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Published: August 21st 2008
Where we stayed on Perhentian Kecil
Hello yet again everyone!
Yes this is 4 blogs in 3 days i know, but i thought i better get you all up to date as we will be disappearing off the radar for a little while tomorrow into the jungles of Sumatra!
Pulau Perhentian Kecil
After the long, freezing cold overnight bus journey from Melaka to Kota Bharu we stayed in Kota Bharu for 1 night sampling the famous night market food whilst watching the opening ceremony of the olympics (everyone seems to be olympics mad in Malaysia, its on everywhere!!) we moved onto the blissfull Perhentian islands (Perhentian Besar or 'big island' and Perhentian Kecil or...you guessed it 'small island'!!)
We caught the fasty boat to the islands and the title doesn't lie it was certainly fast, it was basically a speed boat ploughing through and over large waves, shooting us what seemed like 30 feet up into the air, Laura turned various shades of white and then green, I of course was fine!!
We arrived at Perhentian Kecil on the main beach originally named 'long beach'!
Although this is apparently the busiest beach it was still blissfully quiet the water was crystal clear, turquoise, and the
Crystal Clear Water
Perfect for snorkelling
temperature of a nice bath, the beach was white enough to blind you if you were foolish enough to forget your sunglasses and friendly local eagles the size of small buses flew overhead, occasionally settling in a tree nearby.
You could wade out for hundreds of metres into the sea across the expanse of white sand and still only be knee deep in water, it was just beautiful. We spent many hours sunbathing in the sea rather than on the beach as you could comfortably lie on the sea bed and not drown, as the beach was completely devoid of waves until the late afternoon.
We spent 6 beautiful days sunbathing, swimming, snorkelling and did another scuba diving trip.
Although the diving didnt seem to match up to Ko Phi Phi's amazing colours and wildlife, the snorkelling was really good with turtles, sharks, nemo fish and colourful fish easy to spot, i even swam alongside a huge green turtle for many minutes within touching distance of the great animal (I seem to have developed a talent for free diving to an amateurish level so can stay underwater to see the fish and turtles).
Every night our resort put on really
This ones for you Dad!! (Recognize the pose!!)
good films (that were clearly pirated as they have only just been released in the cinema this month, but hey!!) A perfect way to spent an evening cooling off after the beach whilst eating great BBQ food.
Ma' Daerah Turtle Sanctuary
After our 6 days came to an end here we really didnt want to leave, but leave we must our next stop , Ma Daerah Turtle Sanctuary, which is funded by the WWF, where we had volunteered to help Monitor Turtles landing to lay their eggs, monitor the nests and release any hatchlings that emerged into the sea. We couldn't wait as we have become pretty obsessed with turtles on this trip!
We spent a few days here and although in the daytimes their was little to do (as most of the action involving turtles happens at night) their was a lovely beach to enjoy.
Each night we would get up at some ingodly hour, we weren't told what time this would be which made it even more fun! And we would head off down the beach to find signs that a turtle had landed to lay her eggs. These signs were pretty obvious as they came
The local taxi boats for travelling around the islands
in the form of tracks from the seas edge, up the beach, which looked very much like tractor marks!
We followed the tracks up to where we find a huge mother turtle, in the process of digging out her nest. She would then lay eggs (alot of eggs usually around 100, seriously where the hell she puts them all i have no idea!) that look alot like golf balls which are quickly collected by us and put into a bucket to be transported safely to the hatchery and away from predators.The turtles would then be measured, checked for tags and barnacles (which can apparently kill the turtles if left).
After around 3 hours the turtle would return to sea surprisingly quickly (probably because it was all downhill on the way back!, they seem to sledge in the steepest parts!)
Seeing a turtle lay her eggs was an amazing experience and we felt pretty priviledged to witness it and be able to help as much as we could.
Seeing the mother turtles lay their eggs was eclipsed by being able to check the nests for sign of hatchlings and then release any hatchlings that are found. The little hatchlings are only
The clearest water you could imagine!
aroung an inch long and are the most adorable little creatures you are likely to see, with eyes that are far too big for the rest of their body!
We left the sanctuary absolutley shattered but feeling really priveledged to have been able to be part of helping such geeat animals.
We travelled from the turtle sanctuary to Penang via overnight stops in Cherating and Kuala Lumpur (for another cinema trip!!) The roads in Malaysia are fantastic and the coaches are pure luxury so the travelling wasn't too much of a chore.
We spent 3 days in Georgetown the main town on the island of Penang, which was an important Trading Post for the British and therefore is jam packed with colonial architecture.
Alongside all of this colonial grandeur sit Chinatown and Little India, which not only makes for a fantastically colourful place in terms of culture and architecture but it also means that the food is fantastic, I've eaten alot (and I mean alot) here!!!
Georgetown is a beautiful place full of energy and colour and we greatly enjoyed the diversity as we wondered around the streets looking at the buildings, watching the people and eating and
then eating and then maybe a bit more eating!!
Anyway that is where we are now so you are all up to date.
We have a boat to Medan in Sumatra booked for first thing tomorrow where we will go trekking in search of wild Orang-Utans, I'm pretty excited about that, I seem to be a bit of a wildlife buff!!
I'll let you know how that, and the rest of our stay in Sumatra goes in the next Blog.
Take Care Everyone
Steve & Laura. xxx
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