Monday, March 19, 2012

Alur Naga Waterfall of Mount Jerai

The waterfall on the mountaintop.
Rocky bed of the stream.
The cave beneath the waterfall.

This is a small waterfall on the top of Gunung Jerai (Mount Jerai). Located about 200 m from the chalet, you have to go up and down a hill using the easily seen jungle track. This waterfall is a part of a long stream that have waterfalls, but this particular location is unique. The dripping water, the cave and the pool created a mysterious atmosphere. As by the name of Alur Naga, or the Dragon's Creek, this seems a befitting title to the place.What attracts me is the color. The place looks like a Japanese bonsai garden. There are streaks of red, orange and green all over the landscape. Very high on moss due to little sunlight reaching the place and the rocks are quite slippery.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

More Birds Of The Paddy Fields

The Common Sandpiper.
The Heron among the paddy plants.
A Brown Shrike at the water channel.
The Oriental Pratincole having a drink at a puddle in the paddy field.
The Pacific Golden Plover.

The paddy fields in Kedah had provided a nice habitat for these birds. There is plenty of water, insects and aquatic creatures for food. Most of the birds are migratory in nature, originating from China, Northern Europe and others. They will arrive in September, when winter sets in those countries, and depart again in March, when spring emerges.

Tips: Don't wear anything bright. It is easier to photograph them from inside a vehicle. When you step out, they all will fly away immediately. You can even drive up close to about 7 meters for close-up, as long as you remain in the vehicle.
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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Birds Of The Paddyfields

The elusive Pintail Snipe.
The Cattle Egret
The Bee Eater.

The Little Egret.
The Little Ringed Plover.
Kedah have a vast amount of paddy fields and water channels. This environment had attracted and provided habitats for varieties of birds. You can always observe them almost all day long, among the grasses and the channels' banks, usually foraging for food.

All these photographs were taken at a water channel in Sedaka, Yan. The best time is early in the morning when they are still actively feeding. The next is later in the evening when they are not that active flying anymore.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Tasik Ahning or Ahning Lake

The first of the hill to be climbed to get to the lake.
Soil erosion and potholes to lookout for.

Unpaved road all the way.
One of the aerial views of the lake..
Abandoned boats by the lake shore.
This lake is in Padang Sanai, the northern part of Kedah. Surrounded by hills and forests, the lake is isolated and provides a getaway from city life. Getting there can only be with a 4x4 transport as the road is rough with potholes and unpaved. To get to the lake you will have to drive up two hills before descending down to the lake shore, which also is minimal as the forest is thick. The starting point is the hill next to the MADA office.

Tips: No food or water. Also no accomodation available. The last gas station is at Kuala Nerang, which is about 30 minutes drive away.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Orchids Of Gunung Jerai

The elegant Slipper Orchid.
A yellow bloom of a wild orchid, Eria pannea lindl.
Beautiful patterns on the leaves of the Jewel Orchid.
Wild orchid atop a tree trunk in the forest.

A pink Eria pannea lindl.
Gunung Jerai (Mount Jerai) has a variety of orchids. The bloomimg period is usually after the dry season, but it is hard to pinpoint which species to when. The most common orchid that can be seen starting at the forest park will be the purple spathoglottis. From the hotel's elevation will be the grass like Bamboo orchid.

The Forestry Department had created an orchid menagerie at the forest park. Some of the rare ones are being cultivated there. Contact the department for more information.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Balai Besar Or The Noble Hall of Alor Setar

The Balai Besar, or the "Noble Hall", was built in 1735 and was used for royal gatherings, state assemblies and others. Thai motifs were heavily implemented in the construction as to the historical political connections of the past. 

This hall is located in the heart of Alor Setar city. Nearby the Zahir Mosque and the Balai Nobat. Behind the Balai Besar is the downtown of Alor Setar.
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Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Lata Bayu Waterfall

The main view of the waterfall from the park.
Aerial view of the pool from the lookout tower.
Walkways taking you uphill along the stream.
The waterfall at the end of the walkway uphill.
Located in the district of Baling, Kedah. This waterfall is the second biggest in the state. A multi level waterfall, created by a stream flowing out from the uphill forest. There is a park with walkways, benches and rest huts. For convenient there is a food court, toilet cum changing rooms, and a praying hall provided at the park.
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