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Tourism Malaysia

7 KIDS-FRIENDLY HOTELS IN MALAYSIA THAT YOUR FAMILY WILL LOVE

Are you ready kids? Aye Aye Captain!

As ‘kids’ and ‘play’ go hand in hand, it is no surprise that kids-friendly hotels are usually located within the vicinity of amusement or theme parks. However, there are also a number of hotels that take it up a notch and create their own mini ‘theme parks’, right within their premises. As we usher in the end-of-year school holidays before we welcome the year 2020, we’re pretty sure you’re looking for that rewarding holiday or that sweet escape for your whole family – before the same routine begins again!

We have covered our top picks for the best theme parks here,
so
this time let’s zoom in on the hotels that can best accommodate you and your
children’s needs as we enter the holiday season right here in Malaysia.

1. Sunway Resort Spa, Selangor

Armed with a series of awards and accolades, Sunway Lagoon Theme Park is arguably the best theme park in Malaysia, boasting a variety of attractions namely Water Park, Amusement Park, Wildlife Park, Extreme Park, Scream Park Nickelodeon Lost Lagoon.

To cater for travellers from near and far, Sunway has 3 different
hotels that are located within walking distance from the theme park, one of
which is Sunway Lagoon Hotel Spa, where you can play all day and then
retire to the fabulous rooms come night time.

This 5-star hotel is ideal for the whole family not only because
it is located next to the Sunway Lagoon Theme Park, it also has a connection to
the Sunway Pyramid Mall which is one
of the premier shopping malls in Malaysia. What’s more, Sunway hotels are always
offering great deals for family packages such as this Family Fun Package, which
is valid until year end.

If you’re looking for more than the theme park and the swimming
pool, you can just walk to the Sunway Pyramid Mall and bring your kids to skate
at the Sunway Pyramid Ice, one of
the favourite hotspots for the young and the young at heart. It is a
world-class skating rink with an open view where you can skate for fun, or even
join the skating programmes available.

Credits : Sunway Resort Hotel Spa Official Website

2. The Andaman, Langkawi

Unlike the hyper commercialised theme parks and the lure of
digitalised gaming, the Andaman takes a different spin to define itself as one
of the best kids-friendly hotels, and that is to invite guests and their
children to be one with nature. Flanked
by the 10 million-year-old rainforest, Datai Bay with an 8,000-year-old coral
reef, far away from the hustle and bustle of city life lies the Andaman, a
resort that dedicates itself to the conservation of the coral reef that was
damaged by the tsunami in 2004.

Aside from providing the amenities for families with children such
as the family-friendly swimming pool with wading pool for toddlers, baby cots,
connecting rooms and babysitting services, The Andaman offers unique activities
for both kids and adults which include the Private
Guided Snorkel, Coral Nursery Feeding
and Coral Reef Walks as part of their conservation efforts. There is
also the Marine Life Laboratory
where there are interactive presentations on marine life and guests are invited
to join lab activities like scrutinising minute marine life under the
microscope. The best part is – all of the activities above are free of charge!

One of the unique experiences that
Andaman has to offer is the Young Marine Biologists Programme, where
children aged 8 and above are given the golden opportunity to experience a day
in the life of a Marine Biologist. If you have budding marine biologists in
your midst, this programme is exclusively structured to give young talents the
right exposure into marine life at a fee of RM99 per child. As prior
reservation is required for participation, you are advised to get in touch with
the resort for more details.

On top of that, The Andaman also has a kids’ club, known as Young
Explorers’ Club where fun and educational activities are tailored to your kids.
You may also enjoy a number of water-related activities such as kayaking,
jet-skiing, sailing, snorkelling, boating and if you are keen to get closer to
nature, you can also enjoy hiking, biking or just walking through the nature
trail.

As if we cannot gush more about this 5-star nature haven, check out our feature article on The Andaman for more information: Paradise for Families

Credits: The Andaman Langkawi Official Website

3. Hard Rock Hotel, Penang

Up in the northern region, we have Hard Rock Hotel in Penang,
which is located along the scenic route of Batu Ferringhi. This 5-star hotel
chain is famous not only because of its brand name, but this particular chain
in Penang goes the extra mile to provide a luxurious getaway that is family-friendly,
accommodating the needs of toddlers, kids, teens and all the way to adults.

If you fancy a room that can comfortably fit you and your kids,
you can opt for the Roxity Kids Suite
that has a separate TV and bed for your kids or even the Roxity Kids Suite that
comes with its own courtyard! Each Roxity Kids Suite comes with a Play Station
4 with 2 controllers plus a number of PS4 games, a selection of soft toys and
kids’ books in the room, Mini-bar range for kids and Roxity branded kids’
bathrobes. Within the suite, there is a sliding door between the Master bedroom
and the Kids’ bedroom which allows parents to supervise their children while
also affording them a little bit of privacy.

Click here for a cool 360 degrees view of the Roxity Kids Suite with
Courtyard: https://www.panomatics.asia/nextgen/my/hardrockhotel/roxitykidssuitewithcourtyard.html

Games session, arts crafts,
puzzles and hand painting activities await your kids at the Roxity Kids’ Club, where they will have
the chance to mingle with Roxtars, the cool and fun characters that will be
there to hype up the energy in the club. As no adults are allowed, your kids
will also have a chance to maximise their experience with their peers. That’s probably
a good time for you to have some private moments with your partner or just wind
down without the kids around.

There’s pool, foosball, video
games such as Xbox 360, Sony PlayStation®4 to entertain your teens at the TABU Teens Club where youngsters have
the space to mingle with their peers. If they are more of the adventurous type,
they also have the option of renting a bike to explore Batu Ferringhi.

Not forgetting parents with little
ones, Hard Rock Hotel has a Lil’ Rockers
Infants Club
designed for kids aged 3 years and below. The club operates in
an indoor play area located in the TABU Teens Club
equipped with a mini playhouse, mini slide
along with educational toys games and soft toys.

One of the coolest events for kids in town, the Ultimate Kids’ Foam Party is organised at
the hotel’s poolside on every first Saturday of the month. The ticket is RM20
each but in-house guests enjoy 2 complimentary tickets per room.

