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Langkawi, "the Jewel of Kedah" is an archipelago of 99 islands in the Andaman Sea, some 30 km off the mainland coast of northwestern Malaysia. The islands are part of the Malaysian state of Kedah, which is beside the Thai border. On July 15, 2008, Sultan Abdul Halim of Kedah had consented to the change of name to Langkawi Permata Kedah in conjunction with his Golden Jubilee Celebration. By far the largest of the islands is the eponymous Pulau Langkawi with a population of some 64,792, the only other inhabited island being nearby Pulau Tuba. Langkawi is also an administrative district with the town of Kuah as the capital and largest town. Langkawi is a duty-free island.

The name "Langkawi" has two possible origins. First, it is believed to be related to the kingdom of Langkasuka, itself a version of the Malay negari alang-kah suka ("the land of all one's wishes"), centered in modern-day Kedah. The historical record is sparse, but a Chinese Liang Dynasty record (c. 500 AD) refers to the kingdom of "Langgasu" as being founded in the 1st century AD. Second, it could be a combination of the Malay words 'helang', meaning "eagle" and 'kawi', meaning "reddish-brown" or "strong", in old Malay.

Langkawi eventually came under the influence of the Sultanate of Kedah, but Kedah was conquered in 1821 by Siam and Langkawi along with it. The Anglo-Siamese Treaty of 1909 transferred power to the British, which held the state until independence, except for a brief period of Thai rule under the Japanese occupation of Malaya during World War II. Thai influences remain visible in the culture and food of Langkawi.

Langkawi remained a sleepy backwater until 1987, when the island was granted tax-free status with the intention of promoting tourism and improve the lives of the islanders. The following boom was spectacular and now Langkawi figures on most every European travel agency's radar.

This spectacular boom was also due to the fact that Mahsuri's curse was lifted with the birth of her 7th generation descendant.

Sheltered by the mountainous backbone of Peninsular Malaysia, Langkawi escapes the northeastern winter monsoon entirely and enjoys sunny skies in winter when the eastern provinces are flooded. Coupled with natural white sand beaches, lush jungle foliage and craggy mountain peaks - but hampered by inaccessibility - the island was at one time touted as "Malaysia's best-kept secret".

The 10,000 hectares of Langkawi and its 99 islands were declared a Geopark by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) in 2007

Langkawi Tours

Tours can be arranged via any hotel or a multitude of online agencies. Travel & Culture Services offers special tours for travel agents and our valued customers These tours can be booked with 2 days advance notice.

Half day Private Island Trip (3 hours)

15.00 hrs It’s time to visit the Bon Ton Kampung Houses. Illusive Mahsuri’s Tomb is another place you should make a point to visit - this vengeful woman cursed Langkawi for seven generations after she was wrongfully convicted and sentenced to death for adultery. The Durian Perangin Waterfalls and Gunung Raya, which is the highest peak in Langkawi (840 m) are more wondrous sites where you can enjoy beautiful views and nature.

Cost US$ 28.00 per person minimum 2 people required. Contact us to book now

Full day Langkawi Lifestyle of the Islanders – Culture, Customs and daily life, including lunch (8 hours)

08.30 hrs We will take you through the villages of Langkawi and give you an insight into the lifestyle of the islanders. Visit a traditional Malay House, where you will get an introduction to the local herbs and plants. Continue the tour to the waterfalls and take a dip in the cool waters. The waterfall is accessible through an easy walk through light rainforest. Visit a fishing village, Mahsuri’s Tomb and Kuah Town – the capital of the island. Lunch will be at a local restaurant.

Have a drink at a local tea house at the peak and watch the sunset and the many hornbills that fly about. The Tour will be completed with a visit to the colorful night market.

US$ 110.00 Per person minimum 2 people required Contact us to book now

Half day Island Hopping tour

08.30 hrs Visit Tasik Dayang Bunting, Lake of the Pregnant Maiden by boat. Swim in the lake but keep an eye out for wild monkeys. Hop to the next island, Singa Besar which means ‘big lion’ - a true treasure with its wildlife sanctuary and uncrowded white sandy beaches. Rates are upon request.

Cost US$ 48.00 per person minimum 2 people required. Contact us to book now

Langkawi Sailing Cruise Tour

09.00 hrs Relax under the tropical sky while we sail you around the southern tip of the island. You will have the opportunity mangrove swamps, secret caves, lagoons and isolated beaches. You will also see eagles as they glide by. Lunch and free-flow of drinks included

Rates upon request Contact us to book now

Langkawi Pulau Payar Diving Tour

09.00 hrs Experience the natural beauty of Pulau Payar Marine Park, a haven for all kinds of tropical fish, corals and other underwater treasures. You can dive or go snorkeling in the pristine waters, equipment for all activities is provided. Snacks and soft drinks included.

Rates upon request Contact us to book now

Langkawi Mangrove Cruise & Eagle Watching Tour

09.00 hrs You’ll be taken on a scenic boat ride to experience the unusual ecosystem between land and sea that’s unique to this climate – the Mangroves. Take a trip north to explore the unusual rock formations and hidden caves. Also included in the tour is a rare experience of eagle observation.

Rates upon request Contact us to book now

Rainforest Tour

09.00 hrs Learn all about the unique partnership between plants and animal in this tour. A very experienced naturalist will guide you safely through secrets that these verdant rainforests hold firm. No extreme trekking involved and therefore this tour is recommended for all ages.

