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Last Updated on November 1, 2020 by Amy
Langkawi is a hot vacation destination spot on the west coast of Malaysia. It’s easy to get to and has an abundance of hotels and tourist attractions. Plus, the whole island is duty-free!
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Langkawi is an archipelago of 99 islands off the western coast of Malaysia. The island group is surrounded by the Andaman Sea while only being 30 km offshore. The islands are jungle-covered craggy mountains, which makes for stunning landscapes. However, the water is very murky, with low visibility. We are really crossing our fingers that the visibility gets better when we hit Thailand.
When we arrived in Langkawi we had my cousin Sarah with us, and after she left our friends Denitsa and Niki joined us from Bulgaria!
SkyCab and SkyBridge
On a beautiful day, the best activity in Langkawi is the SkyCab. The SkyCab is a cable car up to the peak of Gunung Machinchang, 708 meters above sea level. It’s about 15 minutes away from the airport, a roughly RM 10 ($2.50 USD) Grab ride. We visited at 10 am and found that we never waited more than five minutes for anything. The ride is about 15 minutes total to the top, but you can get out at the middle station for the views as well. I was a bit disappointed by the lack of information given to us. For example, I had to learn on Wikipedia that the parts for the top viewing platform had to be flown up by helicopter! That’s pretty cool. However, the view was absolutely awesome, and the ride was fun – well worth the 55 RM ($13 USD) per person.
At the top station, there is a connection to the SkyBridge, a short detour for a pier and viewing platform. It’s an extra 5 RM ($1.20 USD) for the SkyBridge, and as a bonus, you might see some monkeys.
Oriental Village and Other Attractions
At the base of the SkyCab is the Oriental Village, a park full of tourist shops, duty-free shops, and cafes. Your ticket to the SkyCab also includes the SkyDome, a movie theatre with hydraulic seats; SkyRex, a 3D simulated tram ride; and the 3D Art Museum. The 3D Art Museum looks like the most interesting one to me, and these types of optical illusion art museums are very popular in Southeast Asia.
Visit Eagle Square
A Grab ride from to Kuah is about RM 37 ($9 USD) and takes 45 minutes. The eagle statue is 12 meters tall and looks out over the harbor in Kuah. It’s very popular for selfies!
Walk Through Legenda Park
While the park is in need of some TLC, it has nice footpaths and lakes. There are 17 sculptures that depict stories from Malaysian legend. Unfortunately, the plaques are mostly gone, but it’s an enjoyable walk and often shaded.
Dinner at a Night Market
On a Wednesday or Saturday, the night market is a short walk from Legenda Park. All other nights the market is further away, so I suggest taking a Grab. The night market in Kuah is usually the biggest one. Vendors set up their booths on either side of Lencongan Putra 3 road. It’s a blast to walk from stall to stall, spending just a few ringgit here and there to taste some delicious Malaysian street food.
Read my guide to the Langkawi Night Market.
After spending a day on Langkawi Island, the best thing to do is get off the island! The other 98 islands of the Langkawi archipelago make for wonderful exploring. You can book day trips on tour boats or jet ski tours, or if you are looking for a longer adventure, consider chartering a boat.
Our next post is about cruising Langkawi and the beautiful anchorages we stopped at!
Getting Around Langkawi
The best way to get around Langkawi is to download the Grab app. I had difficulty getting my credit card info into my account to pay, but once I tried it with a VPN connection to the states, I had no trouble!