Terengganu: Wikis


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Mohd Jidin bin Shafee
—  State  —
Terengganu Darul Iman


Coat of arms
Motto: Islam Hadhari Terengganu Bestari
Anthem: Terengganu State Anthem
Location of Terengganu
Coordinates: 4°45′N 103°0′E / 4.75°N 103°E / 4.75; 103Coordinates: 4°45′N 103°0′E / 4.75°N 103°E / 4.75; 103
Capital Kuala Terengganu
Royal capital Kuala Terengganu
 - Ruling party Barisan Nasional
 - Sultan Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin1
 - Menteri Besar Ahmad Said
 - Total 12,955 km2 (5,002 sq mi)
Population (2009 est.)[1]
 - Total 1,121,000
 Density 86.5/km2 (224.1/sq mi)
Human Development Index
 - HDI (2003) 0.813 (high)
Postal code 20xxx to 24xxx
Calling code 09
Vehicle registration T
British control 1909
Japanese occupation 1942
Accession into Federation of Malaya 1948
Website http://www.terengganu.gov.my
1 Elected and reigning as the 13th King of Malaysia. The Regent of Terengganu (Pemangku Raja), Tengku Muhammad Ismail (eight-years of age) co-reigns with the three-member Regency Advisory Council (Majlis Penasihat Pemangku Raja) headed by Raja Tengku Baderulzaman (the King's younger brother)

Terengganu (Jawi: ترڠڬانو, formerly spelled Trengganu or Tringganu) is a sultanate and constitutive state of federal Malaysia. The state is also known by its Arabic honorific, Darul Iman ("Abode of Faith"). The coastal city of Kuala Terengganu which stands at the mouth of the broad Terengganu River is both the state and royal capital as well as the largest city in Terengganu.



There are several theories on the origin of the name 'Terengganu'. One theory attributes the name's origin to terang ganu, Malay for 'bright rainbow'.[2] Another story, said to have been originally narrated by the ninth Sultan of Terengganu, Baginda Omar, tells of a party of hunters from Pahang roving and hunting in the area of what is now southern Terengganu. One of the hunters spotted a big animal fang lying on the ground. A fellow party member asked to which animal did the fang belong. The hunter, not knowing which animal, simply answered taring anu (Malay: 'fang of something'). The party later returned to Pahang with a rich hoard of game, fur and sandalwood, which impressed their neighbors. They asked the hunters where did they source their riches, to which they replied, from the land of taring anu, which later evolved into Terengganu.[2] Terengganu was called Trangkanu (Thai: ตรังกานู) by the Siamese when it was under their influence.


Chinese naming

The traditional Chinese name for Terengganu has been "丁加奴" (Pinyin: dīngjiānú), which is a direct transliteration of the Malay name. However, in recent years, the Chinese community in Terengganu has raised objections to the name, citing that the characters used loosely translate to "giving birth to a child who will become a slave" (Chinese: 添丁加). Therefore, they successfully petitioned the regulatory commission for Chinese language in Malaysia to change the Chinese name for the state to "登嘉楼" (Pinyin: dēngjiālóu), which can be loosely translated to "aspiring/stepping up to a higher level", in September 2004. It is worth noting, however, that the new name has been in unofficial use by the state's Chinese society for at least 30 years before its official adoption.

There are certain segments of the Chinese society who opposed to the name change, citing the fact that the new name contains too many character strokes, making it much more difficult to write. They have proposed to revert the name back to the version used before 2004, but with the word "奴" (slavery, which was mainly the cause of the controversy) to the similar sounding, but more positive "努" (perseverance).

Geography and demographics

Terengganu is situated in north-eastern Peninsular Malaysia, and is bordered in the northwest by Kelantan, the southwest by Pahang, and the east by the South China Sea. Several outlying islands, including Pulau Perhentian, Pulau Kapas and Pulau Redang, are also a part of the state. The state has a total area of 12,955 km².

