Saturday, 1 January 2022

My Guests of Pandemic 2020-2021

With gratitude and appreciation to my guests who came with me and some return for the beauty of nature in Langkawi amidst the pandemic. Not forgetting the ones who recommended me to their friends and families to experience our nature with me. Thank you.

My guests to Langkawi who booked the private tours with me

Part of the reason that I am still here on the island is because of you who had chosen me as your guide and your continuous support during these two years. There are some of you that I didn't photograph but I know who you are. Big THANK YOU.

I look forward to the burst of this Travel Bubble soon so my guests abroad can return independently. 

Happy New Year 2022 and may your heart desires be manifested.

Sunday, 22 August 2021

Time For the Outdoors After 3 Long Months!

This is good news to all my outdoor friends and especially for me to start with. 

From 20th August 2021 onwards, the PM has announced that non contact sports and recreational activities are now allowed  in Phase 1 states. These activities are birdwatching, hiking, cycling, walk or picnic at the park and camping. Provided these conditions are met:
1. Entering recreational parks are for fully vaccinated individuals. You may need to flash digital vaccination cert via your MySejahtera app. The opening of the park is subject to the State's decision.

2. Strict SOP must be followed when entering the park eg. wearing face mask and social distancing.

3. Non-group activities only. The activities apply to individuals or own family.

Since Langkawi is under the state of Kedah which is still in Phase 1 stage of our National Recovery Plan (NCR). You may click on this link here to obtain the updated status of our NCR.

Tourism activities are currently allowed for Phase 2 states, therefore, Langkawi will have to wait for the actual reopening date or probably in early September 2021. The government is looking at turning Langkawi into a pilot project for tourism bubble before reopening the country. Refer here for details

Travelling and holidaying in Langkawi is only applicable to those who are fully vaccinated. This is the current passport for those who wish to travel.  

Here are the privileges for those who are fully vaccinated: 

1. Dine-ins
2. No more 10km travel restrictions

Here is my bike on 22nd May 2021 and will need some warming up before heading for longer distance (I meant the owner needs warming up).

Cycling thru Langkawi paddyfield


It has been 3 months of full lockdown, the longest and very enduring. My fitness is currently  away and need to call it back, turning fat into fit again. I had been cycling around my residential neighborhood like those old uncles during the full lockdown and birdwatching at my front gate where my cherry tree is. I have been good, adhering to the full lockdown SOP.

With the ease of restriction, it is indeed we have some freedom back yet we must be vigilant as the daily cases in Malaysia is still high. Follow all SOP strictly and avoid crowded places.

Daily cases for Langkawi on 22nd August 2021:

Langkawi Covid 22 aug 2021 75
New Covid cases for Langkawi on 22 August 2021


Current cases for Malaysia on 22 August 2021


Links:

1. National Recovery Plan

2. Langkawi to be pilot project for tourism bubble

3. Resort islands may reopen in early September 2021

4. Ease of restrictions for Phase 1


Tuesday, 30 March 2021

Annual SandBar Walk At Tanjung Rhu, Langkawi

 

This is an event that I looked forward to every year and it is the famous sandbar walk at Tanjung Rhu, Langkawi. This sort of extreme low tide doesn't happen often and the season is during the peak of our dry season or North-East monsoon. The best period in my opinion, is during the spring tide from February till late-March. It is usually at the very early of the morning. Word of caution: Beware of the tide rising up quickly! Check the tide chart before heading out.

 

Dawn is breaking at Tanjung Rhu with Ms Gorilla Peak standing tall


During this time, it is fun to observe, photograph or even learn about our the marine diversity in that area. When the tide is low enough to walk to the island, you may find different varieties of corals on the fringe. Do not step on the corals!

It is common to see our locals heading out to find clams, crabs and shellfish for their own consumption. Each year, same spot and yet different wild marine species can be seen. For this year 2021, my friends spotted an octopus and Peacock sole fishes which were new sightings to me. 


  
A species of Peacock Sole Fish very well camouflaged and yet spotted by the Fiona and her friends!
Photo credit: Tisu Ying

Other sand dwellers :
I find this shot rather captivating. You know what sort of marine species this is. Lovely shot by Tisu Ying. Thanks for sharing this image.

You know what this is!

A rather bizarre creature which is a family of heart urchins call Lovenia Heart Urchin Lovenia elongata

I always like to do this walk at least once a year except for year 2019 after what I had seen that has put me off and pissed me off too. In year 2018, there were some tourists on that particular morning carrying plastic bags to the sandbar putting in whatever living marine creatures that they find fancy which includes any sizes of crabs, starfishes, sea urchins and even a sea horse! See photos below:
Flashback from 2018: A tourist with plastic bag

Flashback 2018: Tourists with plastic bag

I won't name where these tourists are from. There were individuals, groups of friends and families carrying plastic bags walking around. I love to see their keenness in exploring nature but I was furious with them taking mini crabs and starfishes. I was not enjoying my walk on that morning because I ended up going around to those that I can reach out to and attempted with my non-English language to let them know that they need to release those marine creatures back into the sea. Most of them didn't understand me and some ignored me because I am suck at their language. Those sea stars will eventually die after plucking them out of the water.
 
And so for this season and the previous one, these mini marine creatures had a higher chance of survival due to non-mass tourism. The Covid-19 situation is indeed doing a lot of good deeds for our nature and biodiversity, in a way. 
 
To all tourists visiting the sandbar. Please be reminded that even though the nature is here for us to enjoy, do respect them. Take nothing but photographs, leave nothing but footprints!
Take nothing but photos! I guess the octopus didn't quite mind to be surrounded by the ladies - Tisu, Fiona and her friends.


Photo bomb by our shadows