magic of Terengganu begins the moment one enters Kemaman, with
its picture-postcard fishing village and scenery. This atmosphere
of peace and tranquility is heightens as one proceeds along the
exquisite shores--passing through idyllic fishing villages, dreamy
seaside towns, placid, palm-dotted lagoons and secluded bays.
Tanjung Jara is a stretch
of golden sandy beach embraced by the blue-green waters of the South
China Sea. Located here is the Tanjung Jara Beach Resort. Styled
after a Malay palace, but with all the modern amenities one could
wish for, the resort is the recipient of the prestigious Aga Khan
award for the best hotel architecture. Recreational activities on
the beach include windsurfing, sailing and speed boating. Tours to
the neighboring islands such as Pulau Tenggol and Pulau Kapas can
There are regular bus services and many taxis plying the Kuala
Terengganu - Dungun route.
About ten kilometers south
of Kuala Terengganu is the fishing village of Marang, famous for
its sweeping scenery. Beauty and function converge in the rows of
colorful, elegantly carved fishing boats moored on the sparkling
waters. They have made for many a winning photograph, and are even
more breathtaking when seen up close.
Marang is also the take-off
point for Kapas Island, about a half hour by boat. The waters around
the island are home to an infinite variety of corals, seashells,
fish, and turtles. On land, there are the famous Murai Batu--a song
bird which reputedly has 23 different and equally beautiful melodies
in its repertoire. The relative isolation of its spotless beaches,
and the laid-back atmosphere, make this another favorite retreat.
To get to the islands, board a bus or taxi at Kuala Terengganu
for the fishing village of Marang. It costs about RM 1 by bus and
RM 10 by non-air conditioned taxi. Air-conditioned taxis charge RM
Pulau Perhentian is a resting
spot for fishermen and seabirds alike. The island lies 21 km off
Besut in Terengganu. The sea journey takes about one and a half hours
from Besut. Blessed with a long stretch of white sandy beach and
exceptionally clear waters, Pulau Perhentian is a fine destination
for snorkeling, scuba-diving, wind surfing, sailing and deep-sea
fishing. Chalets and campsites are available.
From Kuala Terengganu, take a bus or taxi to the jumping-off
point of Kuala Besut.It takes about an hour. From the Fisheries Complex
at Kuala Besut, take a boat to Pulau Perhentian. The boat ride takes
about 1 1/2 hours.
Another enchanting island
off the coast of Terengganu is Pulau Redang. It is relatively uninhabited
except for a fishing village built on stilts over the sea. Its surrounding
waters support a variety of marine life--hard and soft corals of
every hue, anemones, and colorful clams. The crystal clear waters
make this an ideal spot for swimming, snorkeling, and scuba diving.
Ferry service is available from the Kuala Terengganu jetty and
it takes 45 minutes.