Getting the Most Out of Langkawi SkyCab: Insider Tips

When I travel, I don’t hit every tourist spot on the list. Instead, I pick a few must-see places and then wander off the beaten path to explore the local culture and cuisine. However, on my trip to Langkawi, I made sure not to miss the SkyCab experience; it’s a must-visit attraction in Langkawi for all types of tourists.

But here’s the thing: not everyone gets the most out of their SkyCab visit. The weather is a huge factor, and many visitors miss out because they didn’t plan for it. Timing is also crucial; visiting at the wrong time of day can dampen the experience.

Having visited SkyCab Langkawi and done extensive research, I’m excited to share my tips and tricks. With these insights, you can ensure a fantastic cable car experience in Malaysia!

This signboard will appear at the ticket counter whenever the SkyCab is not operating due to inclement weather
This signboard will appear at the ticket counter whenever the SkyCab is not operating due to inclement weather

Interesting Facts about Langkawi SkyCab

The Langkawi SkyCab, operated by Panorama Langkawi, is situated at Gunung Mat Chinchang in Burau Bay, on the western part of the island. It’s about a 30-minute drive from Pantai Cenang and Kuah. The famous Langkawi cable car ride starts at the Oriental Village at the base of Mount Machinchang, the second tallest mountain on the island. The SkyCab features three stations: the Base, Middle Station (2,100 feet above sea level), and Top Station (2,300 feet).
Constructed in 2004 by the Austrian company Doppelmayr, the Langkawi Cable Car holds the title of the world’s longest free-span single-rope cable car, boasting an impressive 950-meter unsupported span between its Middle and Top Stations. This provides a breathtaking panoramic view of the Andaman Sea.

A stunning view of the Andaman sea from the SkyCab gondola
A stunning view of the Andaman sea from the SkyCab gondola

At the peak of Gunung Machinchang (Top Station), the views are spectacular. From here you can enjoy panoramic views of the Andaman Sea, lush rainforests, and the Langkawi Archipelago. In clear weather, the distant shores of Thailand are visible. Additionally, the SkyCab has one of the world’s steepest cable car gradients at 42 degrees, adding an extra thrill to the descent. The ride combines adventure with natural beauty.

Besides the SkyCab ride, there are two more exciting attractions in Langkawi. The first is the Eagle’s Nest, a freestanding glass platform at the Middle Station. The second is the Langkawi Skybridge at the Top Station. Both offer additional opportunities to enjoy the stunning scenery and add to the overall experience.

How to plan your visit to Langkawi SkyCab?

Many tourists visiting Langkawi are unaware of a crucial aspect: the island’s unpredictable weather. Langkawi’s vast rainforest, especially around the SkyCab location, can cause rapid and dramatic weather changes. It can shift from sunny to windy and cloudy within an hour. To avoid disappointment, it’s essential to check the weather forecast before heading out. This way, you won’t travel all the way only to discover the cable car is non-operational due to inclement weather.

The best time of the day to visit

Another important aspect of the Langkawi SkyCab is its breathtaking view of the turquoise waters of the Andaman Sea. Capturing these mesmerizing views with your camera is a must. The turquoise color of the water results from sunlight hitting the water at specific angles, creating a stunning visual effect.

Since the sun rises from behind Mount Machinchang, the best time to visit SkyCab is during the morning hours. This timing allows for excellent photography as the sunlight illuminates the water beautifully. By midday, around 1 pm, the sun will be almost overhead and then start moving towards the ocean, causing your camera to face direct sunlight. This can make it challenging to capture the stunning pictures you might have seen of this spectacular location.

A breathtaking view of various islands surrounded by turquoise water of the Andaman Sea
A breathtaking view of various islands surrounded by turquoise water of the Andaman Sea

Additionally, visiting in the morning when SkyCab opens at 9:30 am means encountering fewer crowds, especially during the peak tourist season in Langkawi. The weather will also be more pleasant with less heat and humidity

The most important tip:

I believe you will be in Langkawi for at least 3 days. I recommend prioritizing your visit to SkyCab as soon as you arrive in Langkawi. Don’t leave it for your last day; the weather can be unpredictable, and you might miss out on this experience. Seize the first opportunity with good weather and clear skies to visit SkyCab. Other attractions of Langkawi can wait.

