Written by Vivie Emirza Eka
Located at the east coast of Malaysia, Perhentian Island is now a famous tourist spot. The breath-taking view at Perhentian Island is just so mesmerizing. Perhentian as translated in English means a place to stop, looking back at the history of Terengganu where this was the place for traders who travelled between Malaysia and Bangkok. This island consists of two parts which are Small Perhentian Island and Large Perhentian Island. Small Perhentian Island is the 13th best beach over the 100 best beaches in the world listed according to CNN.com.
To reach Perhentian Island, there is no other way except using boat facilities which will enquire you to endure some of back pain or the impact of inertia. This is due to the boat collision with high waves and it will take you around 20-30 minutes to reach the Island from Kuala Besut Jetty. However, first, you must not take a flight to Kuala Terengganu even though Terengganu is the owner of this Island. You need to arrive at Kota Bharu which is the neighbour of Terengganu in order to reach the Island faster and easier. You can always book the taxi or van provided at the airport or pre-booked by package.
Well, after the pain enduring moment, you will feel that it is worth it because when you reach there all you can see are beautiful white sand, blue sky, and obviously the greenish-bluish colour of the ocean. You can hear the sound of the waves and the breeze of the sea is just refreshing. There is no transportation at the Island; all you need to do is walk! No need to worry because it is totally walking distance to walk around the island, and if you need to travel to nearby islands you can always take sea taxi. This is why the Island is still beautiful and unpolluted. Some of data network might be available but only in the selected spots. But who will care about Internet when you already in a paradise?
Regarding the place to stay, there are few resorts and chalets or even campsite for you to choose. There is one resort called D’Rock Garden where you can experience living in simple but nice house, and don’t forget to request for a sea view! For campsite, there is Awatif campsite and the best Awatif cafe will offer you is the fresh coconut juice and the famous keropok lekor (Terengganu most favourable local food). There is also a bar that will entertain you with great fire shows for you to have fun under the sky full of stars. According to a data provided on Terengganu government website, there are more than 1000 of chalets and rooms there.
Famous activities on the Island are snorkelling and scuba diving. The remarkable experience to see the underwater creatures like corals, Dory fish and turtles will leave you the unforgettable memories for your lifetime. And the best part here is to not forget to experience jungle trekking moment and get to the windmills at Small Perhentian. It takes you around 30-40 minutes depending on the speed of walking to get up there. Once you reach the windmills area you will feel so relieve and enjoy the beautiful scenery from the windmills point. It is the leftover projects from the government where the government wanted to implement the effort of absorbing energy from solar and windmills. However, the project is a fail and it is left behind until some people found it and make it one of the best scenery at Perhentian Island, is it an Instagram worthy picture taking side.
However, you need to beware of the monsoon season, the islands effectively close between September to February. Best times to visit there are any time in between early of March to late of October, preferably in the middle of this time. Outside that window you might find accommodation but restaurants and bars are closed. Make sure to bring your sunblock and sunglasses and pretty beach dress and enjoy your moment!