Wednesday, September 05, 2007

of legendary monsters and sunken Khmer cities

While the National Day parades and fireworks were going on in KL, a bunch of us took a drive towards the East in line with the Government's Look East policy. Heh. We ended up at Tasik Chini, with its fabled Loch Ness-ish monster and sunken city (they just had to have one up on the ol' loch).

We stayed at the Lake Chini Resort, which was probably provided the most decent accommodation in the vicinity. Of course, we're REALLY talking in relative terms here. The place wasn't really a "resort" in the full sense of the word.

There were 13 of us so we took up 2 dorms.

Shortly after dumping our bags in our dorms upon arrival, we headed down to the lake to check out the activities that were available for us there.

A half-group shot at the jetty.

Tasik Chini boat ride.

Lau sok, in his penghulu kampung pose.

Managed to catch this decent shot of a lotus in bloom, from the moving boat.

After an hour plus, we headed back to the "resort".

Sunset at Tasik Chini.

Mesmerised by the sunset? Hans thinks not.

There was nothing much to eat at the "resort" so we decided to drive out for dinner. After half-an-hour of hunting for food in the vicinity of Tasik Chini, we came to realise that the place was pretty dead. After all, we're talking about a place with an average population of less than 50 in every square kilometre. It was 9 o'clock and with stomachs growling and patience quickly eroding, we made a decision to take the 45 minute drive to Kuantan for dinner.

Fast forward through travel drama, group politics, car games, and a short trip back to civilisation, we headed back to the jungle for our first night in Tasik Chini.

The weather was good, the stars were shining, the moon was out, and the floating jetty beckoned to us. And so the more adventurous ones among us grabbed our pillows and sleeping bags and ended up sleeping on the jetty underneath the stars that night. With the platform bobbing gently on the water and a cool breeze blowing, it didn't take long for us to fall asleep. My watch showed 3 am the last time I glanced at it before drifting away into slumber.

After about 3 measly hours of sleep, I woke up with dew on my face and my sleeping bag. It was foggy and the atmosphere around us was almost surreal. We woke up hoping to catch the sunrise but unfortunately, the fog was too thick.

A room with a 360 degree lake view!

Eerily beautiful.

After washing up and having our breakfast, it was a brand new day ahead of us to conquer!

Being the city folk they were, doing the 1-2-5 pose while jungle-trekking was no sweat.

Silent waters.

Fast forward through dinner, Tasik Chini monster stories, chilling at the jetty, a heavy downpour, and a night walk (with no torchlights) on a trunk road with the dense jungle, glowing fungus and fireflies all around us. Day 2 came to a close.

Day 3 brought us back to Kuantan for gastranomical delights! Being unfamiliar with Kuantan, we called back to friends in KL who were more familiar with where we could find good food. We ended up at Chilli Restaurant along Jalan Besar. Spread was really good, but I felt as if we were compensating for our supposed 'malnourishment' in Chini.

Erm, just realised that this is not exactly the most-flattering picture of Lau sok! Haha...

And then we headed to Teluk Cempedak...

They have beaches like this in Kuantan??!! WOW!!!

Hans with our kite.

Lau sok as David Hasselhoff.

I like this shot. Faye, Carrie and Daniel fight for the kite.

Just chillin'.

More photos...
2007.08.31 - 2007.09.02 Tasik Chini and Kuantan

Yeah. I love holidays.

Don't get jealous now.