During my week-long stay in Langkawi, I visited SkyCab on my very first day because the weather was perfect. Although I initially planned to go later, the staff at Halcyon Days @ Langkawi, where I stayed, advised me to prioritize it since the forecast showed clear skies. I’m still grateful for that advice.

Parking facility at SkyCab

Please note that parking at Langkawi SkyCab is not free and is not included in your ticket.

There are two large parking lots near Entrance A, categorized as regular and privilege parking. Regular parking costs RM 4 for the first hour and RM 1 for each additional hour. Privilege parking, which is slightly closer to the Oriental Village, costs RM 10 for the first hour and RM 1 for each additional hour. Regardless of where you park, you’ll still need to walk through the Oriental Village for about 10-15 minutes to reach the base station. The difference in distance is minimal, so it’s up to you to decide based on your preference.

SkyCab entrance A, next to the privilege parking lot
SkyCab entrance A, next to the privilege parking lot

Also, be aware that there is no option to pay by credit card at the exit boom barrier. You must take your parking card, which you received from the machine upon entering, to a parking cabin to pay. They accept credit cards at the cabin, but it’s wise to have cash on hand in case the machine is not working.

It appears there is no parking charge for scooters, but it’s best to double-check to avoid any inconvenience.

London Bus

From the parking lot to the base station, there’s quite a walk through Oriental Village. This area is designed to appeal to visitors with its shops and restaurants. It’s also a great spot for photography, featuring a central lake surrounded by trees that offer shade from the heat.

A bridge crossing the lake in the Oriental Village, Langkawi
A bridge crossing the lake in the Oriental Village

If you prefer to skip the walk, there’s a convenient option at the privilege parking area: a London Bus stop. For RM 6 per person (one-way), you can hop on a mini open-top bus that will take you directly to the ticket counter at the base station.

Miniature London Bus for ferrying visitors from parking lot to SkyCab ticket counter
Miniature London Bus for ferrying visitors from parking lot to SkyCab ticket counter

How to save money on SkyCab tickets and jump the queue?

Once you reach the ticket counter at the base station after passing through Oriental Village, you’ll encounter SkyCab staff offering various combo packages. These combos can’t be customized at the counter, but you can top up missing attractions, albeit at a higher cost.

Wondering about discounts or savings?

Certainly, but not at the ticket counter.

The smartest way to buy SkyCab tickets online is through Klook. It’s significantly cheaper than buying at the counter – I saved 15.3% on my tickets by booking online with Klook. There are other online providers, but none can beat Klook in price. This isn’t a sales pitch; it’s my personal experience. I saved over $20 on three tickets for my family, which was substantial.

Moreover, on Klook, you can customize your combo. For example, we wanted to include the Eagle’s Nest, which wasn’t in any combo at the counter. It would have cost RM 50 ($11) per person, but by booking through Klook, we saved money by adding it to our combo.

Additionally, Klook offers a 24-hour cancellation policy (seasonal variations apply), providing flexibility in your plans.

Note: By default, Klook displays prices for Malaysian Residents, which are considerably lower. If you’re a foreigner, be sure to select Non-MyKad to view the correct price applicable to you.

Jump the queue

If you visit during peak hours or are short on time, consider purchasing an Express Lane Ticket for approximately RM 50 extra per person. I generally advise against spending more at tourist spots, but I found the Express Lane Ticket worthwhile for maximizing your experience under certain circumstances. During peak hours, queues can be long at all stations, but the express lane ensures boarding within 10 minutes. Considering the time saved waiting at each station during both the ascent and descent, this investment can save you up to 2 hours of waiting and considerable hassle.