Terengganu has a population of 1,080,286 (2006 census), of which Malays make up 94.7%[1] of the population and Chinese, 2.6%[1], while Indians 0.2%[1] and other ethnic groups comprise the remainder, 2.4%[1]. In the year 2000, the state's population was only 48.7% urban; the majority lived in rural areas[3]. By the 2005 census, the proportions had changed significantly, with 51% of the population living in urban areas and 49% in the rural areas[3]. Terengganu is divided into seven administrative districts (called Daerah in Malay), of which the respective names, area, population, district seats and density are shown in the table below:

District Area (km²) Population

(2006 census)[1]

District seat Density
Besut 1,233 145,324 Kampung Raja 118
Dungun 2,736 159,996 Kuala Dungun 58
Hulu Terengganu 3,874 73,912 Kuala Berang 19
Kemaman 2,536 174,876 Chukai 69
Kuala Terengganu 605 361,801 Kuala Terengganu 598
Marang 667 102,470 Marang 154
Setiu 1,304 61,907 Bandar Permaisuri 47

The people of Terengganu generally speak Terengganese Malay, which is distinct from standard Malay and Kelantanese Malay, except for those in Besut district and Perhentian Islands who speak Kelantanese.


The Terengganu Inscription Stone. The Jawi inscriptions are of local laws influenced by the Shariah and thus one of the earliest proof of Islamic influence in Malaysia

Terengganu's location by the South China Sea ensured that it was on trade routes since ancient times. The earliest written reports on the area that is now Terengganu were by Chinese merchants and seafarers in the early 6th century A.D. Like other Malay states, Terengganu practiced a HinduBuddhist culture combined with animist traditional beliefs for hundreds of years before the arrival of Islam. Under the influence of Srivijaya, Terengganu traded extensively with the Majapahit Empire, the Khmer Empire and especially the Chinese. Terengganu was the first Malay state to receive Islam, as attested to by a stone monument dated 1303 with Arabic inscriptions found in Kuala Berang, the capital of the district of Hulu Terengganu. Terengganu became a vassal state of Melaka, but retained considerable autonomy with the emergence of Riau-Johor.

Terengganu emerged as an independent sultanate in 1724. The first Sultan was Tun Zainal Abidin, the younger brother of a former sultan of Johor, and Johor strongly influenced Terengganu politics through the 18th century. However, in the book Tuhfat al-Nafis written by Raja Ali Haji, in the year 1708, Tun Zainal Abidin was installed as the Sultan of Terengganu by Daeng Menampuk also known as Raja Tua under the rule of Sultan Sulaiman Badrul Alam Shah. In the 19th century, Terengganu became a vassal state of Siam, and sent tribute every year to the King of Siam called bunga mas. Under Siamese rule, Terengganu prospered, and was largely left alone by the authorities in Bangkok. The terms of the Anglo-Siamese Treaty of 1909 saw power over Terengganu transferred from Siam to Great Britain. A British advisor was appointed to the sultan in 1919, and Terengganu become one of the Unfederated Malay States. The move was highly unpopular locally, and in 1928 the British used military force to suppress a popular uprising. During World War II, Japan occupied Terengganu and transferred sovereignty over the state back to Siam, along with Kelantan, Kedah, and Perlis. After the defeat of Japan, British control over these Malay states was reestablished. Terengganu became a member of the Federation of Malaya in 1948, and a state of independent Malaya in 1957.

Following decades of rule by the Barisan Nasional (National Front) coalition, the Islamic Party of Malaysia (PAS) came to power in the 1999 General Elections, making Terengganu the second state in Malaysia to be ruled by the Islamist party (the first being neighboring Kelantan). However, in the 2004 General Elections, Terengganu was recaptured by the Barisan Nasional.

Politics and government


The Constitution of Terengganu came into force in 1911. It has a supplement that came into force in 1959. The official English title for the 1911 constitution is;

  • " The Constitution of the Way of Illustrious Sovereignty "

The 1959 constitutional supplement is divided into two sections. The sections' official English language titles are:

  • In 2008 & 2009, there was a book that made by Terengganu Government which is telling the terengganu citizen to make a payment to Datuk Seri Ahmad bin Said Pok Dogol regarding to real estate issues.


MALAY TITLES "Pembayaran Secara Mingguan Kepada MB Terengganu" "Pajakan rumah secara besar-besaran untuk MB kami" "Selamatkan Ahmad Said daripada dilaknat Allah"

The Sultan of Terengganu

The Sultan is the constitutional Ruler of the state of Terengganu. The State Constitution proclaims that the Sultan is "the Ruler and fountain head of all authority of government in the State and Territory of Terengganu", the Head of the Religion of Islam in the state and the source of all titles, honours and dignities in the state. He is also vested with the Executive Power of the State. The hereditary Sultan of Terengganu since 1998 has been Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin.


