Planning a Tour to Langkawi and Penang
We had a week that would be free in November 2017. So in April, we booked flights to Langkawi and fly home from Penang. Cost for both flights was just around $80 per person. This would be about the equivalent cost for taking a coach to Kuala Lumpur and back to Singapore. In addition, flight time is just slightly over an hour which would be much shorter than the 5 hours bus ride to Kuala Lumpur.
Our flight details were as follows:
Singapore to Langkawi 12.50 pm to 2.15 pm by Tigerair
Penang to Singapore 12.50 pm to 2.15 pm by Jetstar
Such flight timings were pretty ideal. We won’t have to wake up very early in the morning to rush to airport and would be in time to check into hotel in Langkawi upon arrival.
Deciding Where to Stay
To save the hassle of having to get to Kuah Jetty early to purchase ferry tickets, we bought our ferry tickets online at Langkawi Ferry. Cost for a ticket from Langkawi to Penang was RM 70 inclusive of tax. We simply printed out the boarding pass and we were good to go.
With all arrangements settled, we were ready to head to Langkawi and Penang for a short break.
Singapore to Langakawi
November came so quickly. We took a leisurely bus ride to Changi Airport with just a piece of hand held luggage in the morning. It was slightly before 10.30 am when we arrived Terminal 3. First stop was our usual fish ball noodles for a quick early lunch.
Next we walked to Terminal 2 via the underground link way and approached Tigerair’s counter to collect our boarding passes even though we had already completed our online check in process. Once done, we entered the secured area, cleared immigration, we were free to roam the airport.
Terminal 2 was already dressed up for Christmas. This shopping mall like terminal was quite busy with many passengers taking pictures at different beautiful spots. Others were shopping or having meals while some were resting at various very relaxing and comfortable zone before their flights.
It was still very early so we went out to the Sun Flower Garden for a visit. The location is outside the theater and games corner at the far end of the building. This small outdoor area is nicely done up with pretty sun flowers smiling so brightly on this sunny day. It was very hot outdoor so we didn’t spend too much time out here. After taking a few shots, we returned to the indoor area of the terminal building.
We then took a slow walk browsing shops and finally arrived at the boarding gate. We rested and waited till we were called to board our flight to Langkawi. Not long after, we were airborne and on our way to Langkawi.
Flight to Langkawi
It was just slightly over an hour’s flight so we enjoyed ourselves with our window views during flight. It was quite fascinating as we could see very well during this day with good weather during flight. After cruising above clouds for more than half the journey, we finally made descent towards Langkawi. Along the way, we saw Penang Island with the two long bridges connecting the island from the main land of Malaysia. About 10 minutes later we approached Langkawi flying past pretty islands standing out of the sea and landed without incident at the small airport.
The airport is rather small so there are no aerobridges to connect to the aircraft for passengers to walk into the terminal building. As such, we walked down mobile staircase and then walked a very short distance into the terminal building. Another Airasia plane was parked nearby. Three queues were formed at the immigration counters and it took a while to get through.
Once inside the arrival hall, it was like a little shopping mall with shops and tourists information counters as well as cafes and restaurants to cater to the needs of arriving tourists. We went up to the taxi counter and paid RM 20 to get a taxi to Nadias Hotel. We were given a voucher and we had to present this voucher at the taxi counter before exiting the terminal building. The taxi number would be written on the voucher for us to board the waiting taxi outside the building.
We located our taxi and very quickly we were on our way to Nadias Hotel. The ride didn’t take very long before we arrived at Cenang Beach. The area was a little congested as there were road works going on. Finally, we arrived Nadias Hotel. The whole taxi ride was about 15 minutes.
We entered the hotel and processed our check in and were quickly given a room. The hotel staff were friendly and pretty helpful too. Only one card key was given. This hotel is quite new and was opened less than a year.
We then went up to check our room. The room was basic but modern and very clean. The queen bed was clean and comfy. Wall mounted TV was opposite the bed above a small table. Wardrobe along the wall was simple open concept with no doors.
A safe was provided with bottled water and coffee and tea making facility. TV mostly local channels with one English movie channel. Wifi was fine. Bathroom came with rain shower and separate toilet.
We had all that we needed so we headed out across the road to have another meal. Pizza Hut was our choice this time. We liked the decoration here. It was so cool. We ordered pizza, pasta, soup with garlic bread and coffee as well. It was like a mini feast. After this awesome meal, we roamed the street to recce for a restaurant for dinner later that evening.
