(The St. Regis Langkawi/Facebook)
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There’s just something about the ocean that draws you to it. For some it’s the appeal of hedonistic parties atop a yacht. While for others, the idea of a sunny respite and dips in cool, crystal waters are its charm. Of perhaps you find that the best travel memories are made in flip-flops – a mandatory accoutrement on any beach vacay. Whatever it is that you love about straddling both surf and turf, we’ve picked out the best restaurants and cafes peppered all throughout Malaysia for you to enjoy scrummy dishes with remarkable beach views: 

1. Kayuputi, St. Regis, Langkawi

(The St. Regis Langkawi/Facebook)

Located within the Moorish confines of the St. Regis Langkawi, Kayuputi is a luxurious dining house serving fusion Asian cuisine. Overlooking the Andaman Sea, you’ll be able to capture the most stunning panoramic views from its famous sunset deck. Totally Instagrammable, this is one restaurant you’ll want to visit with your gal pals – because who better to get those money shots than them? Of course, the company and food won’t disappoint. 

2. Gustoso By The Beach, Parkroyal Penang Resort, Penang

(PARKROYAL Penang/Facebook)

Soak up sunset views of the Straits of Malacca from right along Penang’s famed Batu Feringghi stretch when you dine at Gustoso By The Beach. Serving up authentic Italian fare with flair in a relaxed setting, this is the restaurant to head to if you’re looking to treat yourself but not necessarily doll up for dinner. For mains, the chef recommends the risotto – a tantalising dish of classic risotto paired with porcini mushrooms and bitey 24-month aged Parmigiano cheese. 

3. Dining By Design, Anantara Desaru Coast Resort & Villas, Johor

(Anantara Desaru Coast Resort & Villas/Facebook)

Okay, so this isn’t a restaurant per se. But beachfront dining doesn’t get much more romantic than a bespoke meal with Dining By Design.  A one-of-a-kind experience available only at Anantara Desaru Coast Resort & Villas, you and your special someone will dine in a dugout sandcastle along the beach – complete with a private chef, butler, sommelier, and a sumptuous menu handpicked by you (there’s an array of Asian and Western dishes to choose from). Since you’re dining right along the shore, your only other accompaniments to the cosy, quiet setting are the sounds of waves and pink skies at sunset followed by the glow of moonlight flecked with twinkling stars. 

4. Fisherman’s Cove, Gaya Island Resort, Sabah

(Gaya Island Resort/Facebook)

If you’re a diver, you’re going to want to add this restaurant to your bucket list! After a long day of swimming with the fishes among the world’s best dive spots in Sabah, why not treat yourself to a celebratory meal of Bornean-style cuisine? Fresh seafood is the name of the game when you tuck into a meal at Fisherman’s Cove. Situated along Gaya Island’s Malohom Bay, you’ll get killer views to boot. The restaurant is perched on the hotel’s rooftop with a breathtaking view of Mount Kinabalu. Really, what more could you ask for?

5. Nelayan, Tanjong Jara Resort, Terengganu 

(Tanjong Jara Resort/Official Website)

In a similar vein to and actually inspired by the locally and internationally acclaimed restaurant that is Fisherman’s Cove, Nelayan is helmed by Chef Wai, the pioneer of Fisherman’s Cove. Similarly, Nelayan’s menu focuses on sustainable fishing practices and the freshest seafood ingredients. As for the setting, you get gorgeous seaside views of the East Coast of Peninsular Malaysia with a backdrop of traditional Malay interiors and intricate vintage wood panelling. 

6. Uncle Lim’s Kitchen, Pangkor Laut Resort, Perak

(Pangkor Laut Resort/Official Website)

Uncle Lim, whose specialty is crafting Nyonya and Hock Chew Chinese-style home cooked meals, took inspiration from local produce to create mouth-watering Asian delights. Uncle Lim’s Kitchen is also where you’ll want to be if you’re a vegetarian or vegan as they’ll be more than happy to accommodate your dining requirements. The real kicker here is an unreal panoramas of Royal Bay that surrounds the base of the elevated establishment. As you unwind in the cool sea breeze and fill in the void in your tummy, from first being painted cotton candy hues at sunset, the sky eventually becomes illuminated with starlight– it’s quite a sight. 

7. Yard & Co, Pengerang, Johor 

(Yard & Co./Facebook)

If it’s good enough for royalty, then it’s good enough for us! Peering out over the waters of Desaru Coast is this quaint café called Yard & Co. After all, not much else beats a spot of coffee and cake after a long walk along the beach. It also needs to be said that this is another one for the ‘Gram. The café’s minimalist décor is infused with touches of nature; we reckon it goes perfectly with the bright blue beyond just outside its windows. 

8. No 11, Angsana Teluk Bahang, Penang 

(No 11 Penang/Official Website)

What No 11 has going for it is a strategic location. Being situated at the north-western tip of Penang island promises a captivating view of the sea; accompanied by a flavoursome international menu of course. Possibly the most accessible restaurant on our list, No 11’s menu comprises of gluten-free, vegetarian, and kid-friendly options. The restaurant also accommodates to wheelchair users, letting you treat the the older or differently-abled members of your family to a lovely seaside meal. 

9. Yellow Beach Café, Pantai Cenang, Langkawi

(Yellow Cafe Langkawi/Facebook)

Finally, here’s where you’re going to want to let your hair down. Easily one of Langkawi’s liveliest spots, Pantai Cenang also happens to be one of the best spots on the island to watch the sun go down. Yellow Beach Café is really a café by day and beach bar by night, though you won’t go hungry here (even if you’re having drinks) when there are delicious pizzas, pasta, and even a table barbecue you can grill yourself on offer. As for the vibe, it’s super laidback, with an open plan, beanbags, and hammocks.