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The Ultimate Travel Guide To Langkawi (+ Itinerary And Map)

Langkawi is a beautiful island in the Andaman Sea about 30km from the northwestern coast of Malaysia.

There are several reasons that make Langkawi a very attractive island to visit, such as its accessibility, the fact that you can visit year-round, and the beautiful white-sand beaches.

This guide to Langkawi will help you plan a perfect trip to this pretty Malaysian island.

Guide to Langkawi Island

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Quick facts about Langkawi

Is Langkawi an island or an archipelago?

Langkawi, also known as Pulau Langkawi (Pulau means Island in Malaysian), is not just the name of the island, it's actually an archipelago counting almost 100 islands, big and small!

What currency is used in Langkawi?

The currency of Langkawi is the Malaysian Ringgit, check the current exchange rate at

What is the biggest city in Langkawi?

The largest town in Langkawi is Kuah but Pantai Cenang is the most popular place to stay for tourists (read more below).

Watch a beautiful sunset on Pulau Langkawi Malaysia

When to visit Langkawi

As I mentioned above, you can visit Langkawi at any time of the year, unlike the islands on the East side of Malaysia (such as Tioman and the Perhentian Islands).

While the island of Langkawi doesn't experience a strong monsoon season, like the East Coast, there is a rainy season (September-October).

However, don't feel like you have to avoid these months altogether, it usually only rains for a couple of hours (often at night).

The dry season is from January to March, so if you want to maximize your chance of sunny days this is the best time to visit Langkawi.

Keep in mind though that this is high season and prices will be higher. Temperatures are higher as well, the average temperature is well above 30 degrees Celsius.

We visited Langkawi in May, which in my opinion was a great time to visit. We had both sunny days as well as some cloudy afternoons but no rain whatsoever.

The island wasn't too busy and there was plenty of accommodation available for a good price.

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How to get to Langkawi

There are 2 ways to get to Langkawi: you can travel either by plane or by boat.

Kuala Lumpur to Langkawi by plane

We flew to Langkawi airport from Kuala Lumpur with Malindo Air (for just €13 per person, including luggage!).

Penang to Langkawi by ferry

If you are traveling from the neighboring island of Penang, you can hop on a ferry. The ferry goes twice a day and takes around 3 hours.

Unfortunately, due to Covid the Penang to Langkawi ferry is suspended until further notice.

Kuala Perlis to Langkawi by ferry

You can also take a ferry from the mainland to Langkawi, ferries depart from Kuala Perlis (1h15min) and Kuala Kedah (2h30min). More information about ferries can be found here.

How to book tickets online?

To do list of the day: check ferry schedule in Kuah - done

Where to stay in Langkawi

We stayed in Pantai Cenang, a lovely village located on the West coast of Langkawi and about 8km from Langkawi international airport by car.

If you are looking for the perfect place to stay, I highly recommend NR Langkawi Motel. This is a lovely and affordable budget accommodation with spacious rooms and private bathrooms.

The only slight disadvantage is that the hotel is located a bit further away from Pantai Cenang beach. We hired a scooter (more below) so that wasn’t a problem for us.

How to get around Langkawi

There is no public transport in Langkawi. There are lots of taxis but if you want to explore the island at your own pace, you can either rent a scooter or get a rental car.

The main roads on Langkawi are in good condition, the secondary roads can be unpaved and a little more challenging (but fun!) to navigate. Fuel is around 2.50RM per liter (we paid 7RM for fuel in total).

How to rent a scooter in Langkawi: practical information

We paid 70RM for the scooter rental, this was the price for 2 days (so 35RM per day). In general, the longer you rent a scooter, the lower the price per day.

There are plenty of rental places in Pantai Cenang. I rented ours across the road from Rasa Senang Chalet.

Also read about the best islands to visit in Southeast Asia

2 day Langkawi itinerary: map

The best thing about having your own transportation is the freedom to pull over wherever you want. To take a picture of the spectacular views. Or to have a break at a cute cafe to have a great coffee.

Or chill out at a nice beach to relax and read. We did all of these things (and more) during our 2-day itinerary in Langkawi.

