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Pulau Tioman


sunny 31 °C
View RTW Part 2 (Aus/New Z/Cook Islands ... home time) on RosiePony's travel map.

The journey here consisted of an 11.30pm night bus from KL that arrived in Mersing (coastal town where u get the ferry from) at 4.30am. I hazily bought an open return ticket (70RM £14) then the coach dropped us off at the ferry terminal. Waited til 7am for ferry then arrived to a rainy ABC resort on Tioman island. I am staying in a bungalow for 40RM (£8) a night which has a fan and is really close to the beach. Just to compare that to the mainland where a dorm room was 10RM a night! Its expensive, but it's nice and has a balcony. Its relaxed here and is hot, once the rain stopped. I am next door to B&Js diving so have arranged diving with them. In actual fact the next 2 days are international clean up day, so for a reduced rate, I get to do fun dives and clean up at the same time, so am looking forward to it! Hopefully get to meet some people too, since it is a bit quiet here at the moment, ESP since staying in private room.

Am actually quite homesick, but know this is down to a new environment and leaving some good friends back in KL. I think this is the hardest
bit about traveling. You make connections, which are amazing if you bump into those ppl again but otherwise just ends up being nice memories, but at the time you feel like you're breaking a link you've made with someone. It's sad so I try to not dwell in this, otherwise I'll be back home to the UK in a flash, and that's a cop out! I just need to weather this storm, and once I meet new ppl this feeling will lessen. So my plans are to stay here (ABC) for 4 days- dive sat, snorkel sun, hike to Salang Mon, then see if Salang is worth staying there, in which case I will take a river taxi to Salang and hope my open return is still valid from there...

Currently I am having apprehensions about Borneo, and I think it's down to this homesickness and the fact that I love mainland peninsular, BUT I think I just have to bite the bullet and go, I know it's gonna be beautiful scenery and activities, then I meet up with a mate from home, here on out known as Whiteley, around mid Oct. Which by the time I will be in Borneo I think is less than 3 weeks. So am thinking about things in small stages...! One day at a time! Speaking of which I'm off to find some Internet or a bar or something for entertainment, it's 8.30 and I have an early start tomo...

Laters x x

Well, Tioman has improved. I'm sat in Johan restaurant trying to ignore the flys that land on me every few seconds. I've just had an amazin lunch, a claypot filled with lovely spicy noodles...As u know, fri I was feeling a bit down, but sat was dive day. I joined a cleanup group, part of project aware, to try and remove as many star fish (crown of thornes) from the reef as possible. I did three dives all varying in depth and I spotted a turtle!! My first ever one :D I was so happy. I saw loadsa different fish too some of which I can't remember or name... But they were cool. I can't wait to go again- I knew this would happen, I'd get the bug again and spend all my money on diving! After an included lunch on board, we finished the day with a BBQ on nearby Salang beach. It is a beautiful place but more in a small bay compared to ABC where I'm staying which is a longer stretch of coastline. It is pretty there and busier but I kinda like ABC now... There are reefs off ABC beach so I am going to go snorkeling today! Then diving again tomo...!

Yesterday I went on a hike across the island to Juara, which I did with 2 other ppl, an American guy called Daniel and a Dutch girl called Linda, both 28 but by no means like me :( I met them diving and do get on with them but conversation seems forced, I think they are quite content being alone whereas I am a people person and thrive in company. Anyway the hike was more like concrete steps (am I ever going to get away from steps???!!! I blame China!) with jungle either side. I found it hard due to the fast pace set by Linda, her motto- the faster we get there the better, compared to my motto- enjoy your surroundings whilst getting there...I hadn't slept well the night before, prob knowing I had to get up early! So was feeling v tired.

It took us 2.5 hrs to get from Tekek (next town down, 20/30 min walk) to Juara. On the way we found a small waterfall so went for a swim to cool down in the water. There were some small fishes in there too! So glad to have done it, probably something I wouldn't normally do...it was lovely to be surrounded by nature with sunlight glinting through the trees to the water and listening to the fall of water behind you as you swam in the cold water. Then warming up on the rocks whilst orange butterfly flutter around you- one landed on my foot to warm up in the sun.

I survived the trek over to the other side, despite arriving covered in sweat (I was dripping) with red faces...approahing the main road we arrived to an Open house in Juara where the whole town had turned out to eat together in celebration of the Turtle sanctury that is there- I wanted to visit the but the 15 min walk was actually 45 mins once I'd checked with the locals... So after an amazing free community lunch of coconut rice, beef curry, sticky rice, spicy beef, soup, orange, Ribena, water an watermelon plus other deserts, I went swimming in the sea.
Daniel, Linda and I shared a taxi back to the top of the hill on the way home, where the jungle walk back restarted and this time it took 5mins to get back to Tekek!! We were powering it home so we didn't get caught by the dark. I was so tired after dinner (chicken burger and chips! You may scoff at home but seriously made me feel good) that I went straight to sleep, after a few chores. So now I need to find somewhere to do my laundry and hire some snorkels for the afternoon...tata for now (about 1.30pm)

Now it's early eve (5.44pm) and I've been snorkeling. Surprise surprise there is still some sea left, despite my attempt at swallowing it! I tell you, diving is so much easier. But I have to say I SAW A TURTLE!!!!!! I was looking out for sharks (reef sharks are present here but prob not so likely along the shore front) and saw parrot fish, damsel fish, pink anemone fish (finding nemo style) as well as sgt mjr fish etc with a few cleaner wrasse when I was trying to find my entry point to the sea (the shore is covered with stones and old reef at the section I'm staying on) - and I wasn't far off- when I spotted a turtle! Just hovering about 1.5 meters in front of me!! I had my underwater camera with me and was like 'OMG!!!' snap snap snap snap snap etc... I swam with it for a few mins watching it surface (this is when I got a mouthful of water and choked) then saw it swim down and get nibbled at by small fishes. It had algae growing on it which surprised me, but I guess is normal in the sea?! It had the most beautiful big black eyes and it watched me for a while before swimming away. I didn't want to loose my bearings so headed home happy! So that's a turtle a day since diving! Hopefully more tomo...

Posted by RosiePony 04:24 Archived in Malaysia Tagged backpacking

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The photos are stunning - the beaches look idyllic. Not sure about the cats and snakes though! Do the turtles remind you of Topsy in a different sort of way?

by June

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