The current Sultan was elected as the 13th Yang di-Pertuan Agong or King of Malaysia. As per the Malaysian constitution and the State constitution, the King cannot reign both as the Head of State of the federation and as ruling monarch of his state. During his tenure as King of Malaysia the state ruler appoints a Regent to rule in his place. The Regent (Pemangku Raja) of Terengganu is now the King's eldest son, Tengku (Prince) Muhammad Ismail. As he is not yet of age suitable for the post (being only eight years old), the Prince co-reigns with the three-member Regency Advisory Council (Majlis Penasihat Pemangku Raja) headed by Raja Tengku Baderulzaman (the King's younger brother) as dictated by syarat (2) Fasal 16 AA Undang-Undang Bagi Diri Kerajaan Terengganu (Bab Yang Kedua) under the state constitution.

Chief Ministers

When Terengganu was an absolute monarchy, the Chief Minister was selected by the Sultan of Terengganu. Since the declaration of independence of Malaysia (then called Tanah Melayu) and the first general election, the Chief Minister has been the State Assembly (ADUN) member elected by a majority of all State Assembly members, who are themselves elected by universal adult suffrage of the citizens of their constituencies. Below is the list of the Chief Ministers of Terengganu from 1925.

Term Starts Term Ends Chief Minister[4] Party
April 1925 June 1940 Dato' Seri Amar Diraja Ngah Muhamad bin Yusof
June 1940 May 1942 Tengku Seri Setia Raja Tengku Omar bin Othman
May 1942 Dec 1945 Dato' Jaya Perkasa Da Omar bin Mahmud
Dec 1945 Dec 1949 Tengku Panglima Perang Tengku Muhamad bin al-Marhum Sultan Ahmad
Dec 1949 June 1959 Dato' Perdana Menteri Di Raja Dato' Seri Setia Raja Kamaruddin bin Idris
June 1959 Nov 1961 Mohd Daud bin Abdul Samad PAS*
Nov 1961 Sep 1970 Tan Sri Ibrahim Fikri bin Mohammad Perikatan
Sep 1970 Sep 1971 Dato' Mahmood bin Sulaiman Perikatan
Sep 1971 Aug 1974 Dato' Nik Hassan bin Wan Abdul Rahman Perikatan
Sep 1974 Dec 1999 Dato Seri Amar Diraja Tan Sri Wan Mokhtar Ahmad Barisan Nasional
Dec 1999 March 2004 Dato' Seri Abdul Hadi Awang PAS
March 2004 March 2008 Dato Seri Idris Jusoh Barisan Nasional
March 2008 Current Datuk Ahmad Said Barisan Nasional

Note:* The state Government formed by PAS after the general election in 1959 was turned over to Perikatan in Nov 1961, due to a vote of no confidence in the State Assembly and the fact that two PAS assemblymen switched parties [5]

2008 Menteri Besar appointment crisis

The state of Terengganu, where Barisan Nasional won two-thirds of the seats in the state parliament, was the last to appoint a Menteri Besar. after the 2008 general elections. In the formation of the new Terengganu state government, the federal government under Prime Minister Abdullah recommended Idris Jusoh as Menteri Besar, who received full support of twenty-three of the 24 Barisan Nasional state assemblymen elected.[6] However, on 22 March, the office of the Sultan of Terengganu announced the appointment of Kijal assemblyman Ahmad Said instead of Idris Jusoh.[7]

The Prime Minister claimed that the appointment of Ahmad Said was unconstitutional as it went against the wishes of the assemblymen and the Prime Minister's office who have supported Idris Jusoh candidacy for Menteri Besar.[8] Ahmad Said was subsequently stripped of his UMNO membership "for disobeying the party's leadership".[9]

On 26 March, Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin met at Istana Negara to resolve the impasse. The Prime Minister accepted the King's appointment of Ahmad Said as Chief Minister of Terengganu. He also apologised to the King for the public spat over the appointment of the mentri besar, explaining that there was no intention to disparage or humiliate the royal household. This apparent backdown was due to threat that the royal household would be prepared to dissolve the state assembly if there had been a motion of no-confidence against Ahmad Said by the 22 Umno state assemblymen.[10]

