Why Perhentian Island is Better Than Bali, Lombok, Krabi and maybe Melbourne Great Ocean Road.

YES IT IS.

Ok, maybe I’m being a bit biased hear but here me out.

perhentian-island-04

The past week I finally got a chance to visit Perhentian Island after all these years (I wanted to go there since 2003). I love beach. The sand slipping through my fingers, the fierce waters and that annoying pebble stuck in between your feet and sandals. I don’t care. I love it.

perhentian-island-02

Over the past few years I went on many adventures. Melbourne Great Ocean Road (2011), Krabi (2013), Bali (2015), Lombok (2016). They were all awesome, but when I reached Perhentian Island, I can’t begin to compare with others. I effing LOVE IT!

Clean Beach

Undoubtedly, Melbourne would be the cleanest, followed by Perhentian then Krabi. Indonesia beach are pretty, but whereever you sit, you might end up sitting on empty cans, plastic wrapper, satay sticks, stuff like that. Even on deserted beach like Mawun Beach, I got trapped with rubbish.

Perhentian was cleaner. They had some rubbish on the beach but it was tolerable.

perhentian-island-05

So worth the trip with @aisyahrozi at the Twelve Apostle along Great Ocean Road.

A post shared by the Real Edwin (@noktahhitam) on

Melbourne Great Ocean Road. The water was damn cold, but very blue and clean.

Clear Blue Water

Perhentian is the best. At neck deep I could see my own feet! Just like in swimming pool. Having said that, other beach had clear blue water as well but sometimes can be murky or tasted like oil spill.

perhentian-island-13

I had the opportunity to dive with the turtle. We’re not allowed to touch nor feed the wild turtle.

Subtle Waves

Perhentian waves were very forgiving. My 1 year old kid had no problem standing on the beach as the waves ripple down the shore. Melbourne and Bali would be the toughest to swim against. But it’s definitely great for surfing (which I do enjoy).

perhentian-island-14

This is Redang Island. It’s much more commercialized compared to Perhentian.

Beautiful Coral

If you’re like me, loves to snorkel but hates scuba diving, then this is the place. Anywhere I swam, I could see beautiful live coral. They can be a little sharp, you just have to be careful. Corals break under harsh waves, frequent rain storm and too many boats. As a result, they were washed to the shores which made the beach floor really sharp.

perhentian-island-08

These were extremely sharp.

perhentian-island-15

This wasn’t far from the shore, with enough sunlight, you can see the floor of the ocean.

White Beach Sand

I’m a sucker for beach sand. The place we stayed at Perhentian Teluk Dalam had the nicest sand. It was silky and white.

perhentian-island-16

Family Friendly

Ok, this is a bit subjective, depending which part of island you stay. Personally, I prefer a beach where people don’t show too much of their skin. Whilst it can be a pretty sight, but 99.9% isn’t. So I’d prefer my odds of not seeing at all.

perhentian-island-11

Island life and booze. I was told they go hand in hand. But if you have to get drunk to enjoy the beach, then that’s pretty stupid. Fortunately, Malaysia doesn’t allow open air drinking. When drinking is prohibited, night life activities and loud lousy techno music are not present.

I truly enjoyed my sleep. On both days there, I slept at 11pm and woke up at 5.30 am (which is very rare). I had a solid sleep.

anigif4

Enjoy some timelapse of breaking dawn in Perhentian.

Full of Activities

The best activity is island hopping (besides chilling by the beach). We went to other side of Perhentian Island, Redang Island and Marine Park. The boat ride can be really long (almost 2 hours to Redang). Redang had amazingly clean beach and water. Marine park had tonnes of fishes and corals.

perhentian-island-07

perhentian-island-06

Budget Friendly

The cost per person for this trip was RM 550 (something like that). This includes lodging, boat fares, marine park entrance fee, bus trip (from Shah Alam to Kuala Besut Jetty) and full board (all the meals). The food on the Island was slightly expensive, but wasn’t far any 7E prices.

