The Island

Mar 27, 2011 No Comments by

While my time in the Highlands was fabulous, the cold and wet managed to aggravate my cold. What was needed was some beach-side relaxing while I got better. Next stop: Perhentian Islands!

Now the island actually consists of 2 separate islands: Perhentian Besar and Perhentian Kecil. Which basically means Big Island and Small Island. I opted for the smaller island mainly because the accommodation was slightly cheaper. To reach the islands you take a speedboat from the jetty at Kuala Besut, and they mean speedboat. This is one of the few times in my travels that I managed to have any research done in advance. Thank god I had read Legal Nomads blog post about this ride and knew to double bag all my electronics. We got soaked, to the skin! At times I literally thought we on the set for The Perfect Storm. The waves were HUGE and the splashes covered us in minutes. About halfway to the island the captain told us to hang on, it would be rough from here on out. From here? Like it’s been all champagne and roses before this? I just started laughing and soon couldn’t seem to stop. I just started treating it like an never-ending log ride. And we all know I adore amusement parks.

Eventually we managed to come to Coral Bay, the first stop for our boat. I clambered out here in search of a hot shower and a towel. I stopped at the Maya Chalets which was highly recommended in my book as one of the better cheap options. It was ok and was fairly decently priced so I took it. On the way to the room after signing in, I noticed a HUGE FREAKIN SPIDER hanging right on my porch. Like gigantic and possibly poisonous. (I’m not being hysterical, there are tons of poisonous spiders on the islands) I screamed , loudly and like a little girl, and ran from the porch. The guy across the courtyard came barreling out of his room thinking I was being murdered, or at least mugged. After laughing at me, he killed the spider. Thank god. Gross!

The problem with my new room became apparent at midnight when the power went out. I went to the office to check to see what the deal was, evidently they only supplied power between 6pm and midnight. Might not normally be a problem except for the now non-existent fan. And there’s no way to sleep in the tropics with no fan. So the next morning I set out in search of new digs. I settled on the Suria Bay Chalets at the end of the cove. It was slightly more expensive than I was wanting to pay but I was sick and wanted comfort. And electricity. Which the new places supplied all damn day. Who knew you could get so excited about AD/DC?

My room was set in the cliffs, up several steep flights of stairs. All of which were varriying heights.

I was surprised every day that I didn’t take a header off the stairs. Go me!

My days on the island consisted of laying around and doing nothing. Most days it started out raining so I spent the time watching movies in my room or reading my book. Sun would normally arrive sometime in the afternoon and the few of us on island would pile outside to soak in the sun. I had managed to come to the island at the very end of monsoon season so the crowds were non-existent. You almost had the place to yourself, a far cry for the beach scene in Thailand.

My favorite spot, under the palms.

On one of my last night’s there we had a torrential downpour that lasted all night. When I got up in the morning you could see the damage the storm had wrecked on the island. All the rain has basically washed the beach away. In it’s place were tons of sandbags normally buried in the sand. They’re laid each year at the end of the monsoons to help keep the beach from washing away completely. I’m not kidding, I asked one of the locals. The heavy rains washing down from uphill have a tendency to wash all the sand out to sea. It was crazy few days traipsing over buried treasure while the ocean spent time building back the beach.

Ummm where'd the beach go?

On my last night there I learned that the Songkran Festival, Thailand’s New Year would be in a matter of weeks. I’ve been hearing stories about this festival for months. I decided to head out of the islands, get back to KL and then head over to Thailand for the crazy water fights! To get back to KL I did something I have never before done in my entire life. I went to the airport and bought a ticket for the that day. Literally walked up to the ticket agent, told him I wanted to get to Kuala Lumpur and paid the man. Grand total? $45 dollars! I love Asia Air.

I’m spending 2 weeks in Laos before Thailand and have been taking a few days in KL getting ready. Needs? A guidebook to Laos and a waterproof camera!

PS. Yes the title is a reference to LOST.  :)


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One die-hard Mac Geek set on traveling the globe.
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