Kuantan is a beautiful beachfront city along the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia offering the best of both worlds!
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Kuantan, the state capital of Pahang, is a city with a booming tourism industry. The city attracts its fair share of visitors who flock to this coastal city for its many attractions, especially the scenic beaches which face the South China Sea. As a developing city, Kuantan offers a unique view into contemporary Malaysian life, with the modern comforts of urban living in the city, and the quiant, laidback lifestyle of the villages in its outlying areas. It exudes a natural air of authenticity, and many of its sights and attractions are still untouched by commercialization, allowing its visitors a truly original experience.
Kuantan does not have an illustrious history, beginning as a fishing village known as Kampung Teruntum which evolved into a town during the tin mining era of the 19th century with the influx of Chinese and Indian immigrants. Kuantan became the state capital of Pahang in 1955 with the shift of the adminstration of the state government from Kuala Lipis.
The beaches along Kuantan are famous, especially Teluk Cempedak, although locals have their individual preferences for other beaches nearby. The city is also steeped in local culture and beautiful landmarks dot the cityscape. Kuantan's close proximity to several other famous tourist destinations, like the turtle sanctuary in Cherating, also adds to its appeal.
Although located on the less developed east coast of Peninsular Malaysia, Kuantan is highly accessible by road and air. There are recent plans for a rail service between Kuala Lumpur and Kuantan but currently there are no rail connections to Kuantan.
Bus services to most major cities in Malaysia are offered at Kuantan's main bus terminal, Makmur Bus Terminal Complex. The terminal is conveniently located opposite the state stadium, Stadium Darul Makmur, in the heart of Kuantan.
Air flights are facilitated by the Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah Airport, a simple airport located southwest of Kuantan. Malaysia Airlines flies from Kuala Lumpur while the budget carrier Firefly flies from Singapore. The airport also handles chartered flights from Taiwan.
Kuantan and its outlying areas offer many places of interest and unique attractions for visitors. The city itself has several famous landmarks, including the Tengku Mahkota Palace, Royal Pahang Gold Club, and the Botanical Gardens. Also look out for the Sultan Ahmad Shah State Mosque, a modern impressive mosque incorporating moorish designs, built in the 1990s.
Teluk Cempedak, just five kilometres from the city centre, is arguably the best choice for most visitors. The white sand and the lovely view from the bay, along with water sports, are some of this beach's main attractions. Other nearby beaches include Batu Hitam, Balok, Chenor and Pantai Sepat.
Besarah Fishing Village
Located on the outskirts of Kuantan, the serene atmosphere of this village belies its fame as a centre of traditional village life. In the evenings, fishermen return with their catch and traditional seafood delicacies produce here are well sought after by locals.
Sungai Lembing Museum
This interesting museum is situated in Sungai Lembing, once a famous and rich tin producing town just under an hour's drive from Kuantan. The museum focuses on tin mining and the influence it had over the state's development.
Kuantan is home to a number of handicraft centres that showcase traditional products like batik, songket and woodcarvings. Watch as these craftsmen use traditional techniques to produce stunning works of beauty.