“It's coming now, jump up!” someone shouted. Whoosh – the gigantic wave came and swept all six of us off our feet.
I was in Pulau Redang, Terengganu, having a rollicking time with my daughter-in-law and four granddaughters. It was high tide and the waves were strong. When it comes, it lifts you off your feet. If you do not jump up in time, your head will be under water. What an adrenaline-pumping experience!
In July 2022, my family of nine (five adults and four children) went to Pulau Redang for a family getaway. We had a fun-filled holiday on the island.
We took an early morning flight, arriving in Kuala Terengganu at about 10.30am. An hour’s ride on a high-speed ferry took us to our resort on the island. At the check-in counter, I was surprised to see a large crowd of holidaymakers – local and foreign – of all ages and races. It looked like everyone wanted a holiday after more than two years of being cooped up at home.
We went to the buffet hall for lunch. Everyone was masked up, as it was still a requirement back then. There was a wide array of dishes: Noodles, nasi lemak, pancakes, chicken, lamb, prawn, fish, eggs, vegetables and dessert. We ate to our hearts’ content, famished after the long journey.
We adjourned to our three spacious and comfortable rooms. Each room had four beds, a balcony and all the basic amenities.
While hubby and I rested, the rest of the family went snorkelling. On their return, they had glowing accounts of seeing many types of fish and colourful corals. Intrigued by the amazing wonders of the sea, they went snorkelling every day that we were on the island.
Pulau Redang is an ideal place for snorkelling. The waters are clean and clear, so we could see marine animals while floating on the surface. I went for one snorkelling excursion only, and was fascinated by the number of sea creatures, particularly two fish “dancing” with each other.
My grandchildren had fun feeding the fish with bread released from a plastic bottle. At certain spots, my sons dived down to take captivating photos of the corals and sea creatures. They even saw a big turtle swimming at close range.
That evening, we joined the resort’s turtle conservation event where children release baby turtles into the sea. This was one activity that my grandchildren will never forget.
Adults were equally thrilled to see the live baby turtles that day.
There are lots to do in Redang, like trekking, kayaking, paddle- boarding and shopping. We chose to swim either in the sea or in the resort’s swimming pool. In fact, after snorkelling, my grandchildren would go straight to the pool for a dip before showering in the room. They could not get enough of the water ... both from the sea and the pool!
One evening, we took a walk along the beach, enjoying the silky-soft sand and the cool sea breeze. Later, we had a great time watching the sun setting in the horizon.
At night, we listened to live bands playing music, or relaxed in our rooms. One night, I played card games with my grandchildren, making as much noise as they did in the confines of our room.
Did you know that Pulau Redang was the location for a Hong Kong romantic comedy movie called Summer Holiday? Filmed in the year 2000, Summer Holiday stars Richie Jen, Sammi Cheng and our own Malaysian actor and singer, Ah Niu. The quaint “More More Tea Inn” that was featured in the movie has been renovated and is now a shop selling souvenirs.
Our holiday came to an end all too soon.
Whether it is romancing with the waves, snorkelling, releasing turtles, viewing the sunset or savouring sumptuous spreads, Pulau Redang is a great place for a getaway and family bonding.
The views expressed are entirely the reader’s own.
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