While the kids have plenty activities to keep them entertained,
treat yourself to the spa, yoga or the gym facilities provided by the hotel.

Head on to their website : Hard Rock Hotel Penang Official Website

4. Meritus Pelangi Beach Resort Spa, Langkawi

Fancy a beach vacation with the
kids? Make your way to Meritus Pelangi Beach Resort Spa in Langkawi for
that unforgettable family vacation you deserve. Your kids will definitely enjoy
Kiki Kids’ Club where they will go on scavenger hunts and swimming, create art,
face painting and handicrafts, and play traditional games.

The hotel has a mini water playground for the kids,
complete with a mini golf adventure park
and Kiki’s Animal Farm for the kids
to get up close with the animals.

Take a couple of hours off and
spend at the Pelangi Spa, state-of-the-art fitness centre or head on to the
beach for some water activities. And fret not, babysitting services are
available at the resort upon request for that much needed me-time!

With all the amenities that cater
to the whole family, it is no wonder that they are the top choice as a family
friendly destination as voted by travellers on TripAdvisor.

To encourage family with kids to
stay at Meritus, the resort gives out exclusive offers like the Family Fiesta
package that can save you some bucks.         

Check out the details on their website here : Meritus Pelangi Resort Spa Official Website

5. Shangri-La’s Rasa Ria Resort and Spa, Kota Kinabalu

Malaysia is known for its
pristine beaches and tropical forests and one of the best ways to experience
both is by staying at the Shangri-La’s Rasa Ria Resort in Kota Kinabalu, which
is neatly tucked in a tropical rainforest that fronts the ocean. There are many
activities offered by the resort for its guests that are made possible due to
its geographical location like parasailing, jet skiing and walking in the
jungle to name a few.

Known to be a golfer’s heaven
where you can enjoy your game amidst the stunning views of Tambalang and
Mengkabong rivers, the resort also has admirable facilities for your kids.

Shangri-La has an active kids
club and children’s pool for the young ones, along with a myriad of other
activities that are not only fun but also eco-friendly. Let your kids
experience firefly watching, traditional fishing, paddock ride, twilight river cruise, bird
watching at canopy
and being a
Ranger
!

For a comprehensive list of the activities offered that are categorised as either sports or nature, kindly visit the resort’s official website : Shangri-La’s Rasa Ria Kota Kinabalu Official Website

6. Club Med Cherating, Pahang

Popular amongst beach lovers,
Club Med Cherating needs no further introduction. Voted as the Travellers’
Choice Award 2019 by TripAdvisor, this resort has all you need for a perfect
vacation, including kids and family-friendly activities that can help you
create wonderful memories with your loved ones.

Located in the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia, the resort is a
premium all-inclusive family holiday package where it covers everything – from your
accommodation, Childcare for kids from 4 years to 17 years old,
all-inclusive dining that is available at any time, a premium open bar, and up
to sixty different sports and activities – so you can just enjoy your holiday
with your family without the hassle of planning every little detail!

ClubMed isn’t kidding when they say their resorts are built with
family in mind – they organise activities
for both adults and kids to enjoy
, like water games, sand castle
competitions, Giant Jenga, archery and many more!

For an intimate evening out with your other half, you can drop off
your kids into the capable hands of the qualified childcare providers at the Pyjamas Club. Amenities for kids are
all accounted for, like the 24 hours
baby feeding and equipment room
, playground, free access to tennis court,
sailing and even a Club Med Baby Welcome package that includes baby foods and equipment
so parents can travel stress-free.

Check out their list on the full amenities and services provided at the resort:

7. Legoland Hotel, Johor

Did anyone say Lego?

We cannot sum up this list without mentioning this iconic brand
hotel whose attraction is not only in its fun-tastic
theme park, but also in the structure of the hotel itself. Designed with
children’s imagination in mind, everything about the hotel reflects its colourful
bricks like the themed rooms, themed lifts
and interactive LEGO features
that will certainly excite your kids. Get your kids involved in choosing the
theme of your room from a selection of Pirate, Adventure, Kingdom or the latest
-NINJAGO for your stay.

In addition to the swimming pool, LEGOLAND Hotel steps up their
game by inserting LEGO themes wherever possible, by providing interactive
activities for the kids like the puzzle to access their own LEGO treasure (available in all rooms),
featuring a special wall with 12,528
LEGO minifigures
and spreading out the buffet at the restaurant with its
organised LEGO chaos.

Your kids will be entertained with the daily activities scheduled
such as the Meet Greet, Magic Class and of course the Building projects which will help unleash
their creativity. LEGO bricks and Xbox 360 Kinect are also available at the
children’s play area if you can’t get enough play time during their scheduled
activities.

We are pretty sure a stay at the
Legoland Hotel is not complete without a visit to the theme park, so we would
recommend you to check out the special rates offered for the hotel and Legoland
Park Entry. While you are
in the area, check out the SEA Life
which is another great attraction for the kids. Expose your kids to ocean life
where 13,000 fishes and 120 types of species are on display in 11 different
habitat zones.

For more information on the theme park experience, click on our article here

Check out more awesome LEGO details here : Official Legoland
Malaysia Website

These are just a few of the best picks for kids or family-friendly hotels in Malaysia. If you have more suggestions, let us know in the comments. Happy holidays!

Written by Athirah Idrus; Information and Photo Credits to each respective hotels.

Article source: http://blog.tourism.gov.my/feed/

Categories
Tourism Malaysia

7 IDEAS FOR A ROYAL TOUR OF PEKAN, PAHANG

Pahang is the largest state in Peninsular Malaysia, and has vast tourism assets including a national park, the highest mountain in the peninsular (Mount Tahan), beautiful islands, hill-top resorts, and beautiful beaches.

Those familiar with Pahang, also known as the “Abode of Tranquility”, may have already visited its many popular tourist spots such as Genting Highlands, Tioman Island, and the Pahang National Park. However, there is a little known town that sits by the great Pahang River that also deserves special mention (and further explorations).

