In August, Jamie’s mom and stepdad, Debbie and Bobby came to visit! We hung out in Singapore for a few days and then went to Langkawi, Malaysia – a small island off of the mainland. We stayed at a fabulous resort called The Datai. It was so remote and even had a nature guide onsite that gave morning and evening tours, pointing out the flora and fauna that lived on the property. He was wonderful! He is a consultant for National Geographic and really knows his stuff. He had been at The Datai as a nature guide for over 20 years. Here is his website.
They had so many wonderful animals there! The most breathtaking were the hornbills. They have the Oriental Pied Hornbill as well as the Great Hornbill which was huge! They also has Sea Eagles, who were also huge and 2 of them lived on the property. Fun fact: Sea Eagles are monogamous and the pair that lived in a tree on The Datai’s property had been together for over 15 years! Beautiful.
They also had an interesting little critter there called the Colugo. It looks like a cross between a flying squirrel and a bat, although much bigger. Even though it looks like a flying squirrel, it is actually a primate, the world’s only flying primate, actually. Look it up, you’ll be impressed. We saw her sleeping attached to a tree like someone taped her onto it. She is the same color as the tree and I think some people on the tour never were able to see her. She was pretty camouflaged. Debbie and Bobby were walking at night together and saw it fly right over the tops of their heads!
Lots of monkeys lived there, too, which are always hilarious to me. They had macaques and dusky leaf monkeys, and those are pretty are cute! They also had a giant squirrel which Debbie and I went on the hunt for one day, finally saw it one evening in a tree by the pool. Needless to say, it was a nature lover’s paradise. We all loved it!
Oh…and they had some Tokay Geckos there, as well…if you haven’t yet read my post about our experience with Tokay Geckos in Cambodia, give this a read.
The first day it rained, but a rainy day in the rainforest isn’t anything to be upset about! It was beautiful and incredibly relaxing. We sat on our porch, read our books, napped, chatted. It was a great first day.
Bobby went to play golf one morning as there was a beautiful course on property, and while he did that, Debbie, Jamie and I went and got massages at the spa! Guys, there are no words to describe how tranquil this spa was! I think it might have been the best I have been to. The rooms were open air along a creek so all you heard during your massage was the running of the water and the birds. It was one of a kind.
And we also saw this butterfly afterwards…don’t mind me, folks, just trying to get the best angle on the guy!
And now to the main attraction, the beach. The Datai had their own private beach within a lagoon that was absolutely breathtaking. Flanking either side of the water were mountains, the water was still and clear, there was even a reef not far off shore that we all were able to snorkel around!
We saw Nemo, Marlin, Dory, Gill, Bloat…oh, excuse me, my Disney brain got away from me there. When Jamie and I snorkel together we say the names of the fish not the types of fish, know what I mean 🙂 For those of you who haven’t seen Finding Nemo (and don’t tell me who you are because I’ll be upset!), we saw clown fish, blue tang fish, moorish idol fish, puffer fish…it’s more fun with the Disney names, isn’t it? Moving on…
The beach was spectacular and really gave us a chance to relax. I got out on the paddle board for a bit when the water was calm and went for a run on the beach one morning. Really nice. Humid as all get out, but nice. We took a boat tour through the mangroves and saw several birds including a Brown Backed Kingfisher, which was superb, as well as several Sea Eagles and Brahminy Kites (predatory birds).
Here’s the best picture we have of a Brahminy Kite…
And HERE is a picture of me with one of my field guide books reading aloud to everyone what we have just seen! Ugh…honestly, the level of my nerdiness gets higher with age. I think the askew headband and the binoculars as a necklace really completes the look. I embrace it.
The trip was such a delight! Here are some more pictures of our time at The Datai in Langkawi, Malaysia. Looking forward to the next trip!