One week after the Legoland trip, barely recovering from the exhaustion, we were off to our Langkawi Family Vacation with my parent-in-laws.
Preparations for the Ultimate Langkawi Family Vacation
It was a 5 hours drive to Perlis Jetty and 2 hours ferry ride to Langkawi. We departed on Friday and would be returning the next Wednesday.
Pack Extra Space When Going to Langkawi
We had more time to prepare for this vacation and yet there were a few small items that we managed to forget nevertheless.
Such as hats (from the last Langkawi Trip) & bath soap & shampoo.
You don’t really need to bring soap & shampoo if you’re staying in a hotel, but we’ve always preferred to stay in a homestay when travelling with a large group due to cost and it’s more fun to stay together
We brought a large suitcase even though it was only a 5-day trip. Expect loads of chocolate purchases people! A separate suitcase for Seri & Tiyah. Another large suitcase for our parents, fishing equipment, stroller (God forbid if we forget that after the Legoland fiasco), 2 walking sticks for the elderly… and oh yeah, most importantly…
Food & Drinks Are Essential for Road Trips
Do not underestimate the importance of snacks even though our highways are filled with RNR stops.
One never knows when the driver with sleep apneas suddenly feels sleepy or the toddler gets bored at calling out the colours of cars and lorries and decides to act out a little drama in the tightly squeezed space vehicle. Snacking is the saviour of my sanity for long distance travelling.
This kind of family vacation was the reason we decided to get the Subaru Forester. It had a large space in the back and we can easily take stuff from the back with a wriggle here and there unlike the saloon car Honda Accord that we previously had. Walking sticks were chuck from the front to the back and vice versa easily.
Insha Allah, if or when our little family expands we’re definitely gonna have to figure how to get an upgrade to an MPV.
Where We Stayed
We enjoyed our previous stay in Chenang, but due to school holidays and last minute bookings we weren’t able to secure a place with the tiny budget we had.
No worries, we decided to stay somewhere in the village nearby Kuah and away from chaotic Chenang to get a feel of a more local visit for this Langkawi Family Vacation.
Malinja Vacation Home
Tiyah was ecstatic about the semi auto washing machine.
Later on, we figured the missing appliance would be a blender or a lesung batu.
The quaint house was a short row of homestays overlooking the paddy fields.
After arriving, we found out we were just around the corner to Makam Mahsuri & the infamous Nasi Dagang Pak Malau. Yeay to awesome breakfast during Langkawi Family Vacation.
A tiny convenience store was also available nearby to purchase the necessities for cooking.
What We Did
We were travelling with 2 elderlies and 1 toddler, it was a vast extremity of what each segment age can do and will enjoy. During this Langkawi Family Vacation, we kept extreme activities to a minimum and more family friendly oriented activities.
The Surprisingly Fun and Well Kept Langkawi Wildlife Park
Seri loves cat & rabbit or is the age where most animals that move excite her. So I thought it would be fun to let her explore the wildlife during our Langkawi Family Vacation
I was totally unprepared for a great time we would have at the Langkawi Wildlife Park.
It was a children friendly attraction with a lot of benches to climb on or sit and feed the animals.
The environment of the Langkawi Wildlife Park was also cooling and not hot as I was expecting like the Zoo. Part of the reason we let our parents stay at the Homestay was to recuperate from Island Hopping trip, and Tiyah to cook for lunch.
Some animals roamed about freely and trying to hide from over exuberant kids.
The employees were also friendly and were quick to teach us how to feed the animals properly. There weren’t a lot of visitors when we arrived, so we took our time exploring, feeding & photographing.
Initially, Seri was apprehensive about feeding some of the animals right from her hand. But as we went further in, I watched her confidence increase and immensely enjoyed the interaction with her father and her excitement
I got peace and quiet for 2 whole hours just snapping away pictures and video recording them which felt awesome!
I highly recommend the Langkawi Wildlife Park when you travel to Langkawi with kids from the age of 2 – 6 and loves animals.