Revolt by Barisan Nasional MPs

On 14 April, 2009 10 Barisan Nasional state lawmakers boycotted the state assembly in a bid to force the resignation of Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Ahmad Said. The absentees were assemblymen Muhammad Ramli Noh (Tepoh), Mohd Zawawi Ismail (Kuala Berang), Abdul Halim Jusoh (Permaisuri), Datuk Din Adam (Bukit Besi), Datuk Rosol Wahid (Ajil), Alias Abdullah (Alor Limbat), Zakaria Abdullah (Paka), Ramlan Ali (Jabi), Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh (Jertih) and Mohd Pehimi Yusof (Kota Putera). There was discussion amongst his own party about plans to table a no-confidence vote against him.[11] There were rumours that nine Umno assemblymen were threatening to defect as a result of a longstanding feud with the state’s mentri besar. If the nine had joined forces with opposition Pakatan Rakyat’s eight Parti Islam SeMalaysia assemblymen in Terengganu, the Barisan Nasional state government would have fallen.[12]

The State Executive Council

The state executive council (EXCO) is established by the constitution. It is composed of the Menteri Besar, who is its chairman, and ten other members. The Menteri Besar and the other members of the council are appointed by the Sultan ( or Regent ) from the members of the State Assembly. The Menteri Besar is currently Ahmad Said.

The Terengganu EXCO (2004-2009) consisted of:

  1. Y.B. Dato' Dr. Abdul Latiff bin Awang, D.P.M.T.,K.M.N., P.K.T., P.J.K.(ADUN Bukit Payung, Marang)
    (Chairman of State Education, Science and Technology and Human Resources Committee)
  2. Y.B. Dato' Rosol bin Wahid, D.P.M.T., P.J.K. (ADUN Ajil, Hulu Terengganu)
    (Chairman of State Islam Hadhari Development)
  3. Y.B. Dato' Ahmad bin Said, D.P.M.T., A.S.M., P.J.K(ADUN Kijal, Kemaman)
    (Chairman of State Housing and Local Government Committee)
  4. Y.B. Dato' Mohamed bin Awang Tera,D.P.M.T.,D.I.M.P., S.A.P., A.M.P. (ADUN Chukai, Kemaman)
    (Chairman of State Industry Development and Tourism Committee)
  5. Y.B. Dato' Haji Wan Hisham bin Wan Salleh, D.P.M.T., D.J.N., P.J.K. (ADUN Ladang, Kuala Terengganu)
    (Chairman of State Infrastructure Development, Public Services and Communication Committee)
  6. Y.B. Haji Din bin Adam, S.M.T.,P.J.K. (ADUN Bukit Besi, Dungun)
    (Chairman of State Cultural, Youth, Sports and NGO Committee)
  7. Y.B. Datuk Haji Mohd Jidin Shafee, D.M.S.M., A.M.N. (ADUN Permaisuri, Setiu)
    (Chairman of State Agriculture and Regional Development Committee)
  8. Y.B. Datuk Abdul Rahin bin Dato' Mohd Said, D.M.S.M., A.M.N. (ADUN Teluk Pasu, Kuala Nerus)
    (Chairman of State Entrepreneur Development Committee)
  9. Y.B. Haji Wan Mohd bin Wan Hassan, P.J.K. (ADUN Kota Putera, Besut)
    (Chairman of State Welfare, Women and Community Development Committee)
  10. Y.B. Encik Toh Chin Yaw (ADUN Bandar, Kuala Terengganu)
    (Chairman of State Environment, Consumer Affair and Health Committee)


Terengganu used to be Malaysia's poorest state until oil and gas were discovered off its coastline not too long ago. Terengganu's main industry now is petroleum and gas. There are huge petrochemical complexes near Paka and Kerteh, involving many joint ventures between the Malaysian national oil company, Petronas, and foreign multinationals. Tourism and fishing are also major industries in Terengganu, a state with a long coastline. Agriculture also remains important, with banana, rambutan, durian, watermelon, and various other fruits and vegetables available in season. Terengganu was traditionally famous for boat-building, with highly decorated carved wooden boats called bangau to be found in the harbor of every village and town in days not so long gone by, before electric motorboats became standard equipment for the state's fishermen.

