Langkawi 2017 : Hotel Bahagia

The hotel provides service as good as its name. You do feel bahagia. Located in the heart of Pekan Kuah, it is appealing to tourists who have ‘shopping at Haji Ismail Group HIG MALL’ as part of their itinerary. It is a 25mins drive from the airport. The room rate at Hotel Bahagia starts at RM99 per night for a standard room. However, the more financially apt guests may prefer the Suites and Studios.

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Hotel Bahagia also has a ‘cousin’ – Villa Bahagia which is a different form of accommodation suitable for families and groups of friends situated a few miles away.

We were in Langkawi for 4D3N and we booked our package through the Malindo Air website. The total cost for our trip –  2 adults and 1 kindie kid was just above RM700.00 (return flight ticket + hotel room)

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Pros;

  1. Location is strategic to Pekan Kuah where all the shopping goes on – especially to locals who go there to find tax-free Luminarc, Corell and what not.
  2. Room has basic amenities like a kettle, hot shower, towels and hairdryer. Only, the lower room rates would lack a window. So you should just stare at your husbands eyes and see through the window of his soul or something.
  3. Breakfast is included in our hotel room rate and the menu is I felt, befitting to what we pay for. They also have a cafe next door, a convenience store with bakery and did I mention there’s a Thai Restaurant just down the block? Yup, all in one row.
  4. There’s an agency that provides island hopping packages and other island activites at the lobby. So it was very convenient for us. Price was negotiable and just like, in Krabi, they pick you up at the hotel with a transport to the jetty.
  5. FREE WIFI in every room

Cons;

  1. You need parking coupons to park at the hotel. They do not have a specific car park. You’d need to park in front of the shop lots. Thankfully, there are plenty of shops selling the coupons. Too bad the reception does not sell them.
  2. Housekeeping can be a bit sloppy. On one day they left their scrubbing towel in the toilet. The next day they forget to empty the trash – I mean they did remove the plastic bag from the bin but they forgot to bring it with them. When we arrived, they did not stock up the toiletries with shower foams. This however, could be an isolated incident so it’s OK.
  3. The coffee could taste better. It was agonizing.
  4. While its nice to have FREE WIFI – you need to get a new username & password everyday from the reception.

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At the end of the day, the good points won us over and it was overall a wonderful stay. We would probably pay for maybe a deluxe or Junior suite room for our next visit if we still choose to stay there. Heard there’s a massage chair in the latter room.

Excellent location.

Worth the money.

Clean facilities.

 

Revisiting Langkawi 2015 : Places to visit

We all have different agendas when we visit a place. Ours were more of to Eat, Sleep and Shop. A pinch of history lessons here and there. And something for the kids of course.

DATARAN LANG (EAGLE SQUARE)

This is where the iconic eagle statue is. We went there to have a stroll – loving the big space where the kids could run around. Nearby is the jetty and one could see the sea and boats. We spent less than an hour here. Took some photos, the kids were pretending to be eaten by the eagle. Then we left. For dinner.

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UNDERWATER WORLD LANGKAWI

Website : Underwater World Langkawi

As an adult, I felt this was an amazing place. Perhaps I haven’t been to a more extravagant facility but this was a visit worth many times. This centre is located at Pantai Cenang, a popular beach to the south of Langkawi Island off the north western coast of Peninsular Malaysia. We love it as a family because it has a variety of species to look at which is arranged in a manner where it’s difficult to miss out on any species and also offers reasonably good Government Rate. All I had to do was flash my work pass ID!! My parents in law got senior citizen fees as well. Yeay!

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If you go to their website, you can see that they also provide educational services to the public such as for practical training and research development programmes. Perhaps it can benefit those studying Zoology or anything animal related.

My son was really excited to see the penguins being fed. He was a bit disappointed though that elephants were not part of the Aquaria.

PANORAMA LANGKAWI

The best place to click is this page : Panorama Tickets – as it provides a lot of options for combo fares especially if you intend to spend the whole day here. We just opt for the SkyCab + SkyDome. The SkyDome was strange. It’s basically visuals of moving roller coaster rides trying to mess with your head and vestibular system while you sit still in the chair. Throughout the mini show I wasn’t sure whether I was genuinely impressed or feeling a bit ‘duh’.

The SkyCab ride was just like how I remembered it. That ‘hamba kerdil’ feeling as you see the majestic forest and waterfalls beneath you. Just wowwww.

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The SkyBridge is now opened to public. There’s also a 6D cinema – was warned early on not advisable for pregnant mothers and elderly customers. We totally forgot to have a look at their 3D Art Museum and send a postcard from the SkyPos – that is soooo Seoul Tower.

MAHSURI TOMB

You may have heard of the curse towards Langkawi that extends to 7 generations – where the land will not prosper and wither. Well Mahsuri cast the curse.

The story begins with the beautiful Mahsuri, a maiden (or princess by some accounts) born over 200 years ago, who married the love of her life during a time of conflict with the Siamese. Her husband went off to fight in the war and her mother-in-law, jealous of her beauty, vengefully accused Mahsuri of adultery.

Mahsuri protested her innocence but the village elders tried the young girl, found her guilty and sentenced her to death by stabbing. She was tied to a stake but when she was pierced with the ceremonial dagger she bled white blood, a sign of her innocence.