Island Hopping Through Kilim Geopark
We went Island Hopping through Kilim Geopark which was about Rm350 for 3 hours. You have the options of 2 hours, 3 hours or 4 hours with additional fish feeding for the longest package.
I chose 3 hours because we had a toddler and elderlies and feel 4 hours would be too long for all of us. If Seri was bigger it would be worth it to go for the extended hours.
I would consider the boat ride to be a bore, but I was entertained by watching everyone else enjoying it and the green view was somewhat relaxing as well. But of course, on our way back. I couldn’t wait to get off the boat. Need more food.
The boat ride would be enjoyable for first-timers, and the view was relaxing for us urbanites.
We stopped at a Bat cave that was dark and stinky, the parents didn’t get off anticipating walking a lot and staircases. Seri was brave and didn’t at all cry and would repeat words we thought her as we showed her the bats hanging from the cave.
Fish Tank & Restaurant
Then, we stopped at a fish tank & restaurants. I let Seri hang out with her father as he showed her the fishes and handled a sting-ray. I was busy fiddling with my new found function in my brand new P9 phone.
We watched for a while the Eagle Feeding and recorded some videos for Seri’s viewing later on. We love talking to her later on about the experiences we went through. She responds well and has a lot of opinions about it, although sometimes, it boggles my mind to interpret them.
Saved for the last, what we thought was the best was a visit to a deserted island for a swim. The place was named Gua Cerita. The jetty was long and dangerous, I didn’t even dare to pull out my phone in case it went swimming with fishes.
Less than an hour, we decided to head back. The sand was coarse and the water wasn’t as green or blue as we had hoped for. Flashback of our last Island Hopping in Tioman right before we had Seri made us decided, it wasn’t worth to stay longer. We were also kind of hungry.
On one of the days the father and son duo headed for a fishing trip for a few hours and caught a few fishes. Both participants ended up exhausted and slept to recuperate. So we didn’t go anywhere far from our homestay. To make up for the lack of activity to Seri, we went for Kite Flying within the Paddy Fields.
There was not much wind, but the Kite flew for some time, and I managed to take pictures. It was fun nevertheless.
We flew the Kite again whilst in Chenang Beach where there was a strong wind.
Langkawi Cable Car & Bridge
It would be my 3rd time going to the Cable Car and Bridge, I didn’t particularly look forward to this activity as I hate the amount of time waiting and standing in line longer than the actual activity took. Especially this time around we didn’t take the express ticket as there were more of us this time.
They did add something new for those who were waiting in line to fill time. The SkyDome is a small cinema for a point of view of a roller coaster ride. Whilst the screen showed the action of spinning around the ride, the seat, however, was still. So we didn’t really feel the excitement except that it was a waste of queuing time.
Prior to riding the cable car, we had to wait an hour before we could enter at 11.00 am, so we decided to check out the Sky Rex. The last time we were here when Seri was just a year old, we didn’t make it into it after a long queue since she cried and cried for milk. Thankfully we made it this time,
Thankfully we made it this time. Apparently, she enjoyed it even though she was quiet the whole ride. Dinosaurs are currently her favourite too.
Right before you reach the Sky Rex is a new Rabbit feeding area which is free, but you have to pay for it’s feeding about RM2. We let Seri enjoy feeding again whilst waiting for our entrance time to the Cable Car.
Another new addition is the Cinemotion, which looked similar to Sky Rex, except it was 4D seats instead of a tram. We didn’t go for this ride, all I saw was a preview outside on a tv screen.
Whilst we manage to borrow a wheelchair at no additional fee from the girl holding the mic, the ramp positionings for wheelchairs are not so good around the area of the park. And even though there is an automatic ramp for wheelchairs for going up the cable car, it’s kind of not a disabled friendly activity as there isn’t a lot of seats for the elderlies and there were a lot more stairs and waiting time up at the top.
We got out of there eventually at 3.00 pm starving.
I would have liked to go to Friendly Farm to check out the Cheese Making Facility there, but it didn’t make the cut on our very busy Langkawi Family Vacation schedule. Maybe next time.
