We have talked about luxurious diving destinations but what about the fantastic places on land and forests? As a tropical climate country, Malaysia is very proud of its amazing greeneries and one of the best is the Belum Rainforest.
If you are a nature seeker who still enjoys hot showers and comfortable beds while venturing into the wild wonders that Mother Nature has to offer, then the Belum Rainforest Resort in Gerik, Perak is the perfect destination for you.
Located in Pulau Banding, an island in the middle of Temenggor Lake, the resort is surrounded by the Belum Rainforest. Hailed as one of the oldest rainforest in the world, Belum Rainforest is currently aged approximately 135 million years old and that is said to be older than the Amazon Jungle, which is barely 55 million years old.
We took a trip down to this pristine destination and discovered the best of Mother Nature without compromising the luxury of havng a soft plush bed and hot shower.
Read on our guide to get the best out of your Belum experience.
Staying in the comfort of luxury
More often than not, when we choose to embark on a nature related adventure, we would have to forego the luxury of accommodation – until now. Here in Belum Rainforest Resort, you are just a step away from your exciting wildlife adventures.
With a range of breath-taking accommodations like private chalets and villas, you have nothing to worry about when the time comes for a night’s rest or a proper bath to clean the sweat and dirt away.
If you are travelling with a large group of friends, then the Villa Tanjung Wan is perfect for you. With 8 spacious bedrooms that could house about 16 guests, private kitchen with a full staff at your disposal and a private swimming pool right next to the forest greens, you are guaranteed to a relaxing retreat.
On a side note to first timers visiting Belum, you need to be prepared to live without the convenience of Wi-Fi and phone connection. These restrictions are placed to pull its patrons away from the modern technology and truly immerse with the beautiful natural environment. That said, for those who are in desperate need for technology, there are selected areas within the premises that allow Internet connection.
Venturing into the wild
Here in Belum Rainforest Resort, there is a range of fun outdoor activities that cater to all sorts of nature lovers.
For a day of wondrous nature discovery, you can sign on to the Daytrip Royal Belum. In this tour, you will first hike on a simple trail in the forest to find the world’s biggest flower, Rafflesia. Then you will head on to the Orang Asli settlement to experience the local culture of the natives before going on another hiking trail where you will find a beautiful and scenic waterfall for a quick dip with the fishes.
For those who love water activities, you can participate in the bamboo rafting and kayaking sessions that take place in Temenggor Lake or you can hire a boat to go out to the waters for a fishing trip. In the Temenggor Lake, there are approximately 23 different types of fishes including Kelah, Tenggalan and Baung, but guests are required to release the fishes back to the waters to maintain a healthy ecosystem for the rainforest.
If you love wildlife, join in the fun of animal sightings especially for elephants. When driving along the highway towards Belum, you might be able to sight the majestic cretures as they cross the roads to the other side of the forest. So keep in mind, to drive slow within the region. Aside from spotting elephants, there are also hiking tours that show you the other residents of the forest like bugs, birds and monkeys - if you're lucky enough to spot them.
Rest and relax
Finally if you are tired of hiking and venturing the wilderness, you can still spend some quiet time within the resort for its many facilities.
Catch a tan as you sunbath and enjoy the beautiful infinity swimming pool in the villa or swim in the open pool where you can interact with other guests. Alternatively, you can also head down to the resort bar where you can enjoy a cocktail or two while playing a game of pool.
If all these activities do not suit you, there are also free outdoor spaces where you can do your own fitness activities from yoga, pilates to jogging. Bask in the mild evening sun while breathing in the fresh air as you perform your 'Sun Salution' and 'Half Moon' poses – a unique experience as compared to your regular sessions in an air-conditioned gym.