It's no wonder Langkawi is a haven for tourists looking to escape bustling cities and drench themselves in nature.
The island's ancient jungle-strewn mountains, unique mangrove habitats, and rare wildlife species earned it accreditation as Southeast Asia's 1st UNESCO Global Geopark.
Langkawi's 550-million-year-old natural history is best learned at the Geopark Discovery Centre before venturing out to explore its jungle, rivers, mangrove forests, and beaches first hand.
Beaches here are amongst the most beautiful in the world. The powder-fine beach sands and panoramic ocean views of Tanjung Rhu make it an oasis for sunbakers and serenity seekers. Adventurous types will find jet-ski hire, island hopping tours, and watersports abounding at Pantai Cenang or Paradise 101.
The islands 2 tallest mountains, Gunung Raya and Gunung Machinchang promise unforgettable adventures for jungle trekkers, bird watchers, and waterfall chasers alike. Wildlife species likely encountered include dusky leaf monkeys, oriental pied hornbills, and colorful butterflies.
Below the mountain peaks are 2 rivers best explored on a boat tour to witness thriving mangrove habitats, traditional fishing villages, and remote tropical islands.
Langkawi's Geopark status isn't all about its nature. UNESCO also honors the island's rich cultural heritage with eerie local legends and a history as rice farmers and fishermen.
Folklore stories like the tale of a beautiful woman who cursed the island after being wrongly executed are best explored at Kota Mahsuri or Taman Legenda.
Visitors can live the life of a traditional Malay villager at Langkawi Kampung Cultural Excursion, or step back in time at the partially modernized fishing villages on Tuba Island. To delve into the island's rice farming history, visit Laman Padi, an active rice farm, and museum.
More modern experiences also abound with the world's steepest cable car, a world-class go-cart track, zoos, and an aquarium. Shoppers are spoilt for choice with local handicrafts at Langkawi Craft Complex and duty-free shopping outlets across the island offering discounted clothing, toys, perfume, liquor, and more.
Langkawi may be small in size, but its range of attractions is vast. We've compiled everything you need to know about the best things to do in Langkawi.
Let's dive in.