Photo credite: https://www.facebook.com/lensapekanofficial

Pekan used to be the command centre and capital city of Pahang in the late 19th century. Today, it is known as a royal town and home to the Pahang Sultanate – those who visit will definitely feel its tranquil atmosphere and even get to enjoy some royal “treatments”!

Kick off a royal tour of Pekan with the following suggestions:

Puding DiRaja

There’s nothing better to start your explorations of this royal town than with a royal dessert! Puding DiRaja or Royal Pudding was said to have been created and served to the Pahang royal household. So popular was this treat, that it is now available even in Kuala Lumpur and perhaps other parts of Malaysia, although, the best is still to be had here in Pekan.

Photo credit: Journeys2Pekan.com

So what is it exactly? It is a medley of bananas, prunes, candied cherries, cashew nuts and what’s called jala emas (fine threads of egg yolk prepared in syrup), and served with a milky custard poured all over it. It is a complete dessert that tantalizes all the senses of your tastebuds – there’s the crunch from the nuts, the sweetness from the various fruits, the slight tartness from the prunes, the light texture of the egg yolk threads, and the smooth custardy liquid that slips past your throat.

Of course, Pekan in also known for other mouth-watering delights. If you have a chance – and room left in your tummy – dig into the Murtabak Makassar, which we hear is also a hit with royalty and local politicians alike! In fact, they say you simply can’t leave Pekan without tasting the Murtabak Makassar.

Photo credit: https://www.facebook.com/murtabakmengkasarsdnbhd/

Essentially, it is a type of savoury pancake made of layers of minced beef or chicken filling, unique blend of spices, pastry and eggs. Best eaten dipped in pickled onions! Sounds yummy to us!

Royal Pahang Silk Weaving Centre

If you have a thing for fabrics, then you must acquire the Pahang silk as part of your collection! It is a collector’s item and would make a wonderful heirloom piece to be passed down from one generation to another.

Photo credit: Journeys2Pekan.com

Pekan is home of the “kain tenun” and in fact, some of the finest woven fabrics in this region comes from this great silk weaving centre. So fine is its craftsmanship that it was once appointed the exclusive makers of the Pahang royal garments. A little bit of trivia here: Pahang silk was the fabric of choice for the King and Queen during their coronation ceremony in 2019!

Photo credit: www.facebook.com/lensapekanofficial/

Today, the centre is a great place to learn about the history of Pahang’s woven silk, see a live demonstration of silk weaving and even purchase the fabric for yourself.

Sultan Abdullah Mosque Museum

A trip to Pekan can be quite educational indeed. Just make a visit to the Sultan Abdullah Mosque Museum and you will be thoroughly enlightened!

Photo credit: Journeys2Pekan.com

The Sultan Abdullah Mosque was built in 1929 and was the place locals congregated for their Friday prayers. It remained the key meeting place for religious services until 1976 when a newer mosque was built to serve the community.

Thereafter, the Sultan Abdullah Mosque was abandoned for some time until recently when it underwent a massive three-year reconstruction work to become the first mosque-turned-museum in the country.

Photo credit: https://batikandbubbles.com/

Visitors to the mosque museum will be able to learn about Islamic history and art with unique exhibits of the Islamic world, complemented by state-of-the-art touch screens and interesting narratives of the artefacts on display. The graceful arches, the majestic domes and minarets and all-white architecture make the mosque look quite stunning, almost like a mini Taj Mahal in little Pekan!

Sultan Abu Bakar Museum

If you think museums are stuffy places full of dusty exhibits, then this museum will certainly have you change your mind! With all the wonderful artefacts and the creative presentation of all the exhibits, we didn’t feel like we were in a museum at all. On the contrary, it certainly felt like we were in a well-curated art gallery with great storytelling of our history!

Photo credit: http://www.pahangtourism.org.my/

Pekan’s museum of note, the Sultan Abu Bakar Museum, was, in turns, a British government officer’s residence, before it became an army barrack, a palace, and finally a museum.

The museum complex houses five galleries: The Keris Gallery; History of Pahang and The Malay Sultanate Gallery; The Islamic Art Gallery; The Ceramics Gallery; and The Archaeology Gallery. Depending on your interest, you can admire weapons like the Sundang (a double edge Bugis sword) or the Sikin (keris with short blades), take a closer look at porcelains and ceramics from China and Japan, or dive into the Metal Age by browsing through tools, artefacts, and skeletal remains.

Photo credit: https://www.facebook.com/True-Asia-Media

The entire museum has been curated to provide an immersive experience with a selection of unique artefacts, insightful storytelling, thoughtful layout and touch screen information boards. Even the front yard has been turned into a kind of artistic gallery with sculptures of horses, elephants and other animals on the grass.

Black Water Jewel

The mountains and jungles of Pahang are very popular tourist attractions, however, many may not know that Pahang also has beautiful and biodiverse peat swamp forests that stretch over 160,000 hectares! It is home to 53 species of mammals and more than 200 birds, including eight species of hornbills.

Photo credit: https://www.facebook.com/FTTSTemerluh/

One of the peat swamp forests of note lies in Pekan, where the Bebar River lies. It is protected as a conservation area, but recently, has been promoted as a tourist attraction. It is called the Black Water Jewel due to the dark brown or black waters – a natural colouration which is caused by the high content of organic matter – and the fact that it is the habitat for a diverse array of animals.

Photo credit: https://www.facebook.com/lensapekanofficial/

Birdwatching activities and river cruising on kayaks are recommended here to explore the natural beauty, flora and fauna of the river. A three-hour cruise can be arranged from Runchang to Nenasi in Pekan. Throughout the journey, tourists have the chance to see unique animals, including the fully-protected oriental small-clawed otter and dusky leaf monkeys. A visit to the orang asli village can be arranged as well.

Meow Island

If you are a cat lover, you will enjoy a visit to Pulau Kucing, affectionately called Meow Island by the locals. It is a privately-run sanctuary for cats also known as the Dato’ Shamsiah Cat Shelter Park.

