Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Malacca: Taming Sari Tower

The revolving tower was officially open on 18th April 2008. Located in the heart of historical Malacca, it is hard to missed esp. as the popular district of Bandar Hilir in Jalan Merdeka is nearby to Mahkota Parade Shopping Centre, Dataran Pahlawan Megamal, the Stadyus, St Francis Xavier's Churh, The Ship (forgot what's its actually name).. Hmm.. so just park the car, and enjoy the walk :)

It's height is around 110 metres and on top, you could enjoy 360 degree of beautiful Malacca, including the Staits of Melaka, Eye on Malacca (previously Eye On Malaysia).. even the St. Xavier church, the swimming pool etc etc...

The miniature tower, snapped when we waited for our turn to go up..

The waiting game....

Walking in searching for seats..

Can't wait for the ride to start..

Base of the tower, the machine, engine.. or whatever it called..

Going up...

The nearby swimming pool.. can skodeng as Terengganu people would say :)

The straits of Malacca, can see Eye on Malacca.. I had a ride on the Eye when it was it Taman Tasik Titiwangsa in KL earlier, ok la... feel like a big giant ferris wheel..

The Ship Museum just nearby..

The new portion.. shopping districts.. eateries..

Older portion.. St Xaview's side..

Going down we shpped the Malaccan delights.. souvenior items, t-shirt, cowboys, cincaluk etc etc...

But Kimi is still loyal to Ultraman masks... hahahaha.. boys will be boys :)

Kelantan Lures Visitors With Its Natural Splendour

March 25, 2009 11:10 AM

Kelantan Lures Visitors With Its Natural Splendour

By Norshazlina Nor'Azman

KOTA BAHARU, March 25 (Bernama) -- When contemplating of a vacation, often for many the first thing that comes to mind is foreign destinations. But why not consider many of the local destinations that are worth visiting?



For example Kelantan, many may not be aware that the state of Cik Wan Kembang has lots to offer - historical heritage, pristine environment and a rich culture and traditions of its people.

According to Kelantan's Tourism Director Muhammad Zaki Talib, not much of Kelantan's tourism assets have been explored by local tourists.

Remember, Kelantan is where the wau or kite and batik originates and places like Kota Baharu, Jeli and Dabong provide a fantastic spectacle for sight-seers.

Recently members of the media were taken for a tour of the state by the Tourism Ministry to see what Kelantan really has to offer. The participants were impressed on what they saw and experienced in the all inclusive tour package that covered a myriad of natural offerings - lakes, islands, caves, rain forest and the interiors.

TASIK PERGAU MESMERIZES THOSE WHO LOVE NATURE

If your are a nature lover, a tour to the Tasik Pergau Sanctuary Park at Batu 18, promises an unforgettable experience with the Pergau Hydroelectric Dam imposing a majestic view.

Tasik Pergau may not be as popular as Tasik Banding, yet it attracts more than 30,000 visitors annually who come here to find a piece of mind.

To reach there, it takes a two hour drive from Kota Baharu town. Located 720 meters (2,400 feet) above sea level, the cool atmosphere of 18 degrees Celsius and the surroundings covered by mist promises and enchanting experience.

The sanctuary covering an area of 460 hectares, located 100 kilometers from Jeli town, promises an unforgettable trip. The lake is also a haven for anglers with fishes like lampam, tilapia, toman and others thriving in its waters.

Visitors can rent a boat to explore the islands within the lake. The boat ride provides a closer look at the natural panorama, and the unique flora and fauna.

Tasik Pergau also serves as an avenue for a good night rest. With only RM70, including the cost of renting a boat, visitors can put up in the floating chalets developed by South Kelantan Development Authority (Kesedar). There are also 30 campsites for the more adventurous ones who want to get a feel of the cold nights in the open.

Visitors can also try kayak rides for a fee of RM20 for two persons or may opt for jungle trekking accompanied by a guide.

DABONG'S NATURAL PANORAMA

The small town of Dabong is more like a mystical hamlet especially for those who love the greens, fresh air and the challenges imposed by nature.

Located about 160km to the west of Kota Baharu, Dabong surrounded by tropical forests is particularly suited for extreme activities like scaling mountains, exploring caves and white water rafting.

As for those keen of scaling mountains, Gunong Stong which is the home to the Southeast Asia's highest waterfall where the water drops 297 meters (990 feet) down is within the Dabong Forest Reserve.

Hiking activities around the limestone hills bring visitors close to many of the unique flora and fauna that are rarely found elsewhere.

Visitors may come across the Asian elephants and the birds that live on the limestone hills including the redrumped swallow.

