Tag Archives: travel photography

Cactus Point and all the cactus you like

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Back to my Cameron Highlands tour…..The night was cool and the air was fresh. We were undecided of the plans for the next day. Eventually, Tony and Erin decided to have a morning walk at 6am while I made up my mind to go for an early photography shoot before our morning breakfast at 8.30am

My family and I over slept being lazy to get up from the warm bed. Tony and wife managed to wake up earlier to keep up with their planned morning walk

The apartment we stayed in Vijay Dahlia, is owned and managed by the famous Hollywood James Bond star, Micheal Yeoh’s family. There was no outward beautiful attraction in the apartment but the cool weather and the natural beautiful green surrounding made up for it.

We had our breakfast at a small foodstall in Binchang. We all had hot spicy curry noodles and hot coffee to warm ourselves in the cold morning .

Cactus Point was the first place we visited during our Cameron Highlands holiday It is situated within Binchang. The entrance is free. The Cactus Point and Cactus Valley are the two most popular spots if you want to see the most variety of cactus plants.

As you enter Cactus Point, you would notice that its main attraction is in the center where all the various cactus plants are placed prominently. On the left is a section for all the popular flowers and on the right a small section of strawberry. All of them are for sale, including the miniature cacti as souvenirs. They are easy to care for.

Cacti, cultivated by people worldwide, are a familiar sight as potted plants, houseplants or in ornamental gardens in warmer climates.

Do you know Cacti are commonly used for fencing material where there is a lack of either natural resources or financial means to construct a permanent fence. This is often seen in warm climates, such as Kenya. This is known as a cactus fence and it was reported in the Wikipedia..

Cactus fences are often used by homeowners and landscape architects for home security purposes. The sharp thorns of the cactus deter unauthorized persons from entering private properties, and may prevent break-ins if planted under windows and near drainpipes.

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Are we still getting cool and fresh air in Cameron Highlands?

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My good friend Tony and his wife Erin called to invite us for a holiday. We chose to go to Cameron Highlands to enjoy the cool climate and fresh air of the highlands

 Cameron Highlands is a highland region located about 300 km north of my home in Subang Jaya. It is the largest and most famous hill resort in the country. This highland paradise still retains much of the charm of a typical English colonial home

We took a slow leisure drive, dropping by at Bidor for lunch to savour the famous herbal roast duck soup noodle. We used the new entrance Simpang Pulai and drove up as high as 1500 metres above sea-level reaching one of the peaks of the main range of Peninsular Malaysia, High above here on the highlands the temperature plunged as low as 16 ˚C.

So many things have changed compared to thirty years ago when I first visited this holiday resort after I left school. During that time, there were not many houses, hotels and apartments and even then there were not so many vegetable farms and gardens. It was just a forest with trees and plants. Nowadays there are too much land clearings for new development around the towns of Tanah Rata and Brinchang. Many have complained that the weather was affected and it was not so cold like in the earliest days

We stayed three days and 2 night at a holiday apartment,. Everywhere we walked we can see flowers and they are bigger and color rich. There were too many key attracting places to look around but we just visited some in Cameron Highlands including, strawberry farms, rose gardens and vegetable gardens, Cactus Point, and the Boh Tea Plantation.

At the Boh Sungai Palas Tea Centre, we order a cup of tea, sitting and chatting. The teahouse which was overlooking the valley while sipping a cup hot freshly brewed tea was truely relaxing

More pictures to come in my next posting and stay tune!

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Bangkok Tour Archived

2007/12/12 Bangkok’s Chinatown

2007/12/17 Bangkok Tour

2007/12/23 The Floating Market- Damnoen Saduak

2008/01/05 Bangkok Tour–Kanchanaburi

2008/01/12 Kanchanaburi – Bridge on the River Kwai

2008/01/19 Kanchanaburi – The War Museum

2008/01/26 Kanchanaburi – War Cemeteries

2008/02/02 Kanchanaburi – Waterfalls and Elephants Ride

Kanchanaburi – Waterfalls and Elephants Ride

Finally we come to an end of our kanchanaburi trip. The five days holiday trip in Bangkok Thailand has given me food for thought about their tourism and no wonder it is called a paradise for holiday makers. Perhaps I have to come again next time as there were so many beautiful spots that I haven’t explored in this trip.

Don’t forget to visit Kanchanaburi as it offers stunning natural beauty like caves, spectacular waterfalls and parks as well as adventure tours including its famous elephant treks through the famous River Kwai.