Photo credit: https://www.facebook.com/MeowIslandMalaysia/

There are more than 60 rescued cats, some ducks, geese, goats and dogs, too, who all roam freely and lead comfortable lives, thanks to the care provided by the owners and occasional volunteers. Over the years, volunteers have built quirky and colourful cat shelters here, and helped out tending to the sick animals, feeding them as well as beautifying the landscape – all in the name of providing a safe sanctuary for these felines.

The shelter also receives the support from the Pahang Veterinary Department, who conducts monthly health checkups on the feline residents of the island.

Photo credit: /www.facebook.com/lensapekanofficial/

Here, you can pet and play with the animals, or do some volunteer work such as cleaning, building and repairing the cat shelters, or contribute donations should you feel like it.

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Categories
Tourism Malaysia

Battling the Waves in Malaysia

People like us are most likely to stay far, far away from the beaches during the monsoon, which usually occur from October to March if we are talking about the east coast in Peninsular Malaysia. But like a secret world, when the monsoon season comes and the islands close their doors to the public; that is when the surfers come out to play. To the uninitiated, monsoon means persistent rain, angry winds and ferocious waves, but to the surfers, it’s just a good day to surf. Indeed, surfing is not my scene at all and it’s not until words got around that a Malaysian surfer won third place at the 2019 REnextop Asian Surfing Tour that prompted me to check out our surfing scenes. Malaysia is no Hawaii or Bali but our surfing spots have start making waves among surfers around the world, no pun intended. Let’s check out Malaysia’s top surfing spot.

Cherating, Pahang

Photo: Cheratingpoint

Cherating, a small beach town about 45km north of Kuantan has been a surfing spot since the 80’s; but since surfing is not part of our culture, it has never been a sport enjoyed by the mass. Nowadays, we can see that the surfing community in Malaysia has grown bigger and stronger. There are even many surfing schools in Cherating.

Photo: Didaqt Surf FB

I don’t speak the surfer’s language but from what I gather the waves in Cherating are consistent and are suitable for beginners, intermediate, advanced and longboard surfers. It’s a good place for beginners to learn surfing, while the more experienced surfers can enjoy a swell that goes up to five foot. For a “hodad” like us (a term surfer uses for a person who hangs around the beach and does not surf), there are also other activities to try your hands at such as turtle-watching, kayaking, kitesurfing and windsurfing.

How to get there:
By Bus
From Kuala Lumpur international airport (KLIA), take a train (KLIA Transit) to the Terminal Bersepadu Selatan (TBS) Bus Terminal – Check here : http://www.tbsbts.com.my. From TBS, please take a bus to Kemaman Town.
Kuala Lumpur (TBS) – Kuantan – Cherating – Kemaman Town – Kuala Terengganu – Kota Bahru . This is the normal route to east coast.
*note: Let the bus driver know that to drop you at Kampung Cherating Lama (Old Cherating Village).

By car
From Kuala Lumpur , just follow the east bound highway towards Kuantan and Kemaman. Normally, it takes about 3 hours to reach Cherating.

Pantai Batu Burok, Terengganu

Photo: Terengganu SURF Community

The strong waves of the South China Sea makes the beaches and idyllic islands of Terengganu ideal for surfing. To the local and international surfers, Pantai Batu Burok is well-known for its beach breaks surfing. Over the last 10 years, various international surfing competitions have been held in Pantai Burok regularly, thus helping this beautiful sandy beaches with casuarina trees lining up the shore, to gain international recognition. In Terengganu, there are at least 15 other surf spots to be explored along the coast from Kemaman to Besut. Merang in Setiu, for example, is suited for point breaks, while Pulau Kapas is ideal for reef break surfing.

Photo: Terengganu SURF Community

How to get there:
Batu Buruk and the surrounding beaches are easily reached from Kuala Terengganu by bus (Marang / Dungun), mini bus (No.14 / 13), trishaw and taxi or even on foot if you like walking (about 20 minutes from the city center). (www.backpackingmalaysia.com).

Desaru, Johor

Located in Kota Tinggi, Johor, Desaru has a few surfing spots that are worth mentioning. Among them are Pantai Desaru, Pantai Tanjung Balau, Pantai Sedili and Pantai Wild Boar.

Pantai Desaru is a great spot for beginners to learn to surf. The best time to surf here is in the early morning when the waves are in best condition with a less crowded beach.

Pantai Tanjung Balau is only 13-minute drive from Pantai Desaru and is home to a strong local surf community and even hosts its own international surfing competitions. Sandy breaks and three-foot-high waves make it an excellent spot to learn to surf.

Every surfing season, Pantai Sedili, a hidden beach located along the road of Sedili is always crowded with surfers especially during “good waves” day as the surfers called it. As the beach is quite isolated, you must bring your own food and drinks because there is no public facilities there.

Photo: Big Foot Industries

Wild Boar Beach is the most secluded surfing spot compared to the other three beaches in Desaru. Aptly named after the local animal that resides in the area, the beach is so secluded that you need a local guide to show you the spot. Surfers have to bring their own food and water supply because the beach has zero facility but these inconvenience means nothing to them as long as they get to have a long uninterrupted ride on sandy breaks.

How to get there:
A one hour drive from Johor town, along with the way to Desaru, palm oil plantation can be seen and a bridge will be connecting the route to Desaru through the Senai Desaru expressway. Driving is recommended to get to Desaru because it is faster and convenient.

For public transportation to Desaru, there are direct Mara Liner coach services four times a day from Johor Bahru’s Larkin Bus Terminal to Bandar Penawar via Kota Tinggi. Besides that, there’s an option of taking a non-express bus from Larkin Bus Terminal (Maju 227 or Causeway Link 66) or from downtown Johor Bahru’s Jalan Wong Ah Fook (Transit Link 41, Maju 227, Causeway Link 6B; the bus stop is opposite City Square) to Kota Tinggi’s bus terminal (duration about 1h; Maju 227 one-way fare from City Square RM4.80; average frequency of Maju 227 is 15 min), and then take another bus from Kota Tinggi to Bandar Penawar (duration max. 1h, one-way fare RM4.50, frequency every 90 min). (Travelistaclub)

Tanjung Simpang Mengayau, Kudat, Sabah

Photo: www.borneo360.com

Kudat in Sabah has long been a favourite surfing spots among Malaysian and Bruneian surfers. Located at the Tip of Borneo in Tanjung Simpang Mengayau, the Kalampunian Beach has waves that can reach up to 6 feet high with 50 to 100 meters ride. The type of break here is beach breaks and pointbreaks. It is an ideal spot for those with advanced surf skill set. But for the non-surfers, Kudat’ sandy beaches and crystal clear water is reason enough to hang around the beach; or maybe, just maybe you will be entertained by the tricks and twists of the surfers while chilling by the beach.

