If you think that Genting Highlands is just a getaway destination for casinos and theme parks, then you are about to be proven wrong. This highland is largely surrounded by forested areas and thank goodness, most of the areas were still left untouched. Resorts World Genting is also trying to preserve these forests by opening up the areas to the public. More of such conservation efforts are put in place so that the biodiversity at Genting Highlands is preserved. It is a potential eco-tourist spot in the coming years and I believe it would draw more nature lovers to visit Genting Highlands which is just 6 hours of bus ride from Singapore.
A couple weeks back, I was there for a weekend getaway and it did entice me to head back for more nature trails or trekking.
1. The Green Lucious landscape at Genting Highlands
If you are in Genting Highlands, do take some time to walk and explore out of Resorts World Genting. There’s an English Garden just a road across Resorts World Genting and over there, you are able to see the cross-hybrids of 3 native species of pitcher plants in Genting Highlands. There are also species that only thrives in cold and high humidity of the Montane-Ericaceous Forest. These are plants which you never get to see in countries with hot and dry weather like Singapore.
Currently, Eddie and Pat are running the Pitcher Plant conservatory program to rescue the pitcher plants and other plant species at Genting Highlands.
2. Great Diversity of Flora and Fauna at Genting
In the past, I would only associate theme parks, casinos and cool weather to Genting Highlands because my family would only explore the confined grounds within the resort. But once you stepped out of the resort itself, you will see dense patches of flora and fauna, waiting for you to explore.
No one would have thought that these insect-trapping plants are commonly found in Genting Highlands. Thanks to naturalists, Eddie and Pat, they are able to revive some of the pitcher plants and keep them growing healthily in a safe place at the English Garden.
3. Pitcher Plant Conservatory in The English Garden
Right now, the couple has a little conservatory house-cum-cafe which is served as a conservatory center to educate others about Pitcher plants. You must drop by their little cafe and if you have any questions, you could approach Eddie, who is an enthusiast when it comes to nature.
They also conduct activities such as pitcher plant terrarium-making.
5. An Eco-friendly resort – Awana
This resort is about 15 minutes drive from Resorts World Genting and it is about 3,000 plus feet from sea level. The hotel has not adopted any eco-friendly features yet but it has a stunning view of the green natural landscape.
6. Night Herping
Initially, I thought night herping was some kind of a musical performance but it actually meant something else which is far from that. It is an activity which involves searching for reptiles or amphibians at night. I guess that it is also much easier to look for such animals in the night than during the day. At night, when you shine your torchlight onto their eyes, the light tends to reflect back into your eyes and it may look as if their eyes are giving off a slow glow.
If you are a nature and outdoor lover, you would love this activity. You will fall in love with animals once again when you are able to study them and see them with your very own eyes.
You can easily find experts in most fields like music, education, engineering, computers and food. But when it comes to night herping, there are only a handful if not a few who are expert in night herping. Steven is so skillful at spotting frogs that people must have taught he has lived his whole life here in the forest.
You are about to view the amazing photographs taken with my trusty Canon G16. To naturalists, looking these close-up photographs is far more fascinating than selfies or #ootd shots of beautiful girls on Instagram. At least to me, these photographs taken are so special because I may never get to see such species again.
I wasn’t sure if our camera flashlight is a disturbance to these animals but rest assured, we did not tramp upon them or kill them. Once we examined them, we released them immediately into the wild.
This is a venomous snake which I believe that it is a resident of the Awana Bio Park here as many visitors have sighted this snake before.
7. Bird-Watching at Awana Bio Park
Another naturalists activity is birdwatching. It may not be as interactive as night herping but it has its own beauty too. You will also need to be able to train yourself to listen to bird calls and observant enough to know how these birds behave in the wild.
We spend the whole morning trekking in Awana Bio Park which covers huge grounds of a forest. And if you want to catch the sightings of some rare birds, you got to drop by the forest early in the morning.
8. Fashion Forest
Fashion forest is the first rainforest to have wi-fi. Instead of signages or information boards on certain species of animals and plants, you can now log onto their wifi to find more information about the species you’ve seen. You are also able to watch relevant videos of animals which are seen here in this area. With technology, it enables us to understand our environment better. Although it might harm the environment through pollution and global warming, it could also bring us closer together to appreciate nature at a deeper level. There’s always both sides to a coin.
Fashion forest is located Awana Longhouse, near Awana hotel.It offers 5 scenic bio-diversity galleries which showcase the best of the Upper Dipterocarp Forest.
If you are interested in the above trails and activities, you can visit TREKS website for more information. There’s also a TREKS outlet at Awana Hotel where you can find more information on nature walks and trails at their booth.