Langkawi, Malaysia

Langkawi, the jewel of Kedah, is an archipelago of ninety nine islands in the Andaman Sea. It is about 33 km off the main coast of northwestern Malaysia. Lying adjacent to Thai border, these islands are part of the state of Kedah.

Langkawi means reddish brown eagle in colloquial Malay. In Malay, 'helang' is shortened to 'lang' and kawi means the colour of reddish brown. Since two thirds of Langkawi is dominated with forests and mountains, it boasts of rich hills and natural vegetation.

Langkawi is a perfect destination for family holiday. White sandy beaches with crystal clear waters and forested hills greet visitors to Palau Langkawi, the largest of the 99 islands in Langkawi archipelago, drifting serenely into the azure Andaman Sea alongside Malaysia. This is known as 'legendary island' with myths associated with its ancient geographical formations.

For a tourist, the tasty local cuisine at nights beneath the dramatic waterfalls should be not just gastronomic but exotic experience indeed.

Malaysia's best holiday destination

Langkawi, with its mixture of picturesque paddy fields and jungle clad hills, is the country's best known holiday destination. And this is the place for those who desire duty free booze, cigarettes and chocolates. Langkawi is perfect for nature lovers with its shoreline fringed with powder fine sand and swaying coconut trees. Perfect for diving options, the island is a treasure trove for holiday goers.

And the electrifying locales of Langkawi keep visitors coming back year after year for more…

The weather in Langkawi is hot and humid, with tropical climate averaging an annual temperature of about 32 degree C. Occasional showers can be seen throughout the year with rainy season during August September.

Langkawi tourist guide

The Pulau Payar Marine Park with its sprinkling jade green island lies about 30 km off Langkawi, on Malaysia's western coast. The well preserved uninhabited marine park is attractive below the sea level – the tourist can step underwater and observe the chamber with marine life – surrounding a reef. Get close to the swirl of real fishes and feel at home with the corals! You have the option to snorkel and join the spectacle. The 950-m long tree top walk in the Sedim River Recreation Park is perhaps the longest canopy in the world. Built of low land of dipterocarp compartment of 15 of Gunung Inas Forest Reserve, the visitors are drawn from far and wide to stroll and watch the primeval rainforest high above the ground.

Rumah Kelahiran Mahathir provides an insight into the younger days of the fourth Prime Minister of Malaysia, and his home has been designated as a historical building restored by the National Archives in 1992.

Well known amongst the local population of Malaysia, Pekan Rabu is a weekly market; operating from atop roofed shack and has since expanded into a multi-storey arcade selling a wide range of traditional delicacies including mengkuang mats, dodol durian and apparels.

Go to Kedah to get traditional Malaysian food such as serunding, dodol and kuah rojak.

The Ulu Legong Hot Spring Baling situated at the southern side of Kedah is for those who enjoy hot mineral waters. A hot dip is recommended especially when the temperature decreases at night. And people with skin problems and ailments go here to seek therapeutic treatment by immersing themselves in the five hot spring pools, which are rich in sulfur content.

The Paddy museum has unique architecture throughout the building, with banister staircases. The paddy cultivation process in Malaysia is showcased in this museum and beautiful murals reveal the history of paddy cultivation in Malaysia.

The Kilim River cruise, which spreads across an area of 100 sq Km, features a beautiful mix of well-protected green mangrove forests and isolated white beaches and lagoons. The calm winding water trail exposes the tourist to the wonders of the park's theme ecosystem, flora and fauna and its natural habitats.

Dayang Buting Lake houses an island which is about 20 kms from Kuah town, and is modestly populated on one side and virtually uninhabited on the other. Legend has it that the favorite bathing pool of celestial princess Mambang Sari was said to be Tasik Dayang Bunting Lake. Here Prince Mat Teja fell madly in love with her and tricked her into marrying him. Sadly, their child died from a mysterious illness just at seven days and grieving, Mambang Sari returned to her heavenly abode, leaving the child's body in this lake. It is believed even today, that barren women who bathe in this lake will be endowed with a child.

The Bujang Valley Archeology Museum sits on Batu Pahat Hill. His Royal Highness – the Sultan of Kedah, officially opened it in January 1980. This is the first archeology museum in Malaysia built by the Museum and Antiquity department and Bujang Valley is indeed the oldest centre of international and entrepot trade for Malaysia.

The island of Palau Beras Basah is fit for an island hopping boat tour.

The Zahir mosque designed by the late Sultan Muhammed Jiwa Zainal Abdin II Masjib Zahir is located in central Alor Star and its main prayer hall measures about 3844 sq ft surrounded by wide verandahs with four mezzanine areas, each topped by a dome. The five large domes symbolize the five Islamic principles.

The Ulu Muda Forest Reserve is rich in wildlife with over 100 species of mammals and over 50 reptilian species. The wild animals can cross into the Thailand jungles from the wild expanse of rainforest jungle that is saddled between the two catchment areas. Visitors can camp overnight, trek and spot wildlife in these areas. They can alternatively spend a day in a boat and trek around the salt-licks.

Take a catamaran ride to soak in the pristine flora. There are exclusive private yacht cruises available at Langkawi offering carefree cruise packages for sunset and overnight stay around Langkawi and in the Andaman Sea.

For awe inspiring scenery, rustic and memorable views of the country side with wooden houses and children pedaling their old bicycles, for great adventures and five-star conveniences, Langkawi is a place to go…. and there is no shortage of things to do in this pristine paradise on earth.

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