Photo: Bahzi Damit

How to get there:
The Tip of Borneo is about 215 KM north of Kota Kinabalu. You need to drive about 2.5 to 3 hours on a paved road (with a few small sections of gravel road) to reach there (via Kota Kinabalu → Tuaran → Kota Belud main road). Or you can charter a taxi (can take 3 or 4 passengers) for a return trip for about RM240. (mysabah.com)

Tidal Bore of Sarawak

Photo: abadiphotography

I wonder whether those experienced surfers dare to fight a tidal bore in Sri Aman’s Batang Lupar River, which is famed for its crocodile-infested waters. The tidal bore in Sri Aman, which is located 170km from Kuching is rated among the best bores in the world. A tidal bore may take on various forms, ranging from a single breaking wave front with a roller, somewhat like a hydraulic jump to undular bores, comprising a smooth wave front followed by a train of secondary wave (whelps). The tidal bore is a high wave caused by the meeting of two tides or by a tide rushing up the narrow river estuary. Its height depends on the time of the year, weather and phase of the moon. Sri Aman hosts the annual Tidal Bore festival known as ‘Pesta Benak’, normally held in the month of May.

How to get there:
To get to the town, board a bus at Kuching Sentral Transportation hub. The hub is a 5-minute drive from the Kuching International Airport and 20 minutes from Kuching City Centre. On average, it takes about four hours to travel by road from Kuching. Usually, bus will stop at the bazaar town of Lachau for toilet break.

Sunway Lagoon’s Surf Beach, Selangor

Photo: Sunway Lagoon

Sunway Lagoon’s Surf Beach is a man made wonder right here in the city where holiday makers all around the world come for a fun filled day in the sun. You can either laze in the beach or for the thrill seekers you can enjoy surfing or body boarding and beach volleyball. You can also show off your surfing skills on Malaysia’s only Surf Simulator or ‘FlowRider’*.

Stretching over 13,000 square meters, the Surf Beach is capable of churning out perfectly shaped waves up to the maximum height of eight-feet. The ability to condition the waves according to the needs of the surfers in terms of height, time and wave patterns make Surf Beach @ Sunway Lagoon a surfer’s paradise for both professional and aspiring surfers.

How to get there:
By Car
Sunway Lagoon is located in the bustling township of Sunway City, within the district of Petaling Jaya in the state of Selangor. It is a mere 15-minutes drive from Kuala Lumpur in smooth traffic conditions and is accessible via a network of expressways including the Federal Highway, Damansara-Puchong Expressway, New Pantai Expressway and KESAS Highway.

Surf Wall, Adventure Waterpark, Desaru Coast, Johor

Photo: Adventure Waterparks Desaru Coast

A safe and high-energy surf simulator where surfing beginners or enthusiasts can catch and ride a radical artificial wave. The Surf Wall can accommodate up to five boogie boarders or two stand-up surfers at one time.

How to get there:

By Car
4 hours from Kuala Lumpur via the North-South Expressway.

By Air
1 hour from Kuala Lumpur to Senai International Airport with additional 1 hour for shuttle to Desaru Coast.

Suddenly I feel the urge to join the monsoon mayhem and pick up the surfboard myself. Paddle,paddle, paddle, and stand up… bruddah!

Featured image is courtesy of andiaceh/ombok

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Categories
Tourism Malaysia

20 Awesome and True Malaysian Breakfasts!

Breakfast is not called the most important meal of the day for nothing. With good breakfast, your day can be full of energy to get ready for challenges ahead.
Being a multicultural society comes with some gastronomical benefits – Malaysians are incredibly fortunate to have the luxury of eating a wide variety of food for breakfast each day, from delectable Chinese dim sum to a more spicy Malay food.
What is your favourite Malaysian breakfast food? In no particular order, here are 20 Malaysian breakfasts you must try during your stay here and where you can find them.
It is definitely worth reading!

Nasi Lemak

Nasi lemak is a favourite breakfast among all races in Malaysia. The fragrant rice dish is infused with coconut milk, and served with fried anchovies, sambal (spicy shrimp paste), boiled or fried egg, and sometimes cucumber as well as peanuts. Nasi Lemak has even been listed as one of 10 most healthy international breakfasts by TIME Magazine. The price ranges between RM2 and RM20 for a plate of nasi lemak, mainly depend on where you buy it. Nothing beats getting up early on a weekend than eating Village Park’s famous nasi lemak at Damansara Uptown for a true Malaysian breakfast!

Nasi Kerabu

Nasi Kerabu is a unique Malay rice dish with the rice in blue colour, a type of nasi ulam. It is quite popular as a breakfast dish for Kelantanese. It is eaten with various mixture of Ulam (traditional local salad), crackers, fish or fried chicken, pickles, hard-boiled salted egg. The blue colour comes from flower’s petals used in cooking it. Try out nasi kerabu at Kesom Café, Petaling Jaya for your stay as it is packed with a good amount of flavour, various ingredients for texture and a price you simply can’t resist! But, in Kelantan, one of the best places to sample this dish is Kak Ma Nasi Kerabu in Kota Bahru.