Income and Quality of life 1995 [13] 2005 [13]
GDP (RM Million) 12,082.9 16,821.2
GDP Per Capita (RM) 13,636.1 13,642.6
Average Household Income (RM) 1,113.0 2,075.3
Crude Birth Rate (Per Thousand) 29.5 18.5
Infant Mortality Rate (Per Thousand) 10.4 6.5
Number of Population Per Doctor 2,803.0 1,930.0
Number of Students Per Teacher 17.6 15.1
Motor Vehicles Registered (Per Thousand) 181.0 212.5
Number of Viewers Per TV 11.4 9.0

Culture and attractions

Kemasik Beach, in the town of Kemasik, Kemaman District.

Terengganu did not receive many Indian or Chinese migrants, and therefore Malay cultural influences predominate. Traditional pursuits such as kite-flying contests, top-spinning contests, and traditional arts & crafts, such as batik and songket are still very much alive. The people of Terengganu have always had a reputation for being socially conservative and devout Muslims.

The major tourist attractions in the state include: Kuala Terengganu, the capital; Tasik Kenyir, a large artificial lake; Sekayu Waterfalls; Kuala Ibai Lagoons; Batu Burok Beach, Kemasik Beach, Rantau Abang, Marang, Chukai town and several offshore islands such as Pulau Redang, Pulau Lang Tengah, and Pulau Kapas, and the Pulau Perhentian, which attract beachgoers and snorkelers because of their picture perfect beaches. Many travelers find the relatively rural and tranquil atmosphere in the state conducive to a relaxing holiday. Terengganu has recently been known internationally as the host of Monsoon Cup, which was first held in 2005 and then became an annual national sporting event. The event brought millions of ringgit of investment into the state from the private sectors and Malaysian Government. Tourists flocked to Kuala Terengganu and Duyong to witness this event, held during the monsoon season, which had previously been low season for tourism in Terengganu.

Basic Tourism Sector Data 1999 [14] 2005 [14]
Average Day of Stays of Foreign Tourist 3.3 4.2
Average Day of Stays of Domestic Tourist 1.9 3.1
Sectorial Constribution to the Economy (RM Million) 298.9 1281.0
Number of Registered Tourist Agents 70 92
Number of Tourist Guides 21 37
Average Hotel Occupancy Rate (%) 55.9 58.3
Domestic Tourist 1,002,324 1,624,726
Foreign Tourist 146,713 197,952
Total Tourist Arrival 1,149,037 1,822,678


  • 2008 National Horse Show at Terengganu Equestrian Resort Oct 31 to Nov 2
  • Monsoon Cup- international sailing event
  • Sultan's Cup Terengganu Endurance Challenge - Horse Endurance Race
  • Formula Future- speed boat racing for under 15
  • Kapas-Marang International Swimathon- International swimming event
  • Kenyir Motocross Championship
  • Terengganu Masters- Golf
  • Kenyir International Mountain Bike Challenge
  • 'Candat Sotong' Fiesta - fishing conmpetition
  • Kenyir Lake International Triathlon
  • Terengganu Starhill Tasik Kenyir 4x4 Challenge
  • Tasik Puteri Water Festival
  • Terengganu Traditional Games Competition
  • Terengganu International 4WD Rainforest Challenge 2007
  • FEI World Endurance Championshiop 2008


The most famous local food is Keropok Lekor, which is made primarily from a combination of dough (sago flour) and pounded fish mainly from mackerel and sardines, fried and served with hot chilli sauce for afternoon tea. Keropok Keping (fish crackers) are made from sun-dried slices of Keropok Lekor. Numerous keropok stalls are to be found on the side of the highway that passes through coastal communities.

Budu, a very pungent and salty anchovy sauce is also popular among the locals. It is often mixed with sliced onions and chillies as condiments.

Laksam (or laksang in local Malay dialect), a modified version of Laksa is made from rice flour (thick and soft slices). It is served in a bowl of light fresh coconut milk mixed with boiled fish flesh (mainly mackerel), finely chopped cucumbers, chillies, onions and long beans. It is eaten cold at breakfast.

