There are two tours that probably most tourists do on Langkawi. One is the mangrove tour at Kilim Geoforest Park, the other is the island hopping tour. We did both tours and would like to report here about the island tour.
booking Langkawi island tour
The island tour is offered in all tour beaches. There are many of them along Cenang Beach. The prices differ hardly (+- 5 RM). The tour is as far as we can judge it in all providers identical. Possibly not all providers offer an included hotel transfer.
Cost of the island tour
The island hopping tour in Langkawi costs approximately RM 25 – RM 30. per person. A private boat costs about RM250. Jet ski tours cost significantly more. The tour lasts officially 4h. However, the period includes the transfer to the port as well.
In addition, the entrance fee to Dayan Bunting Lake costs another. RM6. Life jackets (optional) and activities there cost extra.
Start of the island hopping tour
We were picked up directly at our hotel and after the Tour there also dropped off again.
The tour operates 2x daily
- 09:00 am – 1:00 pm
- 2:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Our island hopping tour started at a small local Port at the end of JL Teluk Baru road, about 500meters from Awana Pier. However, other operators also start directly from the Jetty in Kuah. Unfortunately providers do not pay attention to the tides and partly the boats can at the beginning of the tour the port not yet leave.
Destinations of the island hopping tour
There are three attractions on the tour that all of the Tour providers will stop at.
- Dayan Bunting Lake: The freshwater lake on the island of the same name (Island often the pregnant Maiden)
- The Eagle feeding Point off the island of Pulau. Singa Besar
- Pulau Beras Basah Beach: beach
Experience report with island hopping tour in Langkawi
Too early pickup but unable to depart
Our tour was supposed to start at 9:00 at the hotel. The booking the Day before had been uncomplicated at a booth in the pedestrian zone near Cenang Beach had been. At 8:52 the driver is already at the hotel. We pack hurriedly our things and jump into the minibus.
We pick up a few more people at a nearby hotel Then we drive to the beach. At a little after nine we are at the jetty. There already arrives one tourist group after the other.
Here at the pier, by the way, you can also buy good water us Snacks buy. The selection thereby is very large.
After about twenty minutes waiting time we notice that still not a single boat has left the port. The reason for this quickly becomes clear: It is just low tide and the boats stand in the mud.
A small warning note on the side: The railing at the jetty is so rusty that it immediately gives way when you lean against it – Max almost unintentionally made a mud bath.
The number of tourists continues to increase until about 100 people are waiting for their tour to begin. After three quarters of an hour, the first boats finally trudge through the mud out of the harbor, where the water is just slowly returning.
Sea walk and police check
The boat ride to our first destination of the Island often The Pregnant Maiden (Island of the Pregnant Junfer) is rough. The swell in the Strait of Malacca is significantly stronger than in the sheltered bays of Selangor or the Kilim Geoforest Park in Malaysia. In addition, the boat is extremely long, low and too unstable to counter the waves. We are shaken and also quite wet. The life jackets on the Boat are here for a change times really useful.
Then a boat in blue camouflage suddenly appears in front of us. It’s a police checkpoint on the water! We are pulled with ropes to the neighboring boat. We feel a little like in a pirate movie, just before the ship is captured. The 16 tourists on our boat look at each other and the policemen slightly disturbed. One of the policemen exchanges a few words with our driver. Another explains to the tour group, first in Malay then in English, that this is a routine check, alla “driver’s license and vehicle documents please”. Our driver digs out the documents, then we are allowed to drive on. We tourists were not controlled. I would not have had a passport either.
The island of the pregnant virgin and life jackets
There’s not much going on yet on the Island of the Pregnant Maiden when we arrive. There are small restaurants, snack stands and souvenir stands here. It is a real little tourist town. They are all just opening. We are one of the first boats.
We go to the checkout. The tickets for the lake Dayan Bunting Lake cost RM 6 per person. We are told by everyone at the ticket office that you need a vest to swim in the lake. The vests cost RM 10 extra. The fact that the price for the vests is more expensive than the entrance fee is the warning sign for us not to take them. We go without vests – under the loud protests of the vest renters – to the lake. The way leads about 5 minutes through the forest. To the right and left packs of macaques lurk along the path and relieve careless tourists of their snacks. Then it’s down a long flight of stairs to the lake.
The lake is 10 meters deep on average. There is no shallow shore area. Therefore, one has constructed a floating platform. On this you can sit and there are stands that rent life jackets for 1 RM (oh wonder!). There are also stores with snacks and above all boat rentals. Only a small area of the lake is closed off for swimming. Most of the area is reserved for swan boats, pedal boats, kayaks and small electric boats. We enter the water without life jackets and no one bothers. Most of the other western tourists also do without the vest. Gradually, more and more tourists trickle in and it becomes crowded at the lake.
Eagle feeding in fast forward
After an hour, we move on. We drive into a small bay. Soon we see white-bellied eagle and brahminy harrier in the sky. Even before our boat has come to a stop and without warning, our our captain pours something from a bucket overboard. The birds pounce on it. Hastily we all dig out our cameras. Who sits on the passenger side, has bad luck. The boat does not turn.
After less than five minutes we continue – five minutes it is also only because a Cappy goes overboard and must be picked up first neither.
Dream beach full of tourists
We continue to our last stop. The beach of the island Pulau Beras Basah. We are clearly not the first ones here. The beach is full of tourists. Again, there are stalls with snacks and life jackets. We go to a section of the beach a bit off the beaten track. Here it is quieter, but there is much garbage around. (If you have a bag with you, be so good and collect some trash). On the island there are many monkeys, also here you should be careful with your snacks.
After an hour’s stay, we go back on the boat. There we sit for 15 minutes with 10 other fellow passengers and wait annoyed for a couple who apparently forgot the time.
Return and conclusion from the Island Hopping Tour
Another jerky boat ride later, we are back in the Harbor. There, ushers are already distributing people onto the buses that will take them to the hotels bring back.
Our conclusion of the day is definitely that the tour was too mass-touristy for us. We personally liked the tour at Kilim Geoforest Park much better and you could have arranged a swim stop with the captain there.On the other hand, you can’t expect much for a price of 7€ per person.
What should you bring to the island hopping tour?
- Towel and possibly beach towel to lay down
- Flipflops – shoes will definitely get wet
- Sun protection (sunscreen, hat, etc.)
- Drybag – for camera, money, cell phone, etc. because on the the boat it gets wet
- Camera for beautiful photos
- Water / snacks – can also be purchased on the road be
- Money for entrance fee and snacks
What to look out for on the Island Hopping Tour
- Exit / entry of boats is delayed at. low tide in the harbor
- The duration of 4h refers to the time that you should plan including approach, the tour itself lasts approx. 3h
- In windy weather, the boat trip is nothing for weak stomachs
- You may get wet on the boat from head to toe
- . foot wet
- It’s a mass tourism event, forget about lonely booths
- Swim jackets in Dayan Bunting Lake are optional and optional and significantly more expensive at the ticket office than at the lake directly
- The tour is not suitable for personswith limited mobility suitable (stairs, get in / out of boat, etc.). For children it should be well suited.