Exploring Cenang Beach
There were plenty of shops, cafes and restaurants as well as hotels along this road. A bakery was available as well. There were many tour agents lining the street too. We approached one booth and booked an island hopping tour for the next morning costing RM 30 per person, which was very affordable. This tour included hotel transfer to jetty, boat ride to watch eagles feeding, visit the Pregnant Maiden Lake on an island and also another island to swim at the beach. Timing would be 9 am to 1 pm.
We then returned to Nadias Hotel. At front desk, we requested for late check out and was told there would be a 50% charge for a day’s rate if we check out after 1 pm. This would amount to RM 100. It didn’t make sense at all. So we told the staff we would check out before 9 am the next day and leave our bags with them. However, we would be allowed to use the facility at the swimming pool to shower when we returned from our island hopping tour. In addition, beach towels would be provided for us to bring out for our day tour as well. This arrangement was good and then we returned to our room to rest.
Back in our room, we watched TV and chatted with the children back home. Actually, we were hoping to take the cable car ride up the hill after checking in the hotel. However, it was already after 3 pm and a little late to head out to the Oriental Village for this activity because the cable car attractions would close by 7 pm. Moreover, the queue for the cable car would be usually quite long. So we forgo this activity.
Sunset at Cenang Beach
After 6 pm, we left the hotel again. This time we crossed the road and walked towards the beach to watch sunset. The beach was still quite busy at this hour. Beach goers were still on the beach having a great time. Some were playing balls and another group was playing frisbee. Others were swimming in the sea. Water sports were still available. We were approached to rent a jet ski too which we declined.
The sun was at the lower end and the skies were beautiful changing colours with the sun hiding in and out of some clouds. Sunbeams punctured through clouds diming and brightening the sky, the sea and the beach area and it was quite fascinating. Many people on the beach were holding phones and cameras capturing this magnificent scenes with the ever changing lights and colours of this picturesque moments as though they were paintings on canvas. As the sun descended lower towards the horizon and eventually slipped out of sight, everyone was watching this magical moment in awe before dispersing from the beach.
Dinner Time in Cenang
We also walked back to the main road to look for a restaurant for dinner. After looking around, we decided to try the local Chinese food at Palm Restaurant. We ordered deer meat, hotplate bean curds and an egg dish with two bowls of plain rice. We ordered two coconuts as well. While waiting, we were given tour menu to browse. The tour prices were pretty standard. The price for the island hopping tour we booked earlier was the same. They also sell boat tickets to other destinations such as Koh Lipe in Thailand. The cost was RM 220 for return tickets, if I remembered correctly.
Our food arrived and we began our dinner. The food was nothing to shout about. The eggs were fried with some spring onions and the hotplate bean curds came with mixed beans and no minced meats. The deer meats was fine but not fantastic. It wasn’t an expensive meal and the bill came up to RM 52.50 and we gave the waiter RM 55.
Shopping in Langkawi
After dinner, we continued to roam the street. By now, it was dark all over. The streets and business establishments were all lit up. We walked all the way south and reached the opposite side of the Underwater World that looked like it was close. So we turned back.
We then walked back towards Nadias Hotel. Before reaching Nadias Hotel, we went into Cenang Mall next door to do some shopping. I bought a nice pair of slippers for the island hopping tour the next day. We also bought a leather belt and a leather wallet. The whole of Langkawi is a duty free zone so this would be a good place to do some shopping. We also bought a big bottle of water to bring back to our room.
Next we checked out those chocolate shops but decided not to buy so soon. Perhaps we could buy them the next day at Kuah Town. We then walked over to KFC to enquire what time they open in the morning because we would like to buy some food to bring to the island hopping tour. We found out that this restaurant operates 24 hour which was perfect. Before returning to our room, we went to Starbucks Coffee to chill out over a nice cup of coffee. It was a good place to rest our tired legs as well.
After that, we walked over to Nadias Hotel. Just before stepping into the hotel, we looked up the sky and saw the huge full moon at the low end behind the hotel. This was the time where the moon would be closest to the earth. We tried taking some pictures but couldn’t capture it nicely. We then returned to our room.
Winding Down for the Night
It was time to shower and make ourselves comfortable for the night. Then came TV time and chatting time with the children over the excellent wifi provided by the hotel. We did some packing as well because we would be checking out after breakfast to head out for our island hopping tour in the morning.
With the night wore on watching TV, we realized it was getting late. We needed to shut down for the night and get ready for the activity the next day. So lights out and with eyes shut, we headed into the night in anticipation of the fun that would follow during daylight.
Continue to Day 2 …