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Lost World of Tambun – Malaysia

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Lost World of Tambun – Malaysia

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The new RM60 million water theme park “Lost World of Tambun” is   located in the historic town of Ipoh in the middle of the North-South corridor in Perak.

Ideally located between Penang and Kuala Lumpur. The park will provide a much-anticipated family leisure attraction for anyone in the area.It’s expected to attract 450,000 visitors annually.

The theme park is landscaped with vines, creepers and lush tropical plants to give the illusion of a Lost World.  The park is the sister theme park of Sunway Lagoon in Petaling Jaya.  It is opened since Nov 2004.

theme park is two hours drive north from Kuala Lumpur and one-hour and a half drive from Penang. It opens from 12:00 noon until 7 p.m. on weekdays.

On weekends, school and public holidays, the park opens at 10:00 a.m. It closes on Tuesdays except if the day falls on Malaysian school and public holidays. The entry fees are RM21 per adult and RM16 per child.

I just love the place where they build The Lost World of Tambun. Surrounded by nature with some huge limestone hill as background.

You can start the adventure at Adventure River and get transported on a long river ride, with giant waves providing the thrills.

It’s running 600m around the theme park, the river passes through ruins with special effects like smoke, light, the sounds of monkeys, elephants and insects, and water sprays.  The brave-hearted can check out the Cliff Racer twin speed coaster slides using tubes.

The Explora Bay kids zone has smaller slides and fountains.A favourite with both kids and adults in this zone is the tipping bucket, which overturns when it is filled to the brim, splashing water onto everyone beneath.

There is also the Jungle Wave Pool with seven wave patterns that can rise up to one metre high.Beyond the wave pool, the adventure continues with the Tube Raiders which comprises four different tube slides measuring between 113m and 115m that end at the edge of a pool.

The most interesting and thrilling slide is the one wherein the adventurer is engulfed in complete darkness when passing through it.After a long day of fun and adventure, visitors can relax or rejuvenate themselves by soaking in a bathing pool which is fed with 100% natural spring water from the famous Tambun hot springs nearby.

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Bako National Park – Sarawak, Borneo

Bako National Park – Sarawak, Borneo

It’s been a while since the last visit and butterflies were beginning to flutter in my tummy. 7 years can be a long time in the tropics. lifecycles seem to be shorter and longer at the same time.

It was a 5.30 morning call, we had to get to Bako village for an early check in at the park. Having arrived in Kuching the day before, we had not been able to get to the Visitor’s Information Centre in time to make bookings for a place to stay at the park. Had our quick toast, jam and coffee at Singgahsana Lodge (breakfast included) where we stayed the night before and carrying with us only our overnighters, rushed off to catch the 7.00am bus.

There are a number of ways of getting to Bako. One is to take a tour Or by taxi (RM30 per way) or by mini van. We decided on the bus. This public bus, Petrajaya Transport Co leaves from Bus Stop no. 1 at Jln Market, opposite Elektra House for Bako Village (Kampung Bako) every hour from 7am till 6pm and costs a nominal fee of only RM2.50. Be prepared to wait though. It’s not always on time.

The white mini vans take travellers into the outskirts of Kuching, charge at least double the price of public buses and waits to be filled before leaving. If need be, you can also catch one of these at the car park area opposite Electra House.

About 30 minutes later, we arrived at the bus stop at Kampung Bako. The Bako National Park office (more like a booth really) is by the jetty and manned by very helpful officers. Before entering the park, all visitors are to acquire permits which means just filling up a form and submitting to the officer there. Upon finding out that we hadn’t booked a room at the park he promptly called the park to enquire on availability. The park is now a must see for anyone visiting Kuching and surroundings. Looking at the visitor chart, numbers have certainly jumped from several thousand in the early 90’s to about several 10s of thousands in 2000s. Busy periods are especially on weekends. But on taking a closer look at the visitor chart, the peak seems to coincide with summer and winter holidays in Europe. However, the dormitories are difficult to book some days as tour agents bring in large tour groups. Unfortunate for us, we happened to visit on one of these booked out days.

