Terengganu is a cool and a perfect place to retreat and unwind. Explore Terengganu for a natural high taste of sensations, scenic beauty, adventure activities and the excitement of reliving a colourful tradition and heritage kept alive. Terengganu is the living museum of awesome million years old tropical rainforests with its exotic flora and fauna which are a snapshot of an ancient era where ancient evergreen forests are carved with waterfalls tumbling into clear pools while rugged landscapes of greens sweep down to golden beaches and azure seas. Terengganu’s archipelagoes of emerald islands offer such a profusion of sandy beaches, sheltered bays, quiet coves and idyllic such as Perhentian, Lang Tengah, Redang, Bidong, Kapas and Tenggol, each with their own unique nature, beach and underwater attractions, with sapphire blue waters, white sandy beaches, jungle trekking, snorkeling, diving, beach and water fun-filled activities. Dotted with more than 340 islands throughout the lake, which were once mountaintops and highlands, Lake Kenyir is home to more than 14 cascading waterfalls, cooling waters, an abundance of rapids and rivers, and an idyllic sanctuary to numerous species of freshwater fish and exotic wildlife. Flora and fauna thrive in its vast landscape and are a treasure trove of discoveries and adventures for nature lovers. With so much of nature wonders to explore, traditional experiences to enjoy combined with unique heritage to uncover as well as the warm and friendly people to meet; it is no wonder that the state was named “Terengganu” or bright rainbow. It is definitely A Beautiful State, Beautiful Culture.
Terengganu was part of the Malay kingdom of Langkasuka from 2nd to 16th century. Terengganu also had and active trading relationship with the neighbouring countries of Siam, Cambodia and Indonesia. With all that influence have shape the Terengganu House. Terengganu traditional house are usually being builted by cengal wood (Malay Hardwood) and the roof covered with “Singhorra Tiles” name after the town Songkla, where the tiles originated. Peles (gable ends) are fitted to the end of the roof. The “Sobek” woodcarving with beautiful patterns of flora and islamic symbol made Terengganu house to be the richest cultural and heritage of the Peninsular Malay state. The house floor raise nearly 2.5 meters off the ground give the impression of animals with many legs. The high post also work as prevention from flood water during the monsoon rain as the house normally located not far from river bend.
WHERE TO GO ?
Pulau Redang, located 45km off the coast of Kuala Terengganu, is the largest of a group of nine protected islands dotting the South China Sea off the Terengganu coast. The island offers crystal clear waters and numerous dive sites for enthusiasts. Sheltered within the Pulau Redang Marine Park, the waters here are rich in marine life. At midday when sun rays penetrate the sea, brilliant hues of coral, anemones and fish can be seen.
The waters around Pulau Redang also contain two historic shipwrecks: The H.M.S. Prince of Wales and H.M.S. Repulse, which sank here at the start of World War II, setting the stage for the Japanese occupation of Malaya. This paradise island is perfect for snorkelling, swimming, scuba- diving, jungle trekking, boating and canoeing. No fishing is allowed within a 3.2km radius of the island as Pulau Redang is gazetted as a marine park. The collection of corals and other aquatic life is also strictly prohibited. Berjaya Resort offers a golf course in an idyllic setting
The Central Market, locally known as Pasar Payang, is located by the Terengganu River and is one of the most popular tourist spots in Kuala Terengganu. Housed in a modern building, it offers visitors a variety of traditional handicrafts such as batik, silk, songket, brocade and brassware, as well as fresh produce.
Pulau Perhentian, meaning ‘stopover island’, is not to be missed. Situated 21km off the coast of Terengganu, it consists of the islands of Pulau Perhentian Besar and Pulau Perhentian Kecil. Covered by unspoilt jungle, windswept palms, powdery white beaches and surrounded by sapphire blue waters, Pulau Perhentian is a sanctuary for fishermen, migratory birds and of course, discerning holiday- makers.
Located just off the edge of the Pulau Redang Marine Park, Perhentian’s coral-fringed waters have excellent underwater seascapes for snorkelling and scuba diving. Of the two islands, Pulau Perhentian Kecil is more geared towards backpackers. Here, you’ll find a wide range of budget options for both food and accommodation. Pulau Perhentian Besar, on the other hand, is more developed and therefore offers better facilities. Nevertheless, there are chalets, dormitories and campsites on both islands.
