Kuala Lumpur to Perhentian Islands

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A detailed step by step guide on how to get to the Perhentian Islands from Kuala Lumpur Airport. You will also know how to reach the Perhentian Islands from Singapore and Penang.

Where are the Perhentian islands!? This is what I thought when I saw a photo of the Perhentian Islands. It looked so beautiful and serene! I thought it must be somewhere in Thailand, Indonesia, or in the Philippines. All of my guesses were wrong. It was in Malaysia! The moment I saw a photo of the island, I decided to visit there. And my journey began…. It was not an easy one to get to the Perhentian Islands. First, I had to fly to Kuala Lumpur from Dhaka, where I live. It was about a 4 hours’ flight. Still, the way to the Perhentian Islands from Kuala Lumpur was long. Read further to know the step by step guide to get to the Perhentian islands from Kuala Lumpur.

Kuala Lumpur to Kota Bharu

From Kuala Lumpur, I took a flight to Kota Bharu. We landed after 1 hour. The official name of the airport is Sultan Ismail Petra Airport (IATA code KBR). The airport was a small one.

First step of Kuala Lumpur to Perhentian Islands is to reach Kota Bharu.
A glimpse of Kota Bharu Airport – Passengers are waiting for the flight

Kota Bharu to Kula Besut

Once I landed in Kota Bharu Airport, I was looking for transportation for going to Kuala Besut jetty. Fast boat runs to the island from that jetty.

I took a car (and managed some other co-passengers to go with me to share the cost) from the airport. It was a 56 KM ride. It took us 1 hour and 15 minutes to reach the jetty.

We were driving through Kota Bharu, the capital of Kelantan

Purchasing boat ticket from Kuala Besut jetty

From the jetty, we purchased a ticket for Fast Boat Service. It was an open-dated ticket. It means that you can ride on any day using this ticket.

Third step of Kuala Lumpur to Perhentian Islands is to buy a fast boat ticket in Kuala Besut.
Fast boat ticket to Perhentian Islands

The name of the jetty was Kuala Besut Jetty. Kuala Besut is a small town (Mukim in Malay) in Terengganu province, Malaysia. We learned that we have an hour in our hands before the boat starts. So, we decided to walk around a bit.

Welcome to Kuala Besut – that’s what written in Malay language

There are around 10 rides per day to the island. The jetty was neat and colorful. There were orange shades and pillars. People were selling souvenirs, toys, flags, and many other small things.

Entrance to the jetty

Kuala Besut to the Perhentian Islands

We waited on the jetty for a while and our boat came. It was about a 45 minutes’ ride until we saw a glimpse of land. The captain of the ferry was asking us where to drop. We did not have any idea about it (there are in fact two islands, Perhentian Kecil and Perhentian Besar). We choose one randomly.

Yes! That’s Perhentian islands!!

Unfortunately, we were not dropped to the island directly because our boat was unable to reach there. They moved us to a small boat that took us to the shore. We had to pay a little to the boatmen.

So, after taking two flights (one if you start from Kuala Lumpur), one car ride, one fast boat ride, and one small boat ride (for two minutes only), we reached the Perhentian Islands.

Wait! It was not so complex as it might sound to you. It was easy once we hit the road.

How to get to Perhentian Islands from Kuala Lumpur?

Time needed: 6 hours.

How to reach Perhentian islands?

  1. Fly to Kota Bharu from Kuala Lumpur

    Take a flight from Kuala Lumpur Airport to Kuta Bharu Airport (1 hour 10 minutes).

  2. Reaching Kuala Besut jetty from Kuta Bharu airport

    Take a car to Kuala Besut Jetty (1 hour 10 minutes).

  3. Waiting in Kula Besut

    Wait in the jetty or explore Kuala Besut (depends on your time of arrival) before your fast boat to the Perhentian islands arrives.

  4. Boat to Perhentian islands

    Take the fast ferry to Perhentian Islands from(50 minutes)

  5. Using a small boat

    The ferry might not drop you to the island, you need to take a small boat (less than 5 minutes).

Kuala Besut jetty to Kota Bharu by Bus

Note: On my way back from Perhentian Islands, I took a bus from the Kuala Besut jetty to reach to Kota Bharu bus station. We took a quick bite and took a taxi from there to reach the airport. It saved me quite a lot of money as the taxi from the jetty to the airport was expensive. If you have time in your hand, you can try taking the bus instead of the car.

We took a bus from the ferry jetty to the Kota Bharu town on our way back from the Perhentian Islands
Kuala Besut bus terminal

Are you planning for a trip to Pulau Perhentian?

Important facts about reaching the Perhentian Islands

How to get to Perhentian Islands from Singapore?

You will find many flights to Kuala Lumpur from Singapore. Once you are in Kuala Lumpur, follow the steps mentioned in this article.

What is the name of Perhentian Islands airport?

There is no airport in Perhentian islands. The nearest airport is in Kota Bharu.

How many flights do you have to Perhentian islands?

It’s zero as there is no airport in Perhentian islands.

Can I go from Penang to Perhentian Islands?

The distance between Penang to Kuala Besut jetty is 350 Kilometers. A van will take 6 hours to reach Kuala Besut. From there take the fast boat to Perhentian islands.

Must Read for Perhentian Islands

Where to stay in Perhentian Islands?

Things to Do in Perhentian Islands

Tips for Visiting Perhentian Islands

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