Taman Negara

Trip Start Aug 21, 2006
Trip End Nov 24, 2006

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Flag of Malaysia  ,
Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Travelblogs are just like buses - wait a week for one and two come along at once! - because, obviously, you have all been waiting with baited breath for the next installment of our adventures...my mum has anywyay!

Ok, so, we left the Perenthian Islands, and headed down to Taman Negara, an area of rainforest that is - boring (and probably inaccurate!) fact time:

The oldest rainforest on the planet - about 150 million years.

4,400 KM sq in size - seven times the size of Singapore.

And it contains some of the worst signposting and maps known to man.

We arrived at about 9pm, after travelling on a road that was definitely not meant for a bus, and booked a night in another A-frame hut. Our first day consisted of walking on a rope bridge suspended over the rainforest canopy, which was pretty cool, and a short boat trip to visit the Orang Asli tribes people. Orang Asli literally tanslates as 'Original People,' they live a very basic and simple life in the rainforest, hunting with their blow pipes, living in huts made from materials found in the forest, trekking for weeks in the jungle for Sandalwood trees (the oil's used for making perfume among other things)erm....smoking dunhill fags, calling their mates on their mobile phones, you know, the usual jungle tribe things! Apparently, there are three villages, and we visited the village that really only exists for the tourists, and some of the villagers are quite ingratiated with modern day living, so it's a bit of a fraud...saying that, it was a really good trip, we had an excellent guide who showed us how the tribe make fire (when they've lost their Zippos!) we had a go on the blow pipes - I bought one, but I've already cracked it, so it remains to be seen whether I'll be shooting anyone with poison darts when I'm back! We also drank from bamboo...all skills which we nearly had to use a few hours later, when we tried to find the hide we had booked to stay in, in the jungle. The afore-mentioned signs and map were useless, and as the light began to dwindle, we got a little worried, so we decided to head for another hide, which was up an incredibly steep hill with bad terrain. When we got to this 'hide' we found only an incredible view - see the pics - a metal roof and a bench, we, obviously, couldn't sleep there so we carried on down the other side of the hill until it got pitch black, then we bottled it and turned back. I can safely say that neither of us have never been so knackered in our lives when we got to the top of that hill again.....we bonded. Anyway, we made it back down, saw a few deers' eyes in the pitch black, from yet another hide that you can't sleep in. It was an adventure, but we made it back in one piece. I would just like to add that I've lost two torches on this trip so far, and I bought an old skool Ever Ready torch for what amounts to about a quid, Pipe ribbed me constantly about it, but he had to take it back as it was our guiding light out of the jungle and back to a chalet in the resort...which was nice.

The next day we went caving to see some bats; it stank and was a tight squeeze in some spots, but awesome - see pics. Then we let Taman Negara for the bright lights of Kuala Lumpur.
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