Langkawi map

Click here for the interactive map

2 days in Langkawi: itinerary

Day 1: explore the East side of Langkawi

Itinerary: Pantai Cenang – Kuah – Tanjung Rhu Beach – Pantai Cenang


We made a short visit to Kuah to check the ferry schedule. After a coffee at a nice cafe, we continued our journey.

However, if you like shopping, there are some great duty-free outlets and duty-free shopping options in Kuah town! Unfortunately, we didn't have any space in our backpacks…

Tanjung Rhu Beach

Tanjung Rhu is one of the best beaches in Langkawi and is found in the Northeast of the island.

And unlike the beautiful beaches in busy and popular Pantai Cenang, you may end up having this beach entirely to yourself…

To get there we followed the coast road (Jalan Tanjung Rhu) which ended at Tanjung Rhu Beach.

Mangrove forest on the route to Tanjung Rhu Beach
Mangrove forests on the route to Tanjung Rhu Beach

Just before getting to the beach, we came across a gate with a guard where we had to fill out an environment protection form.

The great thing about Tanjung Rhu Beach? Besides the beautiful white sand, breathtaking views and crystal clear water the major selling point of this beach is the fact that it's so calm and quiet… We spent a very relaxed afternoon here!

Important note: a section of the beach is off-limits as this is part of the exclusive Tanjung Rhu Resort.

Tanjung Rhu Beach on Langkawi

Day 2: explore the West side of Langkawi

Itinerary: Pantai Cenang – Teluk Burau (Langkawi Cable Car and Sky Bridge) – The Datai – Pantai Cenang 

The Langkawi SkyCab

On the second day of our ‘Langkawi on a scooter exploration trip,' we drove to Teluk Burau, the starting point of the Langkawi Cable Car, also known as the SkyCab.

Taking the Langkawi Cable Car is one of the most popular activities in Langkawi and a lot of fun.

The cable car starts at the foot of the Machincang mountain and takes about 15 minutes to reach the Top Station, 708m above sea level.

Fun fact: the Langkawi Cable Car has been added to Malaysia Book of Records for ‘The Longest Free Span Mono-Cable'.

Click here to book your Langkawi Cable Car ticket online

Fun fact: the Langkawi Cable Carhad been added to Malaysia Book of Records for 'The Longest Free Span Mono-Cable'

The Langkawi SkyBridge

Once you arrive at the top of the cable car it's only a short walk to the SkyBridge, a pedestrian bridge where you'll find yourself 100 meters above the ground…

Another fun fact: this is the longest free-span and curved bridge in the world!

Click here to book a combined ticket for the Cable Car and the SkyBridge.

Malaysia Langkawi
My mind says: don't worry, it's safe. But my body say: Get off now you crazy person!
Mind over body… My mind says: don't worry, it's safe.

The Datai

Langkawi On A Scooter: 2 Day Itinerary Around The Island

When exploring an island, I usually have a map. However, on our second scooter day, I forgot my map so we just drove around and went where the road took us.

That is how we end up at the Datai, a stunning five-star resort on the northwest coast of Langkawi, and literally at the end of the road.

When we ask the guard if we can have a coffee at the resort, he was very welcoming and told us to park our motorbike. We headed down a green lane to a large and fancy-looking building.

At the entrance, we were welcomed by two friendly employees. Once again, we asked if we could have a coffee.

We were then redirected to employee no. 4 who asked us if we wanted to have a drink in the lounge or at the Beach Bar. A bit confused we looked at each other and said: the Beach Bar, please.

But of course, Sir, Miss, one moment please, the friendly lady replied. We settled down on a luxurious sofa, a little uncomfortable because we were the only ones in the huge and quiet lobby.

One minute later, the friendly lady called us and led us to a golf cart. We hopped aboard and yet another employee drove us to the Beach Bar.

At this point we started to get a little worried about the costs for this yet to be ordered drinks, fortunately, we had gotten enough cash at the ATM that morning…

langkawi itinerary scooter

The golf cart zigzagged around the resort grounds and I have to say: the villas looked stunning.

When we arrived at the Beach Bar we were welcomed by a whole team of staff and led to a comfortable sofa with a mountain of pillows and a beautiful view over the bay.

langkawi 2 day scooter itinerary

We ordered our long-awaited coffee; when the waiter arrived with a tray it wasn't just coffee. No, there was coffee, cookies, cashew nuts, cold water, a fruit skewer, and a cold-scented towel. What a service!