Rates upon request Contact us to book now

Quad Bike Adventure

09.00 hrs Go across the island with professional guides to see the daily routine of the locals and also visit the some of the renowned places in this legendary island. Safety training and transfers included.

Rates upon request Contact us to book now

Kayak Mangrove Adventure

09.00 hrs Take your own kayak through the exclusive waterways that flourish around the Mangroves of Langkawi. Experience the diverse flora and fauna that makes these salt water loving plants and their ‘canals’ home. Lunch and boat transfer included.

Rates upon request Contact us to book now

Langkawi Malaysian Cooking Course

Learn to cook local dishes in a traditional Malay house. Later, taste your own cooking for lunch to complete this unique and truly Malaysian experience. Available for minimum 2 persons and maximum 8 persons.

Rates upon request Contact us to book now

Other tours offered in Langkawi

Jet Ski Island Tours or Jet Ski Safari,  +60122002155, [18]. Breathtaking view touring the islands of Langkawi on a jet ski. You will be given a choice of three different tours. Private tours can be arranged. The tours take approximately 4 hours and leave at 9.00AM ending 1.00PM. They have pick up service and can depart from Pantai Cenang or Sheraton Langkawi Beach Resort.

Birdwatching Tours. There are over 200 species of birds on the islands. The best times to watch them are the early mornings or early evenings. RM200 Adult, RM120 child. edit
Sailing,. Four first-class marinas provide berths for many international yachts. edit
Kayaking & Swimming Adventure. 4 hour tour. Paddle along the mangrove forest. Opportunities to see kingfishers, sea eagles, kites, plovers, herons, fiddler crabs and mud skippers. RM250 Adult, RM120 child.

Jungle Trekking in the Rainforest. 4 hour tour. Pick up from your hotel. Lots of monkeys and birds. Junglewalla also offers tours suitable for families or advanced hikers. Jungle trekking is free if you follow any of the numerous jungle trek routes available throughout Langkawi. The vegetation is not dense and will be a memorable experience. RM150. edit
Mangrove & Limestone Cruise. 4 hour tour. Explore the mangroves forest and the ancient limestone outcrops and rock formations and possibly walking fish, Kingfishers, and Eagles. Prices vary, depending on the quality of the guide as well as the package components. It can range anywhere from 120-200rm for adults. Alternately, you can charter the boat for 300RM if you are more than 2 people. RM200 Adult, RM120 child.

Nature Walk. 2 hour tour. At sunrise or at dusk. See monkeys, insects, and flying squirrels. RM40 Adult, RM20 child. edit
Scuba Diving & Snorkeling. Best around Pulau Payar Marine Park (20km south of Langkawi). There is a viewing platform for relaxation between underwater adventures. 120-200 RM.

Activities in Langgkawi

Cable Car Ride & Hanging Bridge, (in Oriental village, close to Pantai Kok), ☎ +604959 4225. Ride the cable car to the top of Gunung Mat chinchang and walk across the 700m high Sky Bridge for a spectacular view of the islands and Thailand. Includes a very steep section which is spectacular both going up and coming down. Doesn't operate in bad weather. Also it doesn't run during the regular maintenance days, check before you go. Officially you are not allowed to take food and drink on the cable car, but they seem not to be checking backpacks (when unlucky and all your water is taken by the security, you can buy one at the top). If they are not operating, or you are really into hiking, you can trek partway up the mountain through the jungle. To do this, from the parking lot at Telagah Tujuh Waterfalls go left just before the road goes really uphill and then turn left again at the water reservoir. The trek is very steep most of the way and in a pretty bad condition because the contractors laying down the piping for cables littered garbage all the way to the top. Only attempt this if you are fit and have good hiking boots. Temperatures at the top of the mountain are 4 to 5 degrees lower than at sea level. RM30 Adult, RM20 child.

Langkawi Cineplex, A-14-15 Pokok Asam, Kuah 10th floor of Langkawi Parade Shopping Complex, ☎ +6049661006 (, [20]. Only movie theatre in Langkawi. Current Hollywood and local films. RM10.

Go-Karting, Lot67, Jalan Pantai Cenang, ☎ 604-955 5827/604-955 5792. Morac International Karting features a 1000m track. RM35 for 10 minutes in Swiss Hutless Kart or RM100 for 15 minutes in faster YamahaKart. edit
Golf, (Northern part of the island), ☎ +60 959 2620, [21]. There is a world-class, 18-hole golf course located near the Datai resort. RM400 for 18 holes or RM300 for 9 holes.

Yoga Now, 15 Lorong Keramat, Pantai Cenang (Follow the signboards for Yoga Now on the road behind Rasa Restaurant - 10 mins walk from the beach.), ☎ +60 16 2715 082 (, [22]. Daily yoga classes 9 am - 11 am and 4 pm - 6 pm.. Traditional Hatha Yoga classes in English (also French, Dutch and Chinese). Run by an Irish/Malaysian couple. Yoga retreats and workshops are also available." 50 rm for a 2 hour drop in class, 400 rm for a 10 class pass.

Reiki, Cenang Beach (road behind Rasa Restaurant - 5 mins walk from the beach), ☎ +6012 462 7818 (, [23]. Daily 8am - 7pm. Traditional Reiki treatments and all levels of Reiki courses. English, Russian, Polish and Ukrainian spoken.

Hotels in Langkawi

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