Thanks to swine flu, overseas travel and flight-taking were banned in my family. Haha. Luckily, I still have Tioman Island as a holiday destination for me this semester break. Oh and ya, I have graduated, from the beloved Universiti Teknologi Petronas, now waiting for my convocation in August.
This Tioman trip is a really hectic one, no thanks to Mersing (the jetty where ferries will take you to Tioman) being so far away from Ipoh, receiving a call to go for an interview and subsequently getting the job. More about the interview later. Anyway, this is account of my journey to and from Tioman. Hehe. I have to give credit to the driver who drove all the way from Ipoh to Mersing to KL and back to Ipoh. Hehe. He is none other than Mr Choe! *Clap* *Clap*
18/6: Mr Choe and I drove from Ipoh to Johor Bahru. He was the one driving, of course, and I was happily feeding him with Halls, Double Deckers and MiMi. Still remember MiMi? Haha. A snack so popular when we were young, only 20cents for 1 packet. Hahah.We met up with Mr Choe’s friends and put up a night in a hotel in JB.
19/6: Due to low tide, the ferries to Tioman couldn’t operate till evening so we lepak-ed at JB, til it was around 2pm. Then we started our journey to Mersing. We had two travel companions in the car that day, Amnard and Sin Yin. Hehe. Along the way, I think the tour leader received a call to ask us to go to Tanjung Gemok for the ferry. So we said bye-bye to Mersing when we passed it and headed to Tanjung Gemok. When we arrived at this fat tanjung, the person told us to go back to Mersing. It was like being duped! And it was like in the Amazing Race too. “The participants will now make their way to Mersing, the first 5 contestants to reach Mersing will make their way to the next round.” We reached Mersing at 5.30 and quickly got up the ferry to Tioman. The ferry ride to Tioman took around 2 hrs and we reached around 8pm. Those who are seasick, pls be aware of this; 2 hrs of torture ride.
We had no one to blame, so we blamed the organiser. Haha.
20/6: I forgot to mention we stayed at Babura Resort at Tekek. The condition is okay-lahh, but the food could have been better. Hehe. Anyway, 2nd day at Tioman, it’s time for island hopping. We first visited an unknown island (I didnt catch the name), then to Salang where we had our lunch, next to the Marine Park of Tioman and finally to a small island called Renggis. For avid snorkellers, there’s not much you can see in the first three locations I mentioned. All you can see are just some common fishes you see in all islands. The Marine Park was disappointing as well; no corals spotted, only fishes swimming here and there looking for crumbs of bread. I was kinda bored looking at the same fishes throughout the trip to these three locations. I remember there was a lot to look at, at Redang Marine Park. Then, finally, we arrived at this small Renggis island. I wasnt expecting much but to my surprise, there was a lot of corals still alive in this island. I can see that the fishes here are happier fishes too. Hahaha. I dont know about other coral islands in Tioman, so I would just recommend this Renggis island for coral sightings. Hehe. Then we went back to Tekek. It was still quite early in the afternoon, surprisingly, so we rented bicycles and had land adventures instead. At night, we had BBQ dinner. The ingredients and marinating were prepared by the Resort and we had to barbeque our own dinner. =)
Like budak kampung.. =)
In a duty-free shop at Tekek.
Mr Choe’s BBQ seafood platter. Yum!
21/6: Again, it was low tide in Tioman and we can only board the ferry late evening. The resort person then arranged for us to visit another side of Tioman called Juara. We visited a turtle hatchery at Juara Turtle Project and met some Mat Salleh volunteers. This project is a private and voluntary project, where they use collected funds to buy turtle eggs from poachers. An egg will cost them about RM2.50. The poachers just wouldnt stop poaching, although being aware of the turtle hatchery and the efforts to save the turtles. It was their means of earning more money. The authorities wouldnt do anything about this and the volunteers couldnt do anything about it except for buying back the eggs from these poachers. All donations by tourists will go to buying these turtle eggs, hatching them and releasing them as well as running the center. Most of the volunteers in this center were Mat Salleh and I was really humbled by their noble and kind act in saving turtles in our land, Malaysia. I didnt see any Malaysian volunteer except for the Tioman locals. Volunteers come from Holland, Australia, France and we have never even heard of Juara Turtle Project. We feel so ashamed realising that fact. So what we did was to donate a lot of money. =S Next we visited a waterfall with murky waters. Haha. After lunch, we took an afternoon nap and proceeded to the jetty to wait for our ferry. The ferry didnt arrive till 8pm and we reached Mersing at 10pm. Mr Choe had to drive all the way back to KL and we reached KL at 2.30am. What a tiring journey and that’s the end of our Tioman Island trip.
Mr Choe is sulking for waiting too long at the jetty. Haha.
Tioman Island could have been better if not for irregular ferry services. Hehe. Maybe we were just unfortunate to meet with low tide situation. Anyway, we had fun, and lots of them, thanks to Mr Choe’s crazy friends. =)