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Mystical Island Close to Melaka

Pulau Besar is an attention-grabbing day journey destination.
It’s located about 15km south east of Melaka city and may be reached by ferry or speed boat.

Because the name suggests, it is a large island (168 hectares) and is claimed to be shaped like an expecting woman mendacity on her again, although I could not see much resemblance myself. Maybe they sliced some of her ‘bulge’ off when they were building the golf course again within the 1990s.

Photos (L) The profile of the island is imagined to resemble a pregnant woman. The tomb of Sultan Al Ariffin Syeikh Ismail.

It’s best known for its ancient Islamic graves, tombs and mausoleums which are scattered around the island.

Notable amongst these is the tomb of Sultan Al Ariffin Syeikh Ismail. Based on the notice board exterior the tomb, Syeikh Ismail was the 18th descendant of the Prophet and was born in Baghdad in 1464AD. Whereas visiting the Prophet’s tomb in Medina, he received a calling to go and spread Islam to Java. He reached Pulau Besar in 1495 and from there helped disseminate Islamic instructing throughout the Malay Archipelago. He died at age fifty eight and was buried on the island.

The tomb of Syarifah Rodziah/Siti Sarah (one of Syeikh Ismail’s family) is situated close by as are several other graves and mausoleums. These tombs entice many guests, notably Malaysian and Singaporean Muslims of Indian descent.

Photos:(L) Tomb of Syarifah Rodziah. Other graves on the island.
The island has a number of other sights, some of which are quite mystical together with:

– A lot of previous wells, one of which is believed to include salt water when the tide is in and fresh water when the tide is out.

– Some curiously shaped rocks, including a stone skull, horse head rock and a cut up rock at the highest point of the island. Varied legends and myths are associated with these stone island yellow t shirt rocks.

– A village of elves and an elves’ palace.
– A cave, Gua Yunos, the place warriors were said to practice mysticism and study silat (Malaysian Martial arts)

You can find out extra about these points of interest by visiting the Museum on the island, Muzium Pulau Besar, which explains some of the weird and great legends and sights on the island. Entrance is RM5.

Photos: (L) One of many wells, nonetheless in use. Horse Head Rock.
There was an attempt in the nineties/2000s to create a tourist resort right here. A substantial hotel, Putera Island Resort, was built with a 750 seater ballroom among its many services. It closed down after just a few years of operation and now lies empty and wasted. Perhaps the elves sabotaged the lodge!

There stone island yellow t shirt was some renovation activity occurring on the resort throughout my visit in December 2012. A sign talked about an Islamic Centre so perhaps part or all the resort is being transformed for that goal.

There is a golf course adjacent to the resort. I think it could not be operational but it seems that the greens are nonetheless being maintained.

Photos: (L) Museum Part of the defunct Putera Island Resort.
When i visited, the beaches on the island have been clean and engaging and the sea was calm, inviting and suitable for swimming, although being positioned on the busy Straits of Malacca, it only wants one ship to throw its garbage overboard for the beaches to be affected. For the reason that island can also be a Muslim pilgrimage site this is not a spot for lying on the seashore in a bikini however swimming wearing a T-shirt and shorts (i.e. Malaysian Type!) is acceptable.

There are a few food stalls and retailers on the island for refreshments.
Photos: (L) Beach on the island. Anjung Batu Ferry Jetty.

Easy methods to Get to Pulau Besar
Take the coast road (Highway 5) from Melaka city towards Muar. At Umbai, observe the signs for Umbai Jetty. Here you can park your automobile (RM5) and hire a speed boat to take you to the island. I paid RM100 for the spherical trip. The boat is capable of holding a dozen or so people so is nice value for a large group. After dropping us on the island, the boat driver gave us his cell quantity and we just called him to pick us up when we needed to go back.

His name is Abu Chik with cell 016-677 5035. I see from his business card that he also runs journeys to smaller islands in the vicinity such as Pulau Lalang, Pulau Serimbun, Pulau Nangka, Pulau Dodol, Pulau Undan, Pulau Hanyut, Pulau Binatang, Pulau Burung, Pulau Feringgi and Pulau Hantu.

Photos: (L) Umbai Jetty the place the speed boats may be employed. Passenger disembarking on the island with the help of a ladder.

If you are alone or in a small group it could be higher worth for money to take the ferry.
The ferry operates from Anjung Batu Jetty which is only one or two kilometres further on from Umbai. There’s automobile park on the ferry terminal (RM3).

There are 7 ferries a day in each route:
Anjung Batu




Depart Jetty

Pulau Besar




Ticket Price
Return/2 Methods

RM14 Grownup
RM10 Youngster (ages 5-12)

RM 3 Baby (ages 1-4)

As mentioned the Putera Island Resort is closed down and most web sites quoting accommodation on this island are out of date. I might advocate a day journey only and as an alternative keep in a single day in Melaka.