the thrilling experience of feeding baby sharks. Facilities include gazebos, picnic tables, barbeque pits and restrooms at selected areas. There is also a Visitor's Center that provides information about the marine park. Visitors can get to Pulau Payar from the Kuah jetty point by catamaran or speed boat. The catamaran takes about 45 minutes to get to Pulau Payar while the speed boat takes an hour. It is advisable to book the catamaran service a day before trip.

Kuah
Kuah is the main town located on the south-eastern tip of Pulau Langkawi. It is the take-off point to the neighboring islands. The name "Kuah" is a Malay word meaning "gravy" and is associated with an ancient legend of two battling giants who overturned a gigantic pot of curry at the spot where the town now stands. Once was a rustic town with a few streets, present day, Kuah is a thriving center of modern hotels and shopping-cum-business complexes, but without the overcrowding and bustle of modern cities. Kuah is a duty free shopping haven with a wide variety of goods sold at attractive prices and its restaurants offer excellent culinary delights, especially fresh seafood.

Makam Mahsuri
With its fabled and historical past, Langkawi is a treasure trove for visitors. Among many significant sites on the island that have been preserved for posterity is Makam Mahsuri (Mahsuri's Mausoleum) about 12 kilometers from Kuah. This shine was erected in honor of Mahsuri, a beautiful maiden who was unjustly accused of adultery. According to legend, she bled white blood at her execution as a sign of her innocence. In her dying breath, she laid a curse on the island that it would remain barren for seven generations. Fact or fiction, seven generations have since passed and today, Langkawi is a flourishing tourist destination.Opening hours: Daily, 7.30 am - 6 pm go.

Air Hangat Village
The Air Hangat Village is sited on four acres of land about 14 kilometers northwest of Kuah. This modern complex includes a 3-tier hot spring fountain, an 18-meter long hand-carved river stone mural depicting the legends that enshroud this location and souvenir shops. Visitors can witness the making of local handicrafts and cultural performances.Opening hours: Daily, 9 am - 6 pm.

Anna & The King Gallery
Situated amidst lush tropical greenery at Oriental Village the Anna and The King Gallery is one of the island's latest attractions. In 1999, 20th Century Fox commissioned the construction of this magnificent and expensive movie set for the making of the film "Anna and the King".

Oriental Village
Overlooking beautiful Burau Bay in Langkawi, the Oriental Village is one of the region's most unique shopping, cultural and culinary destinations. Specially designed to provide a new concept in resort duty free shopping, the Oriental Village also houses fine themed restaurants, reflecting Asia's culinary delights. The village offers shopping buffs a bewildering range of international designer labels and local products. Bold displays of culture and fashion and fascinating handicraft demonstrations by skilled craftsmen add to the enjoyment of shopping here. A delightful Inn completes the village concept while cultural and theatre performances enhance the Oriental theme that encompasses the village. Indeed, a blend of the traditional and modern intertwine with the local culture will provide a unique experience for the visitor. Apart from excellent restaurants, a specially designed food court offers a variety of local fare. The Inn and the Club Bar provide an excellent rest stop for refreshments.Opening hours: Daily, 10 am - 10 pm.

Underwater World Langkawi
The underwater World Langkawi, a marine showcase featuring both fresh and salt water fish and other forms of marine life, is a must-see attraction. Located at Pantai Cenang, a popular beach on the island, this aquarium features more than 5,000 types of marine life, exhibited in more than 100 tanks of different sizes. The highlight is a giant tank housing large marine species such as sharks, stingrays, groupers and green turtles, with a 15-metre tunnel for visitors to walk through and enjoy a spectacular view of the exhibits. Underwater gardens of weeds and sea plants together with exotic fishes and exhibits of fossils and shells add to the range of interesting sights. Latest actraction is their penguins. Opening hours: Daily, 10 am - 6 pm.

Island Cruises
Going on island cruises is a great way to relax and take in the breathtaking scenery of Langkawi as your boat weaves through the watery passageways between the islands. A round trip, which takes about four hours, includes Pulau Dayang Bunting, Pulau Beras Basah and Pulau Singa Besar. Boats can be taken from Marble Beach and Pantai Cenang.

Dataran Lang
Dataran Lang (Eagle Square) is Langkawi's most prominent landmark for visitors arriving by sea.Situated near the Kuah jetty, the main attraction of the square is the magnificent statue of the reddish brown eagle majestically poised for flight. According to local folklore, Langkawi derived its name from the eagle or "helang". In old Malay, "kawi" denotes reddish brown, hence, Langkawi means reddish brown eagle! The square is beautifully landscaped and features scenic ponds, bridges, covered terraces, restaurants and barrel vaults made of bricks. Its close proximity to the sea and the soft breezes make it an ideal spot for leisurely walks and a tranquil setting for dining in the cool evenings.The square is beautifully illuminated at night and presents a dramatic scene as you approach the island by sea. Indeed, the majestic eagle is strategically positioned to welcome visitors to Langkawi.

Galeria Perdana
The Galeria Perdana at Kilim, about 11 km from Kuah, houses an impressive collection of over 2,500 state gifts and awards presented to the Prime Minister of Malaysia, YAB Dato' Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad and his wife, YBhg. Datin Seri Dr. Siti Hasmah bt. Mohd. Ali. The exhibits include fine crystal ware and gifts fashioned out of wood, leather, silver, copper, pewter, ceramics and glass. There are also musical instruments, Islamic art and craft, textiles and weapons. A part of the display includes various prototype cars and 4-wheel drive vehicles. The Galeria Perdana comprises of two-story buildings set within a beautifully landscaped garden. Photography is not allowed inside the gallery. Pictures of exhibits are available for sale at the souvenir shop. Opening hours: Daily, 10 am - 5 pm; Public/school holiday, 9 am - 6 pm; Friday, 10 am - 2:15 pm & 3 pm - 5 pm.

Laman Padi Langkawi
Laman Padi Langkawi is Langkawi's latest attraction that should not be missed for the agro-tourism lovers. Located at Pantai Cenang, in the vicinity of the island's popular beach resorts and just 10 minutes from the airport, Laman Padi Langkawi showcases the history, heritage and development of the nation's rice growing industry. Among the attractions is a rice museum displaying artifacts, charts and photographs showing the significance of Padi cultivation to the country. Visitors have the opportunity to enjoy a bird's eye view of the fields from a roof-top garden. For the uninitiated, try your hand at Padi planting using both traditional as well as modern methods of cultivation. There is also restaurant offering popular traditional Malay recipes and local delicacies which are prepared using rice as the main ingredient.Opening hours: Daily, 10 am - 6 pm.

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