DAY 54: Perhentian Islands: Opening my eyes to a new hidden world

Hi my friends,

I arrived yesterday to Malaysia Mainland from Little Kecil, at the Perhentian Islands

This place has really marked my experience in this trip. Several fascinating things happened here, things that I wont forget, brief moments  that I will remember by their intensity….

Kecil island has no electricity, and everything works by generators that are running all day long. There are two main beaches here, at opposite sides of the island, one is called Long beach  (at the east) and the other one Coral Bay (west). They are both connected by a jungle track of 5-10 min. so you can easily go from one beach to the other. Yeah. it is a very small island.

We arrived at Coral beach, which is in the west side of the island, there had been a typhoon at the Philippines so on our way there with the speedboat we had a lot of fun as we were going fast and the boat was literally flying in the air every time we passed a wave….I met here two french guys in the boat and we were all the way laughing about it…yehaaa yehaaaaa!!!

If you go to Kecil you should now that the fun is at longbeach, although in my opinion accommodation, food and services are far better quality at Coral bay than at long beach.

On our second day in the island we did a snorkelling trip, we spent all the day visiting 6 different snorkelling points around it. This snorkelling trip pretty much marked the rest of my stay on the island….On the first place we went it was called Shark point, by obvious reasons….but after half an hour going around the place I didnt see any, just many little fish…. When I went back in the boat I asked the people around if they had seen any, and Rene, the Danish guy I met at Cameron highland told me he had seen 2 small ones!

As there were a couple of guys that hadn’t arrived to the boat yet I decided to make a quick swim on the direction that Rene had told me he had seen both sharks….so there I go, alone, looking for sharks jejeje…around 100 meters away of the boat, in very shallow waters near the coast,I turned my head to the left and I saw a HUGE shark, I could only see it for a couple of seconds before he swam away of my sight, but that was all I needed. That shark was huge guys, I think  it was much more than 2 meters long,it was broad and thick, and it moved effortless through the water its bulky body. A shark is perfection under the water. When you see one you understand that there is nothing that any other sea animals can do.

It is hard to describe what you feel when you see one, it is strange, before you see it, when you think about it, you are scared, but in the water, when you are swimming and you see one the sensation is of complete calm….you are moving slowly, floating in the water, and there is silence, you only hear your own breathing through the snorkelling tube, and then, all of a sudden, without any short of signal that could alert you,coming out from nowhere  you just see this huge animal passing by your side, no sound, just your own breath…epic my friends!!!!

I must say the sharks that we saw are not dangerous, they are reef sharks, and for what Ive been told nobody has ever been attacked by one in this island….

But this is not all, on this same snorkelling trip we spotted a giant turtle, and we followed it in the water for around 15 minutes, floating at her side, following her into the deep waters and up to the surface when she needed to breath again….

The following day we headed through a half an hour jungle path to a very small beach opposite to D lagoon, this was a great find, there I saw around 6-7 baby sharks and another one bigger, around 1.5 m big…but the most impressive thing was a school of big bumpfish around a dozen of them,they were big and broad, more than a meter long and very fat, with beautiful dark blue and purple colors,   just swimming gently through the coral, not alarmed by our presence, I would say they tolerated us around them, we got very close, I think Rene almost touched one….

they look like this, but they were dark purple instead, the mouths looked pretty big, but I think they eat coral so it should be ok 🙂

Finally, aafter seeing so many fascinating things in the water, I decided to take the PADI Open Waters Certification, so I stayed 3 days more  learning the basic skills of scuba diving…

If you know me well you already know how I am….Ive been reticent to take the PADI course as it is quite expensive (although here it is one of the cheapest places in the world), and doing it will make me spend 2 weeks less travelling around SE asia…but I can change my mind so much and so quick that I went from not wanting to do it to wanting to become a PADI instructor jejeje…the thing is that it is a way you can travel all around the world, and staying in beautiful and exotic places while yo do it….I must think about it, for now I am an Open Water certified scuba divers, and I can scuba dive all around the world!!!!

