Saturday 23rd August 2008 saw an International mix of ELS students from the Petaling Jaya Centre jet set off on a luxury air conditioned bus to Pangkor Island. Our first stop was “breakfast” at a place where authentic Malay food was on offer in the traditional Mamak style. Stomachs full and supplies restocked, off we went again to continue our journey to catch the ferry. Onboard entertainment was aplenty with a choice of DVD movies and bursts of song from the students. There was no shortage of entertainment for both teachers and students alike.
A sleepy ferry terminal was forced into life with the arrival of our bus laden with students and as we waited to board the ferry, students and teachers enjoyed the blissful scenery surrounding the terminal. Excitement was abuzz as our expectations escalated for what may be waiting for us on the other side of the Island.
It wasn’t long before we were immersed in the ferry experience and were scooting along the waters off to Pangkor Island. In no time at all we were disembarking the ferry and collected by the “pink” taxi vans to escort us to our Island palaces! After a short briefing upon arrival at our “resort” students and teachers enjoyed a buffet style lunch.
Time for some fun in the sun, we all headed down to the beach where the beautiful sand and warm water greeted us. There was an array of activities to keep us occupied, volleyball to kick off with, which contained mixed teams of teachers and students. Next on the agenda was the sack race, which teachers quite cleverly escaped participating in somehow by keeping busy with their “cameras” to capture the moment! The tug of war event was to blame for the aching muscles the next day.
For the water babies, the “banana” boat was a hit! Zooming off around the water, it filled students with thrills and excitement. Most teachers and some students opted for a more serene tour of the island via a “normal” boat. This was an incredibly enjoyable ride as we were shown a rock in the silhouette of a whale, the view of the island from the distance was like a postcard. A short stop was made as we passed by a group of snorkellers exploring a hidden cove.
As the sun went down, waterlogged and sun drenched students and teachers headed back to take showers and prepare for the barbeque dinner. After dinner everyone enjoyed an evening stroll around Pangkor Island and some even managed to do a little bit of shopping at the night markets, specializing in handicrafts, clothes and souvenirs which lined the main street. Karaoke, which showcased hidden talents from both the teachers and the students, topped off the night.
The next morning greeted the students with the option of an early morning swim or a “sleep in”, most opted for the sleep in while a few students enjoyed the fresh morning sea air and exotic birds. Hungry tummies were what ended the swim as students made their way back to the resort where breakfast awaited.
Finally, bags and packs were loaded into our “pink” taxi vans and we all headed off in convoy for a tour of the island in the comfort of the most welcome air conditioned transport. The first stop was the fish factory. Here you could shop till you drop with all the locally made specialty fish products. Our vans took off to our next destination which was a Buddhist temple that featured a mini version of the Great Wall of China. After exploring the beautiful landscape and pond we headed off to a Dutch Memorial site, which ended our tour of the Island.
The ferry ride back seemed to take no time at all. Lunch at KFC was the next feature before embarking on the bus ride back home. The subject of conversation during the bus ride home was that there was not enough time to really do everything we wanted to do. There were so many things to see and do!
Upon return home, there was talk of students coming back on a Friday and spending the entire weekend to continue the discovery of all that Pangkor Island has to offer.