The Perhentian Islands (Malay: Kepulauan Perhentian) are islands in Besut District, Terengganu, Malaysia.
The two main islands are Perhentian Besar ("Greater Perhentian") and Perhentian Kecil ("Lesser Perhentian"). The small, uninhabited islands of Susu Dara (Virgin Milk), Serengeti and Rawa lie off Kecil.
Like Besut, people here generally speak Kelantanese Malay, however, English is widely spoken and understood to accommodate the growing tourism market. The Perhentian Islands have become a popular travel destination for families and backpackers alike due to the many lodging options that accommodate almost any budget.
Except for two main islands of Perhentian Besar and Perhentian Kecil, there are five more islands in the archipelago. All these five islands are uninhabited. There are many snorkeling and scuba diving spots around it. The amazing sandy beaches are on Rawa, Serengeti and Tokong Burung islands.
Nature tourism provides the economic base for the islands. Both the islands have palm-fringed white coral sand beaches (that can be tough on the feet) and turquoise blue sea. Popular tourist activities include scuba diving, snorkeling, and swimming. On most beaches, the water is shallow with many rays, cuttlefish and parrotfish. For diving, there are dozens of dive sites around both main islands, as well as several off-shore sites. Apart from these, activities like camping, canoeing, fishing, jungle trekking, and banana boat riding are also available.
The tropical waters around the Perhentians are clear with turquoise hues. The designated marine park on the island has corals and fish life is quite excellent. During peak season, the waters are calm which is excellent for learning to dive with one of the dive centers on the island. In contrast to the neighboring islands of Lang Tengah and Redang, the Perhentian islands have a wide assortment of accommodation, ranging from budget to mid-range. Most of the accommodation can be found on both the Perhentian Besar, the larger island and Perhentian Kecil, the smaller island. The Perhentian islands have a tropical climate with temperatures steadily around 30 °C and frequent but brief thunderstorms.
A rise in tourism in Kuala Besar has led to the expansion of many different resorts and many options for snorkelers and divers alike. It is possible to get PADI certified at various locations and take advantage of the various wrecks and coral reefs. The Perhentian islands are home to numerous different species of monitor lizards, venomous spiders, and geckos. In the water and on the coral reefs, sea turtles, clownfish, cuttlefish, blue spotted rays, and black tipped sharks swim freely among many others.
Scuba diving is a mode of underwater diving where the diver uses a self-contained underwater breathing apparatus (scuba) which is completely independent of surface supply, to breathe underwater. Scuba divers carry their own source of breathing gas, usually compressed air, allowing them greater independence and freedom of movement than surface-supplied divers, and longer underwater endurance than breath-hold divers. Open circuit scuba systems discharge the breathing gas into the environment as it is exhaled, and consist of one or more diving cylinders containing breathing gas at high pressure which is supplied to the diver through a regulator. They may include additional cylinders for range extension, decompression gas or emergency breathing gas. Closed-circuit or semi-closed circuit rebreather scuba systems allow recycling of exhaled gases. The volume of gas used is reduced compared to that of the open circuit, so a smaller cylinder or cylinders may be used for an equivalent dive duration. Rebreathers extend the time spent underwater compared to open circuit for the same gas consumption; they produce fewer bubbles and less noise than open circuit scuba which makes them attractive to covert military divers to avoid detection, scientific divers to avoid disturbing marine animals, and media divers to avoid bubble interference.
Scuba diving may be done recreationally or professionally in a number of applications, including scientific, military and public safety roles, but most commercial diving uses surface-supplied diving equipment when this is practicable. Scuba divers engaged in armed forces covert operations may be referred to as frogmen, combat divers or attack swimmers.
A shipwreck is the remains of a ship that has wrecked, which are found either beached on land or sunken to the bottom of a body of water. Shipwrecking may be deliberate or accidental. In January 1999, Angela Croome estimated that there have been about three million shipwrecks worldwide (an estimate rapidly endorsed by UNESCO and other organizations).