Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Life in Langkawi

The gateway to Langkawi. The eagle is the local symbol.

I can't believe it has been two months since our last blog. Since our last post we made a short trip home to Perth to celebrate Christmas with our families and over the last month or so we have done a pretty good job of exploring Langkawi. It is hard in a way to stop. We have been on the move since last July and even before that, involved in the endless preparations for an overseas voyage. We haven't really paused much since we stopped work. All those months we dreamed of not having a schedule to follow and having time to relax and really enjoy this new life, but now that we have the freedom it all seems a bit aimless and lacking in challenge. The sailing, if you can call it that, is too easy here with only a few miles between anchorages. The wind is blowing pretty well from the north east, but sailing amongst high sided island does strange things to the wind direction and strength. The wind either disappears completely or funnels through gaps and valleys at great speed. The heat makes our fridge and freezer run overtime and we have to be conscious of how many amps we are using, consequently we usually  motor from anchorage to anchorage to charge the batteries. There is not a lot of sailing.
The monkey could be the local symbol too!

The anchorage off the town of Kuah, with convenient dinghy dock.
Langkawi is really the perfect cruising ground. Sunsail has set up here and you can see why. The main city of Kuah has a good anchorage nearby and in this city you can get anything you need. There are great hardware shops with most chandlers needs, good supermarkets, fresh markets and excellent restaurants where mostly we can both eat for about $7AU.
The Wednesday night market with lots of interesting food.

Not for sale. One happy catty!

Our favourite anchorage is only about 9NMs from Kuah. It is nestled between three islands with white sandy beaches on two of them. Even if the wind is blowing 25 knots we hardly feel a thing. We anchor 100 metres from the rocky and jungle draped island where every morning and evening, a family of a dozen monkeys visits the water's edge to look for crabs and shell fish. Looking through binoculars you can recognize the different family members, the big male who takes no nonsense from the little ones, the mother with her baby clutched to her chest and the young monkeys that play fight and leap from rock to rock. If you tire of watching the monkey show you can shift your attention to the four eagles that soar and dip over the boat. It must be nesting season as I have watched one eagle carrying sticks and large branches to a tree high on the hill.
Our favourite spot. The Doc is in the distance up against the rock face.

The beach is alive with Hermit Crabs

Our daughter Shae joined The Doctor for two weeks and we had a great time showing her our favourite spots. We enjoyed watching her revel in the duty free shopping, cheap food and beautiful natural sites. After an extremely busy two years it was great watching her unwind and relax into the easy going Malaysian life style.
Woo hoo!

Small island circumnavigation begins
Fast ferry from Rebak Marina to Langkawi
Langkawi from the cable car with a good view of the tsunami wall that saved Langkawi in 2002
Nothing like a waterfall on a hot day. Seven Wells Waterfall.
Birthday feast
After the first week we left Motley and the boat to Shae while we did some land travel in Cambodia. For all concerned it was a win win situation. Shae had the resort marina of Rebak to enjoy to herself while she looked after the cat, and we had some time off the boat.
Rob's account of Cambodia coming soon!

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