Bukit Keluang has some of the best coastal scenery in Malaysia with lovely beaches, a wooden walkway along the cliff edge, sea caves and a 141-metre high hill with a superb view over the South China Sea.
It is located in Terengganu about 6 km south of the town of Kuala Besut which is where travellers catch boats to Perhentian Islands.
If driving there, you can park your car in the beach’s car park which is at the foot of the hill. There were a couple of food stalls located here together with toilets and other facilities.
You can walk onto the main beach which curves around a nice bay lined with casuarina trees. There are some gazebos here for picnics and some concrete chairs and tables under the trees.
The base of the hill is right on the water’s edge and there are steps leading up to a wooden walkway built on the rocks above the water line.
The walkway clings to the hillside and leads to a couple of sea caves inhabited by bats. At low tide it is possible to walk around to the caves but at high tide, the walkway is the only safe way to access the caves.
Unfortunately, some sections of the walkway had been washed away by rough seas and heavy storms and the walkway is not usable.
There is however a steep flight of concrete steps going up the side of the hill and to the top. The steps are located opposite the toilets if you want to try this walk.
The steps run out after a few minutes’ climbing but there is a rough path leading up to the summit of this hill.
It is a strenuous and sweaty climb but when you reach the opening near the top, there are great views looking out to sea.
The closest island on this photo must be Pulau Ru which is likely uninhabited. The island has a 105 metre high hill on it.
Behind Pulau Ru you can just make out the Perhentian Islands in the background.
The path continues along the ridge for some distance if you want to explore further.
Once you return to your car, you can drive to the far end of the hill where it meets a river, Kuala Keluang.
Here lies another clean and secluded beach with hardly any visitors apart from a couple of fishermen trying their luck.
There are a few hotels nearby including the Bukit Keluang Beach Resort.
How to get to Bukit Keluang
If you are driving from the north (Kota Bharu), you will pass Kuala Besut and remain on the coast road. The turn off is shortly after Air Tawar, which is yet another nice beach.
If you coming from the south (Kuala Terengganu), it is located shortly after Kampung Pengkalan Teras.
This article first appeared in malaysia-traveller.com