Fact: watching a sunset (and a fire show) is better on a beanbag!
Beach, beanbags, booze and blazing entertainment! Many tourists wander into this popular drinking spot and find themselves returning every night until they leave. Arguably the liveliest spot on Langkawi’s Cenang Beach, Kalut Cafe N Bar is a prime place to watch the sunset on another day of your Langkawi holiday with an extravagant cocktail in hand. Images of the cafe’s multicoloured beanbags on the sand and their nighttime fire shows have guests flocking to this beachfront bar once the sun sinks below the horizon.
How To Get Here
If you’re walking here via the beach, they are located next to the Casa del Mar Resort. You’ll probably notice the colourful furniture before you see their signage at the front on their large hut. If you are on the road (Jalan Pantai Chenang), look for the Mali-Mali Beach Resort. If you’re driving, I believe you can drive down the narrow dirt road next to Mali-Mali and park right at the cafe.
Ambience & Amenities
Under the main cabana, there are a small number of seats covered by the roof. During the day, tables will be set up on the beach along with a wall of lounge chairs at the edge of Kalut Cafe’s territory facing the ocean. I believe these loungers cost money to sit in them, even if you’re ordering drinks from the bar.
Once prime beach hours are over in the late afternoon, Kalut will remove all of these and begin setting up the iconic colourful beanbags on the beach if the weather permits. These beanbags allow everyone to get a better view of the sunset and lie down to watch the stars once night falls. We arrived at 6 pm and had our pick of the best tables, so come here early to get a front-row spot.
Despite their flamboyant colour scheme, chances are you’ll hear Kalut Cafe N Bar before you see it. They were blasting hip-hop music at an obnoxious level when we strolled up. It was so bad that we almost didn’t sit down here. A staff member seemingly turned it down a notch when he noticed us cringing. This is the usual state of the place, according to some of the bar’s negative reviews. Be prepared to feel like an old fogey complaining about loud music. As the evening turned to night, the soundtrack shifted to more palatable reggae music.
The toilets are in the shed that is off to the left (if you’re on the beach facing the cafe). They’re not particularly pleasant, but one can’t expect much from a beach toilet. Inside the small room is just the toilet, and there was no paper available when I went. The sink that is behind the bar is for staff and guests to use, and there was soap there.
Fire Show at Kalut Cafe N Bar
I’m not sure if it happens every night or just on peak evenings, but we were treated to a troupe of fire dancers with our meal tonight. We were here on a Friday, so you can be relatively sure that you’ll see them too if you come on Fridays. According to their sign, they go from sunset until late. The Kalut Cafe Fire Show began around 7:30 pm on this night. They performed for half an hour before taking their break, informing us that they will resume at 9 pm.
Calling themselves “Fire Skeleton,” there were three of them each with their own style and preferred fire accessory. They took turns twirling firey batons, tossing and catching them, spinning sparkling pois and lighting up the night with a giant cone of flame shot from a rod. This entire show is free, but the troupe will come around to all the tables during their break to shake their tip jar at you. In my opinion, they put on an entertaining show and deserve their tips.
The Kalut Cafe & Bar menu is one large board, double-sided. This is more of a watering hole with lots of options for beer, spirits and interesting cocktails. Between 5 and 6 pm, the Happy Hour deal kicks in which is buy 2 and get a free 1. Hopefully, you’re in the mood for a burger because there’s not much else to eat at Kalut Cafe.
Food & Drink
You can’t get two drinks that are as opposite of each other than the Gin Smash (RM30) and Sweet Beach (RM30). The Gin Smash is a mojito with a gin twist. Earthy with loads of mint and sour edge that is not too overpowering – great for those who dislike the sickly sweet nature of most beach cocktails. The Sweet Beach, on the other hand, is the classic beach cocktail, all that’s missing is the tiny umbrella. Very sweet, with an even balance between the two main flavours: pineapple and melon.
We both got The Kalut Burger (RM38) which came with fries that were very crispy and McDonalds-like. We were drawn in by the advertised Kalut sauce on this burger, but unfortunately, it didn’t taste like anything out of the ordinary and might have just been mayonnaise and ketchup mixed together. The bun was very soft and quite small. It had the texture of those cheapy burger buns you always get at barbeques or White Castle. Halfway through eating the burger, things started to get very messy with the bun sliding around and unable to absorb the juices. The taste of the meat didn’t stand out and the entire burger was forgettable.
The drinks are expensive by Langkawi standards so you have to be in a splurging mood. The food was lacklustre, but you don’t come to Kalut Cafe N Bar for the food. This is a place to drink, be lazy on a beanbag, catch a sunset and watch the fire show, which has almost become a Langkawi attraction in its own right. It was such a relaxing vibe being there at Kalut Cafe N Bar (once the music was tolerable and we had a drink in us) that we almost went again the next night to watch the fire show again.
This place is very similar to the Yellow Beach Cafe, also on Cenang Beach. Both have beanbags, an extensive drink menu, and possibly even a fire show. We saw another fire show happening further along the beach where Yellow Cafe would be. We didn’t have time to visit Yellow Cafe, so the following is based on information that I can gather from other blogs. It does look like Yellow Cafe is a little cheaper and has more food options. However, Kalut Cafe N Bar has a greater number of cocktails on its menu and more interesting beers. The choice between Yellow Cafe vs. Kalut Cafe depends on what end of Cenang Beach you are at, and whether you prioritise drinks or food.
Price for 2 Pax: RM136.00
The Kalut Burger x 2: RM76.00
Gin Smash: RM30.00
Sweet Beach: RM30.00
Kalut Cafe N Bar
Address: 2, Jalan Pantai Chenang, Kampung Lubok Buaya, 07000 Langkawi, Kedah
Opening Hours: Daily, 11am – 1am
Alcohol Served: Yes