Monday, 11 April 2011

Malaysia: the Malaysian Islands

Our last holiday was in 2007. There are some who might challenge this statement, but I am talking about time spent on our own, away from tourists, preferably where no one speaks English, without an itinerary or the requirement to mass produce avocado and roast chicken sandwiches in the middle of nowhere. Absolutely nothing wrong with all that – just don’t call it a holiday. With this in mind, Mrs M planned a few days away on the Seribuat Archipelago (known locally as the Robinson Islands) off the southeast coast of Malaysia.

We headed north through Johor to a hotel near Mersing for the night. The owners of the Teluk Iskandar Inn cleared thTeluk Iskandar Inn, Mersinge jungle to build the hotel sixteen years ago. The gardens that go down to the sea include some of the original mango trees, avocado and ‘sea coconut’ trees (with vibrant orange fruit) as well as birds, frogs, a skinny deranged chicken (that followed us to the beach), a group of plump happy chickens, squirrels and the occasional visit from a family of wild boar that like to roll in the mud under a tree.

We almost wiped out the aforementioned family of wild boar as they scampered across the road on the way to Loke Tien Yuen restaurant in Mersing for some good basic Chinese food.

Back at the hotel, we sat on the veranda with tea listening to a concert performed by frogs, which slowly faded throughout the night to a soothing background hum at bedtime.

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