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Nature Park
 

Malaysia is a country rich with cultural heritages and natural splendors; from national parks with vast diversity of fauna and flora to exotic marine parks surrounded by superb coral garden that is home to great diversity of magnificent corals and colorful marine life.

Visitors need to adopt environmentally responsible travel to natural areas to appreciate nature and promote conservation, and sustain the well being of local people. 

 

Marine Park

The coral reefs in the marine parks resemble one of the most beautiful gardens you ever seen. They can be found in the Pulau Payar Marine Park. It is the only dive spots in the West Coast of the Pennisula Malaysia and is relatively unknown over the more famous dive spots like the Sipadan island.

Pulau Payar Marine Park, 19 nautical miles south of Pulau Langkawi and 32 nautical miles north of Pulau Pinang consists of Pulau Payar, Pulau Kaca, Pulau Lembu and Pulau Segantang. The coral reefs here are made up of soft corals with its magnificent colors and sheer diversity, and an abundance of hard corals like Boulder which is like its namesake, Staghorn which is shaped like deer antlers and Brain corals. The colors of the exotic reef fishes are particularly captivating like somebody painted them from every color of the rainbow with unique strips, spots and dots on them.These coral reefs take thousands of years to develop and they are one of our national treasures. That is why education is important and people must be made to realize that.

Pulau Payar Marine Park was conceived with the long term objective of preserving and enhancing valuable marine resources and the fragile marine ecosystem so that the visitors can enjoy it in perpetuity. Marine Rangers will always patrol the park water to ensure the marine ecosystem is adequately protected. Activities that may cause negative impacts to the marine resources are prohobited in order to ensure the conservation and enrichment of marine resources.

Langkawi Coral is the Malaysia’s 1st & Only Reef Platform in Pulau Payar Marine Park. The reef platform has been designed to have as minimal impact on the local corals and fishes population as possible so as to preserve the natural beauty of the marine park. Floating like a tiny island in the sea, it comes equipped to facilitate all the activities conducted with comfort from snorkeling, scuba diving, coral viewing to sunbathing and fish watching. Whatever you do, there is something for everyone at Langkawi Coral.

 

National Park

 

Langkawi is an archipelago of some 99 islands in the Andaman Sea. The islands are blessed with innumerable beauty of white sandy beaches and its abundance of nature make it a true eco-getaway from marine life to rock formations, there certainly much to do and see.Langkawi is also rich in folklore and legends. It is most known as the site of the Mahsuri legend. The legend speaks of a young woman was executed for adultery and white blood flowed from her to proving her innocence.

Langkawi Geopark was declared a National Goepark on the 31st May 2006 and has been endorsed as the 52nd member of the UNESCO Global Network of National Geoparks on 1st June 2007.  It is Malaysia’s first geopark comprising of Machinchang Cambrian Geoforest Park, Kilim Karst Geoforest Park and Dayang Bunting Marble Geoforest Park with the total area of about 478 square kilometers. A Geopark is a nationally protected area that is unique for its significant geological heritage. The Machinchang Formation is the oldest geological formation in the world at 550million years old, it is said that Langkawi is the birthplace of the region! Kilim Geoforest Park boasts of a magnificently formed landscape of nearly vertical to sub-rounded karstic hills with pinnacles of various shapes and sizes. The name Langkawi is thought to have come from the Brahminy Kite Eagle which nested here. Dayang Bunting Geoforest Park hosts a showcase of marvelous marbles resulted from depositing of Chuping limestone dated back 280million years old. A unique feature of the park is the Tasik Dayang Bunting fresh water lake or Lake of the Pregnant Maiden, it is believed that women unable to conceive becoming pregnant once immersed in its “magical’ waters.

Within these Geoforest Parks, caves are plentiful for exploration activities. One of the many interesting caves has to be Gua Kelawar or Bat Cave with its stunning stalactites and stalagmites, taunt the adventurous to unravel ancient secrets. 

 

Wetland Park

 

Wetlands are areas where water covers the soil, or is present either at or near the surface of the soil all year or for varying periods of time during the year. Wetlands are generally fall into four categories – marshes, swamps, bogs, and fens. Marshes are wetlands dominated by soft-stemmed vegetation, while swamps have mostly woody plants. Bogs are freshwater wetlands characterized by spongy pest deposits and shrubs. Fens are freshwater peat-forming wetlands covered mostly by grasses, reeds, and wildflowers.

Mangrove swamps are coastal wetlands found in estuaries, where fresh water meets salt water and are infamous for mangrove trees due to their ability to survive in both salt and fresh water. Most plants are killed by salt, but the mangrove trees are able to filter salt out through specialized salt glands under the leaf surface. Also, most plants die if their roots are drowned in water thus leaving them without oxygen, and in the mud of mangrove swamps, the rotting leaves usually consume all available oxygen. However, mangrove trees have developed aerial roots that stick out of the mud and project into the air to get oxygen.

Long regarded as wasteland, mangrove swamps are now recognized as the important features in the landscape that provide numerous beneficial services for people, fish, and wildlife. Mangrove swamps, like other wetlands, function like natural sponges absorbing and storing excess water, and slowly releasing it during times of flooding to reduce the risk of costly property damages and loss of life. Mangrove root systems provide a filtering system for run-off, allowing sediments to be removed before entering open water otherwise this sediment would cover and kill coral reef colonies. They improve the water quality by trapping debris, sediments, excess nutrients and toxicants through their natural filtering processes. Mangrove swamps also serve as natural barriers against torrential storms by acting as wave breaks to preserve the coastline and prevent shore erosion.

Often called nurseries of life, wetlands are most fertile and productive ecosystem in the world, rivaling the likes of tropical rainforests and coral reefs in their productivity and the diversity of species they support. Two thirds of all fish consumed worldwide are dependent on coastal wetlands at some stage in their life cycle. Migratory birds use wetlands as resting and breeding areas and as an abundant food source.

 

World Heritage Sites

 

 

Georgetown, Penang has been endorsed by UNESCO on 8th July 2008 as the World Heritage Sites. This historic city of the Straits of Malacca has developed over 500 years of trading and cultural exchanges between East and West. This influences of Asia and Europe have endorsed the town with a specific multicultural heritage that is both tangible and intangible.

The heritage sites of Penang encompass buildings constructed by the British during the colonial era, clan temples of the various Chinese clan associations, religious structures including temples, mosques, churches and shrines, and other structures, including pre-war shop houses within the inner city. The existence of places of worship of different faiths so close to each other in George Town illustrates a history of peaceful religious co-existence and there were rich cultural exchange among the communities of different origins, cultural traditions and faiths.

The tangible as well as intangible heritage of the city is expressed in its religious buildings of different faiths, ethnic enclaves, spoken dialects, festivities, dances, attire, art form, cuisine and lifestyle.

The historic city of George Town is best surveyed on foot or by trishaw. Such a leisurely exploration is the only way to appreciate the old world charm of the old charisma and architecture legacy of the town.

 
 
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