Another Terengganu specialty is sata, a type of otak-otak or fish cake wrapped in banana leaves and cooked over a grill.

Nasi dagang is also popular.

Sister states

  • Iowa, United States (1987)


  1. ^ a b c d e f "Terengganu Basic Data" (in Malay). Malaysian Consensus Department. http://www.terengganu.gov.my/dan/penduduk_05.php. Retrieved 2007-05-03. 
  2. ^ a b "Data asas dan sejarah ringkas negeri Terengganu Darul Iman" (in Malay). jutr.gov.my. http://www.jutr.gov.my/pesuma05/ASASTRG.htm. Retrieved 2007-03-21. 
  3. ^ a b "Data Asas Negeri 2006" (in Malay and English). Unit Perancang Ekonomi Negeri. 2006. http://www.terengganu.gov.my/dan/DAN2006/penduduk.php. Retrieved 2008-01-06. 
  4. ^ "Rulers of Terengganu". http://www.rulers.org/malstat.html. Retrieved 2007-05-23. 
  5. ^ "History of PAS in Terengganu" (in Malay). Parti Islam Se-Malaysia. http://terengganu.parti-pas.org/sejarah_pas_terengganu.html. Retrieved 2007-05-23. 
  6. ^ "23 Terengganu Assemblymen Pledge Support For Idris Jusoh". Bernama. http://www.bernama.com/bernama/v3/news_lite.php?id=322230. 
  7. ^ "Malaysia: The MB For Terengganu Finally Appointed". Sin Chew. http://www.mysinchew.com/node/8893?tid=4. 
  8. ^ "Terengganu MB Appointment Unconstitutional, Says Abdullah". Bernama. http://www.bernama.com/bernama/v3/news_lite.php?id=322201. 
  9. ^ "Sultan's choice of MB stripped of Umno membership". The Star. 2008-03-23. http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2008/3/23/nation/20730032. Retrieved 2008-03-23. 
  10. ^ "Ahmad Said stays Mentri Besar". Malaysia Insider. 2008-03-26. http://themalaysianinsider.com/mni/ahmad-said-to-stay-on-as-mb.html. Retrieved 2008-03-26. 
  11. ^ "Terengganu BN revolt". Malaysia Insider. 2009-04-14. http://my-1.themalaysianinsider.com/index.php/malaysia/23249-terengganu-bn-revolt. Retrieved 2009-04-14. 
  12. ^ "Terengganu rocked by talk of Umno rift". Malaysia Insider. 2009-09-03. http://www.themalaysianinsider.com.my/index.php/malaysia/36721-terengganu-rocked-by-talk-of-umno-rift. Retrieved 2009-09-03. 
  13. ^ a b "Data Asas Negeri 2006" (in Malay and English). Unit Perancang Ekonomi Negeri. 2006. http://www.terengganu.gov.my/dan/DAN2006/taraf_hidup.php. Retrieved 2008-01-06. 
  14. ^ a b "Data Asas Negeri 2006" (in Malay and English). Unit Perancang Ekonomi Negeri. 2006. http://www.terengganu.gov.my/dan/DAN2006/pelancongan.php. Retrieved 2008-01-06. 

External links

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Map of Terengganu in Malaysia
Map of Terengganu in Malaysia

Terengganu (also Trengganu) is a state on the eastern coast of Peninsular Malaysia in Malaysia. The primary attractions of the state are the beautiful tropical Perhentian and Redang Islands.

  • Kapas Island, a small island with few accommodations and nice snorkeling.
  • Lang Tengah
  • Perhentian Islands, unspoiled paradise with great diving.
  • Redang, a more expensive version of paradise with creature comforts and more great diving.
  • Rantau Abang, a sea turtle nesting place.
  • Tasik Kenyir, a gorgeous artificial lake.
  • Tenggol Island
  • Pantai Kemasik, a very gorgeous beach with small rock island just a stone's throw from the beach. When the tide recedes, you can walk to the tiny island and play on its beach. It's just 2km from Kerteh Town. Also, lots of fishing villages are around this beach. The scenery is majestic, especially when the sun rises. For avid photographers, this is a place not to be missed!


It will really help you to know some Malay. Some people speak English, but do not expect everyone to be able to. The local Terengganu accent is quite thick, but most people also speak "standard" Malay.

