Hiking in Langkawi: 9 Scenic Trails & Waterfalls To Explore

Hiking in Langkawi: 9 Scenic Trails & Waterfalls To Explore

Hiking Terengganu: 11 Trails To Explore For A Real Adventure Reading Hiking in Langkawi: 9 Scenic Trails & Waterfalls To Explore 16 minutes

Check Out These Stunning Hiking Trails For Your Next Outdoor Adventure When Hiking In Langkawi!

Just the sight of the word "Langkawi" gets you thinking of crystalline beaches, stretches of sand as far as the eye can see, and of course, the highly sought-after duty-free shopping of endless imported chocolates and *ahem* certain beverages. But did you know that there's more to Langkawi island than its beaches, resorts, and shopping?

If you have already explored Kedah's beautiful hiking trails, why not take a step (or a ferry) further beyond the usual expectations of island life and check out Langkawi island's incredible hiking trails and dense jungle?

Think hiking in Langkawi's rainforests which are teeming with various flora and fauna, to relaxing by spectacular roaring waterfalls with the chance of a refreshing dip. And not forgetting the two mountains which are just waiting to be challenged!

The hiking trails in Langkawi have different difficulty levels that suit hikers of various builds, no matter their fitness level. Meaning there is something for everyone here!

So get your hiking gear on and start planning your trip to the main island of Langkawi because the hiking trails there are waiting for you to conquer them!

9 Stunning Hiking Trails & Waterfalls To Explore While Hiking In Langkawi For A Truly Scenic Adventure

Gunung Raya hiking trail. Photo by Jake Kuypers.
Photo by Jake Kuypers.

1. Gunung Raya Trail

Langkawi's Gunung Raya Hiking Trail is perfect for seasoned hikers and enthusiasts of nature. Even though you'll only be using the stairs, also known as the Thousand Memories Eagle Stairway, the Gunung Raya hiking trail is a rather challenging trek as there are a total of 4,287 concrete steps to be scaled!

You'll come across a park and river before reaching the blue sign at the foot of the stairs which is where the actual hiking trail starts. As you ascend the stairs, prepare yourself to encounter fallen trees that may block your path. Which is why hiking shoes are essential here to provide you with the firm grip you need to safely navigate through the obstacles (preferably worn-in hiking shoes for extra comfort as new ones can be too rigid to truly be comfortable).

Gunung Raya stairway trail. Photo by Jake Kuypers.
Photo by Jake Kuypers.

However, the journey to the peak is well worth the challenge. After all, Gunung Raya is Langkawi's highest peak at 898m above sea level and it boasts a myriad of wildlife and endemic foliage in its dense rainforest. Think majestic mountain eagles, hornbills, flying foxes, geckos, lizards, squirrels, and macaque monkeys just waiting to be spotted.

Fun Fact: Did you know that "flying foxes" aren't actually foxes? They are a kind of fruit bat that ranks as one of the largest in the world and are said to only be found in Southeast Asia, South Asia, East Africa, and Australia!

You'll notice the hill becoming steeper as you get closer to the peak, but not to worry. There are handrails along the way to ease your hike to the top of Gunung Raya. Thankfully, it's not very hot while hiking here as you will be covered by the canopy of trees.

Once you arrive at the summit, you can take a break as you soak in Langkawi's panoramic picturesque views and the surrounding sea.

One thing to keep in mind is that leeches are rampant here during wet seasons so you may run into those bloodsuckers. I recommend wearing anti-leech socks and applying some eucalyptus spray or ointment on yourself to effectively deter the leeches from latching onto you as you scale this challenging route. It's also best to keep moving to prevent leeches from latching on you.

Another thing to note is that there are no shops along the way nor at the peak. So before you embark on your hike, remember to bring snacks like an onigiri or two and a couple of energy bars to stay nourished, and fill up at least 2 litres of water in your trusty Ace Bottle Massive to stay hydrated while hiking in the midst of Langkawi's humidity (don't underestimate the island's humidity!). 

