Sunday, 11 June 2017

Visiting Gaya Island in Malaysia


Throughout my travels in Malaysia I stopped at different points of interest for different reasons. First there was Kuala Lumpur, I city I have heard so fondly spoken of thanks to its' friendly locals and incredible food scene. Oh, and the shopping is great! Then I visited Cameron Highlands to experience tea plantations and strawberry fields (and cater to my undying love for both of these). Now for my third stop in Malaysia I find myself on an exotic island that could quite literally be anywhere in the world thanks to its feeling of remoteness. Here's how I spent my few days visiting Gaya Island in Malaysia (and a good little honeymoon idea for anyone searching for a spot off the grid!)

Gaya Island Resort

The flight to Palau Gaya is around 2.5 hours from Kuala Lumpur, however the local airport does cater to some international flights nearby. Once here, I took a car for around ten minutes to Jesselton Point Jetty to catch a speedboat transfer to Gaya Island Resort, another property from the luxe collection of hotels throughout Malaysia owned by YTL Hotels. My arrival felt like a dream with the sun slowly setting in the background and I was beyond excited to spend a few days here unwinding, taking in all the activities on offer and exploring beyond the hotel.

Although the hotel is well-appointed with a lap size swimming pool, 24 hour gym and a handful of restaurants, I mostly spent my time enjoying the outdoors and trying all the activities around the island and on the water. The beach is nice but the pollution in the waters is quite off putting, though it sadly seems to be the case elsewhere in Malaysia, too.

The lush gardens around the resort were probably my favourite aspect of the hotel as it has a really strong nature focus and rooms are always nestled in between trees, some completely surrounded. I started my stay in an ocean view suite though after running in to a mouse (in my room) I requested a room change and traded out for a room with views of the mangroves - a lower class of room though equally beautiful if you ask me!

If you make your way to Gaya Island Resort I would strongly suggest catching the complimentary speedboat transfer to Tavajun Bay, the resort's private beach which is much nicer, cleaner, and has an incredible Thai lady cooking up incredible food (my favourite food throughout the entire stay). I would also recommend the free kayaking tour through the mangrove trees as it is not only beautiful but also gives you a better insight into the conservation projects undertaken by staff at the resort!

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