Rooms at the Park

The officer at the jetty finally got a reply from the park and. there were no dorm bed left but there was a room available for RM105 per room per night. Ouch! Just to give you an idea of the type of accommodation at the park and pricing, have a look at the accommodation page.

Okay, not to scare anyone away from staying overnight. Bako National Park has so much to offer nature wise. The only grouse we had was the housing condition. We had no choice but to stay at a RM105 per night room, with shared bathroom facilities but we had expected a little more of the cleanliness and upkeep of the place …

Boat ride to Bako

Having been to Bako 3 times in my life, one of the highlights is the boat ride. The first two trips, we were totally drenched. The winds were strong, the rain was pelting on us and there was absolutely no cover from the direct bombardment; the boats were open-tops. Lesson no 1. make sure you bring along waterproof luggage. The recent trip in September was of fine weather, the water was still, the winds down and no rain. I’m not sure if the weather has anything to do with boat schedules but when the tide is low, boats have some difficulty getting to the jetty at the park and visitors may have to wade out to sea to the moored boat or enter and leave the park at tide related times ie earlier than expected sometimes.

The officer stationed at the Kampung Bako jetty usually arranges the boats for visitors. The local boatmen are licensed with the park and standard rate is RM40 per person per way and these boats can seat 4 – 6 persons comfortably. The ride takes some 45min, hugging the coastline, passing kelongs and fishermen out on their sampans pulling in their nets left out the night before. Finally, we arrived at the Bako National Park jetty.

Let the boatman know when to expect you for your return trip and don’t forget to ask for his name, just in case you have a change of plans and may need to get in touch with him. Normally, these boatmen will wait for visitors at the canteen so if you do have to change your plans, meet him there or pass on your message to the ranger or any of the other boatmen sitting around and they will be able to help you locate your boatman.

From the jetty, it’s a bit of a walk to the ranger station. At the ranger station, visitors are required to pay RM10 for the entrance fee. For any room bookings, either pay there or present the voucher for the prepaid room. If you’re early and roomkeeping has not completed their cleaning yet, then visitors can leave their baggage in the baggage room at the ranger station – hang around at the canteen or go on the treks.

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Endau Rompin National Park

Endau Rompin National Park

The Endau Rompin National Park is one of the five national parks in Johor. The other four are Johor Tanjung Piai National Park, Johor Pulau Kukup National Park, Johor Gunung Ledang National Park and Johor National Park in Pulau Mersing. All the national parks are run by the Johor National Parks Corporation.

The diversity of the habitats and species found here is of major conservation significance. The park is home to many species of birds, mammals, frogs, insects and many other wild animals, as well as varieties of orchids, herbs, medicinal plants and trees. One of the most spectacular discoveries was the fan palm (Livistona endauensis), endemic to the Ulu Endau area. This centuries-old rainforest is also home to the largest surviving population of Sumatran Rhinos still left in Peninsular Malaysia.

Besides endowed with scenic natural landscape and unique flora and fauna, the Endau-Rompin National Park also has a peculiar attraction — two high-quality timber trees of the “jelutong” and “Durian Bujur” species, one aged 300 years and the other 100 years. The height of the jelutong tree is approximately 60ft while its circumference is about “five embraces of an adult person” while the durian tree is estimated to be 40ft and circumference some 10 embraces.

The Endau Rompin National Park also has some of Malaysia’s best waterfalls namely Buaya Sangkut, Upeh Guling and Batu Hampar all within 2 hours trek of each other.

The weather is usually hot and humid, with a chance of rain, while the nights can be quite cool. Conditions vary with the time of year. Rainfall is heaviest between October and January. Temperatures range between 25C and 32C. The rainy season between December and January often renders the park inaccessible. Always check with the park authorities beforehand before making your way in.

A minimum stay of four days / three nights is ideal in order to cover the many activities and attractions in the park. Of course it’s not hard to spend a week to get lost amidst the breathtaking rivers and forests. Unless you’re an experienced jungle trekker, it’s best to stick to the packages offered – the Johor National Parks Corporation organizes the most reasonably priced ones.

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