Langkawi 2016

We made a short local trip to Langkawi island in early 2016. Langkawi is believed to be one of the best, if not the best, islands in Malaysia – particularly for its clean beaches, water sport activities, and the tax-free alcohol.

AirAsia KLIA2 – Langkawi return flights for 2pax: ~RM400 (including check-in baggage & seats)

We rented a Proton Saga after landing at Langkawi Airport to travel around, much better value than taking a taxi everytime.
Proton Saga rental: RM50/day

Sunset Beach Resort

We stayed at Sunset Beach Resort, a nice little resort along Pantai Tengah, just beside Pantai Cenang. The resorts at Cenang are more expensive and happening. So if you’re looking for a nice little resort with less crowd and less expensive, you might want to consider this place.

We stayed in a Sunset II room, which accommodates two. The hotel does not provide breakfast, but there are plenty of shops along the road just outside the hotel.

Sunset II: RM220/night
*if you book early, you can request to choose which room you prefer. We requested to have the room closest to the beach, and true enough, they gave us the room at the very end of the resort, right in front of the beach.

Sunset II room, right at the end of the resort facing the beach
A short walk from the doorstep towards the beach. The blue fencing on the right is for future development, but there were no noise or works in progress during our stay, do call and inquire.

The beach, though not as white and smooth as Cenang, is quiet and private. Only the hotel guests were at the area and sun chairs are provided too.

The beach right behind the resort
During sunset – view from the room
More sunset!

Yellow Cafe

We had our first dinner at Yellow Cafe, just walking distance from the resort. The food was good, with reasonable pricing. The restaurant serves Western food with some selection of local food.

Estimated cost: ~RM50 for 2pax

Seafood Penne with a Mocktail
Beef Burger with Beer (not shown)

Gunung Mat Cincang (Langkawi Cable Car)

The next day, we started the morning with a trip to the famous Langkawi Cable Car and Skybridge. The cable car brings you up to Gunung Mat Cincang, where you can enjooy the view and walk on the skybridge.

Note: try not to go during lunchtime. That was what we did and the Skybridge was closed for an hour. With a massive long queue in wait for it to open, we gave up on visiting the bridge.

Tickets: RM42/person for Combo A (for Malaysians): Cable Car, SkyDome, SkyRex, 6D Cinema (except for cable car, the other 3 were pretty pointless. Try to get an individual ticket for the cable car alone if you’re not interested in the others)

Cable cars going up and down Gunung Mat Cincang
View from atop Gunung Mat Cincang – you can see the clear blue seas of Langkawi
View from atop Gunung Mat Cincang

Underwater World Langkawi

After a rest back at the hotel, we went to visit Underwater World Langkawi, which was also walking distance from the hotel (the location of the hotel was perfect!). To be honest, we did not expect much, but the experience the aquarium cum zoo was surprisingly pretty good. If you like visiting animals or sea creatures, you could give it a try.

Entrance fees: RM33/pax (for Malaysians)

There are outdoor animals complementing the fishes in the aquarium as well
Penguins in Malaysia!
Giant spider crab – not available for dinner

Pesona Ikan Bakar Seafood

We had dinner at Pesona Seafood restaurant, a Malay-Malaysian restaurant. The price of the seafood here is much cheaper compared to those at Chinese-Malaysian seafood restaurants. You get to pick your own seafood and how they’re cooked too!
Note: no alcohol drinks are served as it is a halal restaurant.

Price for 2pax: ~RM50

Giant prawns for each of us
A complete meal – rice, chicken, soup (tomyam), squid, prawns, and vegetables + fruit juices

Gunung Raya

Our third day was the most packed – we started off by visiting Gunung Raya. Gunung Raya is the highest mountain in Langkawi. You can opt to hike up via the stairs (Tangga Helang Seribu Kenangan) or just drive up to the peak. We initially planned to hike up, but looking at our schedule for the day, we gave in to laziness and drove up instead. The road was winding, typical mountain roads, but easily accessible even for amateur drivers.

Entrance fees: Free of charge

The view from atop Gunung Raya, you could practically see the whole of Langkawi from here
Towns and buildings from one side, hills and seas from the other

Island Hopping Package: Pulau Dayang Bunting, Eagle Viewing, Beras Basah Island

We then took an island hopping tour recommended by the hotel (conducted by third party, group tour with around 8 pax). This tour took us to Pulau Dayang Bunting, then to a boat ride to view eagle feeding, and finally a stop at Beras Basah Island. The tour costs RM80 per person, including all transportation.

Tour package: RM80/pax

Pulau Dayang Bunting, also known as the Pregnant Maiden Island, is a small island enclosed within mountains and hills, making it a still and peaceful place to hang out. That is, if the crowd is not too big during the day of your visit. There are several activities available on the island, you can trek around the small jungles, swim in the ‘lake’ (formed by the surrounding mountains), paddle boat, or kayak your way around the island. Boat rentals come at various prices, so remember to bring some extra cash even though the tour has already been paid for!

A quiet afternoon at the island surrounded by mountains and hills

The next destination brought us to an island not far away where the eagles are plenty. The boatmen brought food for the eagles so that we could see them being fed. This was only a quick stop without getting off the boat.

Eagles flying around all over us

The final stop was at Beras Basah Island, which in my opinion was the best beach we came to in Langkawi. The sand was white and soft, and the water in clear blue colors. Not many facilities are in place at the small island, so do bring some snacks or food if you’d like to stay there for some time. There are monkeys around the island as well, who are really, really, active – so keep your belongings close – we witnessed a monkey stealing a lunchbox from a tourist!

Clear waters as the first sight upon arriving at Beras Basah Island
The clean, quiet beach
The water is deep, but very still – suitable for a swim or a dip
Monkeys are all around!

If you walk along Pantai Cenang, you’d see plenty of stalls and booths offering deals for water sport activities like para-sailing and jet skis. These are usually hiked up prices with an average of RM100/person for any activity. We wanted to do para-sailing, but found that they charged RM120/person. However, as I got into a conversation with our tour driver, he agreed to get a water sport activity conductor (an acquaintance of his) to give me a much lower price – RM120 for both of us – that’s half the price! So if you plan to do any water sport activities, do try to engage with some local help to negotiate the price, be it your hotel receptionist or your driver – or you’ll find yourself paying more than you should.

Para-sailing at Pantai Cenang: RM60/pax

The water sport activity conductor also helped us to take pictures 😀

We had a simple final day dinner of cup noodles in the hotel room as we were tired and wanted to save on our budget as well. The next day, we had a simple breakfast and headed back to KL.

Estimated budget guide 4d3n at Langkawi for 2 pax:

AirAsia Return (with check-in luggage)   : RM400
Car Rental (Proton Saga, 3 days)                 : RM150
Sunset Beach Resort (Sunset II, 3 nights): RM660
Langkawi Cable Car Package (Combo A)   : RM 84
Underwater World Langkawi                        : RM 66
Island Hopping Tour                                        : RM160
Parasailing                                                          : RM120
Meals (rough estimate)                                   : RM200
Miscellaneous (petrol, shopping)                : RM200

Total                                                                       : RM2,040 (RM1,020 per person)

Not exactly the most budgeted of traveling costs, but not too much of a splurge as well, around RM1k per person for a nice little trip to the island at the North-Western Coast of Peninsular Malaysia.

Been to Langkawi? More ideas to share? Leave your comments below!

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