After the resounding success of the Eat.Travel.Write first and second version, the journey continues to the third phase. This time around, the programme brought 30 participants involving members of media, social network influences and bloggers to explore Kuala Kubu Bharu, Fraser’s Hill, Genting Highlands and Shah Alam.
Read on to explore things you can do when being in the territories.
Where we visited
1. Sungai Dusun Wildlife Reserve
Sungai Dusun Wildlife Reserve is a wildlife rescue and breeding centre with a peat swamp and lowland dipterocarp forest that is home to tapir, Selangor’s iconic animal. There are eight adult and three baby tapirs currently at the centre. The tapirs are fed twice a day and they will only stop eating once they are full.
Besides tapir, this centre is also home to eight Jejulong crocodiles, which are passive, long-snouted species that are not interested in human flesh. This centre is not open to the public but organisations can pay a visit by contacting the centre and writing in formally. This centre is educational and opens travellers’ eyes towards the need to protect the endangered species that are indigenous to Selangor.
GPS: 3.669853, 101.346318
2. Sungai Chilling Kelah Sanctuary
Sungai Chilling is a waterfall at the foothills of Fraser Hill, located near Sungai Pertak, close to Selangor Dam. Once travellers arrive at the entrance, they will need to walk another 100 metres to reach the reception, where every visitor needs to pay RM1 as entrance fee before trekking to the waterfall, which takes another 30 to 45 minutes.
For those who are not willing to trek, they may swim, have a picnic or even feed the fish at the kelah (mahseer) sanctuary, located at river next to the reception. The fish sanctuary is managed by the state fisheries department, while the river is gazetted as a nature park and fish sanctuary to preserve the local green kelah species.
Tel : +60360641214 / +60133080463
GPS: 3.589227, 101.735115
3. Gap Rest House
Located on the border of Selangor and Pahang, people used to stop at the Gap Rest House to wait for the gates to open for traffic heading up to Fraser’s Hill back when there was only one small road. Gap Rest House is a colonial building built in 1930s, straddling the Pahang and Selangor border. The glory days of this once beautiful Tudor bungalow was a favourite stop for birdwatchers, bikers, antique car drivers and anyone passing by, enjoying a tea, a meal or a night at this charming place.
Unfortunately, this rest house was abandoned, reclaimed by nature since 2008. Right now this charming building has just started to be given a new lease of life by the Selangor state government with Tourism Selangor managing it. The property is still being refurbished and looks set for adaptive reuse in the near future. Architecture and heritage lovers may stop by to have a quick look around and imagine what it would have been like during its heyday.
Telephone : +6093622227
GPS: 3.696250, 101.748913
4. Tandem paragliding from Batu Pahat Hill
ETW 3.0 has also brought the participants to step out of their comfort zone and let them experience adrenaline rush by paragliding 1,600 feet above sea level by launching from the peak of Batu Pahat Hill to enjoy Kuala Kubu Bharu scenery. Kelab Luncur Udara KKB, the provider of paragliding experience in Kuala Kubu Bharu, charges only RM250 per session.
The kind of paragliding that travellers will experience is tandem paragliding, which means a person will be accompanied by a professional paraglider who will manoeuvre the flight and glide together with that person. The base where paragliders will land is located at Taman Millenium, an open field next to a mini stadium where Paragliding Accuracy World Cup 2015 was held. Taman Millenium is also the best site for accuracy and cross country paragliding activity. For those who want to challenge themselves into this extreme sport, you better do it once in a lifetime.
Telephone: +6 019 204 8123
GPS : 3.545529, 101.676702
FB Page: Kelab Luncur Udara KKB
5. Birdwatching and Kuala Kubu Heritage Walk
In conjunction with the fifth year anniversary of Wings of Kuala Kubu Bharu (Selangor International Bird Race), the participants of Eat.Trave.Write 3.0 were brought up onto the high trees and sky to enjoy birdwatching and admire Kuala Kubu Bharu’s surroundings from above. Birdwatchers who were at the race witnessed various species such as Marbled Wren Babbler, Pygmy Wren Babbler, Large Niltava, Silver-Breasted Broadbills and three hornbills namely Rhinoceros, Great and Bushy Crested. Later we walked around the nostalgic town of Kuala Kubu Bharu where we encountered pre-war colonial houses, old school barbers and traditional shophouses.
Various walls of the buildings in this town are filled with murals, making them Instagram worthy. As travellers walk to the police station housed in a charming colonial building, you will able to see a charming clock tower from 1930s. Kuala Kubu Bharu is indeed the best place to escape from the hustle and bustle of the city.
Telephone : +60360641331
GPS: 3.555118, 101.665630
6. Genting Strawberry Leisure Farm
Genting Strawberry Leisure Farm, a five-acre strawberry farm located at Gohtong Jaya, is the biggest strawberry farm in Malaysia. With the existence of this farm, people from Klang Valley no longer have to travel all the way to Cameron Highlands to pick fresh strawberries since this farm is only an hour and a half’s drive away from the city centre.
Travellers to this farm will be able to see fresh luscious strawberries being grown on their patches and can even pick the fruits themselves. Strawberries are planted and harvested all year round in this farm, not restricted to seasons. In the middle of the farm, there is a counter where visitors can buy their home-made strawberry juice and dried strawberries at reasonable prices.
