When it comes to island getaways we all know the usual suspects. In a world full of Jamaica, Bali, Fiji and Phuket daydreams, it's easy to forget that there are other amazing islands to see. One such gem is a little idyllic paradise just a short flight from Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia. Langkawi island is often overshadowed by its more popular neighbors, but that's all about to change. If you're looking for a way to escape the crowds and go against the norm on your next beach adventure, Langkawi's got what you need and trust me, it will not disappoint.
It's the next baecation hotspot
While most people who visit Malaysia tend to escape the city with a side trip to Penang Island for a romantic interlude, Langkawi is slowly coming for the crown. If you're looking for a hideaway built for two on the island, look no further than The St. Regis Langkawi. The resort is built for IG worthy #baecationgoals with complimentary Bentley airport transfers, pool suites with direct beach access, overwater villas, heavenly treatments for couples at Iridium Spa, a decanter room filled with all the wine and champagne your heart desires, culinary delights and sunset facing overwater hammocks at Kayu Puti, a top-notch staff that will feel more like family with each passing day and more. Oh, and did I mention you also get your very own butler?
Langkawi is full of adventure
Sure you can fly 24-hours to get to Phuket, Bali or the Maldives, but why would you when Langkawi offers everything they do and more? Charter a yacht or sailboat to enjoy isolated islands, go fishing, snorkeling, diving, kayaking, take a sunset cruise or helicopter tour, head to Underwater World Langkawi, home to more than 5,000 aquatic species, learn how to plant rice in a lush paddy field or feed elephants, ride ATVs and become part of 3-D art at Oriental Village. If you're really adventurous, go zip lining through Langkawi's jungle with Umgawa Langkawi or ride the country's steepest cable car high above the trees to the famous Sky Bridge (The Longest Free Span and Curved Bridge In The World) and take selfies with a few of Thailand's remote islands in the background.
It's a 2 for 1 trip
While a trip to Langkawi is its own getaway, it's best when tacked on to a jaunt in Kuala Lumpur. The Malaysian capital is bustling just like any other major city, so after dropping your bags off at The St. Regis Kuala Lumpur, or The Face Suites for the budget conscious (the views here are a moment), and doing things like haggling in markets, playing in glass boxes or staring in awe at the Petronas Towers, you can catch a quick (And cheap, I paid less than $30 each way!) 45-minute flight to Langkawi to wind down and get your relaxation on. It's like getting two different trips for the price of one.
The people have a story to tell
One of the best reasons to go to Langkawi is for the people. They aren't jaded by the hectic city life in Kuala Lumpur (How can you be when you live in an untouched paradise?!), so they are just some of the friendliest people you will ever meet. Everyone I met had a fascinating story behind their smiles. Whether it was the hotel staff member who loves to impersonate Elvis in his spare time or the tour guide who used to be a Muay Thai fighter, you learned something special about everyone you encountered. They reminded me of the unique characters I meet traveling the Caribbean. It all added to the magic that is Langkawi, and it'll be the reason why you visit over and over again.