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My wife and son went on an elephant ride. They were sitting on an elephant. The weather was hot and sweaty. At first they didn’t really like it (scared) but later on they felt comfortably safe and enjoyed the bumpy but adventourous ride. We also went for an elephant show where two tribes riding on elephants fought each other in the ‘battle ground’.

Later the van driver took us to a waterfall nearby. Kanchanaburi Province has seven major waterfalls. We had almost one hour to spend at the Erawan waterfall while waiting for another van to take us for lunch. The waterfall landscape is among one of the most beautiful places in the province and in the shade of the trees, temperatures are comfortable!

We found a place to sit down in the surrounding of the waterfall and enjoyed the natural beauty whilst listening to the water falling and watching tourists take a quick cooling dip in the water. It’s a thrilling sensation to be walking all over this lovely waterfall. Many tourists were taking photos here.

These are some photos I took at the waterfall.

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Kanchanaburi – War Cemeteries

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We visited the Kanchanaburi – War Cemetery, the resting place of thousands of POW’s who were forced into labour camps while constructing the Death Railway and Bridge On The River Kwai.

In Kanchanaburi town, there are two beautifully neatly maintained cemeteries. Both cemeteries are surrounded by beautiful gardens, well taken care by local volunteers. Flowers are often seen left on the graves by loved ones from all over the world.

We came to the cemetery in the heart of the town where they buried almost 7,000 POW’s who lost their lives in the hands of the Japanese Army, following their invasion of Thailand during World War II, when British, Dutch, Australian and American prisoners were brought to Thailand from Singapore.

A plaque reads

1939 – 1945

The Land on which this cemetery stands is the gift of the Thai people for the perpetual resting place of the sailors soldiers and airmen who are honoured here.

Chong War Cemetery

We have no time to visit The Chong Kai Cemetery, on the banks of the River Kwai. It is smaller and it buried almost 2,000 POW’s

The cemetery can be reached by boats, available at the pier in front of the town gate and also from the Bridge.

Kanchanaburi – The War Museum

The JEATH War Museum is on the bank of the River, inside Wat Chai Chumphon temple. JEATH stands for Japan, England, America, Australia, Thailand and Holland, representing the nationalities of the prisoners of war (POW’s) who were forced to work on the construction of the famous “Bridge On The River Kwai“.

This tribute was established to show actual items that were connected with the construction of the Death Railway by POW’s between 1942-1943.

The museum displays some exhibits of the terrible conditions inflicted on the many young men that died and the many that survived to tell the story. An estimated 16,000 war prisoners and over 100,000 local labourers died .

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Kanchanaburi – Bridge on the River Kwai

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Thousands of Allied Prisoners of War (PoW) and Asian labourers worked on the Death Railway under the imperial Japanese army in order to construct part of the 415 km long Burma-Thailand railway.

Most of these men were Australians, Dutch and British and they had been working steadily southwards from Thanbyuzayat (Burma) to link with other PoW on the Thai side of the railway.

This railway was intended to move men and supplies to the Burmese front where the Japanese were fighting the British

Both the wooden and the adjacent steel bridge were were built by the Japanese, using prisoner of war (POW) labour, which spanned the Mae Klong river (renamed Kwa Yai river in 1960).

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Construction work started in October 1942. A year later the rail laying was completed. The wooden trestle bridge was completed in February 1943, and the steel bridge in April 1943

About 60,000 men consisting of Indian, Burmese, Malaysian, Indonesian, Chinese and Thai labourers as well as prisoners of war took part in the construction work.

The black iron bridge was brought from Java by the Japanese to Tamarkan in 1942.

Both bridges were subjected to numerous attacks by Allied aircraft during the period December 1944 to June 1945.. The curved spans of the bridge are the original sections. A daily train is still following the historical route from Kanchanaburi to Nam Tok railway station.

Japanese army engineers selected the route which traversed deep valleys and hills. All the heavy work was done manually either by hand or by elephants as earth moving equipment was not available.

The railway line originally ran within 50 meters of the Three Pagodas Pass which marks nowadays the border to Burma. However after the war the entire railway was removed and sold as it was deemed unsafe and politically undesirable.

The prisoners lived in squalor with a near starvation diet. They were subjected to captor brutality and thus thousands perished. The men worked from dawn until after dark and often had to trudge many kilometres through the jungle to return to base camp where Allied doctors tended the injured and diseased but many died.

After the war the dead were collectively reburied in the War Cemeteries and will remain forever witness to a brutal and tragic ordeal.

Click here to view video: The Death Railway in Thailand