Thursday, February 24, 2011

Langkawi Weekend

We had a free weekend in December, so we took a quick trip to Langkawi. Langkawi is a Malaysian island north of Penang in the Andaman Sea, just a bit west of Thailand. We just had a few days to relax, but we had a great time and saw some spectacular scenery.

Here we are on the northeast end of the island at sunset, TanjungRhu beach.

We took a boat ride in the mangrove forests to get a closer look at some of the sights. While we were there, we saw caves, a fish farm, eagles, and the open sea.

The name "langkawi" is a reference to the brown eagles that are found in the area. Here is an eagle picking up a snack from the river. There were probably 50 or so eagles circling the area looking for food.

Here is another look at one of the eagles. It was a lot of fun to be so close to so many eagles and to watch them in action as they swooped down to the water to snatch up a snack.

We also saw two caves. Here is the bat cave, which is inhabited by fruit bats. They hang out in the cave during the day, then fly out at night in search of food. Did you know bats always fly in a clockwise direction when they first leave a cave?

Here's the three of us in front of the bat cave. Craig was a bit scared at first, but he was okay with the bats once he realized the were sleeping.

The other cave we went through is called Crocodile Cave. I don't know where the name comes from. The river runs right through this cave, so our boat took us all the way through.

Along the way we saw a fish farm. Fisherman would catch some fish, then let them grow at the farm. The farm is essentially a floating set of planks with large nets that contain the growing fish. Craig was a bit nervous, but afterwards he thought this was the coolest part of the trip.

We encouraged Craig to touch this horseshoe crab. He reluctantly did it. This is one of the many types of seafood that grow up on a farm to be on someones plate for dinner.

The coasts of Langkawi are lined with beaches and resorts, but the interior is very mountainous and lush. This is a rice field near the center of the island.

And here is the water buffalo. Further proof that everyone in fact does have a water buffalo.

We also took a cable car ride to the top of the mountain peaks of Langkawi. We didn't realize how high up the peaks were until we were on our way. About halfway through we all felt like turning back. But after we got to the top we found a nice reflexology place to calm Jennifer down and Craig and I went exploring.

Here is a picture of the first station of the cable car ride. You can see the harbor way way down below.

After Jennifer's reflexology treatment, one of the reflexologists took a picture of us with the peaks in the background. With Jennifer's feet feeling light and refreshed, we were ready for the descent back to the base of the mountain.

Here's Craig eating one of his favorite dishes, Chicken Satay.

Langkawi is such a short flight away, that it's a great spot to spend a weekend relaxing and enjoying the unique scenery.

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