Tips on choosing SkyCab Gondola

Now, you might wonder why visiting SkyCab seems a bit complex. It’s all part of their marketing strategy, offering different types of Gondolas to cater to varied preferences. Let’s explore each type

  • Normal Gondola: Included in your regular ticket, these Gondolas accommodate up to 6 people. They’re fully covered with glass sides and a small opening at the top (except on the left side) for ventilation and photography.
  • Bottom Glass Gondola: Similar to the Normal Gondola but with a glass bottom, providing a dazzling view of the rainforest below. It’s akin to the experience I had on the Skyrail in Queensland, Australia, offering breathtaking views during ascent.
  • VIP Gondola: These special Gondolas feature enhanced interiors and offer onboard food and drinks. They’re assigned to those purchasing the express lane ticket, although one might question the need for dining during a 15-minute ride to the top.
  • 360-degree Gondola: Despite its name, this Gondola doesn’t rotate. It offers an open-air experience with metal grills instead of glass windows, providing an unobstructed 360-degree view.
  • Private Gondola: Ideal for groups or families willing to pay extra, the Private Gondola ensures exclusive use throughout the journey, offering privacy and comfort.

Note: None of these Gondolas have air conditioning.

The First Ride

I hope you are prepared for an unforgettable journey aboard the Langkawi SkyCab. The first leg spans 1.7 kilometers, ascending to the middle station at 2,100 feet altitude. As you ascend, the breathtaking view unfolds gradually, each 500 feet revealing a more awe-inspiring vista than the last. On clear days, the sights are extraordinary, offering a continuous ‘wow’ factor. Gliding over ancient rainforests and climbing over 550 million years old rock formations makes this journey truly unique.

Panoramic view of the rainforest and Andaman sea from the Gondola of SkyCab Langkawi
Panoramic view of the rainforest and Andaman sea from the Gondola as you ascend

If you find yourself seated on the less scenic side due to a full Gondola, don’t worry. The view from the deck at the middle station is even more spectacular – 100 times better, in fact. Enjoy the ride; there’s no need to feel disappointed. The journey to the middle station takes about 10 minutes, where you can disembark to explore. Surprisingly, many visitors overlook the offerings beyond the viewing platform. While most head straight to the top station, there’s much more waiting to be discovered at the middle station.

Things to do at the Middle Station of Langkawi SkyCab

Your first stop here should be the circular viewing platform. If the crowded Gondola ride obscured your view earlier, this is your chance to make up for it. Immerse yourself in the breathtaking panorama of scattered islets including one of the spectacular beaches of Langkawi at Paradise 101, surrounded by the turquoise expanse of the Andaman Sea. On a clear day, the scene is utterly mesmerizing, a view you won’t want to tear yourself away from. It’s simply magical.

Everyone’s favorite spot on the viewing platform, how can I miss it?

Afterward, enjoy a leisurely stroll behind the viewing deck that leads to the Eagle’s Nest. This area is often overlooked by visitors who haven’t included Eagle’s Nest in their itinerary due to its higher cost. However, you can explore this path at no additional charge. In the next section, I’ll share my experience at Eagle’s Nest and explain why it’s a highlight not to be missed.

As you traverse a narrow path, the panoramic spectacle of the Skybridge and top station unfolds before you. This spot offers a different yet equally enchanting view compared to the viewing deck, and you’ll find it pleasantly uncrowded. It’s the perfect setting for a picture-perfect moment against a stunning backdrop. A clear day transforms it into something truly magical, just see my picture below.

Panoramic view of the Skybridge from the backside of the viewing platform at the middle station
Panoramic view of the Skybridge from the backside of the viewing platform at the middle station

Continue towards the entrance of the Eagle’s Nest. Even if you haven’t purchased this attraction, don’t worry, no one will stop you. Instead of heading straight to the security point for Eagle’s Nest, turn right towards SkyBistro café. Here, you’ll enjoy a similar view to the viewing deck but from a higher vantage point. You’ll also have a complete view of the viewing deck and the middle station.

Against a backdrop of azure water, a vista of the middle station and viewing platform unfolds
Against a backdrop of azure water, a vista of the middle station and viewing platform unfolds

If you’re with family or a group, this spot offers the ideal photo opportunity, especially if you have a professional camera with a telephoto lens. Simply have your family or friends position themselves at the viewing deck while you capture their picture from here at the cafe, with the backdrop of the gondola ascending from the base station.

