KELANTAN - EAST COAST REGION OF PENINSULAR MALAYSIA
NATURE & ADVENTURE
 
 

NATURE & ADVENTURE

Many of Kelantan?s natural attractions are situated in Gua Musang, the largest district in the state. The quaint town of Dabong is the gateway to most places of interest here. Both Gua Musang and Dabong are accessible by the local train service. Gua Musang is also accessible by bus and taxi services.

 

The rugged landscape of Kelantan?s interiors makes it a paradise for eco-adventures. Its mountainous terrain provides the excellent backdrop for various activities such as jungle-trekking, river rafting, caving and rock-climbing. Among Kelantan?s eco-treasures are Kuala Koh National Park and Jelawang Waterfall, the highest seven-tiered waterfall in Southeast Asia. The state is also home to some of Malaysia?s richest archaeological caves.

 
 

GUNUNG AYAM

Jelawang, Kuala Krai Selatan

 

Gunung Ayam stands about 70m higher than its neighbour, Gunung Stong. It is also the highest peak in the area. The climb to this 1,504m mountain is reputed to be more challenging and arduous but climbers are rewarded with breathtaking views of the sunrise and sunset. Gunung Ayam is accessible via a six-hour trek from Baha Camp.

 
 
 

GUNUNG RABONG & GUNUNG CHAMAH

Gua Musang

 

Towering at 1,539m, Gunung Rabong in Gua Musang is one of the highest peaks in Kelantan. It is situated at the border of Kuala Koh National Park. A highlight here is abseiling down its seven waterfalls. Gunung Chamah, situated at the border of Kelantan and Perak, is considered to be one of the toughest mountains to climb. It stands at 2,171 m and can be accessed via Kampung Kuala Betis in Gua Musang.

 
 
 

RAFTING IN NENGGIRI RIVER

Gua Musang

 

A wonderful way to take in the sights and sounds of nature is by rafting/cruising along the Nenggiri River. The majestic natural setting unveils breathtaking vistas of dense tropical vegetation and imposing limestone outcrops. Traverse riverine homes, aboriginal settlements, pre-historic caves and enjoy the simplicity and beauty of the state?s hinterland. The riverine wetlands is home to monkeys, birds and squirrels. For more excitement, prepare your own meal and spend a night under the stars. Nenggiri River is also the site of the annual Nenggiri Challenge.

 
 
 

BOAT RIDES

Jelawang, Kuala Krai Selatan

 

 

Short boat rides can be arranged from Kota Bharu to Kampung Laut, a village situated nearby. This ride along Kelantan River takes only 20 minutes and visitors can see riverine settlements along the way.

 
 
 

ETHNOBOTANY CAMP

Gua Musang

 

Situated just 3km away from Gua Musang town, this park offers numerous attractions. The Mini Herb Farm features more than a 100 varieties of herbs, many of which contain excellent medicinal properties. For adventure lovers, rock climbing and abseiling will be thrilling pursuits. The park has 30 routes on limestone outcrops for both beginners and expert climbers. Children and adults alike will enjoy a visit to the deer and ostrich farms located within. Accommodation, as well as obstacle course activities can be arranged for tour groups.

 

Admission is free but visitors will be charged for the services of guides and equipment.

Tel: 09-912 1788/912 1229

 
 
 

LOCAL TRAIN RIDES

 

 

When visiting the natural attractions in Kelantan, one experience that cannot be left out is a ride on the local train. Once known as the ?jungle train?, the railway link was developed to serve the interiors and smaller villages that are not accessible by roads. Visitors too can take the train to experience a slice of the local lifestyle. Its regular commuters are students and locals, and it is a common sight to see people carrying fresh vegetables, provisions and forest produce to trade their wares at main stations. An undeniable sense of excitement sweeps over as the train chugs along pristine countrysides, scenic villages and quaint towns. For the uninitiated, the ?darkness? which falls when the train passes through tunnels will be an interesting experience.

