The island of Langkawi, Malaysia is an exotic holiday destination that offers accommodation of all kinds (from budget beach chalets to the most sybaritic five star resorts) and amenities sitting side by side with idyllic beaches, ancient rainforests and quaint villages. Langkawi Malaysia is an archipelago of 99 tropical islands (or 104, depending on tide) off the north-western coast of Peninsular Malaysia, about 30km from Kuala Perlis on the mainland. They're accessible by boat from Penang, Kuala Perlis, Kuala Kedah and Satun, Thailand, or by air from Penang, Kuala Lumpur and Singapore.
The only island with any real settlement is the eponymous 478sq km Pulau Langkawi; the only other inhabited island being nearby Pulau Tuba. The archipelago has some of the world's most pristine rainforests, limestone and karst formations, caves with stunning stalactites and stalagmites, and among the world's most beautiful beaches washed by clear emerald waters teeming with marine life.
Langkawi, Malaysia is warm and sunny all-year-round. Humidity is high and the annual average temperature is 25C - 32C. The island was named after two Malay words - "lang" (eagle) and "kawi" (reddish brown), hence the imposing eagle statue at Dataran Lang (Eagle Square), welcoming visitors who arrive on the island through the Kuah Jetty.
There's so much to see and to do in Langkawi; diving and snorkeling in the pristine water filled with rich marine life tops the list for most people. You can also take a cable car ride up the mountain that offers a breathtaking 360 degrees panoramic view of the islands, the rural lowlands and the seas as far as Thailand. For nature lovers, you can explore the lush forests and appreciate the unique wildlife of the islands from a different perspective.
Public transport on Pulau Langkawi is limited, so you usually need to call a cab or rent a car, motorbike or bicycle - all are readily available.
There's a huge variety of food available on Pulau Langkawi, ranging from cheap and good hawker food to a splurge for gourmet food in the restaurants. The famous laksa is not to be missed.
Langkawi, Malaysia is a duty-free shopping destination. Other than cameras, branded items, electronic gadgets, shop for lovely silk batik, handicraft and local products, especially those from the fishing villages.