What We Ate and Where?
Our Langkawi Family Vacation would not be complete without a thorough #jalanjalancarimakan aka food hunt to fuel our energy throughout the escapade.
Honey Daging Bakar
Just before we reached Jetty Perlis, we found this gerai by the roadside. For a plate of rice and grilled beef at RM12, it was okay for a quick lunch stop.
Nasi Dagang Pak Malau
Our homestay was just around the corner to this famous eatery and we quickly headed there the next morning we reached Langkawi.
Having breakfast at Nasi Dagang Pak Malau with the beautiful scenery of golden paddy fields spreading and swaying out in front of you was picturesque.
The food was excellent too. Unlike Nasi Dagang in Kelantan, which is sweeter than I prefer, it has a spicier flavour and more to my liking.
The price is more expensive too. RM7 to RM 13 depending on your choice of meat; Fish, chicken or even Lamb which is rare.
If you decide to go to Nasi Dagang Pak Malau, the best time is around 7.30am when they just laid the tablecloth out. Any time later than 8.00am, you would see a large crowd, cars parked chaotically, have to wait for seats and they even may run out of rice.
This was the case when we came the 2nd time, later and on a Sunday of school holidays.
If you’d like to enjoy this view every morning, Pak Malau also provides a homestay.
We found out about this place through my brother-in-law who’s girlfriend is a local Langkawi.
Getting there was easy because it’s in Kuah just nearby Pekan Rabu and has food packages at affordable price.
On the first night, there were 6 of us, we had RM150 package which included:
Their speciality is chilli kuning which the waiter said was like masak lemak but different than masak lemak. Ummm… What??
It did not disappoint, though.
We went to D’saji again for the 2nd time. We were hoping to get them to cook the father and son catch from the fishing trip. Disappointingly, they do not accept external fish. We brought it back to the homestay to cook ourselves.
Since we were back to our original headcount. We ordered the RM100 package for 4 pax that came without the squids for dinner.
We also ordered a good medium size Kerang Bakar. The addition was well grilled and a good medium size.
We went to Seashells also known as Laman Padi on the last night we were there after an evening by the seaside in Chenang.
The choices ranged from Chicken, Duck or Mutton in either Fried, Curry or Rendang with a package price of RM95 per set.
We wanted to eat in the Pangkin surrounded by paddy fields. Unfortunately, they had just shellacked the Pangkin in preparation for Miss World (or was it Miss Universe?) soon. Good thing too, it rained heavily half way through our meal!
One night, we stopped at a Thai Festival and purchased a Somtam priced at RM7. It tasted like crap and was extremely disappointing
The only good thing that came from that stop were RM10 batik & Pelekat pants I found for Seri & her cousins.
They are usually around RM35.
This was another stop not in the original Langkawi Family Vacation list, but in Alor Setar on our way back home. The reviews online indicated it was the go-to place to have a local Kedah flavour lunch and has a variety of Malay food.
Sri Pumpong’s restaurant’s directions did not appear in Google Maps. I found directions on Foursquare and opened in Google Maps or Waze instead.
We cleaned up pretty good despite the massive spread.
What We Bought and Where?
Haji Ismail Group Complex has a variety of chocolates. I bought a magic pan which was definitely useful when we had to cook the fish catch ourselves after the restaurant rejected them. And another smaller pan to replace our old.
Best product I bought was Susu Kambing & Gamat lotion. Langkawi is famous for its Gamat Oil. I was having a difficulty of finding a heated massage oil or lotion equivalent to counter pain or maybe stronger.
Everyone used the lotion after a couple of days in Langkawi, due to major walkabouts and hours on the fishing boat.
I bought another bottle on the way back.
The Langkawi Family Vacation ended with a long journey back. We were all exhausted. It made the journey back seems longer.
We also stopped at Pekan Rabu, Alor Setar that added to the extra travel duration. They have a wide selection of Crafts, Muslim Attires, Traditional Food.
Our ferry from Langkawi was at 10:00 am. We finally arrived home around 11:00 pm after dropping our parents home.