 
 
 

CAVING

Gua Musang

 

The mountainous terrain in Gua Musang gives rise to a number of caves. Most caves are named after their resemblance to objects or animals. Visitors are advised to take note that these caves are not lighted. Arrange with your tour agent or guide to bring necessary equipment such as torch light and ropes.

 
 
 

GUA IKAN

Dabong

 

 

The most commonly explored caves in Dabong are Gua Ikan, Gua Keris, Gua Batu Susun (Gua Lubang Gelap) and Gua Pagar. Gua kan or Fish Cave is named after a solitary fish-shaped rock. It is purported to hold treasure hidden during the Japanese occupation. Visitors in search of a little excitement will not be disappointed as they can trudge through the stream that runs here. Gua Keris, Gua Batu Susun (Gua Lubang Gelap) and Gua Pagar have smaller passageways and more intricate routes, and present greater challenges.

 
 
 

GUA CHA

Gua Musang

 

Situated on the banks of the Nenggiri River, this limestone cave is one of the most actively researched archaeological sites in Peninsular Malaysia. It was first discovered in 1936. Research shows that the cave was the dwelling place of the Hoabinhian and Neolithic prehistoric communities. Various artifacts as well as human skeletons and cultural objects that were discovered here are now displayed in the National Museum in Kuala Lumpur.

 
 
 

GUA SIDANG

Gua Musang

 

Purportedly a communists? camp in the past, the cave is said to have been used as a hideout to conduct clandestine meetings during the Communist insurgency. The cave is supposedly large enough to accommodate nearly 300 people at one time. Other caves include Gua Batu Chawas and Gua Batu Chincin, which also contain evidences of prehistoric settlements. Gua Chawan, Gua Jaya and Gua Peraling make for interesting explorations.

 
 
 

GUNUNG RENG

Jeli

 

This solitary limestone outcrop poses a striking contrast to its plain surroundings. According to folklore, the hill was flown here from another location, following a curse. Locals say that Gunung Reng is associated with the legend of Puteri Saadong, who purportedly made the caves as her home. Till today, the cave chambers here are said to resemble the chambers of her palace. Gunung Reng is situated along the East-West Highway in Jeli. Visitors are advised to get the services of a guide to enter. Kelantan is fondly known as ?The Land of Cik Siti Wan Kembang?, for its association with this legendary warrior queen and her daughter, Puteri Saadong. Their legends can be traced to many other places in the state. Bukit Marak, about 20km from Kota Bharu, was said to be Puteri Saadong?s dwelling place while Padang Halban is where her husband was laid to rest.

 
 
 

LOJING HIGHLANDS

Gua Musang

 

 

Nestled at 1,000 feet above sea level and with temperatures between 170C-220C, Lojing Highlands is an enclave of greenery and cool misty air. ts elevation makes it ideal for the growth of vegetables and tasty fruits such as persimmons and honey oranges. The world?s largest flower, Rafflesia, can also be seen here.

 

Tel: 09-912 1788 (KESEDAR Office)

 
 
 

TASIK PERGAU / LAKE PERGAU

Jeli

 

This is an excellent destination for those seeking a ?back to nature? experience. Lake Pergau is a 54 sq km man-made lake, created to serve a hydroelectricity project. The lush greenery provides the perfect setting for jungle trekking, kayaking or camping. A unique attraction here is its floating chalets. There are no shops in the lake area, so visitors can have the excitement of preparing their own meals. Visitors are advised to book early as places are limited. The chalets are accessible via the Tasik Pergau Jetty, situated along the Grik-Jeli Highway, about 18km from Jell. The boat ride takes 15 minutes.

 
 
 

TENGKU ANIS ORCHID PARK

Kota Bharu

 

Step into an enclave of pretty blossoms! Operating under the auspices of Her Royal Highness the Princess of Kelantan, this park showcases a variety of colourful orchids. Floral festivals and displays are arranged annually to honour His Royal Highness The Sultan of Kelantan?s birthday.

 

Opening hours: 9.00am - 5.00pm daily.

Admission is free.