Here’s a perfect portrait I captured from SkyBistro using my telephoto lens

From here, you also get an unobstructed view of the Eagle’s Nest, with its iconic large eggs nestled in the center of the platform. If you haven’t included Eagle’s Nest in your ticket, you can still capture part of its charm from the SkyBistro café.

It is this panorama that unfolds when you are at SkyBistro

On the rear side, soak in the view of the Skybridge and top station against a backdrop of dense rainforest and the Andaman Sea. Treat yourself to a cup of coffee as you take in the scenery; the café serves multiple purposes, and there’s no additional fee to visit. It is also the perfect vantage point for capturing the top view of Paradise 101 island. This is a private island that offers a number of watersport activities and is a popular attraction. A day trip to Paradise 101 island is a popular luxury beach getaway option for visitors.

On Langkawi's Paradise 101 Island, you can enjoy a wide range of water activities
On Langkawi’s Paradise 101 Island, you can enjoy a wide range of water activities

The Eagle’s Nest

If you’ve purchased an additional ticket or customized your combo offer on Klook to include Eagle’s Nest, it should be your next stop at the middle station. I find it surprising that many visitors to SkyCab skip this attraction, especially considering its unique offerings. Interestingly, many opt to visit the sky deck of KL Tower in Kuala Lumpur, which costs nearly the same amount – something I find rather puzzling.

Eagle's Nest is a glass bottom cantilever platform
Eagle’s Nest is a glass bottom cantilever platform

Eagle’s Nest is an exceptional viewing platform perched atop Mount Machinchang. This 38-meter free-standing cantilevered glass platform provides an unparalleled 360-degree panorama of Langkawi Island and its surrounding seascape. A view of the rainforest beneath you is mind-blowing, you feel as if you are walking on top of the canopy. On clear days, the view extends to the verdant landscapes of the island, the azure waters of the Andaman Sea, and even the distant coastlines of neighboring Thailand.

Embodying Langkawi’s rich cultural heritage and natural beauty, Eagle’s Nest pays homage to the island’s emblematic symbol, the eagle. With a capacity to accommodate up to 300 people at a time, the platform offers a unique perspective from its 2,200 feet altitude, allowing you to walk above the rainforest canopy.

Viewing platform at Eagle's Nest in Langkawi
Viewing platform at Eagle’s Nest

Before entering the platform, you’ll receive a shoe cover which you have to wear to protect the glass bottom. Only one mobile phone is allowed per visitor, and extras must be stored in a provided locker, including backpacks. While mobile phones must be kept in a plastic protective cover during your visit, cameras and GoPros are permitted without such restrictions. Interestingly, they’re concerned that a dropped mobile phone could damage the glass – an explanation that still leaves me somewhat perplexed.

Taking clear pictures with your phone inside a transparent plastic cover is challenging. To facilitate better photography, they offer a service where a team member uses a professional camera to capture photos on the deck for RM 20. This arrangement now makes more sense to me.

Top Station of SkyCab Langkawi

The final stretch of your Langkawi Cable Car journey takes you from the middle station to the top station, spanning just under a kilometer. This leg features the steepest gradient of the entire ride, completed in approximately 5 minutes. As you ascend, the incline might not seem too steep, but on the return journey, it’s a thrilling test of nerves. Brace yourself – it’s not for the faint-hearted. On your right, enjoy a mesmerizing view of the Skybridge.

Skybridge as seen from the SkyCab gondola
Skybridge as seen from the gondola

A walk on the Skybridge

At the top station, the highlight of your visit is undoubtedly the Skybridge. Spanning 400 feet, this curved suspension bridge ranks among the world’s longest of its kind. Constructing it posed significant engineering challenges, including structural balancing from a single point at the pylon’s top, careful weight management, and precise load distribution. The entire bridge was prefabricated and airlifted by helicopter to Mount Machinchang, where it was meticulously assembled.

