MALAYSIA MEGA FAMILIARISATION PROGRAMME
IN CONJUNCTION WITH MEGASALES CARNIVAL FAM
Kuala Lumpur – Cameron Highlands – Penang - Langkawi
JUNE 12 – 27, 2007
This tour, courtesy of Tourism Malaysia and
Eva Air, was a joy for us as it was a tour that we really had some say in
what we saw, so as you can guess, we were all so excited to see what was in
store. I had been to Malaysia before so knew that the group would be amazed
at how beautiful this country really is, and so tropical! Thank you so much
Sandra for opening our eyes to this magical country where delights await
those who visit. Eva Air was on time at both ends, very organized at
boarding in Vancouver, offered great meal service and the Evergreen Class is
the way to go. The flight took 12 hours.
The Malaysia Mega Sale Carnival last 11 weeks, and is jam packed full of fun
things to do besides shop, but this is the main event. It was also a
celebration of 50 years of Independence for Malaysia.
Eva Air, out of Vancouver, BC treated us very well, and we arrived into
Taipei very early the next morning to wait for our connecting flight to KL.
The duty free shops are open at 6 a.m. so we all got in some shopping while
we had a 4 hour layover.
Upon arrival in KL after another 4 hour flight, we were met and taken to the
Millennium K.L. Hotel, very convenient to all of the events that were
planned. This hotel was beautiful and the food was fantastic!
Day 2 June 13, 2007 (Wednesday) Kuala Lumpur
After breakfast and official presentations, we departed for our City Tour
which included the Malaysia Tourism Centre – the place to go for tourist
information including tour bookings, currency exchange, hotel reservations
and internet access, Twin Towers SkyBridge on the 41st floor for an
incredible view, then lunch, followed by the Central Market – a beautiful
art deco crafts center, then the KL Heritage Tour (Merdeka Square, St. Marys
Church – an English gothic church with beautiful stained glass windows built
in 1894, Masjid Jamek Mosque – built on the birthspot of KL in 1939, Sri
Maha Mariamman Temple – a Hindu temple with a 22 meter high gate tower and
Petaling Street or KL’s Chinatown. Merdeka Square is where you will find the
national flag on a 100 meter flagpole, so it is easy to find.
At the Menara Luala Lumpur or KL Tower we were pleased to see a tree right
up against the Tower…they took special care to construct a retaining wall
around the 106 year old Jelutong tree (Dyera Costulata), to protect it.
Surrounding the tower is the Bukit Nanas Forest Reserve, an area of a bit
over 9 hectares. It is the oldest forest reserve in the country. Then we
rode to the top of the 276 meter high observation deck for a gorgeous view
of the city. It is the 4th tallest telecommunication tower in the world. The
C.N. Tower in Canada is the tallest!
After dinner we all took the Eye on Malaysia ride, which was spectacular.
Each pod holds 6 people and the view is wonderful at night. The rides last
about 18 minutes.
Day 9 June 20, 2007 (Wednesday) Penang
Today, after breakfast we set off to visit all sorts of interesting
things…we passed through Fort Cornvallis, the site of Sir Francis Light’s
historic landing in 1786 on our way to the Penang State Museum, Dharmikarama
Burmese Temple, where a pair of elephants guard the entrance, and Wat Chaiya
Mangkalaram Buddhist Temple where we got to see a 33 meter long reclining
Buddha. We also saw the Victoria Memorial Clock Tower which was built in
1867 to commemorate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria.
A quick stop to the Telok Bahang Recreational Forest Museum then it was
lunch and Chowrasta Bazaar before heading back to our hotel. This was a very
happening place with both tourists and locals checking out the bargains.
Day 10 June 21, 2007 (Thursday) Penang
This was our day to visit gardens and the first one was the Botanical
Gardens followed by the Tropical Spice Garden which was great, and finally
the Tropical Fruit Farm which was super…there we all got a chance to taste
some of the tropical fruits we had only seen.
The Botanical Gardens are surrounded by natural rainforests, so you know
this will be lush. They were started by the British in 1884 in an old quarry
site. This Arboretum contains an historical living plant collection as well
as being a site of conservation, education and training. Here you will find
such delights as the Cannon Ball Tree, the Pinang Palm, and the Black Lily.
The Tropical Spice Garden is not just about spices, although it is the
region’s leading spice garden but it also won the Laman 2004 Floral Garden
Award and was a joy to walk through. It showcases a living collection of
over 500 varieties of local and introduced flora from all over the tropical
world with particular emphasis on tropical herbs and spices set in a lush
tropical forest. There are 3 trails to follow and each one introduces you to
different aspects – Jungle trail, ornamental trail and spice trail. There
are also 11 distinct garden rooms such as cycad, ginger, and bamboo. There
is a beautiful visitor center here as well where you can visit a spice
museum, gift shop and have a cup of tea. A big thank you for providing
English guides – I was very surprised at how many places had guides in
A visit to the Tropical Fruit Farm leaves you a bit fuller than when you
arrived. Malaysia has at least 370 species of edible fruits and I am not
saying that we tried every one of them, but we did try some of the more
exotic and I even tasted Durian while there. Cannot say that I especially
enjoyed eating it in the morning as it had a flavour like garlic to me. The
orchard itself has about 200 different species and its list continues to
Lunch then free time until our pick up for dinner on Gurney Drive, known for
the local hawker foods.