Comparing going on overseas trip, this is the cheapest option for us.

perhentian-island-03

Where It Fall Short

1, The food! Perhentian food wasn’t bad, it was edible but just not that good. Every beach destination we went focused on their own cuisine, while Perhentian was trying to accomodate the tourist tongue. They should have featured their own cuisine like nasi kerabu, nasi dagang, keropok lekor and other delicious local delights.

Food is where it can seal the deal.

They didn’t have to attempt western food if they didn’t know what sear and medium well is. The island had abundant fresh fish, they should go with that. It would’ve been unique, fresh and awesome.

Top: Furuma, prawn and squid 300k Rp. (RM100) Bottom: Pantai Nipah, Prawn, Squid and Kerapu 170k Rp. (RM 55)

A post shared by the Real Edwin (@noktahhitam) on

Great food at Lombok. Truly amazing and authentic. Perhentian should do the same too.

2, Transportation.Getting there isn’t easy for foreigners. The nearest international airport (if you’re from outside Malaysia) is KLIA, and the closest local airport is Kota Bahru (KBR). KLIA to Kuala Besut (the jetty) is about 8 hours bus ride. While KBR to jetty about 1 hour drive. If only they upgraded the KBR airport, trip can reduced the time of travelling.

3, Mobile Data. On this side of island, there was no signal. In a way, it’s pretty good but bad for some. Good that I don’t spend anytime playing with the phone, bad is when I don’t know what’s up with the world (little things to worry about).

Summary

In short, I would definitely revisit this treasure island and spend the entire week not doing anything but dip in the waters. The cost is minimal going between island to island. The locals were very helpful and friendly. Though we converse in Malay, most know how to speak English (a little bit). However, if you come here for food, get ready to be disappointed.

ps: This post is for Traveloka Blog Contest. Get great deals at the website https://www.traveloka.com/en-my

pss: Images are taken from Video footage. Sorry if it’s not really in focus like how it should be. For vlogs, you can visit my youtube channel

The Amazing Spiderman 2 Review (No Spoilers)

I am a sucker for super heroes movies, I guess most boys are. The new Amazing Spiderman 2 landed on a perfect day, labor day.

amazing-spiderman2

We watched ours at MBO Subang Parade. Normally we could just walk in and get good seats, anytime anywhere any movie. That was the beauty of MBO. Since they  changed their logo, website and cinema experience, they start to pull in more traffic. I remember those days it only cost RM 8 for MBO (vs TGV at RM 11), now it’s RM 14 for box office movies. The seats were nice and roomie, but since we had to accomodate Sara, we got the couples seat, RM 30 for a pair.

Spiderman – Andrew Garfield version is a lot better than Tobey Maguire’s version. The effects were nicer, scripts were relevant, the setting and the casting was near perfect. Both Emma and Andrew played their roles really well. There was 2-3 moments that really struck me, I could feel dust in my eyes. Having real life couple on set makes a lot of difference.

There were a few people commented on my Facebook Timeline saying it was boring since a lot of talking involved, personally it stroke the perfect balance between action, comedy, drama and romance. I strangely wanted to see more of drama and romance instead of the actions. I bet the kids wants nothing but actions all the way.

They wanted to portray that even though he is invincible physically, he was emotionally frail. Much like my tagline, “even heroes have the right to weep” and this spidey did just that. The emotional tension and asking himself why do this, should be set as precedence to our daily life. It does echo really well in this movie, especially towards he end.

Everyone is a hero, so let’s act like one.

ps: Sara had her first movie today!

I Never Thought Jungle Trekking Was Hard, Until I Tried SkyTrex

I am big fan of outdoor activity, jungle trekking is nothing more than a stroll in park for me. #SkyTrex hit me, how hard can it be? It turns out, it was really hard.

