EXPLORE MALAYSIA

My flatmate got a notification from makemytrip.com about a discount on international flights, so he decided to celebrate his birthday on some island in Malaysia. We planned for the trip in the fourth week of July 2018 and got the round trip for INR 10,000 (570 Ringgit) /person only  from Delhi. There were three of us.

Visa

You can apply for E-Visa on their official website (https://www.windowmalaysia.my/evisa/evisa.jsp). The fee is approximately INR1500 (86 Ringgit) for a  single entry. 

Documents required for E-Visa:

  1. Photocopy of passport
  2. Two passport size photo
  3. Flight tickets (Round trip)
  4. Hotel booking confirmation

Islands

We planned the trip for 7 days on the  below exclusive islands :

  1. Tioman
  2. Perhentian
  3. Redang

Itinerary

  1. Summer clothes, beach clothes, Swimming clothes
  2. Snorkel and fins (If you wish to explore things on your own), swimming goggles
  3. Carry cash in the form of Malaysian Ringgits
  4. Sunscreen

Trip Plan

Day 1: Delhi – Kuala Lumpur – Mersing – Tioman Island

Day 2: Tioman Island

Day 3: Tioman Island – Mersing –  Kuala Lumpur

Day 4: Kuala Lumpur – Kota Bharu – Perhentian 

Day 5: Perhentian Island – Redang Island

Day 6: Redang Island – Kota Bharu – Kuala Lumpur

Day 7: Kuala Lumpur – Delhi

Tioman Island

  1. How to reach Tioman from Kuala Lumpur

We landed at the Kuala Lumpur International airport  at 7 AM and took a taxi from there to Mersing Jetty. It cost us way too much, around 700 ringgits( 2 Ringgit (INR 35)/km). Generally private taxi drivers take a longer route to make money. I’ll recommend you guys to take a bus from Kuala Lumpur. The cost of the bus is 50 Ringgit (INR 877)/per head only. Buses are available from 6:00 AM till 2:00 PM. Mersing is approximately 350 Kms from the airport and will take 5 hours to reach.

From Mersing port, we booked the ferry to Tioman Island. Ferry is available every 2 hrs. Charge of ferry tickets is 100 Ringgit (INR 1754)/head (30 Ringgit for Ocean conservation + 70 Ringgit travel fee).  The ferry will reach Tioman Island in 1.5 hrs.

focalab

 2.Booking

We had pre-booked the Berjaya Tioman Resort the best resort in Tioman from https://www.expedia.com/ for 2 nights for 3 people. It cost us INR 20,800 (1187 Ringgit). It’s a huge  resort and you can check it on their website https://www.berjayahotel.com/.

3.Day 1: Tioman  Island

We reached Tioman Island at 5 PM. Berjaya resort had sent an electric vehicle to pick us up. Breakfast  included in our package. We reached our room and had some beer with a beautiful sunset view. Post that we went for dinner to the banquet hall. For vegetarians, the options are limited. Non-vegetarians can have beef and fish, you will find chicken though. After dinner, we went to the beach to celebrate our friend’s birthday and had wine which we had bought from the Delhi duty-free. It was a full moon on that day and  you could just feel the peace on hearing the sound of sea waves.

Day 2: Tioman Island

Our plan for day 2 at Tioman Island:

  1. Chill at beach
  2. Sightseeing
  3. Snorkeling
  4. Sunset with Beer

 I woke up at 7 AM and came to the balcony to see the beach and had tea. Breakfast timing at Berjaya is from 8 AM to 10 AM. We had our breakfast around 9. One can have bread, pancakes, omelet, juice, fruits, tea, coffee there.

After breakfast, we went to the beach for sightseeing. Tioman island is basically a red sand island. Photographers can take good pictures here. You can go to the sea for a swim. The water is clear. You will find some fish there but no corals. For corals, you have to go further.

At 1 PM we went for snorkelling at the small island 5 KM away from Tioman Island.

