Snorkeling at Pulau Payar Langkawi

Visiting Pulau Payar was not included in our itinerary, but we changed our mind and decided to have it a try after seeing the brochure at the tour desk of Fave Hotel Langkawi. The most interesting part of the brochure was the picture of the coral and the fishes. We thought it would be a great experience for our kiddos to swim with all of the fishes.

One day before the tour, we bought two adults and 1 child package tour (kiddos up to 3 yo was free), the cheapest option was the package of snorkeling at Payar Island. But it does not include enjoying the reef platform. Well, nevermind as our objective was to have a snorkel and swimming session for our kiddos.

At 8 am, we were picked up by the Langkawi Coral's bus. We picked up other guests in different hotels before heading to Jetty Point, located next to Dataran Elang. We arrived there one hour after being picked up, and were divided into groups. Our bus was not the only bus, there were still two other buses. They gave us a waterproof paper bracelet, then walked to the ferry.

ferry to Payar Island

It took about 1 hour ferry journey before reaching the reef platform, enough time for our kiddos to continue their sleep. We arrived there at about 11.30 am, then we had to queue to be transferred to the island from the reef platform to the island with small boats. We kept on telling our kiddos to be patient and that we would have a great snorkeling session, as this transfer process took some time. It would be great if they gave privilege family with children to be transferred first.

the transfer process from reef platform to Payar Island

Arriving at the island, we were briefed regarding the do's and don'ts, and we were given 3 hours to enjoy the island. Well, we left our hotel at 8 am and only had 3 hours to enjoy the island(: The transfer process (by bus, ferry and small boats) took a lot of time. One thing to consider if you'd like to take this tour.

After all the hassle, we finally enjoyed the swimming and snorkeling session. The area near the beach was really dirty with lots of trash! Oh my, I wish tourists coming to Payar Island could be a responsible traveler to conserve this marine park! We swam in the middle of the sea where the coral is more beautiful and there was no rubbish. 

swimming with tiny shark 

There were wooden paths on the island, that lead us to other beach near the  reef platform. But as there were no one swimming there, we went back to our group's place.

the reef platform, seen from the beach

We had our lunch at 12.30 pm, our packed lunch consist of rice with fried chicken and salad, which came with a canned drink and a fresh orange. It was very challenging to ask our kiddos to eat, as they wanted to continue their swimming session.

At 3 pm, we went back to the reef platform by small boats, and we were so tired that most of the ferry's passenger fall a sleep in the air conditioned ferry.

the reef platform in the middle of the sea

Now if you ask me whether the tour to Payar Island worth the money? I would answer yes, considering the price we paid (IDR 400,000 per person) including bus, ferry transfer, snorkel gear and lunch. And as I told you, we paid 3 person and got one free for our #2 kiddos. Having said that, it's a pity that this marine park was dirty when we came. It's one example how mass tourism could damage the environment. Let's start with ourselves to be a responsible traveler! 

written on June 13, 2013

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Langkawi Cable Car
Fave Hotel Langkawi


  1. ahhh I don't have much time to do snorkeling on langkawi. That's why I'll go back there..

    1. Hmm, I prefer snorkeing in Iboih, Weh Island Kak Bobby :)