I was on my way to Penang to revisit the national park there, however I was told at the bus station that the monsoon rains had destroyed the pathways in the NP. So instead I got on a night bus directly to the island of Langkawi. The island is situated more or less on the border between Malaysia and Thailand. Langkawi district consists as an archipelago of 104 islands. Langkawi island is easily the largest.
I found a very cheap hostel full of people wanting to party but instead I was there to look for the wildlife. Hiring a motorbike allowed me to go wherever I wanted on the island, away from the tourist beaches and fire shows.
Probably the most well-known thing to do on the island is to go on the cable car that takes you to one of the highest spots on the island. You must pick a clear day for this otherwise you will just have your head in the clouds. I waited for a nice morning and went up to the top. It was a fun ride with an amazing view, well worth spending sometime walking around seeing the different angles. The ticket for the ride also includes some extras including some 6D adventure and a 3D art museum, which were all right considering they were free.
I spent one day exploring the waterfalls in the area. The first one was Temurun waterfall. To get there you have to go on a nice jungle road and walk maybe 5minuetes up stream. It is a nice size waterfall with a good pool for swimming in. The second waterfall I went to was the Seven Wells waterfall. First I went on the trail to the ‘peak’. It took a good 2 hours to get up there, and at the top, there is nothing to see due to the trees. But it was a nice jungle walk. After walking back down there are some nice rocks to jump off into the waterfall.
All around the island you come across many wildlife. Macaque monkeys are everywhere alongside the road and if you go into the quitter roads its easy to come across langur monkeys. If you go around water ways it’s easy to see very large sized monitor lizards, almost the size of alligators. I was also lucky enough to see an otter swimming across the bay of skull beach (named because of the prison island across the water which used to send skulls floating across the water way) The island however is a paradise for birds.
The island itself is named after the Brahminy kite, which you can see many off. As well as them you can see plenty of the bigger white bellied sea eagles swooning above the sea surface looking for some fish. My main goal was to see hornbills, and I was not disappoinated. Across the island are plenty of pied hornbills to see flying between the tress looking for fruit. However it wasn’t until I decided to go up Mount Raya that I saw the great hornbill. I saw one out the corner of my eye and managed to follow it down the valley to find the tree in which they roost in. One tree must have had around 20 individual hornbills about with a meter and a half wingspan. Perhaps the best bird experince I have seen with all of them calling a jostling for a comfortable place to perch.
After a week exploring the jungles and spending time reading on the beach it was time to head to Thailand. I was going to go exploring the south but the heavy monsoon made me decide to head straight to Koh Samui to see my friends, If you have to be inside with rain, may as well do it with company.