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Back in Beijin on our 2014 World Tour, we spent days trying to find the best paradise island we could for the most affordable price as we were carving for a break after our horrible experience in Ulaanbataar.

A friend that lived in Singapore finally recommended us Panuba Inn Resort on Tioman Island in Malaysia as it exactly fitted our requirements on the 2 weeks get away we wanted : beautiful & authentic, quiet, off the beaten tracks and definitely cheap.

Panuba Inn Resort - Tioman Island (19)

So we went on comparing with other resorts on the island and Panuba Inn would have been the one we would have chosen anyway, as we really fancy the bungalows on stilts rising from the lava stones.

Panuba Inn Resort - Tioman Island (17)

As you must be fully aware now, we love CouchSurfing so much that there was no way we wouldn’t try it on Tioman Island as well, even if it is a small island dependent on tourism. We had free accommodation and met the most peculiar guys on Lake Baikal in Siberia this way, so who knows ?

Panuba Inn Resort - Tioman Island (1)

Well, we found that the owner of the resort was a CouchSurfer too ! This is how we met our friend June, one of the nicest person on planet Earth. She took us for breakfast and as we were on a shoestring budget we mad a deal : we would swap presentation photos & videos against free accommodation. We got our first “client” and spent one the 2 weeks there having an awesome time doing so.

As you can see below you can go hiking, snorkeling, Volley ball playing, jumping from the jetty and so on. The only down side we found in Panuba Inn was the restaurant : the food isn’t that great, especially the burger… But we haven’t found any better on the island anyway.

Panuba Inn Resort - Tioman Island (10)
Panuba Inn Resort - Tioman Island (2)
Panuba Inn Resort - Tioman Island (16)

As for wifi, you can find it for free in a cafe in Air Batang (ABC), a village you can access “walking” South for about 15 minutes. There are plenty of bars/restaurants and a shop there, so you could still buy some sun screen when you run out !

ABC - Tioman Island (6)
ABC - Tioman Island (11)
ABC - Tioman Island (5)
ABC - Tioman Island (8)
ABC - Tioman Island (7)

If you like long hikes, you can go up North for about an hour to Monkey Bay, a great snorkel spot.

Monkey Bay

How much for a night ? 

13 € (you get 10% off if you stay for 5 days or more and 15% off for 10 days or more)

How to go there :

Take the bus from Kuala Lumpur to Mersing (About 4 €) and then take the ferry to Tioman (around 11€).


Have you been to Tioman Island or want to go ? Tell us in the comments below !

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In Expedition 100, Violette & Antoine are taking you on an ultimate world tour seeking their top 100 most extraordinary places on Earth.

Come with us to explore the temples of Angkor, the largest religious complex in the world ! Watch the sunrise over Angkor Wat, play around Ta Prohm temple like Lara Croft, enter Preah Khan through the secret jungle entrance with 360 videos. But you'll also get to meet the locals living on Tonle Sap Lake and to see life at K.K.O., a green N.G.O. running tours and training workshops in Siem Reap.


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