Sunday, 16 September 2012

RANTAU ABANG BEACH


        In the 1960’s and 1970’, Pantai Rantau Abang was made famous for being one of the six hatching sites in the world for giant leatherback turtles. Visitors from all over the world gathered here from May to September every year to just to experience the unique and amazing moment. The turtle travels all the way to as far as Pacific Ocean and swims across to Pantai Rantau Abang to lay their eggs on the long stretch of the beach.
     The number of turtles had dwindled due to a number of factors such as the illegal use of drag nets in the prohibited zones and indiscriminate disposal of plastic bags (plastic bags looks like jellyfish which is a part of turtle’s food). There are foreign fishermen who catch turtles for its meat and shells used to make souvenir items. These are a few contributing factors that led to the dwindling number of turtle landings in most part of the world. From the late 1980’s up until 2000, the Fisheries Department records the lessen number of landings. Now conservation efforts are undertaken by the state government in doing research on the turtles’ conservation and setting up turtle hatchery sites.
    Situated 22 km north of Dungun town and 80 km south of Kuala Terengganu, Rantau Abang was the most talked about tourist spot in Terengganu which associates the branding of Terengganu as a tourist destination. Local villagers believed that the giant leatherback turtles are attracted to Rantau Abang every year because of the presence of a large rock formation resembling a giant turtle. However, the local believe that the turtles are attracted by two giant turtle stones (Batu Penyu) one lies between the bushes on a little hill in the village off the coast and another submerged underwater. The mysterious stone on the hill is accessible by a 30 minutes short walk passing through the village. There is sign board along the way or you may get a villager to bring you there. Whereas the other one is covered by sand and water and is not visible any more. For more information on turtles, there is a Turtle Information Centre managed by the Department of Fisheries at Rantau Abang.
                              
How To Get Here
By Car:
To reach Rantau Abang from Kuala Lumpur, take the New East Coast Highway heading towards Kuantan, Pahang. Then head north towards Kuala Terengganu. As you drive along the road, you will see a large gateway portal that says you've entered the state of Terengganu. Drive until you reach Dungun town. Around 18km north of Dungun, you'll reach Rantau Abang.

By Bus:
Bus service are available in most major towns and cities in Peninsular Malaysia. Pick the nearest destination of Dungun. The bus ride will be between 4 1/2 hours to 6 hours, depending on weather and traffic conditions. Taxis are available at Dungun Taxi Terminal.
By Air:
There are daily direct flights by Malaysian Airlines, Air Asia and Firefly from Kuala Lumpur to Kuala Terengganu. Taxi and car rental services are available at the airport and the ride to Rantau Abang takes around 1 ½ hours driving.
Where To Stay
  1. D'Teratai Beach Resort
  2. Merantau Inn
  3. Turtle De' Village Inn
  4. Dahimah's Guest House
  5. Mini Eco Resort & Recreation Camp
Where To Eat
  1. C.B. Wee Seafood Restaurant
  2. Karimas Sulong Restaurant
  3. Mek Har Restaurant
  4. Nabila Khan Restaurant
  5. Sri Dungun Restaurant