Living Authentically

Slowing Down for a Weekend in Pulau Tioman

Back in October, I was feeling pretty depressed. 2011 was pretty much the worst year of my life so far, and I hadn’t been able to go on all the trips I’d planned – so naturally I was delighted when my friend decided to drag me on a weekend trip to Pulau Tioman!

Pulau Tioman, or Tioman Island, frequently stars in top ten lists of the best islands to visit – and with good reason. This almost-unspoiled haven off the coast of Pahang is a favorite spot for nature lovers as well as divers, teeming with both forest and marine life. We stayed at the Berjaya Tioman Beach Resort, a higher-end resort on the island that made sure to blend in with its idyllic surroundings.

Since Pulau Tioman is surrounded by coral reefs, scuba diving is the most popular activity on the island. But thickly forested hills back the beaches, and they’re easy enough for beginner trekkers to navigate from one end of the island to another.

On the other hand, sometimes on a holiday you just want to sit around and do absolutely nothing – in which case, Tioman island is perfect for you. The Berjaya Tioman Beach Resort offers a decent stretch of private beach, though it doesn’t have the best diving spots. We strolled for hours, scavenging the vast coast during low tide for fish and other odd sea creatures.

The lesser toy car. Rarely spotted among crabs and coral bits.

The sunsets transform the beach into a serene watercolor scene. No crashing waves – just gently lapping water as we waited for the stars to come out.

The weekend on Pulau Tioman flew by – I wish I could have spent more time trekking and experiencing daily life on the island (especially with the freely roaming monitor lizards and cats), but I’m glad I got to relax and unwind! If you’re looking for a quick weekend getaway in Southeast Asia, Pulau Tioman is one place you must not miss.