A genuine tropical paradise, Kapas Island lies on the East coast of Terengganu, a state in the North-East of Malaysia. The island derived its name from the Malay word "Kapas" which means "Cotton" due to its soft cotton-like sands.

White-sandy beaches stretching over a kilometre long, it is the less touristy version of its neighbours, Redang and Perhentian Island. For those who are looking for a relaxing and private getaway without compromising the crystal clear blue waters - signature of the Malaysian East Coast islands - Kapas Island is the way to go!

Kapas Island can be reached by taking a 20 minute ferry or speedboat from the Marang Jetty, costing about RM40.

Jeti Marang 2
Marang Jetty

Jeti Marang
The arabic writing above spells out the Malay writing below. This is the remnants of old Arabic influence in Malaysia, before the western world introduced Greek alphabets to Malaysia.

Accommodation options are plenty and caters to each visitor's need. From treehouse chalets embedded in the hills, to campsites for the more adventurous budget travelers, to modern chalets with karaoke bars and volleyball courts. Despite its small size, Kapas Island has it all.

Coming straight from a hectic one-week work trip in Terengganu, I was dying for some privacy and serenity. As our speedboat approached Kapas Island, I glimpsed the sight of treehouse chalets resting atop a hill and instinctively knew this is exactly what I needed. Qimi Chalet was perfectly integrated to the natural hilly landscape, spanning over an acre with its own private beach, a luxury other chalets can't afford.

Private beach of Qimi's Chalet

Treehouse chalets by the beachfront

View from my chalet balcony

Qimi Chalet is fully built, owned and managed by two Malay brothers. The brothers were both living the typical Kuala Lumpur city lifestyle for over 20 years before giving it all up to become men of the island. A story that sits close to me, perhaps because I someday aspire to leave the city life behind and return to a more natural living too…

One of the brothers taking us on an island hopping trip

The island's shallow beach stretches out far into the sea, sprinkled with coral reefs and adorned by sea creatures. There is no need to go far out into the sea for some coral sighting, simply snorkeling  or kayaking close to the shore is sufficient for such purposes. For the more adventurous, exploring the World War 2 Shipwreck about 5 nautical miles offshore is perhaps a more appealing option.

Crystal blue waters of Kapas Island

Breakfast by the bay


As you can probably already tell from the pictures, Kapas Island is a little sleepy island with limited nightlife options. So if a nightlife is what you seek, perhaps Kapas Island is not the ideal destination as it is more suitable for those seeking for peace and quiet. It is definitely my kind of tropical paradise ;)

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Amalina Davis

Amalina Davis

Malaysian by birth, English-Australian + Malay by heritage, and world citizen by heart. I’m a full-time corporate girl & social advocate, who still manages to fit in cultural-immersive traveling in her hectic life.

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