I can’t say I haven’t explored the different landscapes of Malaysia!
At the end I spent 4 days in Cameron Highlands, the highest hills in Malaysia..you don’t really need all that time unless you like trekking and you want to do some of the proposed tracks but I’m not one of those people. It was nice breathing some fresh air and calmness after all the heat and crowdedness of the past week.
I went to see tea plantations and know more about how the tea is processed..really interesting for a tea lover like me! The landscape was breathless! And actually if compared with India or China, this is nothing!
I made a short hike in the mossy forest where the clouds are at low level and create a special environment, different from the kind of jungle that we all usually have in mind. We just found a snake along the way and then many pitcher plants like these!
On Thursday, after 5 hours on the road and 3 hours on the river, I arrived in Taman Negara, that is supposed to be the oldest tropical rainforest in the world (but actually other Countries claim the same…). The day after I went for 4 hours trekking in the jungle: 1,7 km up and 1,7 km down and Canopy walkway: 7 bridges at 35 mts! Totally worth it!
In Taman Negara you may see all the animals that live in the jungle: tigers, elephants, snakes, birds, sunbears, deers, tapirs and others. I havent’t seen none of these, neither a leech (not wet enough that day!).The fact is that this National Park is big 7 times Singapore (!) and this kind of animals stay away from people so it’s really difficult seeing them. Some rangers were telling me that they saw elephants coming towards the resorts looking for food just some weeks ago…
On Saturday morning..another looong bumpy ride first on the road towards North-East and then on a fastboat: Perenthian Islands! Many people suggested me to go there and then I wanted to some totally relaxing days. Basically there are 2 Islands: one big (Besul) and one small (Kencil) that is supposed to have nicer beaches and lower prices and this has been my choice. You have to tell the boat driver where you want to go and not knowing how the Island was, I told him Long Beach…bad choice! The first impression was to run away immediately: crowded, dirty and overpriced. Basically a party beach. Now it’s high season and everything is fully booked, so I started the same play I did in Perth some months ago..going from place to place looking for a bed: no way! Moreover, when I asked people in the chalets/hostels they answered me with arrogance..and this didn’t help. At the end I managed to find a bed in 25 beds dorm in Long Beach, I was tired after 10 hours journey and pissed off of the overall situation, so I decided to have a rest and then moving forward the day after.
I’m quite picky with beaches, they are the first places where I put that BUT I was talking about some posts ago: I don’t like If they are party, honeymoon, couple, family style… Basically a desert beach is ok for me and I found it!
A research on the internet last night, a tip by a friend , a call to check availability this morning (one room left!) and I ended up in D’Lagoon, that is a private beach, really quiet and relaxing..exactly what I was looking for ! There are couples, honeymooners, groups of friends.. but everybody respects the other and if you want to disappear from the World for a couple of hours…you can. This morning I went to Turtle Beach and nobody was there…I just saw little friendly sharks…amazing!
There’s a “big” French Community, some of them have been here for months now et on doit parler français! It’s good for me, even though sometimes Spanish words come out.
If I think that yesterday I wanted to run away and this morning I asked if they need an housekeeper here…from one extreme to another…this sounds like me
I don’t have plans and I decided not to care about budget this time. These days I’m not travelling, I’m on holiday. When the cash finishes, the holiday finishes (there are no ATMs here!), easy.
I have an open ticket for going to the West Coast, my last stop in Malaysia and then decide the destination for the upcoming two months. I’m waiting confirmation about a project to which I will take part (I hope)…according to the reply, I will decide if going immediately North or coming back South, slowing down the rhythm for a while!