With her dying breath, Mahsuri cursed the island with seven generations of bad luck. Later the Siamese conquered Kedah and invaded the island – the inhabitants of Langkawi set fire to their staple crop and poisoned their wells in order to halt the advance of the invaders. Legend has it to this day traces of burnt rice can be seen in nearby Padang Matsirat (The Field of Burnt Rice) especially after torrential downpours.

Source : MakamMahsuri

This attraction is not that big. Perhaps one of the few interesting thing is that we get to splash our faces with water from the ‘sacred well’ of mystical benefits across the decades. It ironically has a pipe attached to its walls. It was also said that the real resting place of Mahsuri is not the one decorated nicely, for fear it will be used for pemujaan purposes – instead is beneath one of the two trees planted near the area.

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KOMPLEKS HAJI ISMAIL GROUP

You might want to look for Klinik Kesihatan Kuah as your landmark on WAZE. The complex would be this big white building with a hotel just next to it. This is the best shopping destination for most Malaysians. It sells all this Corelle stuff, tax free chocolates and bedding sheets. Of course this may be nothing for those who hails from overseas but for us here, this is like murah kowtt.. 

This is also the place for one who wish to experience homegrown products – tongkat ali coffee, oil based perfumes (minyak attar), lemongrass balms, gamat products etc..

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I bought my souvenirs here – my chocolates and keychains and what not.. then of course we had a meal at the nearby food court. Which brings to my next post. A very short one on Food in Langkawi.

Revisiting Langkawi 2015 : Tok Senik Resort

We stayed here for 4D3N. Despite an eerie atmosphere (initially), the rustic soothing village surrounding soon warmed up to us and it felt less creepy. In fact, it was so relaxing and to a certain extent luxurious. OK. I am too kind. Ha ha ha.

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Kampung Tok Senik Resort, one of the most outstanding hotels in Malaysia, lets you experience the splendour of true Malay heritage. Basking in the abundance of nature, our resort in Langkawi is an exclusive haven reminiscent of a ‘kampung,’ the country’s traditional village.

Our rustic rooms and suites offer a pleasant invitation for you to enjoy a simple and laid-back atmosphere. Here you’ll feel relaxed and completely at ease. More importantly, our hospitable staff will provide you with their expert service as you take in the awe-inspiring beauty of the island.

At Kampung Tok Senik Resort Langkawi, you’ll love the amazing tranquillity inspired by our cultural legacy and pristine nature.

Source : Website

Our ‘house’ named Rumah Sahak has 3 interconnecting rooms. Each room has its own bathroom of course and a small living room. We have no idea if this is a deluxe or a suite because we booked it as a package online through the AirAsiaGo website. All rooms are air conditioned – the middle room however has access to a small balcony overlooking the paddy fields and other houses in the village.

Shared facilities of the resort include a public pool located beside an abandoned bistro. They boast of good food at Warung Tok Mat – an in house restaurant located near the reception. We tried the breakfast package. It was not served as a buffet but as an ala carte meal. Thumbs up for the Fried Bihun. The American breakfast however was disappointing – a bit bland I must say.

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Good points include;

  1. functioning hot & cold shower, in room mini fridge and kettle – the latter a tremendous joy for mothers with toddlers who still drinks powdered milk.
  2. kid friendly swimming pools – not crowded at all. If only the benches were maintained properly and kept in order. the pool itself is clean though.
  3. in room complimentary drinking water and beverages
  4. could hear the Athan ( a call to prayer) from far – pretty interesting for visitors outside Malaysia to experience the ‘sound’

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Weak points include;

  1. inconsistent housekeeping – sometimes we’d get fresh towels but rubbish bins not emptied. Or toiletries not replenished because hey, we need that shower foam.
  2. the walls are not soundproof – I could hear my father in law snore in the room next door but because he is family, I don’t mind. Imagine if the ‘disturbances’ comes from other visitors. We did have cats running around on the roof at night.
  3. some visitors complaint of mosquitos but we did not experience any bites during the stay

Would I choose to stay at this resort again? For the pool, yes. I would have breakfast elsewhere. There’s so much more food to experience. Yummy..

 

Revisiting Langkawi 2015 : The itinerary

This is not the best itinerary around. But I hope to offer a different perspective to anybody’s visit to Langkawi be it for the first time or god knows the 20th time throughout your entire life.

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The last time we went here as a family was less than 4 years ago, so we did skip the island-hopping trips and most of the tourist-y stuff this year. Instead, we took a more relaxing approach to our trip and enjoyed more of the gastronomic experience in Langkawi.

As usual, with AirAsia “everyone can fly” and we booked our tickets through the website 6 weeks prior to the trip on AirAsiaGo.Com. The total payment for our return tickets (4 adults, 2 kids) from KLIA2 to Langkawi including the hotel stay at Tok Senik Resort for 4D3N amounts up to RM 1519.08.

I will be sharing in my next posts about our experiences at the resort and of course our very little activities in Langkawi. Here is a brief outline of the trip.

ITINERARY

Like any other trips via KLIA2, we would park our car at Putrajaya Sentral first before then taking the KLIA TRANSIT train to the airport. Putrajaya Sentral offers good overnight parking rates for a maximum of 14 days. This is not only a convenient way to start our travels but also comfortable. However if you intend to hog along a lot of luggage with you, especially after shopping at your holiday destination- using this mode of transportation is not advisable.

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Hope this kickstarts things. Next I’ll tell you about the Tok Senik resort.