9 Easy & Fun Activities You Didn't Know You Can Do In Tioman According To Locals

You might be surprised by what this island has to offer.

Cover image via @nuts.trip (Instagram) / Sea Rascals & @kovzzz (Instagram) / Mowgli Venture

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As home to one of Malaysia's oldest rainforests and coral reefs, Tioman Island is filled with unexpected treasures

While it's known for being a popular diving spot, you'll also discover plenty of other fun activities to enjoy.

Tioman Island's uniqueness stems from its historical connection to Sabah and Sarawak. This separation from East Malaysia has resulted in Tioman being home to numerous animal and plant species exclusive to the island.

Whether you're looking for an adventurous getaway or a relaxing holiday, there's something for everyone on this island paradise. 

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It's not that easy to find info on what you can do in Tioman, so we decided to put together a list based on what locals suggested for an easy trip suitable for all ages:

1. Snorkel with turtles and watch eagles around Coral Island — if you're lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of dolphins!

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Coral Island is one of the top popular highlights for snorkelling in Tioman. 

There are multiple main beaches on Tioman Island and snorkelling trips are available from every beach to Coral Island. 

You can book a day trip from your hotel reception or from any tour booths around the island.

Image via Tripadvisor

2. Hike to see Tioman's 'mini' Rafflesia from Tekek, ABC, or Juara beach

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You can hire any friendly local guides from tour booths or your hotel reception, depending on which beach you stay on.

They charge around RM130 to RM200 for different hiking packages that include a trip to the waterfall where you will see Tioman's Rafflesias and chameleons along the way.

There are many local guides in Tekek, ABC, and Juara but if you need help, here are some contacts:

S'ari: +6019-4608467
Fahmi: +60137520764 

S'ari is one of Tioman's friendly, chatty local guides.

Image via S'ari (Provided to SAYS)

3. Explore the mangroves

Every beach on Tioman has a mangrove to explore, but each one brings its own flair.

We think Mangrove Bay on Coral Island, in particular, will win you over with its calm and clean turquoise waters.

Watch a clip of it by Instagram user @kovzzz below:

4. Go on thrilling adventures and spend a few days aboard a liveaboard cruise

Image via Sea Rascals

Sea Rascals offers an adventurous 'glamping at sea' experience, during which the team will take you snorkelling and explore hidden gems around Tioman Island.

Discover pristine, untouched beaches, chill on custom sea hammocks that are suspended above the water, and enjoy breathtaking sunsets every evening. Accommodation and food are included throughout your stay.

You can find out more here.

5. Rent a bicycle and cycle around Tekek and ABC beach

Bicycle rentals in Tekek and ABC cost around RM5 per hour and RM15 - RM25 for the whole day. Motorbikes are also available for rent for RM15 - RM20 per hour.

With any of these rides, you can easily explore the kampung, stop by the beaches, and grab a bite or two along the way.

6. Hike to Mother Willow tree from Paya beach

The 3.3km hike to Mother Willow tree from Paya Beach on Tioman Island is a popular, moderately easy route that takes about 45 minutes one-way if you're taking your time.

The 300-year-old magnificent Mother Willow tree is a sight to behold with its massive trunk, sprawling branches, and aerial roots. You can even climb the tree for a closer look and some great photo opportunities. 

One interesting highlight to spot is that while you hike, nature becomes larger in size the deeper you go into the jungle.

The trailhead is located behind Kampung Paya Resort near the beach. There are signs pointing towards the Mother Willow Tree.

You can find routes on AllTrails.

Watch a clip of it below:

7. Visit Asah waterfall

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Asah Waterfall is one of the most famous and picturesque waterfalls on the island. It cascades down seven tiers of rock and features a shallow pool of water at the bottom, perfect for cooling off.

There are five pools on different levels, with one hidden at the top that is not as easily accessible.

You can access the jungle trail to the waterfall from Mukut or from the jetty at Kampung Asah.

The trail will take around two hours to complete by foot. However, you can also rent an ATV to ride to the waterfall for a different experience.

For avid hikers, routes are available on AllTrails.

8. Witness the mesmerising glow of bioluminescent plankton along the shoreline

Image for illustration purposes.

Image via Martha's Vineyard

At night, the island comes alive with another spectacular sight: bioluminescent plankton.

These tiny organisms emit a blue-green light when disturbed, creating a magical effect as you swim or wade through the water.

They usually appear on dark nights when the moon is not visible or when there's no light pollution.

The best time to see bioluminescent plankton in Tioman is during the new moon, when the night sky is darkest. The plankton are more visible on calm nights when the water is still.

9. Ride ATVs into the jungle

Aside from all the water adventures, an ATV ride is an exhilarating way to enjoy the island.

These ATV rides are only available at Paya Beach, where you'll be guided by a professional through a jungle trail.

Visitors can choose to tour the island for one hour, one and a half hours, or two hours on the jungle trek provided, which connects to other villages around the island.

Prices start from around RM150.

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