Tuesday 19 April 2011

Malaysia: Pulau Tioman

Superior chalet - Berjaya Resort, Pulau TiomanAt 10 o’clock we took the boat back to Mersing before heading out to Tioman Island just after midday. The village of Tekek is the third stop on the island where we boarded the transport to the Berjaya Resort. It didn’t take long to realise that the Berjaya was a big mistake.

It’s a like a bloody holiday camp. Our accommodation was one of a block of four dark brown, wood-panelled dingy rooms (unlike the boutique-style photos on the website) that was one of a number of similarly painted depressing blocks. Mrs M had a tizzy. We returned to the reception to speak to the ladies in colourful pyjamas. A manager in a suit offered a room in the (dark brown) Golf Clubhouse (hang on, it’s a golf resort?) for an extra 700RM. We were too tired Golf Clubhouse - Berjaya Resort, Pulau Tiomanto find another location, so we took the room with its two TVs, two fridges, five boxes of tissues and eight towels. At least it was well away from most of the resort.

A little tear ran down my cheek as we sat in the enormous (dark brown) Sri Nelayan dining hall overlooking the pool, which was full of oddly shaped, sunburnt people.

I was grumpy for the next three hours until we escaped under the cover of darkness through the barrier of the main entrance that would not have looked out of place on a prisoner of war camp, running the gauntlet of touts offering advice on restaurants and tourist activities.

Thankfully we found refuge in a cheap Chinese restaurant on the beach with the company of a speckled hen and a very nice cat that drifted from table to table. The food was pretty good too. The day had been rescued.

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