Monday, 9 November 2009

Outing to Hole-in-the-Wall and Pulau Dayang Bunting

On the 8th we went outing with our crew and headed first for the "Hole-in-the-Wall" at NE end of Langkawi Island, the vistas opening up after each bend was stunning watching the "Geopark" formations. When arriving the hole which was literally carved in the mountain wall it opened into a long fiord that was lined by mangroves, visiting sailing yachts and floating restaurants.

Entrance to "hole-in-the-wall"

We passed all this and followed a river through the mangroves and ended up to a mountain that had a tunnel through and while passing this we realized we were heading back the same way we came so it was a dead end when we had thought it would go through the mangroves to the North of Langkawi Island. Once seen this we headed back south and passed E of Pulau Tuba and SE of Pulau Dayang Bunting where we made landing to go see the "Pregnant Maiden's Lake". Legend has it that drinking the water would help female fertility.

This fresh water Lake is separated from the sea only by a narrow ledge and you can stand on it looking at both sides at the same time. We dropped Saini off here to see if there is a path going to the actual landing area. He shouted "yes" after awhile and disappeared so I took off and headed for the landing. This is at the other end of the lake and one has to trek a short distance from shore to reach the lake. At the lake is the usual tourist stalls selling their stuff on floating pontoons as well as one can rent paddle boats to go around the lake. At the pontoons are many catfish and if you are courageous enough you can stick your feet in water and the fish will come and tickle them. This is not like the skin eating fish that are sometimes offered at various spa's nowadays. The fish is just curious and looking for bread crumbs, but boy are there a lot of them.

About reachng the lake we met Saini who had been trekking on land to reach us from the ledge. He told us the wood walkway was in a poor condition and actually closed for tourists. Me and Richard decided to brave the warnings and headed off the walkway. At times we had to get off it as it was collapsed and just climb over rocks, nothing to bad. When we reached the final 50meter to the ledge which was on a floating pontoon we saw the bridge connecting the pontoon to land had collapsed and the jump was a bit too much for us ordinary John's.

I decided to climb the cliff and Richard said he'd wait there. Little did I know where I was going as the cliff started going straight up and di not show any signs f leveling off. The outcrops were loose stones and very sharp edges. It woud have been impossible to climb barefeet, so sharp were the edges. At one stage I dropped one of my slippers as they got stuck on a sharp edge and at same time a bramble whipped off my cap. Luckily I managed to get my slipper back as it had snagged on another outcrop a bit lower down and on I went upwards. Finally I reached the top and started to descend towards the ledge. It was almost more dangerous going down than upwards.

After a short while I reached the coveted ledge and too a few snapshots while catching my breath, I was not interested in going back the same way I came and was able to jump onto the pontoon as the gap was only abt a meter wide from shore and started walking along it to go back to the others. Once I reached the end I found that the cliff had some very small outcrops where one could hang onto and climb to shore instead of risking a jump over the collapsed bridge. I felt rather stupid having taken all the effort and risk climbing over the cliff when I could have gone so much easier. Oh well, at least it was done and I headed back to the tourist area.

Once there we all gathered and headed back for the tender boat as it was getting late. We headed off towards Kuah town in the channel between main Island and Pulau Dayang Bunting with the sun's last rays warming our backs...

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