Entry Fee: Free

Hiking Time: 4 hours 31 minutes

Trail Distance: 7.9km

Elevation Gain: 898m

Opening Hours: 24 hours, daily

Address:  278, Jalan Gunung Raya, 07000, Langkawi, Kedah, Malaysia

Gunung Machinchang trail. Photo by Navin Raj.
Photo by Navin Raj.

2. Gunung Mat Cincang Trail (One Of Langkawi Island's Most Challenging Hike!)

Aside from Gunung Raya, Gunung Mat Cincang, sometimes known as Gunung Machinchang, is one of the two mountains that offer the most challenging hiking trails on Langkawi Island. This trail is perfect if you're looking to take up a challenging hike as it challenges your upper body as much as your lower body. Think scrambling over rocky outcrops, crossing streams, and climbing many steep sections before reaching the top.

In fact, Gunung Machinchang features a series of peaks instead of a single peak. The peak you'll be hiking to differs from the peak you can access via the Skycab cable car.  It is best to avoid this place during the rainy season as the track can become quite slippery, making it less safe to go hiking.

As it is not commonly known to the general public, it is unlikely you will meet many hikers throughout the trek.

The Gunung Matcincang hiking trails is not commonly known to the general public, making it a rather quiet hike. That said, you will still have to apply for a permit with the Kedah Forestry Department to take on the challenge of hiking Gunung Matcincang.

Gunung Matcincang's mighty tree. Photo by Guangchao Xu.
Gunung Matcincang's mighty tree. Photo by Guangchao Xu.

Nature lovers would enjoy trekking at Gunung Matcincang Trail. That's because the Gunung Mat Cincang Jungle is a dense rainforest estimated to be around 550 million years old that is home to rare wildlife such as hornbills, macaques, and dusky-leaf monkeys.

You'll reach the trailhead after ascending about 638 steps to reach the summit of Seven Wells Waterfalls. Many hikers enjoy swimming at the waterfall's pool towards the end of the hike, but we'll check out this waterfall in further detail below.

The hiking trail continues via a steep trail through the dense jungle before arriving at the top of the mountain. Upon getting closer to the peak, you'll come across a rocky and uneven path. This is the one place where you'll want to ditch your regular trainers for hiking shoes with soles in optimal condition to increase your stability and provide adequate friction while climbing. 

Once you've arrived at the peak, brace yourself for a stunning panoramic view of Langkawi island and its surroundings. However, do note that the peak has little to no shade, so you may want to pack along a cap to protect yourself against the blaring sun if you started your hike after 8am.

You will definitely come across leeches while trekking through this hiking trail. So don't forget to wear anti-leech socks to keep the leech bites away.

Aside from hiking, one of the best attractions of Langkawi island would have to be the cable car rides at Gunung Mat Cincang. It is one of the world's steepest cable car rides that takes you to one of the peaks in the Gunung Mat Cincang mountain range. If you're not too keen on hiking, you can always opt to skip the workout, hop on a 15-minute ride on one of the cable car rides, and you'll be at the top in no time!

Hiking Time: 3 hours 17 minutes

Trail Distance: 5.8km

Elevation Gain: 648m

Address: 9MXC+XH, 07000, Langkawi, Kedah, Malaysia

Temurun Waterfall is a must visit while hiking in Langkawi. Photo by Spencer Ankeny.
Temurun Waterfall is a must visit while hiking in Langkawi. Photo by Spencer Ankeny.

3. Temurun Waterfall Trail

Just a stone's throw away from the Oriental Village is the Temurun Waterfall situated in the northern reaches of Langkawi. Temurun Waterfall is a rare gem of nature's beauty that will leave you breathless upon laying your eyes on it. It is a 3-tier picturesque waterfall cascade that stands 200m tall. 

The first tier of Temurun Waterfall is a 5-minute walk up overgrown stairs from the car park. Locals and tourists love hanging out for a picnic and swimming here during the weekends, so you'll definitely want to bring your swimsuit to enjoy a dip in the cool and refreshing waters after hiking here!

To see more of Temurun Waterfall, you can continue climbing up the natural rocky steps to reach the middle and top tiers of the waterfall. There are several gazebos along the way for you to relax as you soak in the lush surroundings.