 
 
 

WATERFALLS

Kuala Krai

 

Aside from the breathtaking Jelawang Waterfall (refer to page 23), visitors can make a trip to Lata Rek in Kuala Krai. Its series of cascading waterfalls, each less than 20m in height, makes it a popular recreational spot. Lata Beringin is another picturesque waterfall, with a 120m drop and lush green surroundings. It is situated off the Kuala Krai-Gua Musang Highway. Jeram Lenang and Jeram Pasu in Pasir Puteh are favourite weekend retreats.

 
 
 

HOT SPRINGS

 

Enjoy a natural spa experience at the hot springs in Kampung Labok, Machang (about 40km from Kota Bharu). The Jeli Hot Springs (near the East-West Highway), is situated about l05km from Kota Bharu. The Sungai Ber Hot Springs is situated in Gua Musang and is only accessible by four-wheel drives.

 
 
 

KUALA KOH NATIONAL PARK

Gua Musang

 

 

Kuala Koh National Park is a section of Taman Negara, Malaysia?s premier national park which straddles across Kelantan and two other neighbouring states. Taman Negara is one of the oldest rainforests in the world, estimated to be 130 million years old. It boasts one of the world?s most complex and rich ecosystems. Kuala Koh serves as its northern entry point and is said to have the best potential for wildlife sighting. Spread over 1,043 sq km, this dense undisturbed jungle is home to various flora and fauna. It is a paradise for nature-lovers, with an exciting range of activities and pursuits. Over 200 species of birds are known to exist in the park and experienced bird-watchers have seen more than 150 species within a few days! Visitors who stay overnight at the observation hides (bumbun), may catch a glimpse of the shy wildlife that visit the salt-licks nearby.

 

For trekkers, there are jungle trails of varying distances and degrees of difficulty. A natural marvel here is the ?Ara Circle?, where visitors can walk under the roots of a giant Ara tree (Ficus spp.). The crystal clear rivers in Koala Koh are perfect for kayaking or bamboo rafting. Don?t miss a visit to the Batek indigenous settlement to watch fire-making and blowpipe demonstrations. Facilities in the park include accommodation (chalets and dormitories), a campsite and a restaurant. Note: Visitors intending to go jungle-trekking or planning any river activities are required to report at the administrative office. The services of guides are highly recommended and encouraged. Please take note that fishing is only allowed at designated areas. The restaurant is closed during the Muslim fasting month.

 

Permits and Licenses:

Entry Permit: RM1.00

Fishing Licence: RM10.00

Camera Licence: RM5.00

 

Telelephone:

09-912 2940 (Wildlife Department Office)

 

Camping: from RM1.00 - RM2.00

Chalets: RM50.00 per night & Dormitory: RM12.00 per person

 
 
 

GUNUNG STONG / MOUNT STONG

Jelawang, Kuala Krai Selatan

 

 

This is one of the most popular eco-adventure destinations in Kelantan. Gunung Stong is situated in Stong State Park, along the fringes of Malaysia?s massive Titiwangsa range. Sprawled over 61,734 hectares, the park abounds with exotic wildlife such as elephants, tigers, bears, gibbons, birds and insects. Unique plants such as Rafflesia, the world?s largest flower, as well as varieties of palms and orchids are stunning attractions here. Standing majestically at 1 ,433m, Gunung Stong is a favourite spot for trekking and mountain climbing.

 

From here, a two-hour climb will take visitors to another one of Kelantan?s star attractions - the spectacular Jelawang Waterfall. At a height of 303 m, this seven-tiered waterfall is acclaimed to be the highest in Southeast Asia. Climbers often make Baha Camp, situated at the peak of the waterfall, as a stopover for the night. The summit of Gunung Stong can be reached with a further four or five hours of trekking. Baha Camp is the gateway to several other natural attractions. For those who choose to enjoy nature at the foothills, the Stong Hill Resort provides basic accommodation. The services of qualified and knowledgeable guides can be obtained here.

 

Admission fee to Stong State Park: RM4.00

Tel: 09-741 4279 (Stong State Park Office, Kota Bharu)

 
 
 
 
NATURE & ADVENTURE
KELANTAN - EAST COAST REGION OF PENINSULAR MALAYSIA