Pangkor Island Attractions
Beaches, temples, fishing villages, ikan bilis and more...
The main attractions onthe island are the beaches. There are several excellent beaches. However, there is more to do. On this page you will explore the many other attractions that will make your stay here a real life experience of joy, love and happiness.
Information on the beaches, you find here.
What can you find on this page?
Pangkor Town, the main town on the island, is located on the east coast. It used to be one street town and it is still not much more. There's a range of souvenir shops and little restaurants. Some of the best food you will find in the local stalls.
On the east coast there are three more fishing villages facing the mainland: Sungai Pinang Kecil, Sungai Pinang Besar and Kampong Teluk Kecil.
In fact it's a long strip of villages that continues to Pangkor Town. Although the villages are small they are interesting to visit. Many of the houses are traditional and some are build in the sea on stakes.
There are local stalls offering great food. In Sungai Pinang Kecil there's Hai Seng Hin Satay Fish Factory. Most people living in Pangkor do still rely on fishing for living. Local fishermen can be seen building new boats.
The villages offers a closer look at life of the average Chinese fisherman and his family. The fishermen's houses are next to the docks.
The women are ready with knives and baskets to prepare their catch when their husbands come home with their catch. This includes small and big fish as well as squid. The catch are then dried in the sun and later soaked in a sweet, spicy sauce.
The ferry from Lumut docks first at Sungai Pinang Kecil where you have a first glimpse of the village.
There are a few other villages on the island. Sungai Udang is the village in between Pasir Bogak and Nipah Bay. There is not a lot to do except eating and enjoying the shadow under the palm trees.
Teluk Dalam is located on the north side of Pulau Pangkor. It is a small fishing village with the Teluk Dalam Resort nearby.
South of Pangkor you will Sungai Teluk Gedung, see further in this page: Dutch Fort and Tiger Rock.
Foo Lin Kong Temple
The Foo Lin Kong Temple is a fairly new Taoist temple. It has been build at the foot of Pangkor Hill in the village of Sungai Pinang Besar.
The temple has a nice garden partly build on the hillside. There is a miniature Chang Cheng (Great Wall) of China to admire. On the roof you will see the 12 signs of the Chinese zodiac.
There are turtles and plenty of different fish in the ponds around the temple
Kali Amman Temple
While you are in Sungai Pinang Kecil, you might like to visit the Kali Amman Temple. This is the largest, and the only Indian temple of any significance on the island.
This temple is one of the only two Indian temples in Malaysia that have the entrance and the shrine of the goddess Kali, facing the sea. The other is located on Penang Island. The temple has a short staircase that descends to the sea where worshippers are required to cleanse themselves before entering the hall for worship.
Dutch Fort (Kota Belanda)
Just south of Pangkor Town lies Kampong Teluk Gedung. There is the old but small Dutch Fort. It was build in 1670 and used for storing tin. The Dutch used to Fort further as a stronghold against local Malays and pirates.
Today only some of the foundations are left. The Dutch Fort is located at Teluk Gedung. Behind the Dutch Fort you can find Tiger Rock Hotel and a bit further on the road, the Batu Bersurat or Tiger Rock.
More on the history of the Dutch Fort.
Batu Bersurat or Tiger Rock
A stonethrow away from the Dutch Fort lies a giant boulder named Tiger Rock or Batu Bersurat in Malay.
It has an inscription ‘1743 I.F.CRALO’ and the initials ‘VOC’ (Veerenigde Oostindische Compagnie - The Dutch East India Company), and the image of a tiger. It's one of the must see things at Pangkor Island. Both the inscription and the tiger are slowly fading in the years that I have seen it.
The story behind it is that a child, who played by the rock, disappeared with no trace and was presumed that a tiger had taken the child.
However the villagers at Pangkor Island said that it wasn’t the tiger that had taken the boy, but rather the angry Malays, who wanted to rid Pangkor of the Dutch. The Dutch chiseled this incident on the stone depicting the Malays as a tiger.
Unfortunately the inscription is fading with the years and graffiti is added.
Next to the Indian Kali temple, there are four graves. It's only worth a visit if You visit the nearby Indian temple. The tomb is halfway in the ground next to a little altar.
The tomb reads: In the loving memory of Patrick de Souza, born 1871, died in 30 April 1911 RIP.
The tomb behind the grave in the foreground reads:
Sacred to the memory of Edward G. Howell, Boatswains mate, H.M.S. Ringdove. Died of dysentery on the 28 December 1875, ages 37 years.
Behind Howell's grave is Seaton's grave which has an inscription on its headstone:
W.A. Seaton, Died 21.9.17, aged 67, R.I.P.
And behind Seaton's grave there is another grave with worn wooden head'stone'.