Bear in mind that several monkeys prowl the area. All we can say is to hold on to your belongings as these monkeys may take off with your things to search for food. And trust us when we say the monkeys are smart enough to open up zippers to steal items from your backpack (it's happened before).

The monsoon season is the best time to experience the magnificent waterfall, as this is when the waterfall comes to life. That said, it's also when the waterfall current is at its strongest and most dangerous so do be careful.

Entry Fee: Free

Opening Hours: 7:00AM to 7:00PM, daily

Address: 161, Jalan Datai, 07000 Langkawi, Kedah, Malaysia

Bukit Kechubung peak. Photo by Remy Bosman.
Photo by Remy Bosman.

4. Bukit Kechubung Trail

For beginner hikers who want to take things to the next level, Bukit Kechubung Trail is a moderately challenging trail you can attempt that takes you through a forest trail.

Once you've reached the summit, you will be in awe of the picturesque views of the town, sea, and surrounding paddy fields.

You may find that this trail not as well-maintained as the other hiking trails of Langkawi. Some areas are overgrown and the route towards the end is not marked clearly. A good way to know if you are on track to the peak is to look for a small rope tied to a tree stump. We recommend wearing long pants and proper hiking shoes since you'll be trekking through some overgrown areas with sharp foliage. 

Hiking Time: 1 hour

Trail Distance: 2.6km

Elevation Gain: 150m

Address: Kampung Bukit Hantu, 07000, Langkawi, Kedah, Malaysia

Seven Wells Waterfall of Langkawi Island. Photo by Chad Lukasiewicz.
Photo by Chad Lukasiewicz.

5. Seven Wells Waterfall Trail

If you plan on hiking in Langkawi, you absolutely must visit the Seven Wells Waterfall, also known as Telaga Tujuh Waterfall. It is one of Langkawi's most stunning waterfalls, offering spectacular views with plenty of space to have fun. The upper tier of the waterfall is also where the trailhead of Gunung Mat Cincang begins. 

To get to the top part of the waterfall, get ready to traverse up 638 steps across the canopy of tall trees that are hundreds of years old. You might even spot hornbills, squirrels, dragonflies, and monkeys! 

The trail is rather slippery, even more so during the rainy season. So do give your trail runners a miss and don proper hiking shoes for this one.

At the top, you can treat yourself to some fun by dipping in the cold waters of the seven natural pools that make up the Seven Wells Waterfall and take IG-worthy photos.

One of the most famous pools is the natural infinity pool located by the mouth of the waterfall. While it is famous, I'd advise steering clear of it as it is rather dangerous with the river current being deadly enough to sweep swimmers over the edge.

But if you're not up for hiking, you can always opt to stay at the waterfall's base. You'll likely find more people hanging around this area as it is easier to access the waterfall base than the highest waterfall tier.

Entry Fee: Free

Hiking Time: 50 minutes

Trail Distance: 1.9km

Elevation Gain: 145m

Address: Mukim, Jalan Telaga Tujuh, 07000, Langkawi, Kedah, Malaysia

Langkawi Skytrail. Photo by Panorama Langkawi.
Photo by Panorama Langkawi.

6. Langkawi Skytrail

One thing really great about Langkawi is that every location is usually not too far away from each other. Langkawi Skytrail is located in Oriental Village, a 20-minute drive from Pantai Cenang.

There are three guided tours for different fitness levels - Beginner Trail, Intermediate Trail, and Challenging Trail. Regardless of which tour you choose, you will be enveloped by Langkawi's unique biodiversity as you learn more about the island's vibrant flora and fauna from the expert guides. The lush jungle is home to more than 1,500 species of plants, such as various flowering orchids and Tongkat Ali. You may even spot bats, vipers, squirrels, monitor lizards, and monkeys here.

Langkawi SkyCab. Photo by Panorama Langkawi.
Langkawi SkyCab. Photo by Panorama Langkawi.

In fact, many tours include tickets to take Langkawi's Skycab, the cable car, down from the top station. So, you can have a relaxing way to end your journey as you take in the scenic views in one of the world's steepest cable cars!

