If you want to live a unique experience Pangkor is the perfect place. The island has a long history of conquests and community. Indians, Chinese, Dutch, Thailand and Malaysian came here and mix their culture in a particular way.
It is a little island, quiet and chilling more than tourist hotspots like Langkawi. It is located off the west coast of Peninsular Malaysia in the state of Perak. It has everything you want for an island escape, with sleepy fishing villages, relaxed atmosphere and amazing views.
You can reach the island from Lumut where you take a ferry that takes 30 minutes to arrive. I left the ferry at the first stop, because my hostel was much closer but there is another one, after this stop. Pangkor is 18 square kilometers, but the good surprise is how much you can do, and what you can see.
- First Day: snorkeling and bike
The first day I did snorkeling in the morning, a small boat bring me and other people all around the island explaining what you see, and after, it stops closed to a small island let you the time to relax and watching fishes. I was the only European; the others were all Malaysian and Thailand people. They all together tried to explain me in English the information the driver was telling us. I paid 30 RM (eight Euros) for 3 hours.
After I came back, I had lunch in a small Chinese restaurant (5RM) and I stayed for a while in the hostel. In the afternoon, I rent a bike and I was to visit the Dutch fort that is in the south part of the island. The bike cost 15 RM for one day.
I took the bike and I started my personal tour of the island! First, I was to the Dutch fort, nothing special but it was good to go and close to the sea take some pictures of the small anglers’ boats and their homes. In front of it there is also a mosque, good to see but I wanted to stay on the beach and take the sun so I turn right in Pankgor city for another direction and after 5 km I arrived to the first beach. The name is Pasir Bogar beach, I stopped half an hour just taking pictures and watching the sea... I missed it!! In front of me Pangkor Laut island, famous for a resort, out of my pocket money….. One night costs almost 2.000€.
After that I took again the bicycle and I continued on the road. Here there was the first difficult road piece. There are 2 climbs of 10%, so I tried but I had to go on foot with the bike in my hands. No problem I made it!
Good point: after the climb, there is always a downhill. Flowing with the wind on my bike I reached the Monkey bay and the nipah beach where I stopped to stay for 2 hours. This beach is known as the best one of the island and in front of it, there are two small island, Mentagor and Giam islands that during the morning I visit with the snorkeling tour.
The fisherman driver told us that 3 days before and 3 after the Chinese New Year night, the water go down and you can go by foot from Nipah beach to both the islands. Around five, I restart my ride to go back to the hostel in SG. Pinang Kechil Jetty. Here I arrived to Teluk Dalam easily. This is a local small village, as I love these type of places I stopped also here in front of the bay and I took same photos with the sun that was going down...
From here to the hostel, the road was hard, but I did it! At seven, I arrived to my hostel and I finally chilled a bit, drinking a beer and smoking a cigarette. At height o’ clock, I was to eat something. Chinese food, good and with the beer I spent 20 RM (4 Euros).
So my first day finished and I was waiting for the next one!
- Second Day: chilling in the hostel
Day 2: The rain was falling down when I woke up at 7 am. Therefore, I took my time having a coffee and breakfast. At 9am, I take again the bike and I was to Teluk Gedund, another village at the end of the island, closed to a mosque build on the water. I continued to reach again Pasir Bogar beach and I chilling there one hour after coming back because my rent time finished!
As did the day before, I had lunch with noodles and tea (6RM) and I rest in the hostel for the afternoon.
A curiosity is that in past times this area was a center for piracy. The pirates had their home ports in the Pulau Gedung Hills, Gua Lanun (Pirates' Cave) and Batu Perompak (Pirates' Rock) on the island of Pangkor. After the Dutch period, during the British rule, the name was temporarily been Monkey Island.
In conclusion, Pangkok was a good experience as you can see fishermen villages covered by a Chinese atmosphere as Sungai Pinang Kecil and Sungai Pinang Besar. Next stop was Langkawi Island, at the extreme north boarder where Malaysia touches Thailand. It is known for the white beaches and to be a free port island.