Classic Combination (Kaya toast + Half-boiled egg + Coffee)

This is a classic combination as all walks of life love to eat it. A sweet start to your day with kaya toast, normally filled with coconut jam or peanut butter.
This is usually paired with a cup of coffee or tea, and sometimes complemented by a couple of soft-boiled eggs. The combination of this meal could be found at any kopitiam (cofffee shop). It is also one of the best sellers in some retail outlets such as Old Town White Coffee and Toast Box.
Tips: Popular kopitiam with this classic combination include Yut Kee Kopitiam, one of the oldest kopitiams in KL (Established in 1928) and Transfer Road Roti Bakar in Penang.

Tosai

No Malaysian breakfast list is complete without Thosai! This long, crepe-like meal may look huge when served, but you’ll soon see that it takes up a small room in your stomach. This is typically served with yogurt or curry on the side.
Charred to a mellow crisp on the edges, warm and a tad tart from fermentation, it’s hard to believe that something so simple and humble can turn into one scrumptious dish.

Famous restaurant to sample tosai: Chat Masala Restaurant in Brickfieds, Kuala Lumpur. (Specializing in authentic Indian cuisine)

Roti Canai

If there’s only one roti you’ll try in Malaysia, this should be it. Roti Canai, a type of flatbread influenced by the Indian ethnicity and it is usually served with dal (lentil-based soup) or kari ikan (fish curry) and is best eaten with bare hands.
Roti Canai is commonly sold in our local Indian tea stalls, famously known to the locals as Mamak stall. Mamak stall is also our locals favorite not only for food but also as a hang out place! Roti canai is variable from original, to the locals – Roti kosong, which means no fillings to choices of fillings with eggs, banana, chicken, lamb, tuna, etc, served with chicken curry, fish curry, dhal or combination of any curry of your preferences. Watching it being prepared itself is a spectacular as the roti is flung into the air like a pizza base.

Dim Sum

If you prefer snacks to breakfasts, or snacks for breakfast, this bite-sized style of cuisine will suit your palate and your gastronomic fashion. Fresh, flavourful and steaming food is typically served in bamboo steamer baskets and Chinese tea.
There are loads of variations to choose from, although some of the more popular ones are the Xiao Long Bao, Har Gow (Shrimp dumpling), Siu Mai (Steamed dumplings with pork and prawns) and Loh Bak Gao (steamed turnip cake).
Some of the famous outlets for your breakfast selection include Foo Hing Dim Sum in Puchong, Jin Xuan Hong Kong Restauratnt, Dragon-i Restaurant and etc. If your preference is halal, Malaysia has plenty of halal dim sum restaurants to choose from, with one of the popular brands in town being Dolly Dim Sum.

Yong Tau Foo

This Hakka dish is a mix of fish, meat, vegetables and tofu. Traditionally, only tofu cubes were stuffed with a paste of fish and pork, and then deep fried or braised. Vendors later got creative and started stuffing vegetables like bitter gourd, ladies’ fingers, chillies and brinjals. Along with the stuffed ingredients are fish and meat balls, and also fried tofu skin. The dry version of the dish is enjoyed with chilli and sweet sauces, but the ingredients are also served in a clear soup. Side dishes such as chee cheong fun and rice are optional. Some of the famous stalls for this dish include Foong Foong restaurant at Ampang and a Yong Tau Foo at Puchong Batu 14 in front of a Chinese vernacular school.

Bah Kut Teh

The name literally translated as “meat bone tea” where various parts of pork is slow-cooked in a complex broth of herbs and spices. Bak Kut Teh is one of the local Chinese favorite breakfast for a nutritious meal, a calorie dense breakfast where it is said that this dish was once created for the hard labour. It comes in various forms as it could be strong and intense, or light and soupy; it could come in a humble bowl with only pork, or it could come in a claypot of goodies.
Klang is regarded as the city of Bak Kut Teh as there are more than one hundred Bak Kut Teh restaurants in the city itself. Under The Bridge Bak Kut Teh is one of the first to come to mind when the question of best Bak Kut Teh arises. This restaurant in Klang dates back to 1979, but the recipe has over 70 years of history.

Noodles soup

If you like your noodles, why not have it for breakfast? Some of the exciting choices here include curry noodles, soto, wan tan noodles, fish soup noodles, shredded chicken noodles and asam laksa.

Noodle soup is another preferred local breakfast, where lots of variation is widely available across Malaysia. From a bowl of delicate curry noodles, soto, fish soup noodles, shredded chicken noodles and lots more exciting choices.
Noodle soup is an excellent pick for breakfast as the soup is highly nutritious especially when the soup is done right.

Laksa Perlis

Many may not familiar about dishes or cuisines from Perlis. However, you should not miss out Laksa Perlis.

At first glance, the dish looks just like the Malay laksa you find in the other northern states of Kedah and Penang. But if you’re looking for traditional Perlis laksa, head to the Laksa Kak Su at Jalan Siakap 1, Kuala Perlis.
Fresh house-made thick rice noodles are served in a fishy gravy along with “ulam” such as julienned cucumber, onion, chillies and daun selom.
Interestingly, Laksa Perlis, or known as “Laksa Kola” locally, is always eaten with pulut udang or kuih spera (like a curry puff but with a savoury grated coconut filling). It makes the gravy thicker and more delicious.

Big Breakfast

A huge plate of Big Breakfast for a breakfast or brunch with family or friends is the best way to kick off the first episode of the day.
With the mushrooming of fancy cafes in KL, most Malaysians have taken a strong liking for the western style hearty breakfast sets.
These usually come with a large portion of well-arranged sausages, sautéed mushrooms, baked beans, toast and eggs.
Places to check out if you love a good brunch or Big Breakfast include FEEKA Coffee Roasters @ Bukit Bintang (pork-free), Plan b, Merchant’s Lane @ Petaling Street (pork-free), Acme Bar Coffee @ The Troika (pork-free) and many more!

Stir-fried noodles/Char Kuey Teow, Mee Goreng….

Stir-fried noodles or Char Kuey Teow or Mee Goreng and etc. are always the favourite dishes for Malaysians. It can be enjoyed as your breakfast, lunch or dinner as it is quite easy to find it on the streets.

