Langkawi - Island paradise

Langkawi Travel Blog

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Sis’ graduation, 2002. Jan 2008


One of the islands in an archipelago of 99 islands in the Andaman Sea, off the State of Kedah

The largest island, Langkawi is brimming with culture, mysteries, legends and an abundance of natural scenery, also famous for duty-free shopping.

The island is recognized by UNESCO as World Geopark.


Legends of Langkawi

Kuah is Langkawi's main town, the name Kuah translate to “gravy” arose from a legend when a pot of gravy is spilled on the ground from a battle between two giants (Mat Cincang and Mat Raya, also the name for the two mountains in Langkawi) over argument at the wedding of their children. Other landmarks such as Ayer Hangat (Hot Water), Belanga Pecah (Broken Crockery) and Kisap (gravy seep into the ground) Village were created in a similar fashion.

As the story goes, the giants realised their mistake and agreed to be ‘turned’ into mountains as atonement, nestled in between the two mountains is a tiny hill called Gunung Mat Sawar. Mat Sawar was the meditator for the warring duo, and agreed to be turned into a mountain as well to continue watching over them, completing this fetching story.


Legend of Mahsuri

Famous Malaysian folklore, a story of Mahsuri, the most beautiful woman in all of Langkawi, framed for adultery with a young man named Deraman while her husband, Wan Darus was at war. It is said that the people who started the rumour was envious of her beauty. Mahsuri pleaded her innocence, but no one believed her. Following the old Islamic punishment for adultery, Mahsuri was to be tied to a tree (or pole) and stabbed to death. When they stabbed her, white blood flowed from her wound, signifying her innocence. With her dying breath, Mahsuri cursed Langkawi to have seven generations of bad luck 

The legend and curse is said to be true, citing the Siamese invasion of 1821 and and decades of failed crops that followed Mahsuri's death. It is only at the end of the 20th century, after the seven generations have supposedly surpassed, that Langkawi began to prosper as a tourist destination.

The tomb of Mahsuri can be visited in Kuah town.


Sights and Attractions

·         Beach

Beaches in Langkawi, sun-kissed white sandy beaches with crystal clear water, perfect for sunbathing, swimming and water sports.

There are also private beaches at hotels for guests


§         Cenang Beach

Most popular beach in Langkawi

§         Tengah Beach

An up-and coming place in Langkawi, has many trendy establishments of boutique resorts, restaurants, bars and spas

§         Kok Beach

was a location in the film "Anna and the King", the palatial Thai-style buildings constructed for the set still remain

§         Burau Bay

§         Pantai Pasir Hitam (Black Sand Beach)

an unusual beach with a strange colouration, the sand is mixed in white and black shades, due to the rich tin and mineral deposits (iron ore) in the area wash up on the shore constantly

§         Pantai Teluk Yu (Shark Bay Beach)

§         Tanjung Rhu (Casuarina Beach)

§         Datai Bay


·         Dataran Lang (Eagle Square)

The eagle represents the name “Langkawi” which comes from combination of “Lang” (helang / eagles), as the island was home to eagles while ‘Kawi’ in Sanskrit translate to marble, which can be found here.  


·         Padang Mat Sirat (Field of burning rice)

The site of a mass paddy-burning spree conducted by Langkawi’s inhabitants when Siamese troops invaded in 1821, to prevent the enemy from attaining source of food.


·         Underwater World

Langkawi’s marine aquarium


·         Telaga Tujuh (Seven Wells) waterfalls

a collection of seven intertwined natural pools fed by waterfalls in Mount Mat Cincang. It is claimed that seven fairy princesses reside in the area


·         Cable car at Mat Cincang Mountain

Cable-car to the peak of Mat Cincang Mountain from the Oriental Village at the base of the mountain. See panoramic view of Langkawi’s magnificent islands and verdant rainforest and at the peak, see spectacular view of the sea and distant lands, including Kedah state and Thailand

Oriental Village is a scenic park with Chinese architecture buildings, housing duty-free shops.


·         Island tours

Ride on a speedboat to visit islands in the Langkawi archipelago :


§         Pulau Tasik Dayang Bunting (Island of the Pregnant Maiden Lake)

The profile of the mountain is shaped of a pregnant maiden lying down on her back,

This island is the second largest, contains the largest fresh water lake in Malaysia, legend claims that the lake bestows fertility upon barren women.

Nevertheless, a dip in its cool waters or observing the spectacular view is refreshing.


§         Pulau Beras Basah (Wet Rice Island)

The island has white sandy beach and crystal clear waters, for sunbathing and swimming

Also a walk about the mangrove swamps


§         Pulau Payar Marine Park

the clear waters are perfect for swimming among the corals and colourful reef fishes.



Accommodation in Langkawi varies from basic budget chalets to upscale five-star resorts and is located mainly in Kuah Town and around the beaches.


·         Berjaya Langkawi Beach and Spa Resort

located in Burau Bay, is traditional Malaysian-style chalets and suites, set in a tropical rainforest fronting the ocean with sun-kissed beaches


·         The Datai Langkawi, Datai Bay

This luxurious resort on the northwestern tip of Langkawi, is also set amidst a tropical rainforest with a secluded white sand beach in Datai Bay facing the calm Andaman Sea.

For our visit, we only dined at the beach café with spectacular views of the ocean.


glennisnz says:
We stayed at The Berjaya and just loved the Chalets on the side of the mountain, there were mankeys swinging around in the trees right beside us, with a fine veiw of the ocean, good food and a great swimming beach and pool. Handy to Oriental Village was also good for duty free.
We were very content.
Posted on: Jan 18, 2008
rintjez says:
It is so funny that in Langkawi they have Pulau Beras Basah. That's the same name with the beach we have in Bontang :)
Posted on: Jan 15, 2008
tvillingmarit says:
Missed Langkawi when I visited Malaysia in 2006 and 2007, but I`ll be back, have a sister living in KL.
Posted on: Jan 15, 2008
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photo by: Mezmerized