Few months back I PM-ed Azlan, the marketing manager for SkyTrex and asked him to accommodate bloggers. In return we will blog about SkyTrex. So he agreed to give SalamMedia (my marketing startup) some free passes to the Extreme challenge, the most difficult route. I did call in last minute to downgrade to Big Thrill, but Azlan insist we have ‘fun’. His definition of fun is definitely messed up.

Here’s some pictures of the awesome activity.

IMG_2699

Safety first! The harness does hold up the sack really well.

IMG_2718

I went first. Flying fox looked easy, yeah because this is the practice version.

IMG_2729

There’s a limit to number of people per platform. 1 monkey per tree.

IMG_2734

This is about 20m from the ground and we had to climb that!

IMG_2742

Flying into nothingness. I did imagine what if I stopped half way. That’s my fault for having a fat lazy bum. Thankfully it was one of the most memorable flying fox I have ever done in life.

IMG_2743

or what if I missed the platform, slipped and fell?  I can feel the movement in my bladder when I saw this picture taken by Abdus

IMG_2754

One of my favorite route, I call this the hammock. Reminds me of Sara’s baby hammock.

IMG_2763

Monkey bar, only for the weak. I took the easier route, glide on the ropes. Haha

IMG_2764

This V shaped string requires a lot of balancing. I did mess this up while trying to do too much in a single leap. I ended up almost loosing my head when the rope strangled my neck. Thankfully a hero doesn’t give up easily. I pulled myself up and retraced the step. For the moment, it did feel like defusing a timed bomb.

IMG_2774

Ammar decided to sleep, programmers sleeps at dawn. Can’t blame him for being sleepy all the time, their sleeping habits is all over the place!

P1050195

This was the easiest, if you know your way around the ropes. Noticed one glove? Yeah, I dropped one while trying to fart.

P1050212

The pulley is made in France, land of Peugeot and Zidane, it’s very sturdy for flying fox. The carabiner is also solid.

P1050215P1050202

Some camwhoring with ‘le wife.

P1050218

Every time I took a challenge, I enjoyed the scenery. It was breathtaking and downright beautiful. The guys at SkyTrex really planned the route well.

P1050225

Aisyah nearing the finishing line. I was a bit sad to see end. I really wanted another hour.

P1050235

The monkey swing was the last challenge and it almost broke my back!

IMG_2800

They even provided a hashtag for SkyTrex.

If there’s one complain from me is the plastic pipes which are being used extensively in the challenge. I guess because it’s cheap and strong hence the extensive iterations of it. Those pipes are slippery and sometimes too big to hold. It does require and additional effort just to grip it properly. Despite that, I am still giving SkyTrex a 5 star.

The SkyTrex Brochures

Conclusion

Overall, SkyTrex nothing but awesome. I could feel my adrenaline rushing up and down my veins while writing this blog post though it happened sometime last March. The greenery was perfect, the staff were really helpful and playful, which was good. They gave moral support and never wanted us to quit half way (but some participant did, age is really a factor).

My best recollection of #SkyTrex was the flying fox. It was the only avenue for me to be lazy, to enjoy the scene and for the first time, it felt like I kicked my acrophobia in the nuts that day (fear of height). I walked out a taller person, knowing that I’ve conquered my fear. If there was a stress meter, I’m sure it was down to zero.

Who is this for? Young executive, students, family, couples, Ranjits, Kumars, Chins, Alis or whoever wants quick escape, nerve wrecking, eyes squirming, lose bladder control or scream your lungs out, this my friend is for you. My advise, do wear long pants to avoid blister, bring your own gloves for better grip, and seriously, take your time doing the challenge, enjoy the scenery and don’t focus on completing it soonest.

If you want more information, check out the official site.

I Wish I Knew the Price of Kawasaki ER6N Tyre Before Owning One

Before I bought my Kawasaki ER6N (nick name “Mutu”), I never bothered about the total cost of ownership of the bike. I did ask around, mostly responded it would cost as much as maintaining a car, I told myself I can live with that, I was wrong.

tyre-tayar-er6n-a

The tyre that came with the bike is worn out. I can feel it twitching when I try to give it a little torque. On dry days, riding to and from office is easy. It got worst when it rains. Pakcik going to mosque laps quicker than Mutu.