EXPLORING THE CAVES

A visit to Dabong is incomplete without a tour to Gua Ikan, literally meaning fish cave, and the other caves like Gua Gelap, which is also known as Gua Batu Susun, and other caves like Gua Keris and Gua Pagar.

To reach the Gua Keris and Gua Pagar, visitors have to pass through Gua Gelap. It is no easy task as one has to bend down and crawl over 20 meters as the cave's opening is small and narrow.

Gua Gelap lives up to its name as it is really dark inside. Only once in a while would one come across streaks of light from the openings in the cave walls.

"Many of the rock layers in the cave have been altered by those hunting for emerald and the damage is further compounded by vandalism," remarked a guide at the cave Fauzi Hussin.

Meanwhile at Gua Keris, visitors have to scale slippery rocks before they are greeted by a 'kris' (jagged knife) shaped rock formation at the entrance, resulting from the fusion of a stalactite and stalagmite.

The cave is spacious with much of the floor being level and it is said that people had inhabited the cave in the early days. A void area within the cave at one time served as the court for those learning silat (the art of self-defence).

The cave is the home for a number of flora that includes the 'Vaughan's Balsam', that can only be found in Perlis and South Thailand.

There too one can find a number of small animals and insects like the scorpion and bats that hang from the roof of the cave.

Visitors must take note that it takes at least half a day to explore these caves.

SAVOUR THE KAMPUNG WAY OF LIFE

If you want something different during your stay in Kelantan, then why not try the kampung (village) way of life. Just drop in at the Kampung Seterpa homestay, at Jalan Penggawa Mat Saat located 16km from Kota Baharu.

Visitors not only can savour typical kampung fare served by the host but also have the opportunity to learn the traditional way of life. The gastronomical offerings are often unique like the kerabu jantung pisang, sambal pauh, serunding, traditional cakes and fresh herbs.

Visitors too can participate in a number of activities including taking a peek at cottage industry, collect edible snails, visit aquaculture ponds, tap rubber, paint batik, dehusk coconut, witness how apes are used to pluck coconut and enjoy cultural shows like dikir barat and kertok.

Thus, for those in search a destination that has lots to offer, then why not consider Kelantan. Moreover, one must remember Kelantan is relatively unique with its own charms compared to the other states.

For inquiries on places of interest in Kelantan, please contact Tourism Malaysia Kelantan at 09-7477554.

-- BERNAMA

Me and My Certs..

This morning I updated my resume file so to speak, got some certs from last year training session that I lazily forgot to file in. It brings up fond memory of my wishes that when I joined the government sector I have loads and loads of certificates to plump up my resume file. Well, as I believe my fellow private sectors colleagues may attest, especially being in small firms or projects basis are concerned, training and maintainance or nurturing of workers is not really applicable. It is different in the bigger firms or even public sector as workers are maintained and nurture. Especially with the vision of K-workers, and the mandatory requirement of 56 hours per year training, aaahhh.. I believe my folder will plump up more with the passing years.. :)

First thing first, my most valuable cert of all. My degree of B.Commerce from University of Tasmania Australia dated May 1997, yikes .. nearly 12 years ago. Quite fond memories of that including the first sem in Australia that I went complecent and almost failed in one subject... however I bounced back from that hehehehe.. another one was when we have to bought our Taxation and Law.. think that was the last semester, we had a box load of them and when passed a pack of Engineering students on our way back home, we heard whispering and stares of disbelieve from them looking of those boxes... hmm.. and also the first time when we had open book exam.. which actually the part that you wouldn't have time to open up any book during the exam... hahaha.. student years...

I am now doing my MBA.. maybe I am a bit matured now.. and the classes are of part time basis.. so I do not feel all that stressed though some of the subject such as Economic Analysia was torture!!!!!

Hmm.. come to think back, I will have a newer more valuable MBA cert when I graduated next year! Yeay! .. thruthfully, I am also thinking of persuing my phD after that, will start shopping out for affordable and "easy" Unis next...

Some of the training certs I got..

Some more...

More to come...

Hahaha.. thruth to be told, I got some more but think to put them all in would be a bit too much.. but I think to scan all off them after this, with the digital age and all.. think that would be a wise move esp. to prevent damage.. and of course for easy referencing...

Monday, March 23, 2009

Melaka - Makam Dol Said, Malay Warrior (Al Fatihah)

As we headed out of the A Famosa going to the toll road for our day trip to Malacca, we noticed a sign saying Makam Dol Said, 18 km or so away.. why not eh? Cz we do not have strict schedule anyway, we decided to drive down to the makam or grave...

