Merdeka is just around the corner and what better way to celebrate our country’s National Independence Day than with a holiday! After all, it will be a nice and long weekend to spend time with the family. Pulau Kapas is rarely a holiday destination that you hear of. Especially in comparison to places such as Penang, Melaka, and other popular locations. However, Pulau Kapas has a lot to offer and you should definitely consider spending your long weekend there.
Pulau Kapas is an island just 6 kilometres east of Marang, Kuala Terengganu. The island takes its name from the beautiful white beaches that scatter around. Perhaps once upon a time the beaches were so pure and white that it reminded visitors of cotton.
What to do?
There are two ways to truly explore the island, the first one being a nice refreshing walk. Pulau Kapas actually has a built-in pathway stretching from one beach to another. Walk along the beach as well to see and feel the fine white sand and clear blue waters. For something more adventurous, you can rent a kayak an tour the island by water. Moreover, a kayak will let you explore the secret bays that are not accessible by foot.
Next up, why not rent a snorkel or bring your own to explore the beautiful coral reefs underwater. Despite the fact that there are fewer types of coral species, some claim that they are healthier and better than Redang Island. If you are also a really good swimmer, consider snorkelling all the way to Gem Island. This neighbouring island is private.
Do you prefer to stay dry? Hike up the two small hills in Pulau Kapas which are collectively known as Bukit Singa. The hills can be covered within a few hours but do take caution of the sharp rocks and steep pathways.
Where to eat?
Firstly, there are not many eateries to choose from as Pulau Kapas is a simple and low-key destination. However, we will provide suggestions to the best of our abilities. Upon arrival at the jetty, you will see Jetty Cafe. The food is said to be good and the staff provide friendly service.
Meanwhile, Qimi Chalet also has some good food choices with accompanying good service. There are also candlelight dinners available but you need to order your meal before 4PM. KBC restaurant is a good place to hangout that provides a large selection of books to read. They are known for their lunch menu and BBQs held on Friday nights. Do take note that kitchen hours are 8am to 3:30pm and 7pm to 9:30pm.
However, if you are looking for something more budget friendly, head over to Longsha Campsite. The camping area is also equipped with a kitchen that is available for use. Make sure to get your own groceries before heading to Pulau Kapas as there are no sundry shops.
You Need to Remember This!
Lastly, we want to provide some tips and important reminders for you before you book your trip to Pulau Kapas. Firstly, there are no pubs or bars and alcohol is scarce on the island so don’t go expecting lots of parties. Also, you need to make sure you bring enough money because there is no ATM available and they do not accept card payments. For those who enjoy walking and exploring at night, you will need to bring your own torchlights.
In addition to bringing your own groceries if you intend to cook, pack some snacks for any late night hunger pangs. Don’t forget insect repellent to avoid pesky mosquitoes and sandflies and bring lots of sunblock because the sun can get quite intense. Be mindful of the sea currents as it can get shallow very quickly and you don’t want to find yourself stepping on corals, anemones, and sea urchins!