Mee Goreng literally translated as fried noodle or commonly known as “chow mein” in Cantonese is another widely favoured choice of breakfast. It is fried with high temperature to create a strong aromatic plate of delicacy.
Char Keow Teow, which is basically flat rice noodles stir-fried with shrimp, bloody cockles, Chinese lap cheong has won the heart of diners from all over the world. It is a must-try dish when travelling to Penang. You have not visited Penang if you have not check it out.

Lontong

Lontong is an Asian dish that is commonly served with nasi impit (compressed rice) which is cut into cubes. It is drenched with a coconut milk and turmeric-based broth cooked with a variety of vegetables along with condiments such as fried tempeh, fried tofu and boiled eggs. You can add to the mix with sambal. An addition that’s highly recommended is the fried beef lung. It’s sliced thinly and fried until very crisp so that even in the broth, the pieces remain crunchy. Famous spot to try out Lontong is Chawan in Bangsar, whereby many white and blue-collared men and women will gather there in the morning to take this dish to kick start the day.

Teh Tarik, Milo, Cham, Hoi Nam Cha, etc.

You haven’t been to Malaysia until you’ve tasted Teh Tarik, or “pulled tea”. It got its name from the way the tea is poured from cup to cup to achieve that frothy surface. It pairs well with any breakfast meal.

Apart from Teh Tarik, the locals love a cup of coffee, better known as “kopi” (Local Malay word). A mixture of coffee and tea and you will get a cup of “cham” which means “mixture” in Cantonese. Malaysians basically love a dose of caffeine in the morning. Not to forget that Milo, a malt chocolate drink that Malaysian children raved over.

Most people choose to dip their cream crackers or biscuits into a nice, warm cup of this yummy drink. Be sure to have a cup of our local beverages and you can be considered as truly visiting this country.

Buns, pastry and kuih

It is not to difficult to look for a bun stall in most of the local breakfast places especially the morning market. Some of the bun with good demand include sweet coconut jam (kaya) bun, dried meat bun, hot dog bun, minced meat bun, tuna bun, peanut bun and etc. Besides, some of these stalls also selling pastry and kuih – local desserts. Nyonya kuih, for example, is a proud invention that most Malaysians choose to surrender their sweet tooth upon.

Chee Cheong Fun

Chee Cheong Fun is a steamed flat rice noodle rolls and taken with sauce, either sweet or savoury. In Penang, the rolls are cut into short cylinders and served with condiments such as thnee cheo (a sweet dark-red sauce), hae ko (black, prawn paste sauce), chilli sauce, oil and sprinkled with sesame seeds. Some people prefer the Chee Cheong Fun lightly tossed in curry sauce as well. People in Penang all have their favourite but you can’t go wrong with the stall outside Seow Fong Lye Cafe on Macalister Lane. Be prepared to wait for your order.

Yau Char Kwai

Yau Char Kway (Cantonese) literally means “oil-fried devil” a name in accordance to the Chinese culture. The traditional deep-fried snack has been a breakfast staple for the Chinese for as long as any of us could remember. Here in Malaysia, it has been always served for breakfast with rice congee or dipped in soy milk, the long golden-brown snack is also eaten with bak kut teh or a cup of brewed coffee. You can also just simply munch on it.

Nasi Dagang

Nasi Dagang

Nasi dagang is one of the most popular breakfast dishes in Terengganu. Nasi dagang is a mixture of white fragrant rice and white glutinous rice. Here, most of the people prefer to eat it together with a curry made with ikan tongkol, a tuna species fished off the coast, and simple side dishes of acar timun and a hard-boiled egg.
Some of the top picks to check out this dish include a stall called Mak Ngah located at Kampung Bukit, Kuala Terengganu and also Kak Pah’s stall at the Batu Buruk food court.

Fish Noodles

 As most of the breakfast dishes introduced here are famous in peninsular, let’s take a look on a common dish for Sabahans called fish noodles.
Fish noodles at Jong Fa Pai restaurant in Kota Kinabalu served with meaty chunks of fish in a fish-based broth (clear or with milk) along with tofu, preserved vegetables and tomatoes. A halal version can be found at Wan Wan outlets.
Ngiu chap (In Hakka dialect), which means “mixed cow”, is another favorite breakfast noodle among Sabahans. Eaters can expect every single part of the cow in this dish, including beef balls, tripe, tongue and tendons. Some people even add in liver and other innards.

Sarawak Laksa

 For Sarawakian, Sarawak Laksa makes for an amazing breakfast. The late Anthony Bourdain, who featured Sarawak laksa in his TV shows once called Sarawak Laksa “Breakfast of the Gods”.
Significantly different from the many other types of laksa available in Peninsular Malaysia, Sarawak Laksa consists of rice vermicelli, shredded omelette, cooked prawns and strips of chicken in an aromatic broth, with sambal and lime served on the side.
This dish is beloved by all Sarawakians and is enjoyed by families and friends no matter what time of the day. Highly recommended Kuching restaurants that serve Sarawak laksa are Mom’s Laksa @ Gita (halal) and Golden Arch Cafe.

Article source: http://blog.tourism.gov.my/feed/

Categories
Tourism Malaysia

EXPLORE THE DIVERSITY OF THE SOUTHERN REGION THROUGH HOMESTAYS

One of the best ways to get to know the real Malaysia is to
live in a homestay in a traditional village or kampung. To think that homestay
in Malaysia was originally started by a local lady known as Mak Long Teh back
in the 1970s at a village called Kampung Cherating Lama in Pahang. She
nonchalantly opened her home to the long staying drifters and provided them
with breakfast, dinner and a space to sleep. Her motto was probably “Mi Casa Su
Casa”.

This time around we will take you all the way to the southern region of the Peninsular Malaysia to show you how diverse the community are at these three neighbouring states in terms of livelihood, culture and tradition.

Kampung Pachitan, Negeri Sembilan
This village of about 1,000 population in Negeri Sembilan is said to have been pioneered by the Javanese from East Java, Indonesia, who came to settle here in the 1920s as paddy farmers. Later, palm and rubber plantations were opened when water sources for paddy ran dry. These plantations now become a tourist attraction as visitors learn more about crop-growing through hands-on experience.

