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Langkawi is an archipelago of 99 islands in the Andaman Sea, some 30 km off the mainland coast of northwestern Malaysia. The islands are a part of Malaysia's Kedah state, but are adjacent to the Thai border. By far the largest of the islands is the eponymous Pulau Langkawi with a population of some 45,000, the only other inhabited island being nearby Pulau Tuba.
Sheltered by the mountainous backbone of Peninsular Malaysia, Langkawi escapes the northeastern winter monsoon entirely and enjoys sunny skies when the eastern provinces are flooded. Coupled with natural white sand beaches, lush jungle foliage and craggy mountain peaks - but hampered by inaccessibility - the island was at one time touted as "Malaysia's best-kept secret".
Langkawi remained a sleepy backwater until 1987, when the island was granted tax-free status with the intention of promoting tourism. The island's airport was upgraded and ferry links were increased.
Today, Langkawi competes with nearby Penang for the title of Malaysia's largest tourist draw. Resorts and 5-star hotels line the beaches and, in the winter high season, direct flights land from as far as Europe and Japan.
Langkawi is affected by the milder western monsoon (May-September), and while diving is possible at Pulau Payar, water clarity tends to be poor.
Langkawi also offers an 'Anna and the King' museum, situated in Oriental Village, created from the props of the movie, which was partly filmed in Langkawi.
Information provided by Wikipedia
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