Situated in the Malaysian territory, off the coast of Terengganu, PulauTenggol or Tenggol Island is the last in the string of islands of Malaysia. The island is a popular tourist attraction that has gathered several people all across the globe to vacation at the privacy of the small island. It is in Tenggol where you can find the best beaches situated off the mainland. The fine shite sand is perfect for a relaxing bask under the clear and sunny skies.
Located across the South China Sea is the beautiful, serene and isolated island of Tenggol. It is 14 nautical miles or 26 kilometers from the mainland of Kuala Dungun in Terengganu Malaysia. The island is filled with rocky terrain amidst the lush jungle forests and stretches 50 hectares, 2 kilometers at the widest point and 3 kilometers at length.The greenery of the jungle stands in the background with the island surrounded by the beautiful crystal clear waters. The beaches are of clear white powdery sand that gives the authentic natural experience of a preserved and lovely coastline of a beautiful island paradise. This island of PulauTenggol is located in the southernmost part of the Terengganu Marine Park along with the group of islands which include the TokongLaut, TokongTimur, TokongBurung, TokongTalang and PulauNyireh.
[spoiler effect=”blind” show=”View More” hide=”View Less”]
In the Asian Diver Magazine 2002, Tenggol Island was coined as the “Best Diving in Peninsular Malaysia”. The rocky cliffs offer exciting dive sites and the fascinating coral reef architecture below is home to many of the world most unique ocean species. Tourists travel to Tenggol to experience a unique island getaway in seclusion and privacy, a comforting retreat from the city. There are several activities one may enjoy at Tenggol, from trekking the mountainous paths to water sports such as snorkeling and scuba diving, or simply lounging around by the beach while soaking in the sun’s rays.
With over 20 diving sites on the island, guests have a variety of choices on locations to take the plunge. Each dive site has its own underwater diversity in terms of specie of plant and animal sea life that can be found and sighted here. There is good visibility around the island region where most divers have reported sightings of nudibranch, various hard and soft corals, sharks and rays. There is wreck diving available for the advanced divers as well as deep diving and drift diving.
Tenggol was originally known to be uninhabited until fishermen from neighboring islands came across it to seek refuge from the strong currents and storms. Other inhabitants also made it to the island during the aftermath of the Vietnam War where the passengers on boats were left stranded on the island. Today, the island is buzzing with various hotels and resorts that highlight the natural beauty of a private island paradise. Being part of the reserve, the Tenggolisland is a picture of the natural beauty and wonder in an island paradise, giving guests and visitors a unique and authentic experience of true Malaysian Island Culture.
Getting to Tenggol & Around
To get to Tenggol, tourists have various options: the bus, by air or by car. To get to the island by bus as the initial transport, you can take any bus from the major cities in the Peninsular Malaysia as most of them offer daily and regular services to Dungun. It is from Dungun that guests can then take the Dungun Jetty to get to the island Tenggol. The journey from the mainland in Kuala Lummpur, usually takes around 5-6 hours. Tourists can also make arrangements for pickup with their hotel accommodations from the island, and depending on the tour packages they have availed from in prior arrangements with the hotel or resort at Tenggol.
Tourists can also decide on travelling to the island by air. Flights are available from Kuala Terengganu to mainland Malaysia daily via Firefly, Air Asia and Malaysian Airlines, the various available direct flights from Kuala Lumpur or Singapore to Malaysia. Tourists can then take a bus or taxi to get to the Dungun Jetty which will then ship you safely to the Tenggol Island.
By car, tourists can drive to Dungun from Kuala Lumpur, a trip that takes around 5 to 6 hours. The quickest way to get there would be via the Karaw Highway to travel to Kuantan, then follow the signs to Dungun which is around 79 kilometers before Kuala Terengganu. Beat services usually start from 8 in the morning to around 5 in the afternoon, depending on the weather conditions on that particular date. The Dungun speedboat usually takes nothing more than 30 to 45 minutes before arrival at the island. The best and surefire way to most likely be on the dot with the schedule is to make prior arrangements with your hotel accommodations on the island. Most accommodations come together with the transfer and pickup services from the airports or docks.
The Tenggol Island boasts a relaxing tropical climate making it the perfect temperature for rich eco diversity in plant and animal species alike both above and under water. During the day the temperatures range from cool and breezy at 32 degrees Celsius to a cold 25 degree Celsius temperature during the evenings. Temperatures at this equatorial region remain constant throughout the year.
The currency used locally is Malaysian Ringgit (MYR).
The MYR or Malaysian Ringgit is the currency used at Tenggol and most of the neighboring Malaysian islands. As Tenggol is a relatively small and private island, it may be wise to have your money changed back at the Malaysian mainland before setting off for the island. Though most hotels and resorts at the island offer various currency and money changers, not all the services available can receive foreign currency and not all may also change these to the MYR. Each Malaysian Ringgit is divided into 100 cents.
Outlets in Tenggol and the neighboring Malaysian islands are the BS-1363 British Type G. Voltage is at 240 volts AC at 50 Hertz. If you have appliances that are not compatible, then you may need to purchase a converter and maybe even a transformer. The plugs of most Malaysian appliances are the two parallel flat pins with one ground pin. For this you may also need to bring an adapter.
The Standard time zone at Tenggol is UTC/GMT +8 hours without daylight savings time. The abbreviation for the time zone is MYT or Malaysia time.
Resorts on the Island are mostly equipped with phone lines while internet is limited to specific accommodations which will most likely charge extra for use of their services. Cellular sites are unavailable yet the signal from the mainland may be reached from the island with considerations as to weather conditions and availability.
Travelers do not require passports or legal papers to get to the island from the mainland but those travelling from other countries will need to present proper passes and identification in Malaysia when they arrive at the country. Immigration passes are required from foreign visitors so it is important to settle all the important documents required for travel. Be sure to coordinate accordingly with your travel agency or agent to make sure you have all the essential documentation and legal papers sorted out before your trip.
Tenggol Frequently Asked Questions
Is it your first time to travel to Tenggol? Want to know the best activities to do on the island? Well you have come to the right place! Here we have laid out some of the most frequently asked questions that tourists have about Tenggol.
What is the most commonly spoken language on the island?
Most of the island’s inhabitants speak Malay so it is important to have a cheat sheet or book about the language if you are not familiar with it in any way. Having someone who speaks the language along with you will also help you in translating anything to the locals and communicating with them. The island is relatively small and not all of the locals speak the English language. Most hotels and resorts however, have English speaking staff and individuals that you can communicate with if you need any help in understanding the language and getting around.
How do I get around the island?
When you arrive in Tenggol you will have a close-up view of how it is living on a beautiful island paradise. Most guests tread the island on foot yet bike rental is also available. You can also rent a car or just make do with the local transportation available to get to the location of your choice.
What are the best activities to do on the island?
TenggolIsland is a beautiful setting perfect for appreciating nature in its natural splendor and vibrant beauty. Most guests travel here to experience Scuba diving in the clear waters. The rock formations and elaborate coral reef below houses some of the world’s most diverse species of plant and animal undersea life that tourists flock to experience. Snorkeling is also a favored activity by tourists. On land, trekking and mountain climbing is a popular choice as well.
What are the popular buys in the area?
Tourists usually purchase hand woven fabrics as souvenirs such as the kainsongket and kain batik. Most souvenir shops and marketplaces have these available. Pictures of the beautiful sunsets and the sights around the area are also popular take homes by guests. Souvenirs and trinkets are sold around the island by the locals.