Tasik Kenyir is the largest man-made lake in Southeast Asia, spanning 260,000 hectares. It is also Malaysia’s largest rock filled hydroelectric dam. When the area was flooded, most of the hills were above the water level, thus creating about 340 man-made islands. The rainforest that cradles the area furnishes the lake with an incredible assortment of flora and fauna. These include rare ferns, exotic orchids, hornbills, elephants, and panthers. It is also home to more than 8,000 species of flowers, 2,500 species of plants and trees, 800 species of orchids, and 300 species of fungus.
It is a popular retreat for nature lovers as it is surrounded by lush tropical rainforest. It is also an anglers haven as the lake is home to hundreds of species of freshwater fish like Baung, Toman, Kelisa, Lampam and Kelah. Surounded by a vast tropical jungle, the lake area is a popular spot for angling, boating, canoeing, jungle- trekking, 4WD driving and golfing
Lang Tengah Island
Pulau Lang Tengah is a very small island located between Perhentian Island and Redang Island. This little island is accessible by a 30-minute boat ride from the Merang jetty. According to locals, Lang Tengah takes its name from ‘Lang’ which comes from helang which means ‘eagle’ in the Malay language, and tengah, meaning ‘middle’. Thus, Lang Tengah means eagles resting on the middle island. The island is very small indeed. A round-island trip by speed boat takes only 10 minutes. The beach is narrow and land is limited. However, its small size gives it its best advantage – Lang Tengah Island holds only 4 resort operators, ensuring a peaceful visit.
Tengku Tengah Zaharah Mosque
Tengku Tengah Zaharah Mosque (Masjid Terapung) is built on a floating platform, giving it a unique perspective from all facets. It sits snuggly on the estuary of Terengganu River and its modern architecture is due to the ingenuity of one of the princes in Terengganu. The glistening white mosque combines modern and Moorish architecture, symbolizing a new modernisation in the state, making it an Islamic icon in the country. The design of the mosque reflects a subtle Islamic influence combined with local features, incorporating the use of marble, ceramics, mosaic works and bomanite paving. The mosque, was built by an idea inspired from the late Sultan of Terengganu, Al- Marhum Sultan Mahmud Al- Muktafi Billah Shah ibni al- Marhum Sultan Ismail Nasiruddin Shah. This beautiful mosque was named after his mother, Tuanku Intan Zaharah binti Almarhum Tengku Seri Setia Raja. The architectural beauty of the mosque is surrounded by a lake, looking enchantingly inspirational much like a place in the tale of 1,001 Arabian Nights. The calmness of the mosque is enhanced with the roaring of the South China Sea, making it an alluring and unique tourist attraction in Terengganu.
About 6km off the coast of Marang is Pulau Kapas, an island renowned for its clear waters, sandy white beaches and swaying palms. Kapas Island is situated offshore about 30 minutes by slow boat or 10 minutes by fast boat from Marang jetty, 20 minutes south of Kuala Terengganu. Relatively isolated from the hustle and bustle of the mainland, this island is the perfect getaway for those looking for some blissful relaxation. It is a lovely small island with beautiful, quiet, unspoiled sandy beaches; cool and clear blue waters, swaying coconut trees and caves with swallows nests. Its waters are home to beautiful marine life such as fish, turtles, corals and others. Making it a must-visit destination, especially for discerning divers and snorkellers, is the incredible variety of hard and soft corals, seashells, fish and turtles. The laidback atmosphere gives a perfect excuse to do nothing. Still, if you are feeling restless, there are plenty of activities to keep you occupied.
Terengganu State Museum
Acclaimed as the largest museum in South East Asia, the Terengganu State Museum Complex houses century old artefacts and artworks of rich and colourful heritage. Located on 27 hectares of land in Bukit Losong, Kuala Terengganu, the complexes itself are an impressive architectural feat, based on the designs of Terengganu’s old palace. It comprises a Main Museum, a Maritime Museum, a Fisheries Museum, four traditional houses and botanic and herb gardens. The Main Museum is built on 16 concrete stilts with galleries showcasing textiles and weaving techniques, traditional weapons, crafts, historical, royal regalias, nature, petroleum development, Islamic arts, new generation and contemporary arts. The other four blocks are adjoined, to represent a large family. At the main entrance of the main complex, lays the famous original Batu Bersurat of Terengganu