Snorkelling charge was 40 Ringgit (INR 700)/person for an hour. Snorkel was included in it. If you have power in your eyes then you can go for a  power snorkel which will cost you 20 Ringgit (INR 350) more. We went to the small island on a jetty. There we dived into the sea with life jackets and  saw different types of corals/fish.The depth is around 30 feet and I swam around the small island. That was my first experience of snorkeling and this was my first beach trip. 

In the evening, we went to the beach to capture the time-lapse of the sunset, left the camera on the beach and went to the Berjaya bar for some beer with a beautiful sunset

Day 3: Tioman Island to Kuala Lumpur via Mersing

Our next island was the Perhentian island for which you have to go back to Kuala Lumpur. You might take a day break here due to the long journey from Tioman to Kuala Lumpur. We missed our jetty from Tioman Island to Mersing and got on to the next jetty 3 hrs later. Around 1 PM, we boarded the jetty and reached Mersing around 3. For some extra enjoyment you can stand at the back of the jetty for 15-30 mins.

We booked a bus to Kuala Lumpur for 40 Ringgit (INR 700)/head. The departure time of the bus was 5 PM, so we had enough time to have lunch and a small tour of Mersing city.We found a Pizza Hut and KFC,had lunch there and roamed around the city. You will find many cats in Mersing city which are very friendly.

The roads in Malaysia are extremely good filled with greenery all along the journey. The journey took ~5 hrs. The bus stopped at the roadside restaurant for the food. They were serving beef curry and fish curry with rice. We reached Kuala Lumpur bus terminal at 10:30 PM. From there we took a cab using Grab taxi app. 

We had pre-booked Airbnb at Kuala Lumpur for one night and reached there at 11 PM. Rent for one night was INR 3000 (172 Ringgit) for 3 people. It was a 1 BHK with an infinity pool in the building and our host was from Pakistan. They were very polite and nice.

Perhentian Island

  1. How to reach Perhentian Island from Kuala Lumpur

Day 4: Kuala Lumpur – Kota Bharu Airport – Kuala Besut – Perhentian Island

We had a flight at 7 AM from Kuala Lumpur and reached Kota Bharu at 8 AM. From the airport, we booked a cab using Grab. Kota Bharu Airport to Kuala Besut is approx 55 km and takes ~1 hr to reach there.

 

2. Kuala Besut to Perhentian Island

We had pre-booked a jetty along with the hotel New Cocohut Chalet. Charges of the jetty were 70 Ringgit (40 Ringgit fee + 30 Ringgit Ocean conservation charge) (INR 1230) per head. There is an office of the hotel in Kuala Besut which helped us in getting on-board the jetty. At 10:30 AM we left for Perhentian Island from Kuala Besut.

The view en route to Perhentian is breathtaking. Try to go in the open small jetty so that you can enjoy the view, feel the freshness of the ocean. You will see blue water and maybe some fish.

3.Welcome to heavenly Perhentian Island

We had never been to this type of island, it was a heavenly abode. The water is transparent and blue. You can easily spot fishes at the beachside only. The pictures below depict how Perhentian Island welcomed us. We had to open our shoes to go to the beachside from the floating bridge.

4.Bookings

We had pre-booked New Cocohut Chalet from https://www.booking.com/ for one night which cost us INR 9000 (514 Ringgit) for 3 people. Breakfast was included in this. You can see the hotel below.

5.Sightseeing

We had lunch there. You can have good fish curry here. Food is not good for vegetarians. After that we took some rest and then went for snorkelling. Perhentian Island is not too deep in the radius of 10 meters from the beach, depth is approx 6 feet. The best part of the perhentian is you don’t have to go far for snorkelling, just dive into the sea near the beach and you will see many fishes and corals. Perhentian is white sand beach, so the colour of water looks blue from the top and it’s very clear. If you are not carrying your personal snorkel then you can rent it out for 10 Ringgit (INR 176) only for 1 hr. It was an amazing experience for me. I have never seen this kind of beautiful island. After snorkelling we went for sightseeing. Perhentian is a less crowded beach. On the other side of the beach there is a mosque.

In the evening, we had beer at the beach and enjoyed the view post which we went for dinner. There I ate fresh red shaper fish. The cook fried the fish in front of me and served it with garlic paste and rice. Taste was heavenly. We stayed there for a day only but I’ll recommend you to spend at least 2 days here.