Don’t miss the chance to stay a bit longer at the farm’s cafe to savour the different gastronomic delights made from strawberries such as ice cream, chocolate dip and refreshing drinks. The entrance fee is RM8 per adult and RM3 per child. The farm is open daily from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
GPS: 3.398949, 101.766712
Where we ate
1. Asam Pedas Pasu Restaurant
Are you a fan of the local spicy and sour stew dish called asam pedas?
If you are, then you should simply head to Asam Pedas Pasu Restaurant at Dataran Kuala Kubu Bharu, which is only 45 minutes’ drive away from Kuala Lumpur. This restaurant serves various types of asam pedas, from the most common asam pedas pari (stingray cooked in asam pedas) to the rare asam pedas udang galah (lobster cooked in asam pedas). If you are fan of spicy food, this is definitely the best spot to fulfil your desire.
GPS: 3.557239, 101.642437
2. Eat & Repeat Cafe
When every dish in a restaurant is priced at only RM1.90, you are bound to repeat your eating, especially when the dishes are lip-smacking. To those in the know, Eat & Repeat is a newly opened café (since April 2016) with a concept similar to the Thai restaurant Boat Noodle, but using its own delicious menu, which are mainly Malay dishes apportioned in bowls. The café’s mission is to educate people in not wasting their food – should they need a second helping, they could simply repeat their order of the same dish, or maybe try a different dish. Great for those with small (and even big) appetite.
Tel: +6 011 3176 2285
GPS : 3.0652, 101.490188
3. Tart Bengkulu
For the first cuisine demonstration, Eat Travel Write 3.0 went to Felda Gedangsa, where the participants learned the making of Tart Bengkulu, a traditional and popular Malay traditional snack. This tart was introduced by the people from Bangkahulu in Sumatera, Indonesia. Unlike the common pineapple tart, Bengkulu tarts are filled with coconut filling and have different texture. Neither using butter nor margarine, the tart is made from santan, baking power, sugar, egg yolk and flour battered together and baked over burning coconut husk instead of oven to keep its flavour. Bengkulu tarts are not only popular during Hari Raya (Muslim festival in Malaysia) but also throughout the year due to its taste.
Tel : +60360463935 ( Pn Maslamat Ishak)
GPS : 3.736611, 101.382124
4. Nasi Buluh & Ikan Buluh
The participants then went to Kampung Orang Asli Serigala to learn the process of nasi buluh (rice stuffed in bamboo) and ikan buluh (fish stuffed in bamboo). This cuisine was demonstrated by the aboriginal community of Kampung Orang Asli Serigala using bamboo and banana leaves cooked on top of burning charcoal. Neither sugar nor salt were added during the cooking process. The participants were informed that this method has been used since olden days since there were neither stove nor rice cooker back then. It was amazing to see how they cooked just by filling a bamboo tube with rice and fish and roast the tube over charcoal fire.
Tel : +60193610537
GPS : 3.437502, 101.548947
5. Kuih Apam Gula Hangus
After savouring our lunch at next to the Kelah Sanctuary at Chilling River, we were shown the way how kuih apam gula hangus (a Malay traditional cuisine that is super delicious when eaten after freshly baked) is cooked. Using common ingredients, this snack is a mix of melt roasted sugar, butter, plain flour, baking soda, eggs and condensed milk, taking only 20 minutes to prepare.
Tel : +60173359231 (Pn. Hamidah)
6. Mua Lao
Mua lau is a traditional Chinese biscuit that has been manufactured by Leonard Oh’s family since 1923. Every mua lau is handmade using the traditional way in which rice is steamed on an old stove before stirred in a big wok for two hours. Afterwards, the melted rice is fried and rolled on sesame or glutinous rice before being cooled and packed. It is popular especially during Chinese festivities and weddings.
Tel : +60360572634
GPS : 3.458673, 101.638197
7. Bahulu En Ismail
Nowadays, this traditional petite soft sponge cake comes in various shapes and flavours. However, bahulu-maker Encik Ismail maintains this snack’s classic taste and shape, which is in the form of button flower using traditional technique. The bahulu batter is poured into cast iron mould and cooked using charcoal fire through the double-baking method, whereby hot pieces of coal are placed on top and at the bottom of the mould.
Tel : +60123929040
GPS : 3.437502 , 101.548947
Where we slept
1. Rumah Sri Berkat
Sri Berkat Rest House is one of a Scottish-inspired rest houses left over from the colonial era that still stands to this day at the peak of Fraser’s Hill. Taking less than three hours of driving from Kuala Lumpur to get there, travellers would feel like being transported to the British Isles as they breathe in the crisp fresh air when staying at this bungalow, besides admiring the lush highland environment wildlife like birds and insects. This little piece of Scotland is ideal for that much needed quick getaway or intimate group gathering.
Tel : +6 03 5513 2000
GPS : 3.42448, 101.44285
2. The Sticks
Those who really want to commune with nature should check out The Sticks, an eco-friendly resort located a few hundred metres from Chiling River. This newly opened resort offers travellers the chance to stay in a tent close to the refreshing river while gazing towards the stars through the tent’s transparent roof. After a tiring day of jungle-trekking to Chiling waterfall, guests are welcome to dine and rest by the river. Definitely for hard core outdoor and nature lovers.
Tel: +6 012 631 0006
GPS : 3.596215, 101.736242