On arrival at the Kampung Paya jetty, a porter from the resort will be there to collect your bags to be sent to the resort. The Paya Beach Resort is located at the end of this traditional Malay Kampung (Village). So you will be taking a nice scenic walk to your resort.
Walking along the bronze coloured sand beach you will see some local Malay homes, restaurants and convenient shops. There are also other guesthouses and chalets along the way which are run by locals.
On arrival at the resort, you will be served a welcome drink and cold towel on checking in. The staff are pretty well trained and friendly who speak good English. A quick drink and I could not wait to see the rooms that were promised. Lakeside or should I say, Pond side chalets at the Aman Damai Wing were the ones I booked for 3 days.
My first impression was 'Wow, not bad at all'. The wooden walkway over the pond lead to our chalet. They actually created a man made pond and built the chalets over it. Something different compared to most of the other chalets and hotels I stayed. Looks like I was in for a fun time here.
The chalet room was pretty simple and tastefully done. No smell, proper sheets, nice mattress, comfy pillow and simple decorations in the room with a television and air condition. The shower was basic and clean and the chalets were also connected to just one unit next door. Loud lovemakers beware.
View form the chalets was pretty nice too. You could see the entire pond and other chalets from your bed window. It looked even nicer when night falls. Just so you also know, the resort has 4 types of Malaysia-styled chalets available. Even deluxe beach front and garden chalets.
At night, the Paya Beach Resort pond chalets are well lit and walking around brings a nice feeling. That true feeling of being on holiday, I kind of liked it. This is what a holiday should feel like. I spent some time every night outside the chalet sitting and just relaxing, watching the lights reflect against the pond while having a nice cold beer. Occasionally you would get some noisy groups of teenagers laughing on top of their voices but that did not disrupt much of the beauty here.
One thing about the Paya Beach Resort is that you are not going to get white powder sand beaches here. The beach is normal with bronze coloured sand and when the tide goes out, you start to see the coral rocks. So best be very careful if you plan to swim around the resort area.
However, for snorkeling, this place is absolutely fantastic. Coral life and fishes are abundant here. One has to go out about 100 meters into the sea and start snorkeling to witness the beauty of this underwater world which is ranked highly as one of the top snorkeling sites in the region.
Even from the main jetty, you can see the corals and fishes as the waters here are really clear. Do bring along some bread and you can feed the coral fishes from the jetty. You can buy some from the sundry shop along the beach too.
The only main restaurant here is called the Rama Rama Restaurant serving buffet and also a-la-carte. Breakfast is served buffet style from 7am to 9.30am while a long lunch is from 11am till 5pm and is also a-la -carte or set lunch. You have an option to choose from pizzas, sandwiches and also salads. Dinner is from 7pm to 10pm and both options are available. Usually when you book your package, they will suggest full board were all your meals are taken care of.
However, there are also other local options available along the main beach of Kampung Paya. A number of local run stalls serve kampung style food like fried rice or fried noodles. There are also some who do a variety of mix Western and Asian. You could also order a Chinese Fried Rice and have an ABC or Ais Batu Campur from these local restaurants. Prices are cheap too.
Exploring Kampung Paya would be pretty quick as there is only one main beach road for about 500 meters. There are no cars or motorcycles here and to go to other places on Tioman Island, you need to book a boat there. You can enquire with your resort or even some of the local shops along the beach.
I spent a good 3 days here and if you do not dive or snorkel, there is nothing much to do but laze around reading a good book or just catching up with that much needed sleep, get a tan, go island hopping or even a nature trek provided by the Paya Beach Resort.
Evenings at the main jetty would be a nice touch as sometimes there are excellent sunsets here. You can see locals going out fishing or even some local kids fishing from the jetty. While the Paya Beach Resort has a nice wooden sun deck, I see most travelers hanging out here. There is a small Beach Bar and also Karaoke for the wannabe singers. Internet is also available for those who cannot be disconnected from the net world.
A swimming pool is also available at the resort. Nothing big but a general sized pool especially for those with kids would find this handy. There is also a spa and massage called Paya Holistic Spa at this resort so for the ladies, your holiday here would be so complete with a spa treatment. The Paya Holistic Spa is open from 10am to 10pm and prices start from as low as RM66.00 (US$22.00) for a Head and Shoulder Massage.
For other sea activities, the resort offers you Canoeing and Fishing besides the general snorkeling. They have a sports center where you can rent the equipment. For those who wear glasses, you can check with the resort if they have powered goggles, if not, you best get a pair of contacts as snorkeling here is a must do when visiting Tioman Island.
A fantastic Duty Free Shop is available at the resort and it is pretty well stocked up with lots of cigarettes, beer, wines, champagnes and liquor. For the party groups, this is a must visit. Along the entire Kampung Paya, this is the only shop which is duty free. Other items available here are chocolates, beach wear, sunglasses and some souvenirs. Playing cards for the gamblers too.
The other shops on the main beach are local run sundry shops and food stalls. There is one main sundry shop that also sells beer and souvenirs. A popular shop that everyone needs to pass while walking the beach.
Finally for scuba divers, the resort has a dive shop called Paya Diver's Cove which is a full range dive shop catering to all kinds of diving around Tioman's best dive spots. Dive courses are also available for first timers right up to the professional level.
For the Open Water Course the price starts at about RM920.00 (US$305.00) and the Advanced Open Water Diver priced about RM830.00 (US$275.00). The dives that are available here are Deep Dive, Night Dive, Wreck Dive and general dives.
More dive packages from Paya Diver's Cove or visit the Paya Beach website below.
Paya Beach Resort official website
Paya Beach Resort Corporate Sales Office
400 Orchard Road #06-12
Orchard Towers Singapore 238875
Telephone: (+65) 6733 4333
Fax: (+65) 6733 4330
email : email@example.com