Pahang, covering about 35,960 sq. km (14,024 sq. miles) of mostly inland forests, is the largest state on peninsular Malaysia. Travelers come to Pahang's east-coast resorts for the long sandy beaches, which stretch all the way up the east coast along the South China Sea. Jungle forests promise adventures in trekking, climbing, and river rafting. In fact, much of Taman Negara, Malaysia's main peninsular national forest preserve, is in this state, although most people access the forest by traveling from Kuala Lumpur. Kuantan, although it's the capital, doesn't have the feel of a big city; however, with the recent construction of a few big shopping malls, there's more choice for entertainment, shopping, and fast food. If you're staying at the beach at Telok Chempedak, 5km (3 miles) north of Kuantan, the atmosphere is even more relaxed.
Cherating Village has a backpacker feel to it, but unlike those in many parts of the region, there isn't the bar and party scene. This is more laid back, with few bars, and it looks a little run down these days.