Langkawi Roads & Places to Drive Around
Several roads in Langkawi are ideal for driving around and enjoying the nature, countryside and uncovering some of the best kept secrets. You will also see lots of popular Tourist Attractions
on the way. So if you have a rental car or a bike, spare some time to explore some of the streets and land areas mentioned below. Roads in Langkawi are known as 'Jalan'. Almost all road signs will have this word prefixed before the name of the road.
A main road in Langkawi would have a number other than just a name. From north to south, Langkawi is about 25kms and a little longer east to west. So you won't be driving continuously for more than 45 minutes to reach one end of the island from the other, unless of course you take a detour.
Photo: Khalzuri Yazid, flickr, cc by-sa 2.0
Jalan Air Hangat
This is a main road (#112) that originates from Kuah Town (the main administrative town of Langkawi) and runs towards north. Get into this road from Kuah Town. As you go past the town limits, you will see the large campus ground of the Mara Science College on your left. Slow down when you see the ground and look for a right turn just opposite to the entrance gate of this college. Take that right turn. It's a side road which is marked by a picture of a monk and leads to Wat Wanaram Temple. This is a Buddhist temple not much known to the tourists. Visit the temple and also the organic dragon fruit farm close to the temple.
As you drive further up along the main road, you will find another side road to the right in about 500 meters distance. There is a huge yellow sign board where the second side road starts and goes underneath that. When you see that sign board, you know that you are heading for another temple destination. Take that side road and you will come to a T-junction. If you take left here, you will get to the Wat Tham Kisap Budhist Temple, while the road towards right goes to a Hindu Temple. Both these temples are perched under huge limestone rocks that are full of stalactites.
Jalan Teluk Yu (Shark Bay Road)
This is another main road (#113). The earlier road Jalan Air Hangat actually goes and meets Jalan Teluk Yu and this road goes all the way to the west along the north shore and up to Pantai Kok. So you will see several beaches and attractions along the north shore line of Langkawi. Get into Jalan Teluk Yu from Jalan Ayer Hangat and drive towards west. You will soon pass by Pantai Pasir Hitam or the Black Sand Beach
on the right. Park you car on the road side, go through the shops & stall and take a look at this beach that has unbelievable black sands. You can also see a fishing jetty from the beach and close to it.
Come back & drive towards west. When you see a low fence made of yellow & red stones on the right, you know that you are close to the Shark Bay (Teluk Yu) Beach
(on your right) and the entrance to the Langkawi Craft Complex on the left. Shark bay is one of the greatest beaches in Langkawi, which has couple of entrances. The most popular one is through a large paved promenade with many palm trees and cabanas overlooking the sea. There are stairways to get down to the beach. The Langkawi Craft Complex
on the left show cases Malay heritage art & craft items.
There is also a Glass Blowing Studio
just behind the Cultural Craft Complex building. Get back and continue to drive towards west and you will soon reach the Ewa Jetty
and the fishing village. While this is a great waterfront area where large ships often dock, the main show spoiler is the huge cement factory (Lafarge) nearby which is the largest in Langkawi.
Further west is the Telega Harbour Park
in Pantai Kok where you can see large number of sailing boats and yachts moored at the marina. On one side of the harbor you will see Perdana Quay, a waterside boardwalk and a complex with many restaurants, cafes, and specialty stores.
At the harbor area, visit the Telega Harbor Lighthouse. Follow the sign for Perdana Quay and take a left turn before the Danna Langkawi Hotel. Go all the way and you will find the lighthouse.
Further west, Jalan Teluk Yu meets the road Jalan Datai (#161). This is another beautiful main road running along the north shore of Langkawi. On the way you will pass by the Pantai Pasir Tengkorak beach
, a lovely small family beach that can be accessed from a side road and has picnic facilities, public toilets, changing rooms etc. As you drive further along, you will soon come to Temurun Waterfall
, and opposite to that is the open air 3-Tiga Restaurant
which serves fresh and tasty Malay food. You can plan to have your lunch at this scenic and friendly budget restaurant.
From the backside of the restaurant, a footpath leads to the Pebble Beach
. This is a beach full of pebbles and small rocks. The beach is visible only during the low tide though. As you approach the Datai and Andaman resorts further along, you will see the Langkawi's one of the best rain forests on one side. Park the car and enjoy the serenity before you reach the Datai Resort, and watch the many different kinds of birds.
Jalan Bukit Malut
This is a long winding road (#167) which goes along the south shore offering wonderful view of the south-side ocean and Langkawi's small islands. The road starts from its meeting point with Jalan Kedawang on the west and goes all the way and meets Jalan Padang Matsirat towards east. While you can always take a car and drive along, a ride on a motorbike would be more suitable as there are not too many places for cars to pull over. On the way take the detour along the road Jalan Lincongal Bukit Malut (#107), which offshoots from Jalan Bukit Malut and goes closer along the shoreline. The views from this road are really pretty. If you try to explore the side roads from this road (#107), you may land up at Burmese Refugee Village. The road #107 takes a circle and comes back to meet the original Jalan Bukit Malut (#167).
Jalan Padang Gaong
This road (#152) runs from south-east of Langkawi off-shooting from Jalan Padang Matsirat and goes north-west meeting Jalan Ulu Melaka (#112). On the way you will see signs for a wonderful nature reserve called Lubuk Semilung on the right. This is in the same area where the International Book Village
is located. It has several great natural water pools. Once you drive into Lubuk Semilung, look for the huge electrical tower and take a left turn into the side road next to it. This is a very narrow side road so drive carefully. At the top there are some lovely natural swimming pools which are hardly known to the tourists. The locals often come here on the weekends for swims though. However during summer if it hasn't rained for a while, you may not go there as the pools are likely to be dry. Below there is a nice park which is great for picnics.
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