When I think of the beach, I can already picture the crystal-clear water, feel the soft white sands and smell the salty sea breeze. Sometimes just the thought of what a serene place the ocean is helps me to escape the craziness of city life, the stress from work and everything else that comes with our daily lives.
I’m so much of a beach person that I actually love the smell of sunblock and tanning oil. When I get time off, my popular choice of relaxation time usually involves a cocktail, a book and the beach, and that’s truly a treat for me. Some of us travel far and wide in search of the perfect beach getaway with clear water and blinding white sand. But what if I told you that you don’t have to endure long flights and that there are plenty of beautiful beaches in our backyard to enjoy.
This island needs no introduction as it has been dubbed as one the best beaches in Malaysia and divers just can’t seem to get enough of this place. It’s a haven for any island-goers and there is plenty of underwater activities to engage in while you’re there.
Located 6km away from Marang, Pulau Kapas is a beautiful and secluded island. The island, Kapas (which means cotton in English) owes its name to its white sand. Another popular choice for divers, this island boasts clear seawater and coral reefs.
Tioman has such a wide range of visitors, from honeymooners and families, to scuba-divers and people looking for some lone adventure time. Besides enjoying the beach, visitors can also go jungle-trekking, snorkeling, and scuba-diving. You can also swim under the waterfalls or visit the adorable turtle farm. There is plenty of culture to soak in from the local villagers too!
For those who prefer a less crowded and commercialised beach, you might want to consider Rawa. From the Mersing jetty, you can choose to get there by a one hour ferry ride or a 30 minute speed boat ride. Known for its coral reefs that is rich with marine life and it’s soft white sand, you won’t be disappointed after a visit to this obscure island.
Another island that is accessible from Mersing jetty, Pulau Tinggi is bigger than Rawa but smaller than Tioman. This island is great for family vacations or group trips as it offers an abundant range of marine and outdoor activities, such as, rock climbing or trekking that leads to a waterfall in the lush jungle.
With the choice of Perhentian Kecil or Perhentian Besar, these islands will have you mesmerised that you almost forget you’re still in Malaysia. If you’re looking for a more relaxing type of vacation, opt for the big island as it provides a more laid-back vibe. If you’re looking to drink by the beach and enjoy a live band, head on over to the small island ‘cos that’s where the party at! Both islands provide plenty of activities for you to indulge in during the day.
Who needs to go to the Maldives or Caribbean when you have Mabul Island? Okay, that’s a lie as one of the things I want to do most is go to the Maldives but still, Mabul is pretty damn gorgeous. This place is heaven, friends and family that’s been lucky enough to experience this island swear by it. Most divers will also tell you that Mabul and Sipadan are great diving destinations. This luxurious place comes at a pretty steep price, but for such a view, it’s totally worth it!
Also known as Survivor Island, this island was the first location for the popular reality tv show Survivor. Situated off of the West Coast of Sabah, this island has plenty to offer, which includes the famous mud volcano. And if creepy-crawly snakes are your thing, then you will be glad to know that there are trips to snake island. Pulau Tiga is a refuge to some of South-East Asia’s endangered species and the island’s natural beauty will take your breath away.