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Author Topic: Trip Report - Perhentian Islands, Malaysia (May 2014)  (Read 7204 times)

Nameless Bear

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Impulsive. That's what I was when I made the decision to head up to the Perhentians for a long weekend trip on short notice, booking the bus tickets for Friday evening on Tuesday evening the same week. Couldn't help it, though.. I was itching to dive and had read up about how beautiful the beaches at the Perhentian Islands are!

Getting there (and back)

I took an evening bus from Singapore (Beach Road, The Plaza) which departed at about 730pm (you can also board the same bus at Johor Bahru, Larkin Terminal, later in the evening), making stops every so often during the journey before arriving at Jerteh at about 6am (Note: Tell the driver to drop you off at Jerteh, or else they will stop further up North at Kota Bahru!). At Jerteh, many taxis were waiting for us at the dropoff point, ready to take us to Kuala Besut where the jetty to the Perhentians is. Upon arrival at Kuala Besut, we were quickly ushered to one of the nearby offices for ferry services to purchase a ticket. A short wait (great time to grab some breakie) and a one-hour boat ride later, I was on Perhential Kecil; the smaller of the two Perhentian islands.

Leaving the island, I took the 4pm boat (boats depart at 8am, noon, and 4pm) to Kuala Besut, and from there made my way to Jerteh, boarding the overnight bus to Singapore at about 9pm.

Perhentian Kecil - Topside

Man, this place is beautiful!

Coral Beach by Nameless Bear, on Flickr

Long Beach by Nameless Bear, on Flickr

Having not made any bookings for accommodations, my first priority now was to find a room. Not getting any luck despite trying both beaches (Coral Beach and Long Beach) and also the jungle trail linking the two, I settled on a diving package with Panorama Divers which included dorm room stay, which, by the way, was poorly ventilated and dirty. Serves me right for coming here on a long weekend without making any bookings! Luckily, I was able to find my own room further down Long Beach after my dives (Phew!).

I spent my evenings relaxing along the beach, enjoying a few beers with fellow travellers, smoking some shisha and watching fire dancers perform.

Fire dancer by Nameless Bear, on Flickr

Be sure to try the pizza at Oh Lala and beef rendang at Chillout Cafe along Long Beach, and also head to Mama's Kitchen at Coral Beach for some barbecue. Just go easy on the Monkey Juice when you're out partying...

Diving

The diving at Perhentians is pretty decent, with a good mix of the larger stuff such as blacktips (saw a big, beautiful one!) and bamboo sharks, blue-spotted stingrays, turtles, some macro, and also a few wrecks to explore.

The following are my favourite sites:

- Temple of the Sea
- T3
- Sugar Wreck

Moray Eel by Nameless Bear, on Flickr

Crocodile flathead by Nameless Bear, on Flickr

Underwater selfie! by Nameless Bear, on Flickr

Blue-spotted Stingray by Nameless Bear, on Flickr

Spotted Scorpionfish by Nameless Bear, on Flickr

Check out more pictures here! https://www.flickr.com/photos/namelessbear/

Till next time!

DIN

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Re: Trip Report - Perhentian Islands, Malaysia (May 2014)
« Reply #1 on: 02 Jul 14, 00:54 »
Nice report. Thanks for sharing. Any crazy party photos? :P
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divelust

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Re: Trip Report - Perhentian Islands, Malaysia (May 2014)
« Reply #2 on: 15 Jul 14, 13:11 »
This is what I'm looking for! It's always been my dream to go to the Perhentian Islands but due to time constraints (work, family, etc), I was not able to. Seeing your post revived my fascination for the diving spot so I am thanking you Nameless Bear. I will now work on my oath to dive in Perhentian before the year ends and of course, refer on your guide  :)
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Ddivex

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Re: Trip Report - Perhentian Islands, Malaysia (May 2014)
« Reply #3 on: 15 Jul 14, 16:47 »
why are you hair standing?
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Nameless Bear

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Re: Trip Report - Perhentian Islands, Malaysia (May 2014)
« Reply #4 on: 15 Jul 14, 23:00 »
Nice report. Thanks for sharing. Any crazy party photos? :P

They wouldn't be crazy if I were willing to share them, would they? ;)

This is what I'm looking for! It's always been my dream to go to the Perhentian Islands but due to time constraints (work, family, etc), I was not able to. Seeing your post revived my fascination for the diving spot so I am thanking you Nameless Bear. I will now work on my oath to dive in Perhentian before the year ends and of course, refer on your guide  :)

Please do! It's a really nice place quite nearby Singapore. Let me know if there's anything else I can share with you!

Oh... one thing.. If you're taking the Transnasional bus from Singapore, do NOT get seats in the last row (row 10); There's a space behind for the drivers to rest and as a result seats in the last row cannot recline.. This sucks big time on an overnight bus ride. :'(

why are you hair standing?

Gatsby.

divelust

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Re: Trip Report - Perhentian Islands, Malaysia (May 2014)
« Reply #5 on: 16 Jul 14, 09:00 »
They wouldn't be crazy if I were willing to share them, would they? ;)

Please do! It's a really nice place quite nearby Singapore. Let me know if there's anything else I can share with you!

Oh... one thing.. If you're taking the Transnasional bus from Singapore, do NOT get seats in the last row (row 10); There's a space behind for the drivers to rest and as a result seats in the last row cannot recline.. This sucks big time on an overnight bus ride. :'(

Gatsby.

Oh I see. I appreciate the tips. I will go there with my close diver friends. By the way, what are the best months to dive in the Perhentian Islands? Do you recommend going there late November to early December?
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dp4610yz

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Re: Trip Report - Perhentian Islands, Malaysia (May 2014)
« Reply #6 on: 16 Jul 14, 13:54 »
Late November to early December is closed due to the monsoon.. :)


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divelust

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Re: Trip Report - Perhentian Islands, Malaysia (May 2014)
« Reply #7 on: 17 Jul 14, 10:00 »
Late November to early December is closed due to the monsoon.. :)

Oh I see. That's a bummer. I guess we'll have to make some tweaks on our diving trip. Thanks for the heads up! I appreciate it  :)
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alexlee

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Re: Trip Report - Perhentian Islands, Malaysia (May 2014)
« Reply #8 on: 17 Jul 14, 10:34 »
Don't even think of going around Oct. I went last Oct. Vis is really bad...

Ringwraiths

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Re: Trip Report - Perhentian Islands, Malaysia (May 2014)
« Reply #9 on: 22 Jul 14, 17:21 »
Nice series...ya perhentian its a nice place to go

But bro remember to book the resort in advance...mine last stay was @ bubu resort which was last year not bad actually. As well as the hut (I cant recall the name but its near the cliff area - that was 2012).

During the 2012 it was a road trip tot we drove all the way up and parked @ kuala besut.

Last year trip haha a flight.

I miss that place actually....haizz hopefully can go again this year if not early next year