Trading ships with weary sailors travelling between Malaysia and Thailand used to stop for a rest on the gorgeous Perhentian Islands and, hundreds of years later, this beautiful region has not lost its appeal. Though inhabited by a small community of locals in a fishing village on Perhentian Kecil, the majority of the region remains uninhabited, leaving plenty of virgin jungle and sandy white beaches for visitors to explore by foot, fin, or sea taxi.
The islands are less than an hour by boat from the northeastern coast of mainland Malaysia. The splendid coral reefs and fringes and crystal clear waters teeming with marine life are all protected as part of a national park area, making the Perhentian Islands a remarkable diving destination. Apart from admiring the beautiful natural surroundings, trekking, diving, or swimming, there isn’t much else to do, and that’s absolutely fine by us.
The best time to travel is between June and late October, when the waters are calm, the sun is shining, and all the recreational and dining facilities are open for business. It is remote here: for access, a ferry travels from Kuala Besut and drops visitors off at their destination of choice. The Perhentian Islands attract a lot of backpackers, so the vibe here is casual.
We’ve hopped among the islands and tried the hotels. Talk to us while you are planning and let us share our expert knowledge with you. We’d love to help you plan a trip to the Perhentian Islands as part of a wider holiday in Southeast Asia.