The last I went for a real holiday was a few more months back where The Teenager and I took a slow drive over to Melaka for a nice weekend. It was a rather short get-away but needed.
Ever since I was small, I love going on trips like these. I recall my mom and dad would fetch me on the last day of school and I’d change into holiday attire. We would take a nice, slow drive heading to some exciting destinations with the occassional stops at some kampungs to eat durians or rambutans, or take a quick dip in clear rivers.
Even now, in my mind, whenever I take my drive out of KL, somehow the nostalgic feelings would come back and it is as if I am back being 7 years old and going for these trips.
Along the years, I have travelled extensively all over Malaysia including Sabah and Sarawak. Favourite places are varied – they could be the cold mountains of Mount Kinabalu, the gorgeous beaches in Sipadan, Pangkor, Tioman or Langkawi, the seafood haven in Kuching or Kota Kinabalu, the historical cities of Melaka or Penang or, the laid-back towns and cities of Kuantan or Kota Bharu. Ive seen them all and I would love to be back.
Ive lost most of the pictures taken over the years due to relocation and all that events happened in one’s life but the sights and smell are still so vivid to me.
I have compiled a few sites that will show some of the mentioned places starting with my state of birth, Pahang, and by no means they are exaustive.
Pahang – I lived in Kuantan, Pahang for a good 7 years right after I left school. There are a few good beaches came to mind for a good beach destination-
Teluk Chempedak – after I left my first job at one of the international hotels in Kuantan, I opened up a small boutique at the Teluk Chempedak selling beach wear and batik items to hoardes of German, French and Japanese tourists who stayed at the nearby Hyatt Kuantan. Business was brisk and I made many new friends. Teluk Chempedak is considered one of the most beautiful beaches in Pahang and had undergone a few rounds of facelifts. Great place to see sunrise.
Balok – well known for kite-boarding activities and is a favourite destination with tourists in the month of June to September when the weather is warm and the sea oh-so-inviting. Many resorts, from 5-start to mom-and-pops sprouted along the beach of Balok. You can almost always find something that fits in to your budget. Oh, by the way, if you drive along the road in this area, watch out for “land-mines” (cow dungs). Cows are just simply everywhere.
Rompin/Lanjut – now, this is quite a destination to drive all the way from Kuantan but it will be worth all the one hour drive. Along the way, you will see what Pahang is all about – jungles and forest. Giant old trees lining up the highway with the occassional rivers that just begs you to stop for a dip. Rompin is also the destination for the Endau Rompin National Park. An amazing place to visit to be acquainted back with nature.
Cherating Beach – the famous Club Med is located in the Cherating beach. The nearest neighbour is the Impiana Hotel and Resort which is the last resort located towards the border of Pahang-Terengganu. I had fond memories of Cherating beach where my friends and I used to escape to this place after a long week working. Cherating, truly was so tranquil that it make you feel you would not want to leave. Imagine having a lazy breakfast in your most comfortable attire and then whiling the rest of the day on a hammock under the coconut trees.
Fraser’s Hills – My dad’s final posting as a Headmaster was to Fraser’s Hills. He lived there for about 3 years before his retirement at the age of 55, and that was 8 years ago. The Olde Smoke House is a favourite retreat for city folks although there are a few of old bungalows for rent. Recommended for those who are looking for a reasonable retreat in a cold place away from the city.
Taman Negara National Park, Pahang – what can I say about this place but all fond memories of going back to nature activities I had? There are really good accommodations for those who want some creature-comforts. Mutiara Taman Negara is one of the resorts which is highly recommeded although there are a few other basis A-Huts or chalets for those who travels on a lighter budget.
Tasik Chini (Lake Chini) – when I was still working for a travel agency way back years ago, part of my job was to take tourists who wanted to see the splendour of Tasik Chini. My first love story with Tasik Chini even started when I was still young, maybe about 7 or 8 years old when my then grandad used to take me for a visit to the Orang Asli village during the school holidays and we would canoe-ed along the lakes and small rivers in a boat fashioned out of a dug-out tree trunk. Scary thing when you cant swim and the water was just inches away from you…