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November 26, 2010

Hidden Gem of Penang Island - Pantai Kerachut (Part I)

The down to earth side of Penang Island. A hidden gem behind the vibrance of Georgetown. Pure sea, sand and sun. It's at the North-West Coast of Penang Island, overlooking Malacca Straits.

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In order to get there, this is where to begin. The jetty at Teluk Bahang. Nearby is the car park area for visitors. Park, pay and walk towards the Penang National Park entrance. For lazybones, you can choose to take a boat ride here instead of hiking through the jungle.

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Pantai Kerachut is actually just a part of the Penang National Park coverage area, there are A,B,C,D,E,F,G spots for stopovers if you really want to finish exploring the whole Penang National Park. See the trail guide, we're heading to F - Pantai Kerachut. And oh yea, did I mention there is also a turtle hatchery and sanctuary too? There's an icon right under the Pantai Kerachut picture! (getting excited.. I was there 10 years ago but there was no hatchery yet)

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Bought a ticket each and our journey began!

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Directions~ Kerachut Beach. The journey takes approximately 1hr 20minutes. Didn't snap much photos in the jungle as we have a 'professional' camera man assigned with the task.. (but I still haven't get any photos from him yet.. T__T)

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After 1hr plus we were finally crossing the bridge of Pantai Kerachut! Sandy beach here I come! It was already 5pm. We departed late because we planned to camp there.

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This is the Unique Lake.

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"This lake that you observe of this moment is known as meromictic lake. Do you know that in Malaysia, this kind of lake can only be found at Penang National Park? As a matter of fact, the lake is only available at 19 places around the world." (WoW!! I'm so proud to be a Penangite yea~)

What makes it so attractive and unique?
"Meromictic" reffers to the two layers of sea and river water which does not mix with each other. Fresh water is relatively lower in density as compared to the hypersaline sea water.

Can you guess which type of water occupies the upper layer?
This lake is covering an area of 2.77 km square with a maximum depth f 9 feet in full capacity, the lake can provide water to 2,5000 household for one year.

Have extracted the text as above in case you're not able to read properly the small fonts..

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A panoramic view of the beach.

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Like A Dam. The Meromictic Lake.

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"Local proverb says "Once there is a flood, the beach will change". It really explained the formation of this lake.

The natural process of inundating and drawing out water from this lake happen intermittenly. It can be witnessed in the months of April-May and October-November which is the transitional period between monsoon.

During these periods, huge waves and strong wind will move sand to form natural dam. Eventually, the lake will be filling with the sea and the river water that surround it

Similarly, the huge wave and strong wind can crush down the dam, and draw the water out of the lake. This phenomenon can take place several times within this transitional period

Only those lucky visitors may witness this unique event.

Obviously I was NOT the lucky one~ It's dry!!

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If you're a lucky visitor, you get to see this beautiful meromictic lake. I enjoyed soaking in it during my last visit (which was 10 years ago!), there were little fish and prawns you can find inside too. Just my luck~

Off to the campsite and setting up tents. I was lucky to have Scouts (and King Scout too) in my group. They did all the tough tasks, including carrying a 20kg backpack (charcoal, food, Bunsen burner, tents, etc...) all the way from the carpark! :P

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Not allowed to light a camp fire. Lights off after 12am. That's why most of us didn't sleep here but they slept on the jetty bridge after having enough game session at the jetty.

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Little creatures to watch out. I didn't get to spot any.

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Yippie! After 10 years I'm back to this beautiful seaside. Now there are even turtles here. Turtle hatchery in the next post. Stay tune.

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A tranquil seaside. Unlike the touristy spots. Man I love the seabreeze! This beach is less known by the foreigners, usually the foreigners go to Monkey Beach at the other side.

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Our Taiwanese friend. He loves it here.

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Colors in the sky when it's almost sunset. Reflections on the fireball on the sea, like a mirror, sparkling as diamonds in the water.

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No swimming here. There are more jellyfish than fish that I could find in the water. And they're super big size jellyfish.

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Mesmerizing at the jetty while waiting for my turn to shower. There are basic ameneties for campers at Pantai Kerachut, including shower (cold cold water!!) and small kitchen with basins and water supply. But taking a shower there is a terrible experience. Mosquitoes kept kissing my butt! Unless you leave the water running nonstop.

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Sunset view at the jetty. So beautiful.

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Printing my footsteps on the sand. (Since when have I such big feet??!)

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More magical moments of sunset.

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One limitation at Pantai Kerachut is you don't get to swim in the sea...

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We couldn't play with the jellyfish so we ran around and caught a crab!

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I think we scared it really bad. I was pointing on it with a torch... (I'm bad.. I'm bad..) Sorry crab.. but at least we didn't BBQ you.

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(...to be continued...)


i never knw penang got such place . thanks

Thank you for the intro, I like your post! I'll be sure to visit when I am at Penang.

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