Many of us who scuba dive will think that it is troublesome and hot to wear a full wetsuit.
Therefore, we usually choose a shortie instead because it is easier to wear and not so hot but you will not be protected from the hard corals.
The dive centre that I dived with does not have full wetsuit for rent. I suffered some itchy stings and scratches around my legs.
I would strongly urge the visitors to carry tubes of sun screen/sun block lotions, as the tropical sun is very strong during the morning and afternoon time. Apply the lotion several times during the snorkeling/swimming sessions. My wife and daughters had sunburns in spite of applying sun screen lotions, perhaps because they applied just one time and forgot about it later on.
While swimming or snorkeling in the water you may feel a stinging all of a sudden. You will not see any jellyfishes. I was told by the locals these are 'Ocean Mosquitos" some kind of water-borne organism that will sting you. It won't leave much of a mark and it is not dangerous. If you move down the beach a little you should be able to find an area where they won't bother you. Just be forewarned but don't worry.
There are a few huts on the beach advertising laundry service. We took advantage of it as the price was moderate and there would be a one day turn around in service. However, it turned out to be a good news/bad news situation. Yes our clothes were returned washed and folded, BUT they all smelled like smoke from a wood fire, whew! I have one shirt that even now after returning home, I look at it and I still smell smoke :).
I can't say this always happens because we only had our clothes washed one time, but just beware of this possiblity!
Here, you can't see street dogs wandering around but flocks of street sheep! They looked quite dirty and not friendly to us, just busy 'mei'-ing at me when I walked pass them. Luckily, they didn't run into me.
There are lots of HUGE sea urchins even in shallow water. Watch your steps or keep floating all the time!
If you're really that unlucky, get some oil for foot baths. Oil helps soften the needles inside the skin. I learnt this method from the doctor of the public hospital in Paros Island of Greece when my friend carelessly stepped on a sea urchin. It really works!
Beware of jellyfish, especially if you go into the water after raining or bad weather. My left hand was attacked by a jellyfish and it hurt me for a few days. There is a scar left behind : ( The feeling was like an electric shock, that's too much for me.
If you're really that unlucky, go to your resort to ask for help. I got some VINEGAR for washing the wound and a lime for placing over the wound. The locals said that ACID helped though I doubted it : P
Travellers cheques cant be exchanged on the islands.
A number of resort operators either DO NOT accept credit cards or accept by applying surcharge.
It is best to bring a sufficient amount of cash for your stay in the islands.
Sometimes when you snorkel, depending on the waves, the tiny jellyfishes get washed up near the beach area. Hence, when you swim or snorkel, you will get stung by some of those. To prevent this, wear a long sleeve tee over you when you snorkel at times when the tiny jellyfishes are swimming with you.
This little bugger was responsible for me shifting from my favourite spot on the sand.
It looked pretty when I saw it, so I decided to take a picture. Bad move. After taking my picture, it yelled at me (in squirrel talk) and ran up above the branches. Thinking nothing of it, I got comfortable on the sand when out of nowhere, water came from above and drenched me. Cursing, I looked above & I saw that little bugger shaking on the branches !! Swearing explicit words at it, I gave up and went hunting for another spot :-)
OK. Make sure you carry cash when on the islands as there are NO CASH MACHINES.
The nearest cash machine is about 15km away from Kuala Besut. So, beware.
Just make sure you take sufficient cash. It would be good if the chalet can payments using credit cards. There a few who do that, but not many.
It is advisable that you know the low tides and high tides during the day. If you plan to canoe, low tide is an essential information because you would want to get stuck with it.