Your boat journey from
Kuala Tembeling to Kuala Tahan takes about 3 hours depending on how
swiftly the river is flowing.
The Pahang River system is the largest in Peninsular Malaysia. The
principal tributaries are Sungai Tembeling, which forms part of the
southern boundary of Taman Negara, and Sungai Jelai, on which the jetty
for National Park boats is situated. Four hundred metres downstream from
the jetty the two rivers join, at Kuala Tembeling, to become Sungai
Pahang. From here it is 300 kilometres downstream to the sea, and 60
kilometres upstream, on Sungai Tembeling, to Kuala Tahan.
Along your journey, especially for the first 35 kilometres, you can see
Malay villages (kampung) located along both banks, village trees - tall
slender betel-nuts palms, coconuts, kapok trees (with short fat pods)
and bonglai trees (with extremely long pods), local fishing people, as
well as the village buffaloes along the water's edge.
After the Taman Negara boundary is reached, at Kuala Atok, it is
National Park on the left, and on your right is the secondary growth and
Along the river edge, the most common trees you can see are the red
river fig (Ficus racemosa, ara masi) with clusters of fruits, ripening
red, along the lower branches;the river jambu (Eugenia densiflora var.
agustifolia, jambu air) with creamy-white "asterisk" flowers and round
white fruits; the bungur trees (Lagerstroemia speciosa) producing dense
upright clusters of bright mauve flowers during the first half of the
Though wildlife is not abundant along the river, you will not go
unrewarded if you stay alert. Movement of leafy branches often indicates
the presence of monkeys; Sometimes, otters are sighted, too Don't be
shocked if you see "crocodiles" in the river. They are in fact water
monitors-lizards (Varanus salvator) which fully when grown may be two
Bird-watchers get your binoculars ready! Three kinds of kingfishers with
beautiful blue wings are commonly seen. They are the white-throated
kingfisher (Halcyon smyrnensis) with a dark brown head and abdomen; the
stork-billed kingfisher (Pelargopsis capensis) is larger, with a bright
red beak and a very pale brown head; and the black-capped kingfisher
(Halcyon pileata) with a red beak and white collar.
During the monsoon season (when Taman Negara is closed to visitors, from
mid-November to mid-January) the river level can rise dramatically. When
you disembark at Kuala Tahan and climb the concrete steps up the river
bank, at the top, please note the marker indicating the flood level on
4th January 1971.
Beyond Kuala Tahan, Sungai Tembeling is navigable for a further 100
kilometres. Just upstream from the Park Headquarters, there are steep
hills and major rapids. Here (and at a few places downstream) tilted
layers of sand-stone bedrock are exposed. This is the prevailing geology
over most of Taman Negara, in contrast with the granite of Peninsular
Malaysia's Main Range.
Just 15 minutes boat ride
up river from Kuala Tahan, you will reach Nusa Camp. Accommodation at
Nusa Camp consists of Malay House, Family House, Malay Cottage, 'A'
Frame Chalet, Hostel Dorm and Camping Ground. There is a small stream
running right beside the camp, which is excellent for a cooling dip. The
restaurant serves food for a very reasonable price, and runs by friendly
and helpful people. Here, you can also rent inner tubes to run the
rapids in the Tembeling River
Chartered boat is costly. Nusa Riverbus is the only cheapest boat which
operates between Kuala Tahan to Nusa Camp and to some other places of
Destination : Nusa Camp to Kuala Tahan
Departure Time : 8.15am / 1.15am / 2.15pm / 3.45pm
Destination : Kuala Tahan to NUSA CAMP
Departure Time : 10.00am / 12.30pm / 3.00pm / 6.00pm
Destination : Kuala Tahan to Blau / Yong / Cave
Departure Time : 8.30am / 5.30pm
Destination : Kuala Tahan to Kuala Terengan
Departure Time : 10.00am /3.00pm
Destination : NUSA CAMP to Kuala Terengan
Departure Time : 10.15am / 3.15pm
Destination : Kuala Terengan to NUSA CAMP / Kuala Tahan
Departure Time : 11.00am / 3.30pm
There are many trails
available to Taman Negara visitors. All trails are sign posted and have
approximate walking times marked clearly along the way. There's a wide
variety walking and trekking possibilities here for an hour's stroll
(short trek) to nine arduous days (long trek). Do some homework to
familiarize yourself with what is possible given your level of fitness
and the time you wish to spend in the Park.
Feel free to discuss your itinerary with Park staff at the reception
counter. If you wish to stay in hides or lodges, or use boats, please
book these as far in advance as possible.
Be well prepared if you are in a long trek, and don't forget to inform
the Park Staff about your long-trek-schedule.