Trekking at Pangkor
There is a very interesting and challenging trekking to do across the island. Not many people do it, but trust me, if you like to experience a tropical rainforest and do not want to go too deep into the wild of Malaysia, this is a good introduction.
The 4 hour trekking leads to Bukit Pangkor and all across the island. Chances are you find wildlife like snakes, wild boar and hornbill birds.
Another trekking is quite interesting and leads from Teluk Segadas to Pasir Bogak, a guide is necesary for this trekking as the path disappears frequently.
The Suspension Bridge or Jambatan Gantung
Technically not a historical site but the bridge is years old and -unfortunately- in deplorable state. It's located near Pasir Bogak a few hundred meters in the jungle. The shear coolness of the jungle is a great way to escape from the midday heat and a good moment to find some wild animal life, if you take the time.
Since late 2011, it is again possible to dive around Pangkor. Not only you can do short snorkeling trips from the beaches (get your boat and equipment there), but you can go to Pulau Sembilan and explore the marine life which is abundant. What to see? I saw amongst others leopard sharks, stingray, nudibranches, turtles, heck even sea horses!
The dive trips are organised from the Marina Island, check our diving page for details.
Motorbike or bicycle?
Motorbike or bicycle, that's the question. I have always preferred the bicycle. However, many people prefer the motorbike. Some think the weather is a little too hot to ride your bicycle. Pangkor island is small enough to cycle around in day and hang out on the beach or visit some of the sights. The roads are in good condition though a bit steep and narrow on the North-West part of the island. See my motorbike/bicycle page for more info.
Cycling or motor-biking around Pangkor island is an adventure in itself. You do not need a lot of luck to see one of the many biawaks or monitor lizard, the slightly smaller cousin of the Komodo dragon (see our wildlife section) crossing the road.
One of the great attractions of Pangkor Island is the possibility to go around the island by boat. It is possible to go to Pulau Mentangor or Pulau Pelandok.
There is services to rent boats at the beaches of Teluk Nipah and Pasir Bogak. You can arrange a speedboat through your hotel. The Coral Bay and Sea View have this service available. Expect to pay about RM200 to RM250.
Not necessarily around Pangkor but you can get a canoe and do some canoeing from Teluk Nipah to Pasir Bogak through Teluk Kepatang is quite another experience.
You can rent canoes on the beach of Teluk Nipah. Get one and visit Pulau Giam in front of Coral Bay and Teluk Nipah and enjoy yourself for an hour or two in the bay. Recommended!
For an island that lives on the fish industry it is obvious there some good fishing areas in the neighborhood. You can arrange a boat with local fishermen for a day and catch some fish. Expect to pay about RM 70-90 for an offshore fishing trip.
There is a golf-course on the island. The Pangkor Island Beach Resort has its own, a small midi golf course. There is on the mainland: Damai-Laut Golf & Country Club and Royal Teluk Rubiah Country Club. Check here for the details on Pangkor Golf
Pangkor island is not exactly a shopping paradise, and that may be an euphemism. In Pangkor Town there are some souvenir shops and many local food stalls. They are worth a visit. For some more shopping you can visit Lumut. Seri Manjung and Sitiawan are from Lumut just a 20 minute drive. There are taxi's and public transport available. If you come to Pangkor to shop, you better give either Kuala Lumpur, Penang or Ipoh a visit. However, in this area of Malaysia you can easily buy what you need.
Pangkor is no different from other parts of the world. It has its own festivals. Since the population of Pangkor is similar build up as in the rest of Malaysia, there are Indian, Chinese and Malay festival. Indian festivals include Thaipusam while the Chinese have there Chinese New Year. The Malays celebrate the Ramadan and the birthday of the prophet Mohammed.
Technically it may not be the best place to mention it. However, if you are looking for something really special, Chinese cemeteries are very special in this part of Malaysia, especially during the Ching Ming Festival.
In fact around Pangkor island is the only place in the whole of Malaysia where the Chinese cemeteries are so spectacular beautiful. At Pangkor itself there are a few nice graves to be seen just outside Sungai Pinang Kecil.
However for the "real thing", you have to visit Seri Manjung and especially Sitiawan. The biggest graveyard is a few km out of Lumut. Read more about Chinese cemeteries around Pangkor.
I was invited to celebrate the wedding of Hazman Bin Sabtu weds Zurul Affza Binti Mohd Yusoff at Pangkor island. That was quite an event. First day at the girls house in Kedah, second in Pangkor:
I was lucky to get an invitation from my friend David for his sons' wedding.
David is Tamil Indian and therefore his son's wedding was a full traditional Indian wedding. Have look at it if this is what you are looking for. It may happen to you when you come to Pangkor!
A bit later David called me and asked me to come again. This time one of his Chinese friends' son got married. It was great opportunity to experience the differences between the Indians and the Chinese. Some day I will be able to introduce to you the typical Malay wedding.