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Hantu Air, Puaka Air or Mambang Air is the Malay translation for Spirit of the Water, which is the unseen inhabitant of watery places such as rivers, lakes, seas, swamps and even ditches associated with bad things happening to people which includes drowning, missing, flooding and many more.


Some people believe that spirits discarded by their previous owners will haunt places associated with water. T Superstitions arising among the locals tell of this evil spirit dwelling in watery places where it sometimes disguises itself as an old tree trunk, a beautiful lady, fishes or other animals in order to lure people into its trap. When caught the human will be eaten or drowned.


A ceremony still popular among the local older Malays, especially in the East Coast of Malaysia, is called Semah Pantai. It is a ceremony whereby fishermen and seafarers honor the sea spirits and at the same time ask for blessings and protection when they fish at sea.