There is more to Pangkor Island than just the fishing village famous for its delicious and succulent shrimp.
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Just 40 minutes away from the town of Lumut is Pangkor Island, one of the many famous tourist destinations in Malaysia. Don't be surprised to see many fishing boats at the docks as the ferry reaches the island's jetty. Though it is home to a few high end hotels, Pangkor Island is, at the heart of it all, still a fishing village. Here, one can observe the simple life of local fishermen as they head out to the sea to bring in their catch for the day. Even today, there are many of the residents in Pangkor Island who are still making a living from the sea.
Arguably, one of the best ways to tour the island is by renting a bicycle. Visitors can also rent mini vans or even motorbikes to go around the island. There's plenty to see and do on Pangkor Island if sunbathing is not your cup of tea. For the fishing enthusiasts, trips can be arranged to visit Pulau Sembilan, an uninhabited group of islands for some serious fishing. The journey to Pulau Sembilan takes approximately 40 minutes by speedboat. Canoes are also available for hire as well as jet skis. Certain parts of Pangkor Island and the other smaller islands host beautiful corals and reef life.
The founders of a local temple, Foo Lin Kong Temple, not only wanted to build a temple for the populace, but were also inspired by the desire to bring one of the world's seven wonders to Malaysia. Consequently, a mini version of the Great Wall of China can be found here within the grounds. This temple, built at the foot of Pangkor Hill, has a nice garden and a few fish and turtle ponds. There are also figures of the 12 animals from the Chinese zodiac and other mythical animals around the park, which make it an ideal location for some interesting photography.
Another one of the many interesting attractions on the island is the Dutch Fort, located south of Pangkor town at Teluk Gedung. Also known as Kota Belanda to the locals, this 300 year old fort was built by the Dutch in 1650 for storage and protection of its tin supplies from the sultanate of Perak. The locals were displeased with the methods employed by the Dutch and launched numerous attacks on the fort. Undeterred, the Dutch came back to the island in 1670, wanting to rebuild their fort and seek compensation for damages done. Unfortunately for them, their presence were never accepted by the locals and one last mounted attack in 1685 not only forced them to close down their headquarters permanently but also drove them away. Today, thanks to the efforts contributed by Malaysia's Museum Department who reconstructed the fort in 1973, visitors to the island can see and explore for themselves this relic from the past.
Public ferry service is available from the jetty at Lumut to the Pangkor Village Jetty. There are departures leaving the jetty from Lumut every half hour, the earliest ferry departing at 6.45am. The journey is approximately 40 minutes.