Happy CNY, everyone! The Chinese New Year lasts for 15 days, so I’m not too late with my wishes! 😛
This year’s celebration was a little different. Instead of the usual balik kampung to Ipoh, the fam rented a bungalow in Janda Baik, Pahang for a 3D2N stay. Tucked among hills and greenery about an hour’s drive from Kuala Lumpur, the area is a popular tourist spot for those who like relaxation and nature.
Our accommodation was called Rest.Pause Rainforest Retreat – and it did not disappoint.
Built on a hill slope, the house was spacious and beautifully designed, with all the comforts of a modern home, surrounded by lush greenery. There was a nicely kept garden at the back with its own fish pond, as well as a natural stream. There was also a caretaker on hand to take care of all our needs during our stay. He lived in a small but immaculately kept house just next to the main building, and kept the fattest chickens I had ever seen.
(Above) Spacious living room, complete with comfy couches, a large-screen TV and a selection of DVDS to watch. Tall wooden sliding doors opened up to the verandah, allowing for plenty of sunlight to filter in. The place was airy and bright.
The dining area where we had most of our meals was outside on the verandah, affording us scenic views of the garden and surrounding jungle. It was lovely especially in the morning when a mist shrouded the trees and there was a cacophony of chirruping crickets and birds.
Insert obligatory vain photo here.
Our welcome drinks of sweet and fragrant pandan water.
They also prepared a gift basket of snacks; peanuts, instant noodles and Mamee.
There were four rooms in the bungalow – two on the ground floor, and two upstairs. Ideally, the house should fit a maximum of 15 people – we had 25 ._. They were still really accommodating and even prepared extra mattresses and pillows. Some of us slept in hallways and living rooms.
View of garden from staircase window.
One of the rooms upstairs. The setup was basic but comfy. The springy mattress wasn’t good but I slept on a thin one on the floor. Super comfy and cooling!
Room shared with Moo, Pops and the Bro. I like small spaces and tight corners so you can guess which bed I ‘booked’ immediately upon entering the room. 😀
The thing I liked most ? THEY HAD A MINI LIBRARY!!!! The bookworm in me shrieked with pleasure when I saw the cupboard of volumes just waiting to be flipped and caressed and devoured (figuratively speaking, of course). There were also some board games on the shelves underneath: UNO blocks, congkak, poker cards, Monopoly, chess.
Picked up a gem of a book called Shantaram; but it was a long novel so I couldn’t finish it within 3 days. 😦
Venturing out to explore the garden. Caretaker’s house (right).
View of the bungalow from the garden.
Bougainvilleas in bloom.
Dinner on the first night was hotpot. The place had all the facilities we needed, included cutlery and pots – all we had to do was bring the food. It felt really warm and comforting to enjoy hotpot in the cooling weather!
Breakfast the next morning was prepared by the caretaker and his wife – simple but tasty fare of fried eggs, sausages, toast and beans.
Janda Baik is close to many tourist spots, including Genting Highlands, Bukit Tinggi, Bentong and a couple of waterfalls. I wanted to stay in and read but the fam was bored so we drove up to Genting Highlands. It was my first time playing slot machines at the casin; it might have been beginner’s luck but I won some money – enough to treat the fam to a good lunch.
Dinner on our second night was BBQ – the caretaker set up the charcoal and stoves for us on the front porch. The aunties also made a killer lap mei farn (rice with waxed meats).
Breakfast on our final day was fluffy pancakes with honey and butter – washed down with steaming mugs of coffee and refreshing glasses of orange juice.
I’d highly recommend Rest.Pause to those who love nature, and those who want to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city without driving too far. The Wifi is pretty wonky, which prompts you to tear your eyes away from the screen for awhile, and reconnect with nature, family and friends (in my case, I still had my nose in a book so, shrug). Everything was provided for – kitchen facilities, entertainment such as books / TV, even mosquito repellents and insect cream – so all you have to bring is yourself and the food. Travel is best by car as there is no public transport in the area. Cycling seems popular but I don’t recommend it as the roads are windy and narrow.
A stay at Rest.Pause costs approximately RM1,000 per night.
REST.PAUSE RAINFOREST RETREAT
Lot A293, Sum Sum, Jalan Tanarimba Pine, Tanarimba, 27540 Kampung Janda Baik, Pahang