Not every attraction in Langkawi comes with a queue and a price list. After our visit to the cable car and its surrounding tourist trap, we drove a couple of miles to the Seven Wells, and had to pay only a few ringgits for parking.
The Seven Wells are a series of pools at the bottom of a waterfall, and not only are they a great spot for photographs, you can swim there. A small toilet/ shower facility offers a place to change into your costume – just make sure when you’re going up the mountain that you take the path to the left. If you follow the signs for “Waterfall”, they’ll lead you on a long hike up to the top. The views from there are probably spectacular, but we were advised by locals that it’s not a walk suitable for children.
I’ll offer one piece of advice which I wish someone had given to me. If, like me, you’re the sort of completist nerd that wants to swim in each of the seven pools, then you’d be well advised to start at the top and work your way down. Once you’re slippery and wet, scaling those smooth, water-worn rocks can become tricky. At one point I found myself sliding down, out of control, on my backside, which was exciting but also terrifying.
The top pool is no more than a meter deep, but you can sit with the whole force of the waterfall crashing down on your head. It’s an invigorating sensation, for a minute or two at least. Further down the largest pool is deep enough to swim in – and in one place, to jump into from a high rock.
My kids were delighted to discover this, and hurled themselves in repeatedly. Finally they persuaded me to give it a go. From the rock it looked a long way down to the water, and I spent some time dithering while they shouted encouragement (and insults). Finally I jumped, more out of embarrassment than anything else.
“How was it, Dad?” Noah asked when I resurfaced.
“I’ve done it,” I said, “and I’m glad I did it, and I’m never going to do it again.”
A word on safety: jumping into rock pools is dangerous, and a bit stupid, and you do it at your own risk. Care is advised generally around the Seven Wells, especially with young children, as the rocks are slippery, and the bottom of the pools uneven.
However, the water is clean, and cold, and on a hot day nothing freshens you up like a river falling on your head.
Photos: Andrew Killeen