I deliberately delay the change because a MICHELIN PILOT ROAD 2 set of wheel costs RM980. Yes, That’s enough to change all 4 tyres on Jenny (my Gen2). But that’s not all, through wear and tear, a car tyre can potentially last 2-3 years, motorcycle tyre last about a year. Mutu is about 15,000km (not really far).

1974384_264324083741993_1821625711_o

MICHELIN PILOT ROAD 2 – ER6N size is front: 120/60/17 and rear tyre: 160/60/17

Why is it expensive? Well, a motorcycle tyre is made of 3 to 5 compound, soft-medium-hard. Soft gives you grip but wears out quickly. Hard gives you the endurance but lacks the grip. Mixing this compound is only natural. Normally, hard is place in the center and softer by the side. The shape of the thread also plays an important role for wet or dry.

I did search at Mudah.my just to familiarize with other options. Due to the nature of Mudah, some tyre are not longer displayed. So I Googled, it was very specific, thus making it harder to find. To be honest, I didn’t know what exactly to find, I just keyed in “Tayar ER6N”, a lot of links selling the bike instead of the tyre. I also didn’t know the size of my tyre nor the brand (I couldn’t see on Mutu’s tyre). So I went to Facebook and found a nearby shop.

(Note: for brick and mortar shops, it is really important to have Facebook page or Mudah Niaga.)

Screen Shot 2014-04-12 at 10.51.44 PM

I went there with my car for two reasons, 1. I didn’t want to be conned/pushed to purchase. 2. I wanted to see how they treated the bike and customer. The staff was really helpful, explaining stuff I didn’t even consider. I got the price for MICHELIN PILOT ROAD 2 brand new for RM950 after bargaining but it proves to be to steep for me. Hey man, I can buy an iPad with that money (what an iFag!).

I walked around the shop (they were pretty happy to see me exploring the shop) and my eyes were fixed on used tyre. I was really surprised to see the condition of these tyre. The kid told me, sometimes bikers change tyre because they hated how it handles, some wants better grip. Well, one mans trash is another man’s treasure. It did feel like I found a unicorn. After negotiating, I got the  MICHELIN PILOT ROAD 2  for RM 690.

tyre-tayar-er6n-b

They carefully put on paddock stand and extract the old tyre.

tyre-tayar-er6n-c

The front tyre was wobbly and the wear is uneven making it harder to control during raining season.

Personally, it didn’t really matter whether is new or used, I just need one soonest before I go crazy getting stuck in traffic jam commuting to work.

How does MICHELIN PILOT ROAD 2 handle? Well, as a noob biker, I say it does take a while to adjusting to the new one. Because the tyre is so round, it felt unbalanced when it is slightly tipped to the side. On straight line, better grip. Giving additional torque does make it feeling doing a little wheelie. Corners are fantastic, entrance is easy and exit is the best. I have rode the ER6N for 2 years, I have never done anything above 70kmh while cornering, on MICHELIN PILOT ROAD 2, I did 85kmh and it felt natural.

I would to reemphasize that I am a relatively new biker and comparison was made against the OEM tyre.

So to those who are still dreaming of owning big bikes, I seriously urge you to consider this, the tyre cost change annually RM 1k, Road tax and insurance about RM 1.5 k, maintenance RM 600 (every 4 months or mileage). Now, you need an additional RM 3,100 per year just to maintain the bike. For starters go for 250cc bikes.

Hence the reason of buying a big bike is critical. The parts aren’t exactly cheap, the oil change isn’t too, accessories costs your pinky finger, helmet maybe a bomb, safety and yara-yara. If there’s any advise I can give to fellow riders or aspiring rider and this has been passed on to me by other riders is, “Ride within your means”. Budget, speed, guts, safety and reason. I ride to escape the traffic, therefore I don’t have to ride like a maniac 🙂

SalamMedia: The Birth of an Awesome Blog Advertising Company

It was dark into the night, I saw @tekong’s facebook post, that booth were up for grab and there were 14 days left. “It’s impossible to join now”, I told myself. I ran through a quick list that I have to do buntings, banners, website, candies, slides and all the preparation that’s involved in this. It’s impossible now as the deadline draws closer.