An extract from Wikepedia on Dol Said for the history buffs:



Dol Said or in full Dato' Abdul Said was a 19th century Malay leader of an area called Naning, which was then part of Malacca on the Malay Peninsula. He opposed taxation by the British's taxation policy in the area and refused to pay it. This was a direct cause of a conflict known as the Naning War.

Dol Said's defiance led the British to send 150 soldiers in July 15th 1831 to capture Naning led by Captain Wyllie. Naning however successfully defended itself-guerrilla style- with aid from other Malay allies, which includes Seri Menanti, Sungai Ujong, Johol and Muar. The British realised that Naning can't easily be attacked, so British requested reinforcement from Yamtuan Muda Raja Ali in Rembau. Raja Ali agreed to send 600 troops to assist British on the attack of Naning. Later in March 1832, British sent a larger force, consisted of 1200 troops, to defeat Dol Said's force. Colonel Herbert led in this assault against Naning. In the second attack, Naning failed to receive military aids from his neighbors. Such failure along with the presence of a huge British expedition forced Dol Said to retreat to Sri Menanti before surrendering himself, effectively ending the war. British then combined Malacca and Naning. Dol said was given a home in Malacca. Till today, Dol Said is still known as a hero in Malaysia. [1]

Dol Said and the people of Naning was betrayed by the Malays of Rembau. The Rembau Malays and their descendants now enjoying the spoils of war and from the blood shed by the people of Naning. The story about the Naning Wars has not been glorified although the Malays had won the First Naning War and the British was the de-facto World Power then.

Some of the old graves there. Looking at the length and width of the graves, it seems that the older generation are all bigger sized than us.

Memorium plaque detailing the history of Dol Said and Nanning.

The tomb.

ENtrance to go up to the tomb.

An even older plaque. The content of both are nearly similar.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Malacca - A Famosa Resort

Actually this trip is a while back, around 29 - 31 JAnuary right after the states directors meeting with Mr J, our big boss. I think the timing is strategic but more convinient to the directors posted to Sabah and Sarawak wanting to go back to our home in Peninsular Malaysia, but for me it is a bit of a burden, cz I am already at my kampung (hometown) and would just prefer to stay home... having a lovely loooong weekend.

Anyway, still I had to go, so cz of the loooong holiday, thought I bought my mum, my lil bro and Kimi to camp out at my sis, and she was thoughtful enough to treat us to A'Famosa, she treat us with the apartment but alas.. the money to go to the waterpark was on me.. wowwweee.. expansive, bought the ticket for the waterpark and the cowboy town... RM60+++ each!! Oh welll...

Anybody interested to go there can get more onfo on http://www.afamosa.com/main.php

As usual, pics told a thousand words...

First thing first, have to go to the Curve the Ikea potion. Kimi had a nice time riding the mechanical animal... hahaha asked my lil bro Hazman aka Jemang to chase him around.

Lunch at Kopitiam, quite nice but having been living in Kuala Terengganu, near RM50 for a meal for 3 people of nasi lemak, meehon, coffee and toast seems a bit steep :)..

On our way in. We arrived quite early so got good parking spot!

Kimi and the floats. Bought it outside at around RM8. Same float sold at the premise at 3 times the price outside!!

We found a shady spot at the kiddies side of the waterpark and spend majority of the time lounging there.

The overall park layout.

Mum, Kimi and Jemang. Hmmm to think Jemang was as small as Kimi just a few years ago.. time flies!

The apartment courtesy of my sis. Got some units that are empty. Think that might be because of time shares. Lots of birds as well making nest in the empty apartment. On the last day, me and Jemang (I was afraid to go on my own) went to the top of the building.. there are some renovation going on but I can imagine that the apartments on top were unoccupied for quite some time, spooky.

View from our balcony. The pool is quite nice, suitable for dip ins if you are still not satisfied from the waterpark.

Mum, Kimi & Sis. Kimi got quite a hankering to "tido umah tinggi" aka sleep in hi rise hotel.. hmmm...

The sparklers after the show ended.
Waiting for the show to start, Kimi with his Iguana... which he already envision to become raksaksa (monster) to his ultraman :)


The Indian and Cowboys..


Some of the animals. These are the tigers.. some goats and even chicken. I like the orang utan...

The performer end parade with the train.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Ramblings...



Hmm.. haven't been posting for quite a while, nearly a month plus and soo much things had happened.. been busy, been to KL, been to Waterpark holidaying, so much things happen and so little time to record everything..

Just had an audit visit for the past two days and then had a fun time going round with them shopping for batik and scarfes... Hmm I am not in a good mood for a blog entry so I should bid adieu before I boringly rambled on..

Post a pic of one of the activity I've attended, got another one this Saturday.. ho hum hundrummmm..