I’m sure you are not coming to an island destination like Langkawi with a plan to retire by early evening every day and going off to bed. Well if you do that, you will miss out on another side of the island’s life which springs into action after dark… and that is it’s own charming nightlife.
However you won’t get large discotheques here where you can dance away to the wee hours. But there can be lot’s of music of all types, background and live, some can be right on the beach, others in a cozy lounge or bar, and you can enjoy that with your favorite drink or have a friendly chat with fellow guests until late hours.
If you walk along the streets of Pantai Cenang or Tengah, you will notice how quickly the restaurants transform themselves from the day’s sedate looks into colorfully illuminated bars & pubs and continue to get thronged by tourists as the evening progresses. And many of these bars remain open until late, some even till 3am.
So essentially, nightlife in Langkawi means visiting a bar, pub or a beach bar, listening to live or background music, having a relaxed drink, join a game of pool or dart, or make friends and chat away till it’s time, or just relax on a couch and simply enjoy the ambience.
Top Langkawi Beach Bars, Pubs, Music Bars
In the section below, I have listed the top nightlife options in Langkawi. However, there are large variations in categories, from budget to upscale and therefore they should be compared within their own respective class. The experience and profile of people could be radically different depending on how much you are willing to shell out from your pocket.
Babylon Mat Lounge ($$, Beach Bar, Pantai Cenang)
This is a beach bar with a rustic village like setting and located on the beachfront of Pantai Cenang. It’s open from 10am until late into night and serves lunch & dinner. Take a beer, listen to the live music, watch the lovely sunset from the sand, and then get immersed into the lively music & ambience. This is what sums up Babylon. All seating arrangements and furnishing is created using driftwood and recycled stuffs. You will literally have to sit on mats and on the sand. So don’t go there with expectation of an upscale bar… it is not. But its musical bands and casual friendly, laid back ambience have been pulling crowd since years. Drinks are quite cheap and menu is nice. The burgers are really great and filling.
Little Lylia’s Chillout Bar ($$, Beach Bar, Pantai Cenang)
This is another mid priced beach on Pantai Cenang offering candle lit tables with chairs rigth on the sand amidst swaying palms, with beautiful views of the ocean and complemented with live music in the evening. It serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, but really comes alive after 9pm when the live band gets going. They have a barbecue stall which opens in the evening. The beer and other drinks are reasonably cheap. Although the food isn’t that great, the ambience, closeness to water and the music is all what draws the crowd here.
Budaba Music Bar ($$, Bar, Pantai Tengah)
They call it music bar because there is a bacjground music playing all the time… not to loud though. And once in a week, there is also a live musical performance to further add to the music scene in the bar. Otherwise this is another cozy bar in Pantai Tengah which is patronized mostly by the locals, returning tourists and even expats.
Debbie’s Place Irish Pub ($$, Irish Pub & Bar, Pantai Cenang)
Located in Pantai Cenang, this is a great place to have a drink & dinner, while being thoroughly entertained by Debbie and Greg. The board outside reads ‘Debbie’s One Hand Wonder’ and which is so true when you see her mixing cocktails with deft skills and showmanship with one hand. The food menu is also nice and has both snacks and main course meals.
Cappuccino House ($$, Pub & Restaurant, Kuah)
Tucked in a corner of a road but in the main town, Cappuccino House is a great favorite to locals who like to spend an evening out with a cold beer while watching sports & movies on wide satellite screen and having chats with the local patrons. The prices are very reasonable and this is one of the few places in Kuah town that remains open till late hours.
Chillout Bistro & Sports Bar ($$, Sports Bar, Pantai Tengah)
It’s located near the northern end (beginning) of Pantai Tengah and tucked between few other restaurants & eateries. Friendly owner and ambience, great LCD screens for watching sports channels till very late hours while having a drink, and also has a pool table. Quite favorite with the locals.
Charlie’s Place Restaurant & Bar ($$$, Bar & Restaurant, Kuah)
This is a wonderful bar facing the Kuah harbor and the marina, and offering lovely view of the sunset. In the evening you will find several yachters and local patrons thronging the bar for a cocktail and friendly chats. While they serve breakfast, lunch and dinner offering International and Malay Cuisine, the main attraction here is the view of the water from a window side table. Over all a friendly place to have a quiet romantic dinner with cocktails.
Sunba Retro Bar ($$$, Bar, Pantai Tengah)
Located in the SunMall Complex in a village like setting, this retro bar is one of the favorites for the locals. The live band and the DJs would play the retro music of the 60s to 80s while you enjoy a cocktail, dance or even play a game of pool. The interior of the bar has been setup like a wooden traditional village house of Malaysia with all wooden furnishing and rustic looks. But overall it’s an upscale bar.
Langkawi Nightlife by Locations