The Natural Beauty of Tioman Island

Off the southeastern coast of Peninsular Malaysia, just a couple hours drive from Singapore, is the idyllic island of Tioman. Tioman is a hotspot of adventure sports for the outdoorsy type, but can also be a place to post up in a beachfront bungalow for a week with a stack of magazines and coconuts to sip on if that's more your style. I was there on a school trip with students, so it was pretty much nonstop action for us.

Students and staff on our jungle trek

A well deserved dip

Right off the bat, we took our kids for a jungle trek followed by some over night camping in the jungle. It was a jolt to the senses having come from the city noises of Hong Kong to the deafening noises of the Malaysian jungle wildlife. The kids got to build campfires, swim in rivers, and do their business outdoors- oh joy!

Kayaking through the mangroves

Pythons spotted above us whilst kayaking! EEK!

Considering Tioman is a tropical island, there are plenty of water activities to do either in the rivers of the island or on the surrounding beaches and reefs. We did a little bit of everything. Kayaking through the mangroves gave us a chance to spot monkeys and pythons, and while scuba diving and snorkeling we saw an abundance of sea turtles, sharks, and stingrays. The island really had it all.

With another chaperone hanging out on the beach

Lots of beach time means hammock time, duh!

Tioman is perfect for nature lovers on land or on the water- everything is packed right there. We stayed in Riveriew Juara which was super scenic, but the Swiss Cottages on the other side of the island were also beachfront and adorable, and attached to the Tioman Dive Center, which is a bonus.

I saw bluespotted stingrays at 3 different dive sites in Tioman

Scenic spot in the town of Juara

So for your next SE Asian beach getaway, here's another one for the books. Tioman is a 1.5 hour ferry ride from the Malaysian town of Mersing, so it's not the most convenient, but the remoteness makes it special. The beaches don't have loads of vendors harassing you, and there doesn't seem to be an obnoxious tourist stretch. It's laidback, rustic, and dare I say, authentic.

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