The best places to visit in winter after leaving behind the winter scenes and ski centers are the exotic islands with their fantastic tropical beaches. In this perspective, the islands of the Southeast Asia are as generous as to make their visitors say ‘coming here is the best thing I’ve done.’ Langkawi is one of such. When it is compared to the other popular islands, it is more authentic and natural; therefore, the island has many features that would guarantee the satisfaction of its guests who would like to experience a local vacation.

Walking around the forests that are inhabited by the region’s unique mangrove trees that grow in saline coastal sediment, observing the monkey families that try to steal your food or your hat by hanging over the trees while you are walking, feeling in peace when you are having a river tour by boat are among the things that you should experience in Langkawi. The island that can be reached easily by taking a short flight from Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia, or by getting on a ferry or by using a land route is a great alternative to make time for yourself.

Its name means ‘Red Eagle’
What gave its name to Langkawi is the red eagles that live in the island. Because in Malay, ‘lang’ means ‘eagle’ and ‘kawi’ means ‘red.’ Smiling for the camera in front of the giant eagle sculpture, located at the center of the island, is a must. Seeing these red eagles is possible through a river tour. You catch the opportune moment to see them closely when the captain stops the boat to throw pieces of meat in the river. The eagles notice them immediately with their sharp eyesight and dive in to get them.

It is possible to be drawn to tax-free shopping like a moth to a flame in the island. In addition, plenty of activities await you. The steepest of the world, Langkawi Cable Car is one of the most popular among them. Climbing to the summit of the Machincang Mountain over the lush forests by almost touching to the treetops astounds you. Presenting amazing views, this short travel leaves you in awe. It is a good idea to spend some time shopping or eating at the restaurants of Oriental Village that welcomes you after getting off the cable car. Time passes quickly while looking at the wooden objects, colorful clothing items, shawls, souvenirs, jewelry made with natural stones and seashells in the shops.

Langkawi is an island that its folks love the legends and they are fed by them. ‘The pregnant virgin’ legend is one of them. According to the legend, as a result of love between an ‘elf’ male and a mortal female, a baby comes to the world but then dies. The mother leaves her baby to the waters of the lake. Later on, a rumor about the lake’s healing waters for the women who want to become pregnant is spread among people. The boat tours are organized at the lake. Moreover, during the tours, the boat stop at a certain location to allow tourists to see the natural formation that looks like a pregnant woman.

Another one of the wide spread legends is the tomb of Makam Mahsuri. You won’t lose much if you don’t visit this place; however, its legend is interesting: Makam Mahsuri was executed centuries ago, although she was an innocent woman. It was believed that she had cursed the inhabitants of the island for 7 generations. According to the legend, the old abundance and wealth of the island in fact had returned back after 7 generations.

One million year-old forests
The forests that are one million year-old in the island are among the oldest forests of the world. While biking or walking around these forests, coming across the endangered animals that you haven’t encountered before is going to be among the best experiences of your life. Telaga Tujuh falls that is home to the mountain fairies according to a legend is another natural beauty.

Watch out for coconuts!
The worst thing that you could experience in the island would be a coconut landing on your head. Tasting the tropical fruits, greeting smiling faces, sitting around the dining tables filled with the freshest seafood, and relaxing in a lounge chair surrounded with the beautiful trees are only among the few of the extraordinary moments that Langkawi has to offer to us mortals.

A romantic sunset
The activities are so many as the legends are in Langkawi. You can visit tie-die workshops depending on your interests and time, you can visit rice fields and photograph people who harvest rice and maybe help them. You can observe alligators in different sizes in alligator farms, make enchanted walks along the river, or have romantic long walks at the beach while watching the amazing sunset. Tanjung Rhu and Pentai Cenang are the best beaches.

Stop by the Tie-die Village to support local production.

Try the coconut jam and the rice pilaf cooked in coconut milk.

Keep your camera handy during the boat tour that the red eagles are fed.

There are plenty of tax-free shops and small shopping centers in Pentai Cenang.

Langkawi is announced as the first Geopark of Asia with its 550 million year-old geological history by Unesco.