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One of our most frequent musings about Malaysia is the sheer number of abandoned tourist attractions and ‘ghost’ malls we stumbled upon on our most recent trip. From the doomed, mothballed monorail we encountered in Melaka to the oft delayed Genting Highlands movie theme pack, eerie empty lots are much abound across Malaysia. Lagenda Langkawi (Dalam Taman) in Kuah Town, Langkawi was one of the more surreal abandoned theme parks we stumbled across – indeed, we hadn’t read about it before in any previous travel guides or online forums so we didn’t know much about the history of it until after we visited.
Originally opened in 1996 to much fanfare (although due to how decrepit and tattered it has become, it looks and feels much older, like something from the 1970s), the $10 million theme park now appears to have been left to rot.
When launched, Lagenda Langkawi was billed as an open-air garden museum with almost 20 areas and vivid sculptures depicting Langkawi legends including beautiful birds and mythical princesses (plus the odd ugly ogre thrown in for good measure).
However, when we visited in February this year (2019), we were literally the only visitors to this huge park and we just kind of stumbled in, after walking back to our hotel from Eagle Square along the coastal path. Although there is fencing all around, we found an unlocked gate and were totally surprised by what we saw.
We walked around unhindered and found several huge abandoned structures, bridges and buildings, including a colossal crocodile sculpture plus an underground cavern system that looked like it had come straight out of Hobbiton.
Perhaps most spooky was the centre-piece Celebration Gallery, a rotting relic from the glory year that wouldn’t have seen out of place as part of the Olympians – how can Lagenda Langkawi amusement park have fallen so easily fallen out of favour?
After respectfully exploring the park, we found it a little more difficult to exit than we had entered, having to make a large loop to find an unlocked gate (a large part of the borders are fenced, with a river bed on the side of the park nearest to the road). We eventually found an unmanned security / sentry gate and made our escape, back to the hotel.
Overall, exploring the abandoned Lagenda Langkawi theme park was fun, albeit a tad creepy – given all the cave structures and abandoned buildings, it isn’t likely somewhere we’d want to visit after dark.
Enjoyed this Langkawi blog? Read our ‘Top Things to Do in Langkawi’ post >
How to get to Langkawi
There are two main ways to get to Langkawi Island – by plane or by ferry.
The quickest and most expensive option is to fly to Langkawi. You can book direct flights from many cities in Malaysia, as well as Singapore, Thailand (Phuket) and China (Chengdu and Guangzhou).
A cheaper and more slower way to reach the island is by ferry. There are regular daily services from mainland Malaysia (Kuala Kedah and Kuala Perlis), Penang island or Koh Lipe in Thailand.
Use 12Go Asia to find the best public transport options to get to and from Langkawi
How to Get Around Langkawi
There are no public transport options in Langkawi, so the best ways to get around are by doing a tour, or by taxi. Grab taxis are widely used by both tourists and locals, and the fares are really cheap! Download the Grab app here and use the code GRABCKTRAVELS to earn a free ride when you sign up.
Sim cards and pocket WIFI
Having data on your phone whilst travelling is almost essential these days – from planning your route around the city, booking a Grab taxi or for staying connected with friends and family back home. SIM cards are pretty cheap in Malaysia with generous data allowances and are available to purchase from airports, malls and convenience stores (bring your passport along for identification purposes).
You can also prepay online and collect a SIM from Langkawi airport. Just remember to make sure your phone is not locked to your local network provider before purchasing one.
Alternatively if you do not want to change your sim card then renting a pocket WIFI device might be for you. We’ve used them multiple times and love that we can both connect our devices to it, however the downside to the Malaysian ones is that there is a data allowance of 1GB per day. Pre-order one online with Klook for collection when you arrive at either KLIA or KLIA2 airport in Kuala Lumpur.
Other Malaysia blog posts
- Exploring Langkawi’s Mangrove flora and fauna
- Things to do in Georgetown, Penang – travel guide
- Cruising in Langkawi – a ‘spirited’ sunset adventure
- Island hopping in Langkawi
- Exploring Kuala Lumpur from above – KL Tower and Eco Forest Park
- Tasting Malaysian cuisine on a Kuala Lumpur food tour
- Visiting Batu Caves in Kuala Lumpur for the Thaipusam Festival
- A cheap day tour in the Cameron Highlands, Malaysia
- Eating like a local on a Penang food tour
- A guide to Georgetown’s street art in Penang, Malaysia
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