Known as “beautiful island” in Thai, the fishing village of west Malaysia is a tropical gem in the Straits of Malacca at Manjung Perak with Dutch remains and rich marine life.
HOW TO GET THERE
The quickest mode there from Kuala Lumpur is by Electric Train Service (ETS) to Batu Gajah then use a taxi ride to Lumut Jetty. There are also buses from Terminal Bas Selatan (TBS) to Lumut daily taking around 3-4 hours on road. Better yet, direct flights are available from Subang Airport in KL and even Singapore.
WHAT TO DO
Pasir Bogak and Teluk Nipah are Pangkor’s best known beaches with clear waters and wild hornbills. At Teluk Nipah, you can water ski, take thrill rides on banana boat and island hop to Giam Island, a small isle surrounded by corals across the beach to snorkel. For fishing enthusiasts, there are multiple places for you cast your line like the Pangkor Fish House or rent a boat to venture out to the sea.
The Dutch Fort in Pangkor is a famous stop for tourists to see the ruins of 17th century Dutch colonizers in Malaysia. For cultural stops, Foo Lin Kong is the largest Taoist temple at Sungai Pinang Besar for visitors to appreciate the intricate oriental architecture or honoring religious beliefs as well as Lin Je Kong, a seaside temple.
WHERE TO STAY
For easy access to the pristine beach, Pangkor Sandy Beach Resort is a deluxe settlement at Pasir Bogak. This 3-star resort offers a range of recreational activities including jungle trekking to the deep forests besides canoe and kayaking in sunset. Close proximity to Teluk Nipah beach is Rumah Rehat Kerajaan Negeri with 11 limited ritzy rooms on stilts by the sea, casting a heritage semblance in contemporary guestrooms.
WHERE TO EAT
Expect nothing less from a fishing town but an abundance of seafood. Restaurant Pasir Bogak is a leading Chinese seafood restaurant that uses Malay recipes and Indian spices in their dishes for a true Malaysian taste. During rainy days, go for a seafood hotpot at Nipah Deli that overlooks the sea for some warm broth or Daddy’s Café for western cuisine.
LOCAL TIPS & FACTS
- Dried seafood as snacks are popular souvenirs to get from a fishery island. Visit Hai Seng Hin Satay Fish Factory to purchase some.
- Motorbikes are the best mode of transport on the mountainous island so rental services are affordable and ample.
- The country’s 2018 Budget declared Pulau Pangkor as a duty-free island where products like chocolates and kitchenware will have duty-free prices. However, it is not applicable to alcohol and tobacco.