Under the Economic Transformation Programme (ETP) the Malaysian government has a long-term development strategy for the tourism indus...
School’s Out and Here’s Some Fun Things To Do With Your Kids
As I packed away some old things last weekend, I found my old trusty portable camping stove. I last used it during a trip to Endau Rompin several years ago, and it made me think about the wonderful holidays I had when I was a child.
Holidays have always been a great time for us; they hold such great promise of memories to be cherished. I recall three times a year, at the end of each school term, we would badger our parents to take us somewhere special - even if it was just to visit our cousins in the next town. The general idea was to simply get away from the usual routine and surroundings such as homework and chores, and have a little taste of adventure to do something fun with mum and dad.
There’s something about unfamiliar situations and surroundings that seem to bring us all closer together. It could be the sharing of little new experiences together; even otherwise ordinary things like deciding where to eat. Holidays are also a time to bend the rules a little - like staying up late and snuggling between mum and dad in bed.
Today in Malaysia, we are spoiled with too many school holiday choices, and the fun things to do along with that. The latter is really important because as any parent will attest: An entertained child is a happy child; and a happy child makes a great family holiday.
Even a relatively easy weekend at the Sunway Lagoon Hotel can make for a fun weekend getaway. There's the great Lagoon and theme park that almost guarantee a happy child. And when it gets too hot outside there's always that ice-skating rink and the retail therapy to be found indoors.
For those of us in the outer suburbs and from the towns outside the Klang Valley, the shopping centres here can offer a quick and easy weekend getaway. The hotels there are usually equipped with the necessary facilities for young visitors and there are always fun things to occupy the kids, all in air-conditioned comfort and convenience.
For the intrepid, especially older kids, there are always many outdoor holiday adventures to be found nearby. Places like the Kuala Selangor Nature Park can be most interesting for kids who enjoy the great outdoors; like going on safari but without the lions. The park is filled with nature's wonders that for most city kids are often only seen on television.
After a long tramp through the mangrove, families could then head for the many seafood restaurants on the bank of Sungai Selangor to enjoy the local fare and watch the sunset. Kuala Selangor nightlife can be most suitable for families; watching the fireflies from a rickety sampan in Kampung Kuantan will surely be remembered long after the holidays are over.
To complete the outdoor experience, basic chalets and camping site are available in the Nature Park; great for kids who want to experience sleeping to the sounds of nature.
For kids who might like the outdoor but require a little pampering, there are numerous beach resorts dotting the Melaka Straits from Morib to Port Dickson. The Avillion in Port Dickson is so complete that families need not leave its grounds the entire holiday. There's plenty to see and do with its Water Chalets hovering above the sea with glass bottomed rooms, a petting zoo, a nice tree lined swimming pools and water slide that the kids would love.
If all these outdoor adventures are just too much, then there are the many world-class theme parks to be enjoyed. Places like the First World Theme Park in nearby Genting Highlands and Legoland in Johor can make a short, fun filled holiday seem like a trip to a faraway land. Hotels here can be just as fun; think Legoland Hotel's themed guest rooms - Lego dreamtime almost assured.
It's clear that there are choices aplenty for school holiday ideas in Malaysia, something to suit most budgets and schedules. Just add a little sense of fun and adventure and a memorable family holiday can pop up just about anywhere. But there are just over a dozen years from the time kids can really appreciate a holiday getaway until they're embarrassed to be seen with you. Multiply this with the number of school holidays per year and you get less than fifty - in a lifetime. So have a great family holiday this school break!
By Lam Kok Liang
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