Walking on the Sky Bridge is an exhilarating adventure that blends awe-inspiring engineering with breathtaking natural beauty. Suspended 100 meters above the lush, tropical rainforest of Mount Machinchang, it offers an unparalleled panoramic experience. As you step onto the bridge, the sensation of being high above the forest canopy is both thrilling and surreal.

Taking a walk on the Skybridge is an unforgettable experience
Taking a walk on the Skybridge is an unforgettable experience

Each step along the gently swaying bridge reveals new vistas: the dense green foliage below, the azure expanse of the Andaman Sea, and the distant, misty silhouettes of neighboring islands. The bridge’s transparent sections provide a heart-pounding view straight down, adding an extra layer of excitement. To experience this spectacle at its best, however, you should visit Eagle’s Nest if you haven’t already. As you walk on the Skybridge, the cool mountain breeze and the chorus of birds create an immersive, sensory-rich experience.

View from the far end of the Skybridge is scintillating
View from the far end of the Skybridge is scintillating

At the end of the bridge, you’ll find the turnaround platform. Information boards along the way offer fascinating insights into the bridge’s construction, as well as the flora and fauna of the surrounding rainforest.

The information board provides details on SkyBridge's engineering
The information board provides details on SkyBridge’s engineering

Two ways to reach Skybridge

To access the Skybridge from the top station, you have two options available: the Skyglide or the stairs. The Skyglide is a tram that offers a convenient and quick ride directly to the Skybridge entry point, making it ideal for those looking to minimize physical exertion. However, it’s important to note that the Skyglide requires a separate ticket purchase at the top station, which isn’t included in your initial ticket for the Langkawi Cable Car experience. It’s a bit surprising that this detail isn’t typically mentioned at the base station.

The RM 10 fee may not ease your mind as queues can be quite lengthy. Even during off-peak seasons, we experienced a 20-minute wait going down and another 10 minutes returning. With a maximum capacity of 250 people, long queues can be expected.

You literally glide all the way to Skybridge on the Skyglide
You literally glide all the way to Skybridge on the Skyglide

Alternatively, you can opt for the stairway, totaling about 300 steps—some ascending, some descending. Be cautious, as some sections are steep and narrow, making it a challenge for those not in peak physical condition. While the stairway offers a direct 10-minute route to the Skybridge, expect to work up a sweat akin to a rigorous cardio workout. Remember, if you choose the stairs down, you’ll need to return the same way, as Skyglide can’t be used without prior payment at the top station. Individuals with medical or heart conditions should avoid the stairs entirely.

A brief ascent from the Top Station leads to two viewing platforms atop Mount Machinchang. Here, dramatic views unfold, showcasing the towering rock peaks that dominate the landscape. These platforms offer breathtaking 360-degree panoramas of Langkawi and Southern Thailand, revealing deep chasms, cliff walls, and isolated pinnacles.

One of the viewing platforms at the top station offers this panoramic view
One of the viewing platforms at the top station offers this panoramic view

Let’s get ready for one last thrill

Get ready for an exhilarating ride as you board the gondola back to the base station. While you have the option to disembark at the middle station, we decided to continue our journey all the way down. The descent from the top station to the middle station is nothing short of thrilling, taking just 5 minutes to cover a heart-pounding 950 meters. As you descend at a steep angle of 42 degrees over the expansive Andaman Sea, suspended by the world’s longest unsupported cable, the rush is truly indescribable. If heights make your heart race, this ride will definitely keep you on the edge. Words can hardly capture the excitement – maybe this video can give you a sneak peek into the adrenaline-pumping adventure.

Other attractions at Oriental Village

Your ticket includes access to three complimentary attractions at the Oriental Village: SkyDome, SkyRex, and 3D Art Langkawi. SkyDome is perfect for families with young children, featuring entertaining cartoon shows that everyone can enjoy. On the other hand, my experience with SkyRex left much to be desired—the 3D dinosaur chase with flimsy glasses didn’t quite live up to the excitement of rides like those at Sentosa Island in Singapore. I would skip it.

