The hotels on Rawa, an island that’s a 45-minute boat ride from Mersing, Malaysia, did not make it on Concierge.com’s list of the “World’s Sexiest Beach Hotels.” No matter. Rawa is an easy-going, wonderful and budget-friendly getaway–with or without romance.
When I went to Rawa, I found rustic relaxation and a bit of excitment in a two-person kayak. My husband and I went there with a few friends for a weekend of R&R when we lived in Singapore.
Located in the Seribuat Archipelago in the South China Sea, this small, private island boasts two hotels. We stayed in one of the 2-person huts at the former Le Club Rawa, now called Alang’s Rawa.
This lodging only has nine cottages, each with private baths. The showers have saline water that only runs cold, thus one reason why this place may not be deemed as one of the most sexy. Still, there is a charming quality of the thatched roof, wood plank buildings that evokes a Robinson Crusoe kind of feel. Happily, Le Club Rawa’s version of this adventurer story includes breakfast. The resort also serves lunch, dinner and snacks and its Saturday night barbecue is a feast.
While we were there, my husband and I rented a two-person kayak to paddle around the small island. On the other side from the hotels, there are sheer, craggy cliffs without any place to land. Since my husband is not one of the most diminuative fellows, he wasn’t able to fit inside the kayak, but perched on top of his end of it with his legs danging over the sides.
Part of the beauty of places like Malaysia is that no one says, “If you can’t fit, you can’t go.” Adventure can be had in many sizes. Although, when we bobbled up and down in the waves, looking at the sheer cliffs, knowing that the only way back to land was to keep going around the island, we recognized the folly. This kayak trip was to be one of those once-in-a-lifetime experiences.
Rawa, though, would be worth repeating. Here’s where you bring a good book and beachwear for kicking back and letting the rest of the world take care of itself while you unplug. There aren’t roads, WiFi, or TV. Plus, the white sand beach, lush tropical foliage and aquamarine water is gorgeous.
If staying at a more upscale place is to your liking, this small island has another resort. Rawa Safaris has 67 units that range from beach front cottages on stilts to similar accomodations close to the hill. This resort also has a dining room and a bar.
During a Rawa stay, along with kayaking, you can windsurf, snorkel and take an island-hopping cruise or fishing trip.
Getting to Rawa involves hooking up with a boat from Mersing. When boats go can depend upon the tide. For detailed information about how to make the trip, check out this page at Rawa Island, Rawa Safaris’ website. The page contains other useful travel tips as well. Rawa Safaris can book boat transportation from Mersing.
MYOUTDOOR.COM SDN BHD
15-01, Jalan Padi Emas 3/1,
Bandar Baru UDA,
81200 Johor Bahru Johor.
Tel: +607-235 1216
Alang’s Rawa Contact:
Tel: +6012-3435309; or +6017-7906076
Alang’s Rawa will also help arrange transportation.
- Marijn de Vries Hoogerwerff
- Marijn de Vries Hoogerwerff (Rawa Safaris is on the left side of the photo)