Well-known for the Cherating Club Med Resort, Cherating is a popular destination for tourists to soak up the sun and have fun in the cool waters at the scenic beaches. Located approximately 45 km north of Kuantan, Pahang, Cherating is also a popular destination for surfers especially during the north-east monsoon season from November to March, which brings about high waves ideal for surfing. The best time to surf at Cherating is at the peak of the monsoon season in November and December.
Do remember to take a breather from the adrenaline rush and discover the quiet coastal villages too. There, you will be awed by culture and way of life of the locals, such as their skilful ability to weave pandan leaves and how well-trained the monkeys are at plucking coconuts for visitors to drink the refreshing juice!
A fun activity is the Cherating River Cruise through the mangroves, operated by Mr. Hafiz. Depending on the tide there are two daily trips, on in the morning and one in the afternoon. Duration of the trip is about one hour. We paid RM25 per person. Always check up front if Hafiz is in business, especially during the monsoon season. Besides the standard river cruise, you can also book a firefly trip there. Guides have a very keen eye for all kinds of wild life, including beautiful snakes hanging in trees.
The main attraction in Cherating is the Club Med resort, the first Club Med that was built in Asia. This exclusive resort is one of the high-end hotels in the region with room charges approximately RM665 per person per night, inclusive of all meals. There are various sea sport facilities provided at Club Med, such as kayaking, catamaran sailing and windsurfing.
The resort also offers day passes to non-guests to visit the resort and enjoy its facilities. The day passes are available at the price of RM230 per person and are valid for use from 11am to 6pm. However, do take note that the day passes may not be available for sale during the peak season to enable hotel guests to fully enjoy the resort’s facilities. Diners who wish to sample the eats dished up by the chefs at Club Med may also come over for a satisfying meal. Lunch is priced at RM180 per person while dinner is priced at RM280 per person.
Another favorite attraction in Cherating is the Cherating Turtle Sanctuary which is located just next to Club Med. Established in 1972, the turtle hatchery aims to ensure the survival of the turtles that arrive between April to August to lay eggs at Malaysia’s coastal beaches, especially in Pahang. The centre also aims to protect the endangered turtle species found in the country, particularly the Leatherback Turtle. At the centre, there are many educational exhibits on the various species of turtles in Malaysia to explore and visitors can also view the turtle hatch lings which are protected in the centre until they are old enough to be released into the sea. It is certainly a heart-warming experience to watch these little turtles emerge, ready for life out in the deep blue sea soon. The centre is best visited at night for this is the time when the turtles arrive at shore and the turtle hatch lings which are ready to fend for themselves are released into the sea as well. There are no charges for visiting the centre, thus no one should miss this rare experience especially so if your trip coincides with the turtles’ eggs-laying season.