However, 3D Art Langkawi, also known as Art in Paradise, was a delightful surprise. We spent a full hour exploring this unique museum, where over 200 vibrant 3D paintings create mesmerizing optical illusions. Each artwork invites you to interact, offering endless opportunities for playful and creative photos. From standing on the edge of a waterfall to diving into an underwater world, every scene is meticulously crafted to astonish and entertain.

The excitement begins as you pose with a towering waterfall, appearing to balance precariously on a cliff’s edge, or dive into the depths of an ocean teeming with marine life. Each gallery is meticulously themed, from ancient Egyptian temples to outer space adventures, ensuring that every turn brings a new surprise and a perfect photo opportunity. The wow factor is undeniable as you find yourself seemingly walking through a painting, reaching out to touch objects that appear astonishingly real.

It's quite fun to click yourself with an optical illusion created by the 3D paintings at Art Paradise Langkawi
It’s quite fun to click yourself with an optical illusion created by the 3D paintings at Art Paradise Langkawi

In addition to these attractions, the Oriental Village houses Machinchang Petland, a large zoo where you can interact with various wildlife (separate entrance fee applies). You can catch a glimpse of the zoo from the gondola as you descend from the middle station. If you have young children and enough time, it might be worth a visit.

One upsell after another

Visiting Langkawi’s cable car and Skybridge for the entire day is a carefully disguised sales funnel. At every turn, there seemed to be another opportunity to upgrade or add on an attraction. It’s crucial to approach your visit with a discerning eye, carefully evaluating each option to ensure it aligns with your interests and budget. By planning thoughtfully and understanding all the offerings beforehand, you can navigate this experience to maximize enjoyment without overspending. I hope this blog provides you with valuable insights to enhance your Langkawi adventure.

Insider Tips for SkyCab Langkawi

Before you buy your SkyCab ticket, there are some crucial points I want to highlight. These details might not be fully disclosed upfront, and overlooking them could impact your experience. I would like to ensure that you make the most of your visit because the Langkawi Cable Car and Skybridge are a must-see!

  • You cannot carry food or water with you. They will ask you to remove them at the base station. Basically, you must purchase all of your necessities from the stores at each station.
  • Shops and restaurants at middle and top stations do not accept credit cards. Make sure you have enough cash on hand.
  • You will have to walk a lot if you want to explore everything at this attraction, so wear comfortable shoes and clothing.
  • You are literally pushed into posing by photographers at every corner, there is no charge for posing, but you must pay if you want a picture. I politely said “thanks” and moved on.
  • The weather in this region can change by the hour, so make sure to schedule your visit to coincide with good weather and a clear day. Locals can provide the best help here since they have no vested interest in selling you anything.
  • Tickets purchased at the counter are non-refundable. If the cable cars are suspended because of weather conditions or maintenance issues, you will have to revisit. It’s strange because I’ve never seen an organizer not refund money if they can’t provide you with the experience for reasons outside their control.
  • The SkyCab undergoes periodic maintenance, especially during the off-peak season. It can take a few days to about a month for such an event to take place. Their website and social media usually announce much earlier. Keep an eye on it before planning your trip.
  • It is likely that there will be a queue even if you cannot see it from a distance. It might be hidden somewhere that you’ll discover when you get there.
  • Shops inside the village sell atrociously expensive souvenirs and merchandise. The duty-free island of Langkawi offers better and more economical options.
  • The good news is that you will not have to pay extra for bringing your camera.
  • It is, however, not permitted to fly a drone in this area.
  • Langkawi does not have public transportation, so if you do not have a rental vehicle, you will have to hire a taxi in order to reach SkyCab. If this is the case, you may be able to get down at Entrance B, which is closer to the ticket counter.
  • You will enjoy visiting this attraction first thing in the morning after they open at 9.30 am. Therefore, plan your itinerary accordingly.
  • Free Wi-Fi is available only at the ticket counter. The mobile network is, however, available throughout the journey.
  • There are washrooms located at each of the stations for your convenience.
  • The tickets are often sold out during peak season, so buy your SkyCab ticket online and ahead of time if possible.
  • The website of SkyCab provides an excellent visual representation of the location of each attraction and point of interest. Take a look at the graphical map before you visit to have a better understanding.


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