Living in The Oldest Nature in Malaysia

Short Note: today is the last day for July’s Nicolekiss Give Away Contest, so send in your story before the strike of midnight. Selected 3 articles will be published next week for voting.

Taman Negara spans over 4,343 square kilometres, spreading across Pahang, borders of Terrenganu and Kedah states. Impressively, Taman Negara is more than 130 millions years old and believe it or not, one of the oldest existing rainforest in the world.

The highest point in Taman Negara is Mount Tahan (or Gunung Tahan) that reaches 2,187 meters above sea levels and is the toughest trek in Malaysia (believed by many in SoutheastAsia too), as suggested by the name (tahan means endure), conquering Mount Tahan is not an easy task, the old long trail from Kuala Tahan will take you seven days to trek, return journey.

The traditional way, and most recommended in my opinion, to get into Taman Negara is through the river, a 3 hour river ride upstream Sungai Tembeling via the Kuala Tembeling Jetty. Accessible through the town of Jerantut, Pahang.

tmn negara river routes
Kuala Tembeling Jetty is located at the bottom of the map

The rainforest inhabits over 10,000 species of plants, 350 species of birds and proudly, some of the rarest and critically endangered species in the world.

cinnamon tree
Never knew cinnamon comes from such a sturdy tree

tongkat ali
Never knew tongkat ali comes from such a scrawny tree

giant tree 2
Guess how big this tree is?

giant tree pose
No I’m not a midget, the tree is huge…

giant tree
It’s called “Giant Tree”

sumatran rhino description

Written way below the photo (unshown here):

Extinct in Malaysia
The Javan Rhinoceros once roamed the Malay Peninsular. Once roamed and found in India, Myanmar, Indo-China, Malaysia and Indonesia. Today only a handful remains in Hava and Indo China. The last Javan in the Peninsular Malaysia was shot in 1932.

Now what catches my heart is the top part.

Will the Sumatran Rhinoceros go the same way as the Javan? The population in the Peninsular is about 80-100l in Borneo about 36 remained. Even if it proves possible to breed them and return them to the wild, they will still be threatened by poachers. Hunted to the edge of extinction because of silly belief in the value of the matted hair of their horns, it is unlikely that these gentle, rather comical creatures will survive far into the next century.

Have a moment to think about this. We can’t do much of what we have lost, so try to save what we can today.

The entrance fee of Taman Negara is RM1.

But please bring more than just RM1, camera license is RM5. So are many of the hidden charges.

entrance sign

The only way to get around the rainforest, other than through the river, is on foot.

trekking 2
Trekking down

trekking 1
Climbing up

You might want to get a sturdy pair of hiking shoes if you wanna go far in this jungle.

One of the highlight in the forest is the Canopy Walkway.

canopy walk

Built in September 1992, this 450 metres long and 50 metres high above the forest floor canopy walkway is the LONGEST in the world. But the most impressive part of this construction is no nails have been driven into the trees. Only wood, ropes and cables, nonetheless, it is very stable.

tree bark

But for safety purposes, there’s a long list of regulations to follow before setting foot on the walkway.

canopy sign

Read: do not run or sway on the canopy walkway, do not make noise, etc.

But what is the fun of that?!!

Getting on the walkway will set you back another RM5.

canopy ticket

Don’t underestimate this walkway, at one point (which is the highest), it is impossible not to hold onto both side of the walkway really tight when you’re standing on a flimsy piece of wooden plank (or so it seems) and is 50 metres high way, a small breeze can make the plank sway like crazy.

warning sign

I bet if Ming would piss in his pants if he walks through this walkway. :p

The view on the top however, is very rewarding.

view from canopy walk

If there is one thing I love about being in a preserved rainforest more than anything else, is the nature. It is here, you find some of the most preserved caves no where else can.

Have you been to a cave?

If yes, how many out there have been to a cave where pavements have been carved out, lights have been set within the cave to ease tourists to walk around. But not in this rainforest, no.

The cave I visited was called Gua Telinga (or funnily translates to “Ear Cave”).

ear cave?

I didn’t know why it is called that way.

Till I got inside.

climbing cave

The “pathways” are so narrow, it there wasn’t a guide forcing himself through it, I didn’t think it was even possible for a human to crawl through such narrowness. There are no lights in the cave, and the only way to get around, is holding a torch light in one hand and balancing yourself on rocks from time to time.

narrow cave
Very slippery rocks

Some 20 metres into the cave, we reached the largest void of the cave, which is not so big, and were welcomed by this magnificent sight!


It was so beautiful I could not describe the sensation. These creatures were just at most 2-3 metres above me, some was so close, I could touch them (though I did not).

gua telinga

I was probably the only one in the group who took photo, risking having bats sworn all around with my blinding camera flash. But back in my mind, I wanted to share this delightful moment with my readers and people out there. See the things I do for you guys? Appreciate me already? :p

Note: I asked permission from the guide of course

I look back now at how much I have written and feel that I should stop here. But not before describing one more thrill I had on this trip, the rapid shooting.

Gosh, you guys have to try this. It is so cool.

tmn negara river2

The scenery is spectacular as you tour along the river through the primitive rainforest, indulging every sight in the most relaxing way.

tmn negara river
The water got rougher

tmn negara river 3
And rougher

Okay, maybe not so relaxing. Hold one tight or you might get wet!

me on rapid shooting

Someone hand me a towel.


14 kissed Nicole

  1. Gua telinga sama lu! ahahahaha...

    I think I'll stick with "gua caya sama lu" la...

  2. Hi ,Nic

    I didnt see U sweat?

    Still in good pose:)

    I Love U......

  3. i think I saw you the day u take this pic, in Maybank Cyber. . . @__@

    but I shy shy to say hi >_<

    will say hi now, hi nicole~


  4. wow, huge tree! =D fascinating~

  5. needed more than a towel!

    you know what nicole? you should buy a pair of really comfy and nice hiking boots, that can be used for every traveling situation that you might come upon. try timberland.

    sigh...i cant submit any entries for the nicolekiss contest without offending anybody, so...too bad. sorry ya?

  6. So many bats. Vampire might be lurking around. btw, got try bbq bat? :P

  7. Guess what, I think I had those creatures' shit on my hand in Gua Telinga. That was so smelly.

  8. Zul of Chelsea: dun understand

    XoX: sweat? why sweat? the water so cold..

    PearlJade: did I take pic in Maybank Cyber?

    Patricia: yea... the works of mother nature always amaze me

    sheon: yea i should, been thinking about for some time now.

    whisperer: how can u eat such cute creatures!!! they are like.. little piggies.. sooo cute!!!!

    Kenny: haha... i had gloves on :p

  9. Superb post Nicole.

    Yeah, heard the hike to Gunung Tahan is a killa. Even harder than Mt. Kinabalu which is 2k higher.

    Btw, did you get Batman's autograph at Gua Telinga?

  10. "Gua caya sama lu!" is a traditional malay(colloquial?) term for "Way to go!" in, "gua caya sama lu, nicole!" means "Way to go, nicole!"...

    "gua telinga sama lu" is a play on the phrase "gua caya sama lu" and has no particular meaning...

    hope i've cleared things up!(probably not).

  11. Taman Negara is really fascinating !! Love to visit that place

  12. nature really is calling. thanks for pics..!

  13. sigh...these days where do i find free running sand besides the beach?

  14. asyik-asyik badak