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Rachel Kristen
live, love, laugh. Just the way I like it.
An Escape to Paradise.
Wednesday, May 9, 2012, 8:27 AM
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 Traveling has always been a favourite past time and this time around, we visited famous Perhentian Island. What can be better than an island getaway after a stressful week in the bustling city! I hope that by reading our experience, you too can be motivated to hop onto a boat and enjoy a weekend in paradise.

That's me fooling around in the clear water :)

We arrived at Kota Bahru in the morning before heading to the jetty. What is there in Kota Bahru, you ask? Err nothing much apart from kampungs and grocery shops. 

We also took advice from friends who have been there to shop for drinks and souvenirs on the mainland before going to the island. You'd be surprised by how the locals sell drinks in their humble homes. The taxi uncle brought us to a few places that seemed a little dodgy at first but we got our drinks nonetheless. 

From the Kuala Besut jetty, we took a 20 min boat ride before arriving at Long Beach in Perhentian Kecil.

 I could already smell the fresh island air that instantly put a smile on our faces.

In case you are wondering, Perhentian Island is separated into two - the Big and Small island. Depending on the kind of leisure you plan on having, go to the big island for beautiful and secluded beaches, and the small island, for backpackers and budget travelers who are looking to dance to reggae and jazz music while sipping on some iced cold beer by the beach *bliss*

Interesting board showing resorts and places to go. Travelers can opt to visit other parts of the island by "water taxi".

We stayed at backpackers' inn, Perhentian Tropicana (website here) that is located between Long Beach and Coral Bay.

It is truly a backpackers' experience living in Tropicana because we hiked up and down the hill, walk through narrow paths and iguanas everyday just to get to our rooms or the beach. Plus I have never gone backpacking to this extend but it was fun.

Owned by Michael and his family, the backpackers' inn is perfect for those of you looking for a place to crash for the night. Their rooms come with basic facilities; a fan, queen-size beds, and a toilet with hot shower. But trust me, you don't need hot shower in a place with such hot weather. We were also the first occupants of their newly renovated rooms.

Food (Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner package): 7/10
Service: 6/10
Facilities: 5/10
Location: 6/10
 Overall budget stay rating: 6/10

Getting away from the city and drowning ourselves in endless sunlight with sand on our body was exactly what we needed.

Day 1 Relaxing by the beach.

It takes us about 5 minutes from our rooms to the beachfront. I have to admit though, it felt like a hiking trip that was.... fun tiring. Lesson of the day: Pack light, travel light! (you can refer to my guide to items you need to have with you)

There are plenty of restaurants and bars, snorkeling stations, and umbrellas for you to rent along Long Beach. We rented an umbrella with beach mats for RM 10 and stuck our lazy asses on the white sandy beach while getting our first round of tan.

Dinner that night was provided by the Inn in our package that comes with 2breakfast, 2 lunch, 1 buffet dinner and 1 bbq dinner. All in for less than RM 400!

Afterdinner drinks at Black Tip bar.

Chilling to good music, fire twirlers and breezy weather.

Day2 Of snorkeling and more beach activities.

Perhentian is blessed with various sea creatures so after breakfast we went snorkeling at the island's  famous sites including turtle and shark point, fisherman village and coral reef.

Feeding the fishes with white bread

Admiring the awesome view and clear water, they take my breath away.

You can see the fishes and rocks underwater

 Hello Nemo!

 Apart from turtles and sharks, meet the pink sea cucumber:

*inserts caption*

It was my first time holding one, slimy and it squirts! Halfway through snorkeling though our boat was attacked by a green sea snake and we had to move locations several times because it kept following us. Never met such aggressive snake but it was an adventure nonetheless.

The whole snorkeling trip took about 4-5 hours before we headed back to lay by the beach again.

My flip flops have served me well, following me on all my trips :)

Bikini number 2 for Day two.

Beach getaways are meant to be relaxing, so apart from relaxing we found other ways to entertain each other like . .

Blowing a kiss and making funny faces

My cousin, Janice posing with her new shades

Laughing at each other when falling off the banana boat

And of course, couples do what they do best. Build sandcastles ;)

I wish we could have stayed a little longer because three days go by so quickly.

We continued tanning, swimming and getting plenty of fun in the sun before taking the last boat ride back to the jetty.

 It has been only one week but I already miss the sunny weather, clear blue skies, and crystal clear water.

A paradise close to home. Till we meet again :)

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