Perhentian Dive Site - Scuba Diving Malaysia

Pulau Perhentian, Terengganu : Golden sandy beaches with shady coconut palms coastline stretches from the state of Kelantan through the state of Terengganu and Pahang and extends south to Johor. Thailand borders the East Coast towards the north. Being geographically cut off by the mountainous Main Range, the East Coast has retained its traditional customs, arts and crafts, coconut plantations and unique traditional houses. The unhurried pace of life makes it an ideal destination for a relaxing holiday far from the maddening crowd.

perhentian dive site Terengganu malaysiaTerengganu : Terengganu stretches along the east coast between Kelantan to the north and Pahang the south with a coastline of 225 kilometres. The beautiful golden sandy beaches along the coastline are also one of the very few nesting grounds of the Giant Leatherback Turtle (Dermochelys coriacea).

Diving The state of Terengganu is blessed with some of the most beautiful islands with the finest diving sites on the east coast. Pulau Perhentian is the northern most island followed by Pulau Lang Tengah, Pulau Redang, Pulau Bidong, Pulau Kapas and Pulau Tenggol towards the south. The healthy coral growth and abundant fish life owe their existence to the enforcement and conservation programs of the Department of Fisheries. Fringing reefs are a blend of hard corals species with patches of dendronephthya soft corals, whip corals and sponges growing on boulders. Seascape terrain is either gentle slopes or plunging granite boulders, with most dive sites accessible by boat. Currents around the reefs are usually manageable, with the submerged reefs washed by slightly stronger currents. Mooring buoys mark most popular dive sites around the Marine Park islands.

Pulau Perhentian : Pulau Perhentian group of islands comprises of Pulau Perhentian Besar, Pulau Perhentian Kecil, Pulau Rawa, Pulau Serenggeh, Pulau Susu Dara Besar and Pulau Susu Dara Kecil. These islands are located about 20 kilometres from the main land. 'Perhentian' when translated from the Malay language means stop over and the word 'Besar' means big while 'Kecil' means small. Dive operators and resorts are located on both Pulau Perhentian Besar and Pulau Perhentian Kecil offering various styles of accommodation to suit the visitor's budget and dive packages.

Tokong Laut : This rocky outcrop islet is situated on the northwest of Pulau Perhentian Kecil and is accessible by a 30 minutes speedboat ride. The boulder-like terrain gradually slopes down to about 30 metres. Strong to mild currents usually sweet the boulders bringing plankton-rich nutrients and attract anything from pelagics to the whale shark. You can easily cover the entire dive site without getting lost around the somewhat triangular boulder terrain. Soft corals in all colours and sizes carpet the seascape offering refuge for numerous small reef fish and mollusks. The presence of smaller reef animal attracts larger predators up the food chain. Jacks, barracudas, king fish, black tip sharks and nurse sharks are usually sighted.

North of Pulau Susu Dara Besar and Kecil : Facing the open sea front, hard and soft coral communities thrive on the rich nutrients from the sea. Soft corals are not as plentiful as Tokong Laut. However, the diving is interesting with good water clarity and abundant reef fish. Expect to see damsel fishers, wrasses, trigger fishes and a moray eel peeping out from its lair. You can dive close to the island and let the current take you along the reefs. The fringing reefs give way to sandy terrain at about 18 metres.

Terumbu Tiga : 'Terumbu Tiga' when translated from the Malay language means three coral blocks and is rated to be one of the top dive sites around Pulau Perhentian, together with Tokong Laut. Situated towards the east of Pulau Perhentian Besar, this dive site is usually washed by currents and makes an interesting drift dive. The boulder terrain slopes down to about 20 metres at the sandy bottom. Visibility fluctuates between 5 to 15 metres depending on the tidal changes. The granite boulders support various soft corals, sea fans and coral whips swaying with the current. Schools of fusiliers, rainbow runners, jacks and bat fishes swim about searching for a feed. Black tip sharks can occasionally be observed at the outer reaches of the reef.

Getting There You can either travel by road along the scenic coast to Kuala Besut or catch a domestic flight to either Kota Bharu (the capital of Kelantan) or Kuala Terengganu (the capital of Terengganu) and then by taxi or bus to Kuala Besut. Daily ferry departures from the jetty of Kuala Besut to Pulau Perhentian are available, usually from morning to noon.