Connections are poor and expensive here so this will be a quick update. I’m staying in the hostel portion of the Mutiara Resort. So much for the hostel, I’m the only one there so it’s a private room. Internet connections there cost $10 MYR per 30 minutes. For comparison, the hostel I’m booked to stay in for the next two nights in Cameron Highlands cost $12 MYR per night.
Taman Negara has been amazing.
To get to the internet place, I walked through the property of Mutiara, waited for a boat to take me across the river, hiked up the hill, left the place I knew about that doesn’t now have internet, trekked on up the hill, and around the corner and bingo! Here I am and at a reasonable $1 MYR per ten minutes.
I’ve loved the forest and will write a bit more when I get to a place where that is possible. Tonight, I’m going on my own night hike and see what I can spot. Last night, in addition to the Mouse Deer, we spotted a 10″ black scorpion (they glow florescent under the right light) and we spotted a spider with the top half of it’s body that of a scorpion and the bottom half that of a spider.
Tomorrow, I will go early to the hide overlooking a salt lake and see if I get lucky spotting mammals. My shuttle leaves around 10:00, I change once around 12:00 and should get Tanah Rata mid afternoon in the Cameron Highlands.
Reading an overview of Malaysia last August to see what was available, one place that jumped out to me was Taman Negara. It’s described as possibly the oldest rain forest on earth. It was one of the “must see” spots before I started. Now, more rested and wanting to get out of the city, I’m headed there tomorrow.
There are several ways to get there one of which is to arrange a trip on your own. From the sounds of it, that takes more time, may require a stop over night, you have to arrange your own lodging and guide service once there, a visit to the park requires a boat to get you across the river and meals are all on your own. Normally, I’d be up to the challenge of exploring that way.
However, my priority is to see and experience as much of the park as possible and that will be with a tour. I talked with three different tour companies and picked the one that felt right. They have an arrangement with my hotel so I booked through The Travel Hub where I’m staying. Tomorrow at 8:00 am, I’ll be picked up and on my way. Here’s a link to the company I’m going with if you are curious about more information. Taman Negara
There is a budget version that includes only lodging and transport. All meals, guide services, etc. are extra. The one I have selected uses the Mutiara Resort which is right in the forest. All other accomodation is in the local village across from the river. Staying in the forest is recommended for people who like to get up early, go bird watching and listen to the forest come alive. See information about the resort
here: Mutiara Hotel