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Langkawi ~ Legends II

An Introduction Getting There Legends Sights & Visits Beaches Islands

Stay-in Langkawi Travel-in Langkawi Langkawi Map

Cave of the Banshee Isle of the Pregnant Maiden

The islands of Langkawi were infested with pirates living and feasting on boats and travellers who chose to sail in their waters. Not many locals ventured to the islands and soon stories abound of these mysterious islands. The myths are still woven strongly into the lifestyle of the local people.


Gua Langsir
On the neighbouring island of Pulau Dayang Bunting, there is a cave so deep and dark that no one dares to venture in. People today claim that thousands of bats live in it but the local people of yesteryear would not set foot there, not even for all the riches in the world. They are convinced the cave is home to a female vampire called the langsir, which, after having lured men to its lair, would suck their bodies dry of blood. The "langsir" in Malaysian mythology is supposed to be an evil spirit that shrieks, much like the Irish banshee, although this local variety also drinks the blood of its victims.

No one would go near Gua Langsir, for they believe that the eerie sounds that come from the depths of the cave are the cries of the banshee and it is enough to make their blood run cold and their hair stand on end?.

This cave is 91m in height and rumoured to be haunted. Gua Langsir is filled with bats and is definitely not a place for the faint-hearted

Gua Langsir somehow lacks the usual stalactite and stalagmite formations on its ceiling and floor respectively. It is, however, gloomy and slightly eerie, almost as if it truly is haunted....


Tasik Dayang Bunting
Tasik Dayang Bunting is a fresh water lake on the island of Dayang Bunting,
the second largest in the Langkawi archipelago.
Here are two main legends related to the island

Dayang Bunting & The Rude Merchamts
Dayang Bunting was a giant guardian spirit that kept watch over the islands. The lady's defences include her pet lion and poison from the tuba root, potent weapons for her protection. Hence, the two islands closest to Pulau Dayang Bunting, are named Pulau Singa Besar (Great Lion Island) and Pulau Tuba (Poisonous Root Island).

The story goes that, a group of rude merchants failed to pay the obligatory
respects to Dayang Bunting as they passed by the islands. Rudely awakened by the intrusion, she summoned her pet lion to despatch the trespassers. She roused the spirits of wind and water, stirring up a tropical storm that unleashed its fury on the incoming fleet of sailors.

The howling winds and tossing waves threw and dashed vessels on Pulau Jong (Junk Island), hence the remains of wrecked vessels. In the stormy affair, a cargo of black and white water buffaloes escaped to Pulau Gubang Darat (Land Stable Island) and Pulau Gubang Laut (Sea Stable Island) while the white buffaloes sheltered at Pulau Balar (White Water Buffalo Island). Yet other boats, laden with rice, was stranded at Pulau Beras Basah (Wet Rice Island).

The Dayang Bunting Legend
The legend of Pulau Dayang Bunting is a romantic story concerning
Putri Dayang Sari Or also known as Mambang Sari, a celestial princess,
and Mat Teja, a male genie

Mambang Sari used to frequent the island accompanied by her maids. Their favourite spot was Pasir Teluk Air Tahun and Teluk Lawak. One day Mat Teja saw Mambang Sari and was struck by her beauty. He fell in love with her and used to follow her wherever she went. Once, while on a lookout for her, he met Tok Diang an old man from the village. Mat Teja told him of his love for Mambang Sari but just did not know how to reveal this secret and feared that his love might not be reciprocated.

Tok Diang asked Mat Teja to get the tears of a mermaid from the sea and to wipe them on his face the next time he met Mambang Sari. He did just that and when Mambang Sari saw him she fell in love with him. They often met at various places to enjoy the beauty and serenity of these spots. They became more intimate and as a result Mambang Sari became pregnant. His ploy worked indeed and he married the princess.

She chose to retire at Tasik Dayang Beranak (Lake of Born Maiden) to give birth. Unfortunately the child died after seven days, which was when she discovered that her marriage was through trickery. After burying her baby in the lake, Tasik Dayang Beranak, heart broken, she went to the lake once more and blessed it with magical fertility powers, saying that any woman who wanted a child could get her wish fulfilled after drinking water from the lake. She returned to the heavens, never to appear again.

This legend gained credence when it was said that a couple, childless after
almost twenty years of marriage and not for lack of trying, drank from the lake. Only then did they have their prayers answered. They had a baby girl.

Today, a white crocodile is said to be living in the lake. It is indeed a very lucky person who manages to get a glimpse of it for it is hardly ever seen.
Guardian spirit or a real albino crocodile, no one is able to say for sure but many believe in the authenticity of this legend that has brought many a despairing couple to its banks, who have put their faith in the good-will of a broken-hearted fairy princess who had loved the lake and who has given Langkawi another legendary legacy in Tasik Dayang Bunting, that is the
Lake of the Pregnant Maiden.

Some people believe the water of the lake possesses some mystical power of helping barren women to bear children.

Hence, when going on the island hopping tour, if you look closely you can make out the physical appearance and silhouette resembling that of a reclined pregnant giant woman with her hand on the large belly

The best way to know about the various legends of Langkawi is to visit the Legend Park or Taman Lagenda Langkawi with its with 17 story-telling monuments, located nearby Eagle Square in Kuah Town

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