Langkawi, officially known as Langkawi the Jewel of Kedah, is an archipelago of 104 islands in the Andaman Sea, some 30km off the mainland coast of northwestern Malaysia. The island is not as popular as Bali or Thailand yet, as it is quieter and considered as an eco/beach island but it definitely has potential. There are no crazy parties, tourists puking around or loud music so it is a perfect place if you want to spend a few days far from the crowds.
The island has its own International Airport, however, we flew in with Air Asia from Kuala Lumpur. If you’re flying in from another country, make sure to keep a few hours transit time as going from international arrivals to domestic departures take a bit of time. You need to take a fast train to change terminals, and it costs 2 Malaysian Ringgits one way per person. After an hour of flight, we arrived at Langkawi Airport and took a taxi which cost 26 MYR to get to The Danna Langkawi hotel. To be honest, we were not impressed by the weather or the resorts surrounding us during our taxi trip from the airport to our hotel. We were even trying to find out how I came up with the Langkawi idea. After all, it is not a famous island decorating the pages of travel magazines or a stylish travel blog. However, our feelings shifted once we arrived in the hotel lobby, and welcomed with a drink and a complimentary massage.
I booked a room at The Danna Langkawi on hotels.com months ago and had trouble changing the date as I wasn’t able to make it for the dates I booked. I was requested to pay double of what I’ve already paid but ended up paying a less amount of money to change the dates. My experience started really bad even before arriving Langkawi but they managed to change this one hundred per cent in just three days.
Set directly on the beach, this stylish resort has a boutique design with colourful tiles, big arches, tall ceilings and an infinity pool. Sun beds were laid in the pool so you can put your feet in the water while sipping your drink. Feeling too hot? Just head back inside the building and sit in comfy couches enjoying the pool and sea view. You could watch colourful fish in the garden or have an afternoon tea at the café.
Our mountain view room was also pretty amazing. It was big and luxurious, and we could see the Geopark from the bathtub and the balcony. It was very peaceful, and one of the best hotel rooms we’ve stayed in.
The sea was warm, blurry, and it was surrounded with a net to protect people from jellyfish. However, I would definitely recommend heading to the beachside for amazing sunset views after spending the day near the pool. Even if you lay on the beach during the day, the pool staff makes sure to make your time enjoyable by bringing cold water, small bites to eat or ice cream. Plus there is a happy hour between 5pm and 7pm, and you can enjoy cocktails (I would definitely recommend the frozen fruit margarita) for half price.
The breakfast was outstanding, and more than expected. Homemade jams, Asian and International types of food and champagne made it perfect. From sushi to watermelon jam, it was just a complete buffet for an amazing start to the day.
If you’re visiting Langkawi to stay at this luxurious hotel, I would recommend at least 4-5 days to enjoy and relax. The Danna is 2 km away from both the scenic Langkawi Cable Car and the pedestrian-only Langkawi Sky Bridge so take a day or two for sightseeing. Once you reach the top of Machincang mountain with a cable car, you can enjoy a 360-degree view of the islands and the flora around, and even see monkeys if you’re lucky.
Other things to do include night markets, diving, Cenang Beach, zip lining, island hopping with a jet ski, 3D art museum, Langkawi UNESCO Global Geopark and of course eating seafood. The island is rich in nature, so you wouldn’t regret even to take a walk around. Duty-free shopping is very common on the island as there are loads of duty-free shops to buy chocolates, alcohol, perfumes etc. but we didn’t find prices very attractive.
As we visited in rainy May, the island was quiet and there were not many people around. The sky was grey and it was raining from time to time but we were not bothered. If you prefer the dry season when the tourists fill the island, it is between January and March.
In short, I would definitely recommend Langkawi as a destination and The Danna Langkawi as a hotel to stay when you’re visiting this beautiful island.