I have sat on the idea of starting a blog advertising company for so long. I was gonna give it another year. I didn’t have a name yet! I talked to my wife, colleague and meditated a lot. I couldn’t draw to a conclusion, a go or no.

Here I am teaching Sara to be fearless, but I am fearful myself. This won’t work. Some things have to change.

10 days left to event, I decided to just do it. With Aisyah juggling Sara, I didn’t have any other help. If it’s something beneficial for others, I’m sure God will work His magic. And He did.

I drew up a quick to do list. Started doing everything as quickly as possible. From designing the logo, banner, name card, to building website, copy writing (by jolly this was the toughest) all of this was done myself with the help of sleepless night. Sometimes, when I worked till wee hours, I’d just walk to Sara, brush her hair to get some strength, it was all that I needed to burn the midnight oil.

As the deadline drew closer, things we getting intense. Then I realized, there’s no compelling reason for bloggers to sign up with me. I have to give something of awesome value. I have set aside a budget for the new iPad Mini 2 for quite sometime but decided to throw to my dream company as a lucky draw. This is between helping others or myself. Bit the bullet and willing to give it away. You can participate in the lucky draw on Salam Media Website.

The Blogrrr Event was held at Mines. To make it more challenging, it overlaps Big Bad Wolf, which made the whole place crazy busy.

We arrived at the location to install our gears the night before. The organizer did not provide any wall, so we had to creatively build our own to accomodate the backdrop. It worked fine. The sleepless nights were starting to take it’s toll. I was constantly being frustrated at everything, reckless drivers, bad traffic, no parking, location, mobile phone (which decided to corrupt and I had to flash the whole thing) and whole lot of thing starts falling on my nose.

This was a testament of my good deeds and it should be tough. My father has told me before, nothing good is easy.

Alhamdulillah, on that day itself, everything went according to plan. Acquainted to many new bloggers, met old blogging friends, our booth became a chatty booth. I met at least 20 prospect that day. It was amazing. Seriously, I’m not too focused on getting a customer but quality talks with prospects. I learned a lot from Mesiniaga’s MD, and applied what I learned that day.

Anyway, why did I create Salam Media? I have one goal that I have to achieve in life, to be someone who benefits other. I can do this by helping people earn extra income, at same the time help companies gain more exposure which leads to bigger revenue. Islam is my way of life and it should not be separated from what I do to earn my income. This is my form of dakwah, by promoting syariah compliant ads.

To date, I have qualified Salam Media a few prospects. Talked to big brands and my approach is sell nothing but value. It’s going to be slow start, I know, but if this is what it means to help others, so be it. I have His support when I started this venture, what makes you think He won’t continue supporting me? InsyaAllah when you plan to do something good, He’ll always be there.

Our neighbors were a cookie/perfume and cloth booth, both did poorly. I guess people who came didn’t really look for such products.

Sean Razak from Blogr.my, The grumpy dude who wakes up at 12 and works at Amanz.my wrote me a wonderful piece, Alif from Blogr.my, Kay from Raksasa Oren and Fathur, my Internet marketing teacher from JomPHP.

Nisa Kay, Shy guy and Sean on stage. I’ve got to say, the talks was a big mess and the turn out for the talks were pretty close to pathetic.

With Kak Ku Jie, who writes damn well and have been plagiarised by newspaper. How more awesome can a blogger be if not being copied by newspaper?

With heavy weight BroFramestone (which part is stone, no idea), Mijie friends since Maxis10 and Marcus Reus, SalamMedia founder, eh.. that’s me.

Pray for my success. InsyaAllah will help as many people as I can.