Again we shot a worrying look at each other, this could end up costing our entire daily budget… But first, we drank our delicious coffee, nibbled on the provided nuts and fruit, and sipped our ice-cold water.

Langkawi On A Scooter: 2 Day Itinerary Around The Island

We spent a comfortable hour on a sofa so soft it felt like we were sitting on a cloud. We didn't dare to order another drink so we asked for the check and were amazed this wonderful experience ended up costing only 30RM (€6,50/$7,50)!

A little reluctant we headed back to our scooter (after being driven back to the lobby by a golf cart, imagine having to walk somewhere;-).

If we ever go back to Langkawi, I would love to stay at this resort for a night. Though I better start saving up because the villas cost a lot more than a cup of coffee…

Click here to check the latest prices of the Datai

Update: reader Stanley informed me that unfortunately it's no longer possible to have a drink at the Datai unless you are staying there.

Langkawi travel guide: in conclusion

You can download the map of our 2-day Langkawi scooter itinerary below.

Check out my other posts if you want to read more about my Malaysia travel budget,  2-week itinerary, or my guide to the Perhentian Islands and Tioman Island.

This post was updated in October 2022.

Vanessa Workman

Monday 15th of April 2019

5 star resorts don't generally encourage people to pop in for a cup of coffee and use the beach chairs reserved for their guests. There are also security issues. It sounds to me as if you were initially mistaken for a resort guest, thus the confusion.

Recently a young man decided to come to the resort via 'jungle path' then proceeded to video the guard questioning why he was there, etc.. while 'jungle boy' condescendingly spoke to the guard 'this is a free beach, free for the public to use... '. Jungle boy then proceeded to post it on Facebook so everyone could see the indignity of it all.

As far as I know, yes you can certainly have a cup of coffee at The Datai, but making proper reservations and going through the front gate/lobby is preferable (not sneaking in through a jungle path). Dressing appropriately is probably a good idea as well. In addition to not being rude to the staff.

I personally wouldn't want to be paying for 5 star service and have to worry about random people just popping in. Especially in a remote location. I also would never spend 35RM on a cup of coffee, unless of course I was taking full advantage of beach chairs and inclusive snacks.


Monday 22nd of April 2019

Hi Vanessa,

Thank you for your comment. I agree sneaking in isn't appropriate at all, but I just want to clarify: we drove to the main gate with our scooter and stated clearly we were not staying at the resort. We asked if we could have coffee and the guard said that was okay. This was 4 years ago however and apparently the Datai changed their policy in the meantime. Perhaps because of people trying to sneak in or perhaps due to complaints of resort guests, who can tell. In any case, we very much enjoyed our 5 star cup of coffee, it was quite an experience for us:-)

All the best! Lotte


Thursday 14th of March 2019

Hey, thanks for writing! We enjoyed loosely following this itinerary round Langkawi. Just to let you know that we got to the Datai today to pop in for a drink and you're unfortunately no longer allowed to do this. The security staff told us we had to have made a reservation and be guests of the hotel. They were actually pretty brusque and seemed to want to get rid of us. Oh well! They shan't be receiving my custom when I'm a wealthy man ;)


Sunday 17th of March 2019

Hi Stanley,

Thank you so much for your feedback! I'll make sure to adjust that in my post. I hope you still enjoyed Langkawi, it's a lovely island:-)



Thursday 6th of April 2017

Waw. That's amazing :D

Have you try motobike touring in Indonesia?


Friday 14th of April 2017

No haven't been to Indonesia yet! But I imagine that would be great:-)


Tuesday 12th of January 2016

I wish my hubby was brave enough, but he must have been an actuary in a previous life... doesn't like anything that could be remotely considered dangerous. lol I just wrote a sponsored article on the sky bridge... can't wait to see it for myself.


Tuesday 12th of January 2016

Haha, lol! The Skybridge is very safe, though is doesn't feel like it when you are standing on the glass:-D Have a great trip!


Tuesday 8th of December 2015

Love a good motorbike adventure!


Tuesday 8th of December 2015

Yes me too! One of my favorite things to do when I am traveling:-)