This
village of about 1,000 population in Negeri Sembilan is said to have been
pioneered by the Javanese from East Java, Indonesia, who came to settle here in
the 1920s as paddy farmers. Later, palm and rubber plantations were opened when
water sources for paddy ran dry. These plantations now become a tourist
attraction as visitors learn more about crop-growing through hands-on
experience.

The
scenery in the area is dominated by large tracts of these crop plantations but
the nearby beach holds many attractions as well. It’s a favourite spot to go
fishing on the jetty or just sit by the beach to collect shellfish for a later
meal. One can also opt to canoe along the mangrove area and do a spot of
birdwatching.

What’s
unique here is the Javanese culture and traditions that still remain strong and
is manifested in the language spoken, the food, music and games. For example,
visitors to Kampung Pachitan will certainly get a taste of Nasi Ambeng (a meal
consisting of steamed white rice served with chicken in soy sauce and beef
stewed for hours in thick gravy and other condiments), pecal (a local salad
served with peanut sauce), and tempe goreng (fried fermented soy beans) and
such.

It recently received an ASEAN Tourism Award in the Homestay category.

Homestay Kampung Pachitan
No.37, Taman Nuri Fasa 1,
Jalan Besar Chuah,
71960 Chuah, Port Dickson,
Negeri Sembilan.
Contact person: Mr. Ahmad Nadzri, Tel : 019 385 9793
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PachitanMalaysia/

Homestay Lonek, Negeri Sembilan

This village is simply picture perfect with timber dwellings sitting on wide and well-trimmed lawns and the scenery of paddy fields stretching out as far as the eye can see. The folks who live here take great pride in their culture and heritage.

They speak with a strong Negeri Sembilan accent, and will introduce you to typical Negeri Sembilan cuisine, the famous one being daging salai masak lemak cili api, which is smoked beef cooked in a gravy of coconut milk, turmeric and chilies.

Traditional folk games are very much alive here and visitors
will learn the Malaysian version of hoop rolling using bicycle wheel rims,
bowling with coconuts and tobogganing on palm fronds.

If you don’t mind getting mud on your feet (and hands, face
and hair), you can try out the local pastime of “mengocak ikan” or grasping for
fish in the paddy fields.

Homestay Kampung Lonek
No. 10, Kampung Lonek,
72200 Batu Kikir,
Negeri Sembilan.
Contact person: Ms. Hajah Nor Asiah bt Haron, Tel : 06-498 1078 / 012 691 5482
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/homestaylonek/

Homestay Rawa, Negeri Sembilan

Fresh from winning the ASEAN Tourism Award 2019 in the Homestay category, Homestay Rawa has something unique to offer to visitors…horses! Horseriding is a great way to appreciate the beauty of this village. Saddle up and ride through bountiful fruit orchards, acres of rubber plantations and hillsides where you can appreciate a breathtaking view.

During fruiting season, there are plentiful fruits to keep you sated. From mangosteens and durians to rambutans and langsat. These tropical fruits grow abundantly in this village and are a joy to the palate.

For those who love cooking, the ladies of the village would be all too happy to share their secret recipes for their typical sweetcakes such as godok golumang which are fist-sized banana fritters coated in caramelized brown sugar and kuih bahulu (a light and fluffy sponge cake with a crispy outer layer, similar to the French madeleines) traditionally cooked over charcoal fire in brass moulds.

Homestay Rawa
Lot 23, Lorong KRU 10,
Kampung Rawa Hilir
71750 Lenggeng
Negeri Sembilan
Contact person: Ms. Saadiah Othman, Tel: 019 354 4472
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/asequine1/

Homestay Kg. Alai, Melaka

Melaka is not only known for its historical values but also for its beautiful traditional Malay houses. Homestay Kg. Alai, located about 8km from Bandar Melaka is full of beautiful Melaka houses with all kind of unique characteristics.

Apart from admiring the unique architechture of the traditional houses, there are plenty of activities that can be done here, including traditional games, cultural performances, village tour and fishing at the near Crystal Bay Beach. On top of that, you also get to learn about Dondang Sayang (a love ballad that conveys affectionate feelings of love and provide advice on moral issues) with the popular Seri Warisan Baru Alai Dondang Sayang group led by Tuan Hj. Mohd. Isa, established since 2011.

Staying at this homestay will also give you the opportunity to learn how to cook Melaka’s traditional cuisines and snacks such as Melaka’s famous asam pedas (a hot and sour dish), onde-onde (a ball-shaped snack stuffed with palm sugar and coated with shredded coconut) and making inang-inang (glutinous rice crackers) from scratch.

Making onde-onde. Pix courtesy of GTN

Homestay Kampung Alai
KM 7.6, Jalan Hj. Said,
Kampung Alai,
75460 Melaka
Contact person: Mr. AkramuddinHj. Abdul Aziz, Tel: +6 016 666 6649
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=msPuGZpIE3U

Pix courtesy of Tourism Johor

Homestay Kampung Parit Tengah, Johor

While in Johor, why dont you stay at Kampung Parit Tengah, the recipient of the 2nd ASEAN Homestay Standard Award in 2017. That is reason enough to stay but imagine yourself arriving at the village and being greeted by the villagers with their traditional gambus (an Arabic stringed lute) performance combined with the reverberation of the kompang (traditional Malay handheld percussion).

Make yourself part of the community by participating in their daily activities such as palm weaving, rubber tapping, harvesting pineapples and corn, as well as catching prawns by the river. Catching prawns by the riverside is considered the village’s trademark and you can also learn how to cook your “catch of the day” local-style.

Getuk ubi. Pix courtesy of peachpurple

At Kampung Parit Tengah, their usual menu comprise traditional Javanese delicacies such as getuk ubi (pounded tapioca cake) with shredded coconut and sambal goreng Jawa.

Homestay Kg. Parit Tengah
No. 26 Kg. Parit Tengah,
Mukim 12 Rengit,
83100 Batu Pahat, Johor.
Contact person: Mr. Sukran Arifin, Tel: 019-7666400
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pg/Homestay-Parit-Tengah

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