Saturday, June 20, 2009

Vacation To Malaysia - Pulau Lang Tengah

Pulau Lang Tengah or Lang Tengah Island off the coast of Terengganu is one of the nation's well-kept secrets. Its arresting beauty can easily captivate you while you are there. Crystal clear sea-water, pristine beaches and untouched tropical jungle. Its arresting beauty lingers forever in your memory. An island you can call your own, private and tranquil.

Getting there

Lang Tengah Island is located about 40 km north east of Kuala Terengganu (22.5 km from Tanjung Merang) on the east coast of peninsular Malaysia. The island is reached by boat from Tanjung Merang (not to be confused with Marang, south of Kuala Terengganu), 45 minutes’ drive north of Kuala Terengganu.

Boat services to Lang Tengah
Most resorts include return boat transfers from Tanjung Merang to Lang Tengah in their packages or arrange it for their guests. You can also charter a boat from the nearby Perhentian Islands or Redang Island (Redang Island also has an airport – see below).

Tanjung Merang is a small fishing village 45minutes north of Kuala Terengganu an

Perhentian KecilImage via Wikipedia

d the jetty is a few minutes outside of the village. Taxi services are available or your resort can arrange a land transfer from Kuala Terengganu airport or bus terminal.

Scuba divers observing fish and coralImage via Wikipedia

Speedboat departures from here are usually pre-arranged with your resort and take 40 minutes. Most boat operators have a fixed schedule, with two departures daily (morning and afternoon) in peak season and one departure in off-peak season.

Lang Tengah IslandImage via Wikipedia

Transfers cost around RM 95 return.

It is possible to charter a boat (from RM 380 per trip) to Lang Tengah Island from Tanjung Merang, Redang Island or the Perhentian Islands.

Getting to Kuala Terengganu / Tanjung Merang
Directions for buses and flights are to Kuala Terengganu. From Kuala Terengannu, you can take a taxi or local bus to Tanjung Merang jetty or arrange a land transfer with your agent/resort from the airport or bus terminal. If you are driving, continue north on highway 3 and follow the signs to Merang jetty.

Air Asia and Malaysia Airlines have several daily flights (50 min) from Kuala Lumpur to Kuala Terengganu.
Firefly has daily flights from Kuala Lumpur (Subang Airport) and Penang.

Berjaya Air offers daily flights from Kuala Lumpur (70 min) Subang Airport and Singapore (90 min) Seletar Airport to Redang Island. From here, you need to arrange a boat transfer to Lang Tengah.

Take a bus
From Singapore buses depart from the Lavender St bus station and are operated by Transnational. Tickets cost around SGD 35 and the journey takes around10 hours. Buses depart early in the morning or late evening for overnight journeys. There are other coach & travel companies operating out of Golden Mile Complex at Beach Road (e.g. Five Stars, Enjoy Holiday Tours, Konsortium and Gunung Raya etc.) that provide holiday packages and coach services to Kuala Terengganu or Merang. These buses are more luxurious, but are also significantly more expensive.

From Johor Bahru buses depart from the Larkin bus station. Several choices are available, including Transnational, Damai, Adik Beradik and Cepat express. Tickets cost around RM 35 and the journey

Lang TengahImage by g™'s Flickr via Flickr

takes just under 9 hours. Buses depart early in the morning or late evening for overnight journeys.

From Kuala Lumpur buses depart from the Hentian Putra bus station. Several choices are available, including Transnational, Damai, Konsortium, Plusliner, Sutera and Mutiara. Tickets cost around RM 30 and the journey takes around 7 hours. Buses depart early in the morning or late evening for overnight journeys.

From Penang buses depart from Komtar or Butterworth bus stations and are operated by SP Bumi or Atieza. Tickets cost around RM 35 and the journey takes around 9 hours. Buses depart late in the evening for overnight journeys.

From other major cities and towns in Malaysia, there are also several bus companies that operate services to Kuala Terengganu. For updated information and schedules, enquire directly at the long distance bus station.

There are car parks at Merang.

From Kuala Lumpur take the east bound highway (East Coast Expressway) in the direction of Kuantan. From Kuantan, take the coastal road (highway 3) north, in the direction of Kuala Terengganu (follow signs along the way). The journey should take around seven hours.

From Singapore / Johor Bahru Cross the border at Woodlands or the Second L

Sky, sea and sandImage by samuel_lee via Flickr

ink and from Johor Bahru take the Plus highway north. Exit at Yong Peng. Follow highway 1 to Labis and Segamat, highway 12 to Kuantan, then use either highway 14 to KT or coastal highway 3 via Kemaman, Paka and Dungun.

From Penang take the East-West highway 4 towards Kota Bharu via Grik and Jertih. From Kota Bahru, proceed south on highway 3 to Merang or Kuala Terengganu.

From Kuala Terengganu continue north towards Merang and follow the road signs to Kota Bahru; Batu Rakit; Kustem Universiti; Sutera Beach and finally, Merang Jetty.

Things to see and do

Scuba diving and snorkelling
There are 12 dive sites around the island, with a depth of 7-26 metres and within 5-15 minutes’ boat ride from the resorts. At the nearby Redang, Perhentian and Bidong Islands, there are another 40 sites, within 30-45 minutes from Lang Tengah by boat.

One of the notable attractions for scuba divers at Lang Tengah is the possibility of sighting whale sharks or manta rays at certain times of the year. Turtles are present throughout the year as are barracudas and if you are lucky you may also spot a leopard shark.

Jungle trekking
For early risers, one of the best treks is the early morning trek to Batu Kuching (Cat’s rock) where you can watch the sunrise at 06:30 am. The trek takes around 30 minutes from the resorts and can also be done at any other time of day for beautiful views over the island and the surrounding sea.

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