Day 5: Perhentian Island to Redang Island

We decided to directly go to Redang Island from Perhentian. It costs us too much but it got compensated for by the time we saved. We had to book the private jetty. Charge was 200 Ringgit (INR 3500) per head. We left from Perhentian at 8:30 AM. 

Redang Island

We reached Redang at 9:30 AM.

  1. Bookings

We had pre-booked the hotel Sari Pacifica from https://www.agoda.com/en-in/. It costs us INR 14000 (800 Ringgit) for one night for 3 people but was totally worth it. Breakfast was included in it. You can check the hotels on their website https://www.saripacificaredang.com/. It’s the biggest resort in Redang Island. We had booked a sea facing room but they upgraded us to a sea facing suite . Below you can see how Redang Island welcomes us.

2.Sightseeing

We went to the room. It was extremely good which is depicted in the pictures below. Redang is also white sand beach and has clear water so you can easily see fish at the shore.

Redang is famous for big turtles, corals and sharks. You might expect some crowd here. We went for snorkelling and at Redang there is a guide who will take you for the same. One point is famous for Turtles and another for colourful corals. Charge was INR 1200 (70 Ringgit) per head for 2 hour total. That was my first experience of seeing big turtles. Guys don’t forget to take a waterproof camera or a go pro for underwater pictures. Turtles are very friendly in nature and you can even touch them. After snorkelling we returned back to the resort, chilled there and roamed around the beach. Here are the views. I had captured some time lapses as well.

Timelapse 1

Timelapse 2

The dinner at Sari Pacifica is not that good so we went to Coral Redang Island resort instead. 

Kuala Lumpur

Day 6: Redang Island – Kuala Besut – Kuala Lumpur

We had a flight from Kota Bharu to Kuala Lumpur at 11:30 AM. But the problem was that the passenger ferry starts from 10 AM from Redang due to which we had to book a private jetty to Kuala Besut. It costs us way too much around 900 Ringgit (INR 15800) for three people. We left Redang at 8 AM and reached Kuala Besut at 9 AM. From there we booked a taxi to Kota Bharu airport. It cost us 400 Ringgit (INR 7000). But I would recommend adjusting the flight timings so that you can catch the passenger ferry. It’s much cheaper. We booked Malindo Air to Subang (Small airport at Kuala Lumpur) for INR 6000 (343 Ringgit) for 3 people. From the flight you can see the different colours of water.

Booking

We reached Kuala Lumpur at 1 PM. We had pre-booked airbnb near Petronas twin tower for 1 night and it cost us INR 6000 (343 Ringgit) for 1 night for 3 people. It has an infinity pool with the view of Petronas twin tower plus the whole city.

Sightseeing

We had enough time in the evening to see the city. We went to Aquaria KLCC. It’s a huge aquarium spread across 5600 meters and two floors. The ticket is for INR 1000 (57 Ringgit) per head. I would recommend visiting here, it has a variety of sea creatures. After that we visited the city.

Day 7: Kuala Lumpur to Delhi

We had a flight at 7:30 PM and had enough time for the 7th day. In the morning we went to the infinity pool for a swim. It was really crowded. Itinerary for Kuala Lumpur –

  1. Batu Caves
  2. Kuala Lumpur Bird Park

Batu Caves

We went to Batu caves at 10 AM. It is a limestone hill and has a series of caves 100 meters above the ground. Outside the Batu caves you will see the world’s tallest statue of Hindu god Lord Kartikeya. South Indians runs restaurants and shops here.

Kuala Lumpur Bird Park

Bird park in Kuala Lumpur is pretty famous and is one of the largest covered aviaries in the world. You can spot many species of birds here. Tickets are for INR 1080 (62 Ringgit) per head. The whole park is covered with nets. Only big birds like Ostrich are kept in a cage. Below are some pictures of the bird park.

Our trip ends here. Budget was INR 72000 (4105 Ringgit) per head for 7 days. Do spend a minimum 2 days on each island and book your flights as per the jetty timings, this will save your money and try to get public transport instead of private taxi for long distance.

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