Perhentian Island consists of two main islands, Perhentian Besar and Perhentian Kecil, which make up part of the National Marine Park of Malaysia. The Malay name Perhentian is translated as “a place to stop” and this is exactly what these two islands were for when traders travelled between Malaysia and Thailand many years ago.
The only permanent inhabitants live in a small fishing village on Perhentian Kecil and there are no roads on the island apart from footpaths that cut through the forest. You may even encounter wildlife such as mouse deer, monitor lizards, squirrels, wild magpies, nicobar pigeons and fruit bats.
Close to the island, divers will get to see hawksbill turtles, blacktip reef sharks and bumphead parrotfish. More experienced divers should go to Tokong Laut where the currents are strong, but you will get to see colorful reefs and diverse marine life such as bamboo sharks. Rental equipment such as wet suits and scuba diving gear are provided or you can use your own equipment if you have it. If you come between June and late August, you might even get a chance to see giant green turtles laying eggs along the beach.
Perhentian Island is closed during the monsoon season, from mid-November to mid-February, so be sure to plan accordingly.
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