Get in

Most visitors to the Perhentians bypass the bulk of Terengganu and instead transit via Kota Bharu, in the neighboring state of Kelantan, which offers better connections by air and train and is only one hour away. However, Kuala Terengganu and other locations along the main north-south highway are accessible via long-distance bus from Kuala Lumpur, Penang and various other cities.

By plane

Kuala Terengganu's own Sultan Mahmud Airport (TGG) does field a number of flights daily from capital Kuala Lumpur and twice daily from Penang, as well as a thrice weekly international flight to Singapore by Firefly [1]. It's a two-hour drive from here to Kuala Besut, the usual jumping-off point for the Perhentian Islands.

Get around

By car

There is a substantial network of paved roads in the state.

By bus

There are many intrastate bus routes. In addition, if you stand by the side of the main coastal highway in a village, you can hail intercity buses if you want to go to Kuala Terengganu or other major cities in the state. The intercity buses will usually stop if you hail clearly enough for the driver to see you.


Many tourists come to Terengganu to go to islands like the Perhentians to swim and scuba dive, but the coast itself is beautiful and pleasant and dotted with peaceful villages (kampung in Malay), and Tasik Kenyir, a reservoir lake in Ulu (upriver) Terengganu, provides breathtaking panoramas.


Terengganu is known for local fabrics like kain songket and kain batik. The Pasir Payang Market (Pasar Besar Kedai Payang) in Kuala Terengganu is the best place to pick up some.


Terengganu's most famous culinary product is the keropok lekor, a thick hot dog-like sausage entirely unlike the thin deep-fried crackers called keropok elsewhere in Malaysia. Keropok lekor is made from fish paste and sago palm flour and should always be accompanied by a reddish-brown dipping sauce of tamarind, chili, sugar and vinegar.

Much good inexpensive food is to be found in coffee houses (kedai kopi) along roadsides in villages, and of course in cities. And do not miss the chance to buy some of Terengganu's delicious fresh fruits in any of the pasar (bazaars) in the cities and larger towns.

Nobody seems to be quite sure if it's legal or not, but turtle eggs are widely sold in Terengganu. They're a threatened species, so think twice before you indulge.


Alcohol is generally looked down upon throughout Malay-dominated Terengganu and is served only in Chinese (non-Halal) restaurants. It is possible to buy Malaysian and imported beer by the can at large grocery stores.

Non-alcoholic drinks are widely available, including fresh juices, coconut water (air kelapa), corn drink (air jagung) and the array of packaged drinks sold elsewhere in Malaysia. The widest variety of branded products is available in Kuala Terengganu, but there are drink stalls on the side of any major road.


Terengganu, with its nickname as Darul Iman (Abode of Faith in Allah), is known as a conservative, Islamic state. You will have a better experience if you respect local mores when you are outside of resort areas where people are used to foreigners dressed in bikinis. It is not necessary or expected for non-Muslim women to wear a headscarf (though it would certainly meet with approval), but both men and women should wear clothing that covers all or at least most of their legs (no short shorts), and women should wear blouses or dresses which cover their torso. Long sleeves are preferable for women, and outfits which show the shoulders or midriff should be avoided. The watchword is modesty. Tourists dressed in shorts and skimpy tops are really out of place in this state.

Get out

Culturally, Terengganu has a lot in common with the neighboring state of Kelantan, but the cultural and historical differences between the two states make Kelantan interesting and well worth including in your trip to Terengganu. A bus ride from Kuala Terengganu to Kota Bharu lasts only about three hours.

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Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary


Proper noun


  1. State in western Malaysia which has Kuala Terengganu as its capital.

Simple English

The floating Tengku Tengah Zaharah Mosque in Kuala Terengganu.

Terangganu is a state in Malaysia that is located on the northeastern part of Peninsular Malaysia. The capital city of Terengganu is Kuala Terengganu.[1]


Other websites

States and Federal Territories of Malaysia
States: Johor | Kedah | Kelantan | Malacca | Negeri Sembilan | Pahang | Perak | Perlis | Penang | Sabah | Sarawak | Selangor | Terengganu
Federal Territories: Kuala Lumpur | Labuan | Putrajaya


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