BACKGROUND The largest state in West Malaysia, Pahang covers an area of 35,960 sq km with a population of about 1 million. Kuantan is the state capital while Pekan lying 45 km away is where the royal family resides.
Pahang offers a liefetime experience of endless excitement, with its pristine forests, idyllic fishing villages and white powdery beaches. The state is also home to the longest river on the peninsula, Sungai Pahang, and its highest peak, Gunung Tahan.
HISTORY Archaeological finds showed that the first human settlement in Pahang was probably at the Tembeling River. Ancient Chinese records referred to Pahang as a vassal state of the Sri Vijaya Empire from the 7th to 13th century. From the 15th to 19th century, it was a vassal state of the Melaka sultanate and later of the Johor-Riau Empire. In 1882, Bendahara Wan Ahmad of Pahang proclaimed himself Sultan after the collapse of the Johor-Riau Empire.
In 1888, a British Resident was appointed to administer the state. Pahang became part of the Federated Malay States in 1896 until the Japanese occupation.
GETTING THERE Malaysia Airlines provides regular flights from Kuala Lumpur to Sultan Ahmad Shah Airport near Kuantan, as well as Tioman airport.
There are also regular air-conditioned coaches plying between Kuantan and other major towns in West Malaysia.