Located 32 km off the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia, Pulau Tioman is a small island 39 km long and 12 km wide. The island belongs to the state of Pahang among 13 other states in Peninsular Malaysia. Malaysia is divided into Peninsular and East Malaysia (Malaysian Borneo), separated by the South China Sea with a total land mass of 329,847 square kilometers. Malaysia was a subject to the British Empire in the 18th century and later achieved independence on 31st August 1957. Singapore was part of Malaysia, known as Malaya back then, but was being expelled from the federation in 1965.
The island of Tioman is densely forested and it is surrounded by coral reefs. It has an estimated population of slightly over 400 inhabitants. Tioman has many villages and the most popular one being Kampung Tekek where the government owned airport is sitting in. The airport, known locally as Lapangan Terbang Tioman serves turboprop domestic flights from Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport, formerly known as formerly Subang International Airport, Subang, Selangor. There used to be flight services from Singapore to Tioman but has ceased operation since 2014. The flight operator is Berjaya Air Sdn Bhd, part of Berjaya Group who also owns Berjaya Tioman Resort. Apart from Berjaya resort, the island also has many resorts and chalets in other villages located around the island. Tioman is a highly preferred destination made popular by the 1958 movie, South Pacific and is also voted as “one of the world's most beautiful islands” by Time Magazine in the 70s.
Travelling to Tioman
Daily ferry services from Mersing, 136 Kilometres north east of the state capital Johor Bahru and Tanjung Gemok, approximately 30 minutes from Mersing between Endau and Rompin,are available for the transfer to Tioman. The travelling time is around 90 minutes. Other means of getting to Tioman is by plane which is available from Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport, formerly known as formerly Subang International Airport, Subang, Selangor.
Diving around Tioman
Many discounted the fact that Tioman is still a diving paradise and claims that it has been “over dived”. The truth is that Tioman being a popular tourism destination, unauthorized fishing is not conveniently practiced and marine conservation efforts has done their part for the reefs around Tioman. The diving season is from March to October. Visibility is generally around 15 meters with nearby dive sites like Renggis being the closest, most dived and probably the richest in marine life dive site. Residents black tip reef sharks roam the area together with the usual suspects like turtles, Napoleon wrasse, schooling barracudas and many more. More popular dive sites North West of Tioman includes PulauTulai, Chebeh, Malang rock and Labas promise better visibility, richer reefs and spectacular underwater rocks formations. Occasional visitors like whale shark is known to happen around these sites. Scubapeople has been organizing dive trips to Tioman since 2002 and does weekly weekend as well as daily trips to Berjaya Tioman Resort till date. If your focus is not only on diving alone but also on holiday comfort like twin sharing accommodations and sumptuous meals, you may want to check on Scubapeople for your next Tioman getaway.