For a comfortable trekking experience, we recommend wearing long-sleeved shirts, long pants, and sports shoes. Depending on the weather, a raincoat or a sweater would be great in case of rain.

Langkawi SkyBridge. Photo by Panorama Langkawi.
Langkawi SkyBridge. Photo by Panorama Langkawi.

Don't forget to check out the iconic Langkawi SkyBridge when you're here. The bridge is situated 660 metres above sea level, offering visitors a breathtaking scenic view of the surrounding jungle and the Andaman Sea. For the bold ones, you'll want to check out the glass floor section to look at the jungle below!

Opening Hours: 9:30AM to 5:30PM, Thursdays to Tuesdays only

Address: Oriental Village, 07000, Langkawi, Kedah, Malaysia

Wat Koh Wanararm view. Photo by Megat Harris Iskandar.
Photo by Megat Harris Iskandar.

7. Wat Koh Wanararm and Orchid Farm Trail

When it comes to challenging hikes, the Wat Koh Wanararm and Orchid Farm Trail is definitely one of the hiking trails in Langkawi that comes to mind due to its incredibly tricky terrain. You'll be navigating through rocky and muddy areas to reach Wat Koh Wanararm, where you can catch a glimpse of the golden Buddha statue.

Thankfully, certain areas have ropes to assist with your ascent. But you should still opt for a good pair of hiking shoes over your standard trail runners for more stability while hiking. You will also be treated to the lovely panoramic views and abundance of flora and fauna along the way, which makes the climb all the more worth it.

Do note that mosquitoes are abundant here, so you'll want to pack along your trusty insect repellent to keep those pesky buggars away!

Hiking Time: 3 hours

Trail Distance: 2.9km

Elevation Gain: 365m

Address: Kampung Kandis, Kodiang, Kedah, Malaysia

Durian Perangin Waterfall, a must visit while hiking in Langkawi. Photo by Ralf S.
Durian Perangin Waterfall, a must visit while hiking in Langkawi. Photo by Ralf S.

8. Durian Perangin Waterfall

Located just 15 minutes away from Lubok Semilung Recreational Park lies the Durian Perangin Waterfall. Despite its name, it has nothing to do with durians but everything to do with a waterfall. But having said that its name does indeed come from the durian trees growing in the nearby forest.

The trail at Durian Perangin Waterfalls is a short but moderately challenging hike that is perfect for those seeking a quick workout. Your efforts will be well worth it when you arrive at the peak and absorb the scenery of the coast from the top. This is also where seasoned hikers opt to continue on their journey towards Gunung Raya's summit.

The cascading 14-tiered Durian Perangin Waterfall is surrounded by a lush jungle and interesting rock formations. The cool and refreshing waters make it a popular place for locals to hang out here for a picnic and go for a swim during the weekends. But that said, the true optimum time to drop by the waterfall would be during the weekdays as it isn't as packed as it will be during the weekends.

Entry Fee: RM2

Hiking Time: 18 minutes

Trail Distance: 0.6km

Elevation Gain: 52m

Opening Hours: 24 hours, daily

Address: 07000 Langkawi, Kedah, Malaysia

Bukit Kilim peak while hiking in Langkawi. Photo by Izzat Irfan.
Photo by Izzat Irfan.

9. Bukit Kilim Trail @ Kilim Geoforest Park

If you're new to hiking, the Bukit Kilim trail is for you. The well-marked trail makes it easy to follow as you ascend the summit. Ropes are available throughout the route as well to assist you in navigating the terrain. As you reach the summit, you'll be in awe of the breathtaking views of the mangroves that stretch out before you.

Aside from hiking Bukit Kilim, you should also check out the Kilim Geoforest Park itself. One of the best ways to experience the beauty of the place is to hop on one of its boat rides to enjoy the stunning views of the mangrove forests and limestone rock formations. 

Hiking Time: 12 minutes

Trail Distance: 0.6km

Elevation Gain: 26m

Opening Hours: 8:30AM to 5:00PM, daily

Address: Kilim River Tourism Jetty, Mukim Kampung Kilim, 07000, Langkawi, Kedah, Malaysia