This is a self-guiding short trail, 800 metres in length, altitude range
is 62-72 metres. The circuit takes about one hour. The terrain is flat
and very gently sloping.
This trail aims to emphasis the details of a rain forest. There are
numbered markers at 23 sites around the 80-metre circuit path, to point
out some of the things we do know about Malaysia's rain forest, and some
of the things we don't. It is an information trail. Observe the flora
along this trail and understand more about the rain forest.
This is a virgin forest circuit, another loop trail which is less than a
kilometre long. The altitude range is 67-100 metres. Access is from the
back of the camp-site, and takes about an hour of walk. The trail is
steep in places, but should be within the capability of almost all Taman
From the camp-site, a path leads up a ridge to the start of the circuit.
Walking anti-clockwise, you initially follow around the side slopes at
the head of a small valley. Then the trail drops sharply down into a
stream bed, and finally zig-zags back up to the ridge again.
Walking this trail, you will feel rewarded for just to get the feeling
of humility that comes when you are surrounded by nature so unspoiled
and so magnificent. It is a classic example of virgin lowland rain
forest - its grand stature, its sounds and smells, it atmosphere - a
wonderful view of the forest as a whole.
Trek through forest of river flats and foot-hills to a wildlife
observation hide, this trail takes about one and a half hours walk,
about 3.1 km in length, and with the altitude range about 67-107 metres.
The trail passes the swimming place, Lubuk Simpon, then the turn-off to
A few sections of the trail are steep, and slippery after rain. For
wildlife observation, this trail is most productive in the first and
last hours of daylight, both along the way and at the hide, Bumbun
Tabing. It is enjoyable to observe the variety species of flora along
The Well-equipped Walker :
Everyday clothes - loose-fitting, light- weight cotton are suitable in
the Kuala Tahan area. But if you are heading further afield, you'll need
heavy-duty gear. Jungle attire is ideal, both as protection and making
you less conspicuous to the wildlife you want to see. You might need
long trousers and long sleeves to keep insects at bay.
Leeches are generally not a major problem but they can be a real
nuisance after rain. To keep out leeches, wear jungle boots, or ordinary
footwear with calico socks worn over trouser cuffs. Insect repellent on
your feet and ankles, a liberal coating of insecticide sprayed on shoes
and socks, deters leeches for a few hours. The aborigines (Orang Asli)
approach is to go barefoot and flick off the leeches as they begin to
Other ways to keep these blood- suckers at bay - use mosquito repellent,
salt, toothpaste, tobacco or soap, with varying degrees of success.
You may also like to take these things along with you:
Water. Boiled water may be marginally safer than drinking from small
Trail maps and perhaps a compass. Park trails are well and clearly
marked and broad. Navigation will be difficult only if you are off the
An umbrella or plastic poncho. For yourself if it rains, and also to
keep whatever you are carrying dry.
Binoculars. A "must" for all bird- and mammal-watchers. 7X magnification
is quite adequate. Keep the lens caps off, so you can put them to work
before the subject of interest disappear!
Camera gear. Auto-focus cameras with flash work well on many subjects in
the rain forest. An SLR camera with close- up attachments and a tripod
broadens the scope for good pictures. Or you can prepare films with at
least ASA 400 and above, in order to get good photographs in the dense
forest. Keeping optical equipment dry in the rain forest can be a
challenge. But you can leave everything out overnight under a ceiling
fan to help to dry off any accumulated moisture.
A magnifying glass. Have a look at the eyes of a spider, the spore cases
of a fern...The sort of 10X lens can open up a whole new world in the
A notebook and pencil. So that you can take notes of the detail of an
animal you see because remembering details of an animal sighting tend to
change as time goes by. You can thus broaden your knowledge of wildlife.
A torch. Just in case you are late coming home!
are three tributaries of the Tembeling River are within
convenient reach for Taman Negara visitors:
Sungai Tahan, flowing from Gunung Tahan, the Peninsular
Malaysia' s highest peak, and join the Tembeling at Kuala Tahan;
Sungai Trenggan, in the valley to the east; Sungai Kenyam, to
the east again.
nature of the water in the Sungai Tahan and Sungai Kenyam is
derived from the peat soils of their mountain catchments. Both
rivers are navigable by small(3-4 seater) boats. The Trenggan
River is generally too shallow.
Sections of it can be explored on foot from the trails.
water may become muddied after heavy rain. However the rivers
will flow clear after a day or two, with the pebbly bottom
visible a metre and more deep.
forest rivers which flow from virgin forest catchments, with no
cultivation or human settlements along the banks, are rare
indeed in South-East Asia today.
Malaysia has what few countries in the world have - a great,
undisturbed wonder waiting for discovery...
Rafting and Rapids Shooting |
Trekking and Camping Out