Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Pulau Payar 2005

Pulau Langkawi is a famous archipelago island located north of the Straits of Malacca, and off the shore of Kedah.
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Many know of the existence of this free-trade port, especially Malaysians and most have visited this place more than once, as it is easily accessible via boat/ferry from Penang or Kedah or via direct flight to the Langkawi airport.
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I have personally been to Langkawi a few times too, and in 2005, I went to Langkawi with my colleagues and we hopped to another island off Langkawi.
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Pulau Payar is a relatively famous island too; located south of Langkawi.
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It is accessible via a catamaran from Pulau Langkawi; in fact, as soon as you arrive at Langkawi, you can find various tour packages offering tours to Pulau Payar; well furnished with the boat ride and lunch there.
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Pulau Payar is a beautiful island, filled with the natural and colorful coral reefs decorating the shores of the island.
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It is also a Marine Park, a measure taken by the government to preserve the marine life and vegetation/corals in the area.
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Due to its natural beauty, Pulau Payar is also an ideal location for snorkelling and diving with the tame and friendly marine life.
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One of the itinerary on the package was the feeding of the fish
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The fish swim in large schools towards us, and the swishing of their tails brushing against our legs was rather ticklish too!~
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During noon, you could also feed or swim with the baby sharks!~
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The island, despite its reserved nature is no longer that reserved anymore as tourists are now flocking to enjoy the beautiful corals and marine life
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Usually the tour packages last half a day, and the boats would arrive to ferry us back to Langkawi in the late afternoon or in the evening.
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I have heard that the island is no longer as attractive as before, with the beautiful corals losing its natural lustre and color in a phenomenon known as bleaching, causing the government to step up measures to now close the marine park to public and forbidding any form of public activities in the area.
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It is a good move that I commend as it is important to preserve the natural gifts of Mother Nature, and not let commercialization destroy them.
I just felt fortunate that I have had the opportunity to witness and admire myself, the true beauty of Pulau Payar.
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The colorful memories and the crystal clear water will forever be etched in my mind...

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