Big hug guys, today is going to be a very long long long day, taking the jungle train at 4 o’clock in the morning for around 8 hours to the heart of the biggest national park, Taman Negara….


8 responses

  1. Silvia Titus Herrera


    Pero que maravilla de blog el que has escrito!!! Puedo sentir tu entusiasmo al maximo. Felicitaciones por tu Open Water Padi certification. Ya veo que poco a poco vas encontrando tu camino.

    Me imagino como ha de ser eso de estar entre tiburones. Lo quise hacer en Tailandia pero como viajaba con mi hermano el se moria del miedo que yo lo hiciera, asi que no quise darle un disgusto.

    Aca las cosas siguen igual, aunque ya estamos empezando la primavera en full asi que los animos estan mas altos. El sol esta saliendo cada vez mas seguido y ya se siente que el veranito casi esta aca.

    Yo voy a Paris la proxima semana y dentro de dos semanas tengo que decidir al fin cuando viajo a Guatemala. Tengo unas ganas de ir a casa!!!

    Por lo demas planeo ir a Madrid a ver a Laura a finales del verano pero todavia no se cuando.

    Bueno pues querido, te mando un gran abrazo, me tomare una Kwak a tu salud o unas tres mejor!!!

    Cuidate mucho y sigue siendo TU!!!

    Te extraño,


    09/04/2010 at 9:12 am

    • pues a disfrutar Silvia, que las primaveras en amsterdam son geniales…casi me das envidia!

      14/04/2010 at 10:38 am

  2. Ranky

    hey mate! that sounds fuckin awsome!!! when i was snorkling around kecil i just saw the small sharks and even that is a strange feeling cause you see there “faces” and you remember all the horror stories about them. great that you found the big bugger!
    have a safe trip jose!

    09/04/2010 at 11:18 am

    • yeah, they got really close the small ones,they look terrific, dont they? I guess it can get pretty scary if they open their mouth and show you the teeth….

      Where are you heading now?

      see you later my friend!!


      14/04/2010 at 10:35 am

  3. Amber

    Holy Moly! You’re a brave lad! Sharks!?!? Even if they are peaceful sharks, I think I’d probably be scared to death! I saw a little shark snorkeling in Mexico and I just just about jumped out of my skin. A shark attack has always been an irrational fear of mine!

    Sounds like you are having a great time. Take care of yourself and don’t get eaten over there!

    Besos gordos,


    13/04/2010 at 9:48 pm

    • hola Amber!

      maybe in mexico sharks are nastier! Here they are very pacific and nice, like the people in malaysia!

      hope you are doing well in madrid? Something interesting going on? do you see pergen and eva? give them a big hug from my side!



      14/04/2010 at 10:33 am

      • Amber


        Things are going great here, though not half as exciting as Southeast Asia! For Semana Santa I want to Granada and I LOVED it. Just now starting to put some pictures up on Facebook. I took almost 600 pictures the week that I was gone! I also went to Almería and Cabo de Gata. Nice places but the water was too cold to swim in…

        For now I continue to work and save money for some summer fun. Will probably be going back to the US to visit. Not sure how long, maybe 3 or 4 weeks. Also thinking about the Camino de Santiago for a couple weeks, but I’ll have to see about my money situation.

        When you said Eva, did you mean Paz? Pergen’s girlfriend? I’m not sure who Eva is. I see Pergen and Paz every week or two, so I will give them your regards.

        Nice to hear from you! Hope to see you in Spain sooner rather than later. Have fun on your adventures!



        15/04/2010 at 10:53 am

      • hola!

        yes! I mean Paz! Dont tell her anything! 🙂

        Great to here you had a nice eastern holiday, the south of spain is great!

        big hug!!!!

        15/04/2010 at 5:11 pm

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