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Abode Of Faith

Located on the north-eastern part of Peninsular Malaysia, along the east coast, Terengganu covers a total area of 12,995 square kilometres separated into 7 districts. Located along the longest coastline in Malaysia, Terengganu had been an important maritime port during ancient times, resulting in the state being home to one of the oldest settlements in Malaysia.

 

With over 244 kilometres of the coastline under its jurisdiction, Terengganu boasts a great number of pristine sandy beaches that are certain to delight any visitors that enjoy the sea. Terengganu also has a great number of beautiful islands, waiting to be explored. As a matter of fact, the state is the home to two of the most popular island destinations in Malaysia, Pulau Redang and Pulau Perhentian. Terengganu is a treasure trove for anyone who enjoys the beaches and snorkelling.

Located on the north-eastern part of Peninsular Malaysia, along the east coast, Terengganu covers a total area of 12,995 square kilometres separated into 7 districts. Located along the longest coastline in Malaysia, Terengganu had been an important maritime port during ancient times, resulting in the state being home to one of the oldest settlements in Malaysia.

 

With over 244 kilometres of the coastline under its jurisdiction, Terengganu boasts a great number of pristine sandy beaches that are certain to delight .

Many visitors that enjoy the sea. Terengganu also has a great number of beautiful islands, waiting to be explored. As a matter of fact, the state is the home to two of the most popular island destinations in Malaysia, Pulau Redang and Pulau Perhentian. Terengganu is a treasure trove for anyone who enjoys the beaches and snorkelling.

 

In a multi-cultural society such as Malaysia, Terengganu stands out as it never did receive many migrants of other ethnicity. Over 90% of its population is Malay, with only a small number of Chinese, Indian, and other races. This causes Terengganu to have a predominantly Malay culture that is almost unchanged from ancient times, making it one of the best destinations to experience traditional Malay culture. Terengganu is one of the few places that traditional practices such as wau, gasing, Tarian Ulek Mayang, Tarian Gamelan and others can still be widely found

The combination of natural beauty such as pristine beaches and lush rainforests, a unique and vibrant culture as well as a proud history and rich heritage marks Terengganu as a prime tourist destination within Malaysia.

History

Archaeological discoveries found evidence of civilisation that exists as far back as 4,000 B.C, which suggests that Terengganu is home to one of the oldest settlements in Malaysia. The earliest reports of Terengganu were by Chinese merchants, dating back as far as 6th century A.D. Terengganu’s strategic location by the South China Sea makes it an important trading centre along trade routes, and it frequently traded with dominant forces of that time such as the Srivijaya Empire, Majapahit and China. It is said that even the famous Chinese admiral Zheng He once stopped by Terengganu to replenish his supplies.

Like other Malay states, Terengganu once subscribed to Hindu-Buddhist beliefs that are mixed with traditional animist beliefs. Terengganu, however, had the distinction of being the first Malay state to officially accept Islam. The discovery of the Batu Bersurat, or Inscribed Stone in Malay suggests that Terengganu has been following Islam as early as 1303. The 700-year-old Batu Bersurat is a stone inscribed in the language of Malay Jawi, officially announcing the status of Islam as Terengganu’s official faith and stating the acceptance of the Islamic faith by King Mandalika, dated 1303.

The Sultanate of Terengganu

 

Terengganu had been under the rule of other forces throughout its existence, such as the Srivijaya empire and the Melaka sultanate. Terengganu achieved true independence only around the 18th century, with Tun Zainal Abidin being the first ruler of the newly-established sultanate. As Tun Zainal Abidin was the brother of a former sultan of Johor, Johorean politics strongly influenced Terengganu throughout the 18th century.

Terengganu later became a vassal state of Siam (Thailand). Control of the state changed hands rapidly during the 19th and 20th century, switching back and forth between Siam, the British colonists and Japan. After the defeat of Japan, Terengganu joined the Federation of Malaya, the predecessor of the Malaysia we know today. Terengganu Today

 

Prior to the discovery of an enormous oil reserve of the state in the 1970s, the main economic activities of Terengganu are mainly limited to fishing and farming. Despite rapid development in Terengganu due to the oil and gas industry, many places remain untouched by industrialization. A great number of unspoilt natural wonders still reside within the state, while traditional Malay culture continues to be practiced unthreatened by modernization and globalization.

Culture

 

Visitors looking to experience traditional Malay culture should certainly take some time to visit Terengganu. Games such as wau and gasing, classic forms of dancing, songket and batik crafting can all be found here. Also, not only is Terengganu home to a number of traditional Malay customs still practiced today, but the state also has some variations that cannot be found anywhere else.

One of the things to look out for in Terengganu would be the traditional Malay dances, some of which are unique to the state. Still performed regularly, dances such as Tarian Gamelan and Tarian Rodat will allow visitors to experience the best of traditional Malay performing arts.

Another thing to look out for would certainly be Terengganu’s world-famous boat-makers. With skills handed down through generations of craftsmen, these master boat-makers are able to create boats of incredible detail and intricacy without referring to any plans or blueprints. Their skills are so renowned that they continue to receive orders from both locals and foreigners alike. Visitors to Terengganu should definitely pay a visit to see these masters in action.

Gastronomists will also feel at home with Terengganu cuisine. Terengganu’s location along the coast and its traditional economic activities of farming and fishing causes its cuisine to heavily feature coconuts, fish and rice. Other than classic Malay dishes, Terengganu is especially famous for local specialties such as keropok lekor (fish crisp crackers), nasi dagang, laksam (a regional variety of laksa), sata (grilled fish paste) and many more.