Pangkor Island is in Perak, on the west coast of peninsular Malaysia, about 100km west of Ipoh and halfway between Kuala Lumpur and Penang. Pangkor was previously a favourite refuge of fishermen, sailors, merchants and pirates, and was an important site from which to control trading in the Strait of Melaka. Pangkor's economy was once reliant on fishing, and fishing and dried fish products are still a major industry for the island. The east cost of the island faces the mainland and is a continuous strip of residential villages, including Sungai Pinang Kecil (SPK), Sungai Pinang Besar (SPB) and Pangkor Town, the major centre of population. The road that runs along the east cost of the island turns west in Pangkor Town and crosses the island to one of the most famous beaches on the west cost of the island, Pasir Bogak (about 2km from Pangkor Town).