At time of writing, which is in mid-November 2020, Malaysia is battling with the third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, which leads to the imposition of the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) in specific areas, especially the state of Sabah and parts of Klang Valley, to curb the spread of the virus. However, unlike the previous Movement Control Order (MCO), many sectors of the economy are permitted to open but strict standard operating procedures (SOPs) must be institutionalised and members of the public are urged to stay home if they don’t have strong reasons to go out. The majority of office workers situated in areas undergoing the CMCO – except those in finance and administration, including essential services – are urged to work from home where possible. Even classes for students have now moved online since schools and colleges are closed. Businesses are forced to restrategise and find other ways to meet and serve customers’ demands through digitalisation.
When it comes to travel and tourism, those who reside in the CMCO-imposed areas have their movements curtailed to within their respective districts. Fortunately, for others who are located in green zones (areas with very few or no COVID-19 cases), they can freely travel to other green zones, while avoiding high risk areas labelled as red zones and keep adhering to the SOPs.
As we adapt to this new normal, we must accept the fact that the threat of the pandemic persists as long as there is no vaccine. It is imperative for us to keep our spirits up, remain hopeful and continue to be positive that in the end, we will eventually win in bringing the pandemic under control – or better yet, eliminate it – because as the famous writer on spirituality and wisdom C.C. Scott once said, “the human spirit is stronger than anything that can happen to it”. What we can do now is to make sure that we minimise the risk of being infected by maintaining social distance, donning effective surgical masks, washing our hands regularly and keeping our health in check as we go about our lives.
Since Gaya Travel Magazine team is based in Kuala Lumpur and unable to travel overseas because the borders are still closed, the team decides to focus on destinations within the Malaysian borders such as Desaru Coast (pages 21 & 68); Kelantan (page 34); the villages of Kampung Hulu Chuchoh, Kampung Hulu Teris and Kampung Bukit Bangkong in Sepang, Selangor (page 44); the villages of Kampung Parit 2, Kampung Parit 3 and Kampung Pasir Panjang in Sabak Bernam, Selangor (page 52); Hulu Selangor and Kuala Selangor (page 66); the islands of Johor (page 74); Marang and Kuala Terengganu districts (page 82); including Melaka, Port Dickson, Kuantan and Temerloh with Rangkaian Hotel Seri Malaysia (pages 100 & 104). When it comes to accommodations, the team also brings you Anantara Desaru Coast (page 92); Sutera Sanctuary Lodges at Manukan Island (page 108); and Vivanta Langkawi Rebak Island (page 114). It is the team’s hope that the contents of this issue offer enriching ideas on where Malaysia-based travellers can head to locally, while at the same time keeping their (and the team’s) wanderlust alive. Apparently, Malaysia is not short of wondrous gems awaiting to be discovered by travellers, and Gaya Travel Magazine is committed to carry on highlighting them, irrespective of whether the borders remain closed or otherwise.
Till then, see you in the next issue. Stay safe and stay healthy friends!
JUHAN KAMARUDDIN @ JEREMY KHALIL
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Cover photo by: @jey.zainudin @kamarulsulaiman @notsobackpackers @oohainbamm @syarehhh @n.muif
Page 14. Editorial Jottings
GAYA SPECIAL FEATURE
Page 8. Let’s Explore The Extraordinary Kelantan
Page 32. 9 Must-Do in Seremban
Page 50. Covid-19 Pandemic: Ipoh City Recovery Plan
Page 56. Swiss-Garden International Hotels, Resorts & Inns Ideal Getaway For Business and Leisure
Page 90. The Philosophy Behind Terengganu Woodcarvings
Page 98. Layan Makan Jerrr @ RTM
Page 21. An All-Girls Desaru Getaway!
Page 34. Getting All Charged Up by Kelantan
Page 44. #KitaKeKampung Programme Introduces the Villages of Selangor: Kampung Hulu Chuchoh, Kampung Hulu Teris & Kampung Bukit Bangkong
Page 52. Being Kampung People in Sabak Bernam
Page 58. Unlocking Desaru Coast’s as a Potential Beach Retreat via Klook
Page 66. Selangor: A Plate of Culture, A Bowl of Rice
Page 74. Majestic Johor: Discovering Johor Bahru, Mersing & Kota Tinggi
Page 82. Exploring the Land and Sea in Terengganu
HOTELS & RESORTS
Page 92. Anantara Desaru Coast Resort & Villas Brings Authentic Luxury to Malaysia’s Golden Shores
Page 100. Experiencing Hotel Seri Malaysia Melaka & Hotel Seri Malaysia Port Dickson
Page 104. Savouring the Delights of Kuantan and Temerloh with Hotel Seri Malaysia
Page 108. Sutera Sanctuary @ Manukan Island
Page 114. Vivanta Rebak Island Langkawi
Page 120. YB Ustaz Zawawi Mughni, Executive Councillor for Islamic Affairs, Consumer Affairs and Halal Industry, Selangor State Government. In Service for This Life and the Hereafter
Page 126. Tuan Haji Ramli Mohd Tahir, Managing Director, KDEB Waste Management. Bringing Selangor’s Waste Management Services to New Heights
Page 132. Aereon Wong