BUKIT LARUT aka MAXWELL HILL

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Do you think Bukit Larut should be "upgraded" so that it will attract more tourists, especially foreign tourists? For example, the present type of accommodation available may not appeal to most of the foreign tourists as they are used to be pampered in more luxurious surroundings. And getting up there by Landrovers isn't everyone's cup of tea. How about an eco friendly cable car system? Tell us what you think. Use the form below and let us have an opinion. Try to back up your opinion with some reasoning or arguments :-)

 

 

RESPONSE

Kamelia<kashalia@gmail.com>

I like Maxwell Hill just the way it is, and I feel that tourists should be able to accept that, as opposed to us changing the surroundings to accomodate them. Bukit larut may not have the fine luxury, but it is charming and romantic in that sense. You have that old world charm whenever you you are there precisely because everything is still old and pristine. Upgrading to attract tourists may have its good intentions, but it never ends well for the destination. Look what happened to cameron highlands. It is slowly being butchered away as everyone wants a piece of the tourist action. A cable car would be ok I suppose, but if Maxwell Hill is left undeveloped, and as it is, with minimal tourists, I don't see how it could be maintained properly. I feel that it's quaint to be able to go up Maxwell Hill with the four wheel drive. So, in conclusion, don't change anything. Well...maybe more gardens, and more picturesque looking flowers :P

nor azli<norazli@nuclearmalaysia.gov.my>

I think we should remain and priserved what it is...cause, It surrounding with the beautiful natural habitat rainforest that should be protected. On my opinion, the main thing is to upgrading the facilities such as rest house, transportation,bar or shops for the visitor and traveller..

Richard Widdicombe<richard_widdicombe@yahoo.co.uk>

I don't think a cable car is the way forward. what about cutting all the trees down to put a cable car up that's not eco friendly. Why not a veggie car or bio diesel or electric car. I do think the it needs a revamp. Just a bit of paint as the buildings are great old british. No one can build them again. Keep them and just do them up. I would love to be able to transform them. Landrovers can be converted to bio diesel that easy to do.

I love Bukit Larut think it is a very beautiful place when i was a kid I love to see the great big butterflys the size of my hand. I think it is a magical place. last time I was there I saw some white face monkeys. that was about 11 years ago when i work in K.L building Petronas Twin Tower, KLIA and LRT. But Taiping was my home Aulong. love the place. I will be going back this year 08 to see what has changed.

Kritz C<kritzc@yahoo.com.sg>

Hi All,
Speaking from the tourist point of view as experience on 1st January 2008.
1) Keep the land rovers ride (skip the cable car), perhaps allow self driven 4x4 to follow the experts.
2) New rules & policies for number of visitors allowed (frequency of transfer, booking facilities, professional receptionist)
3) New tracks/trails (pathway) for hikers walking up to the hills
4) New tracks/trails at the top for explorers (Incorporate themes like rain forest, tulip park, heritage walks...)
5) More professionals or knowledge workers
6) Upgrade the resorts, restaurants, wash rooms (maintain cleanliness is a must)

Mike Whitehead <mapimw@yahoo.com>

Unfortunately I think the modern tourist would appreciate a cable car. I say unfortunately because in my opinion the only real way to see and experience travelling up Bukit Larut is either walking or in a landrover so that you can really experience the journey. I went most of the way up Bukit Larut by 'shank's pony' in 1959 and wouldn't have done it any other way. To get back to the tourist though I think they tend to just 'do' places don't they. A chap I met recently for instance said, when he heard I'd been to Borneo, 'Oh I've been there' and when I asked whereabouts said 'Oh I don't know, where the orang utans were'.

Scott Mackie<samsco@btinternet.com>

Greetings from Scotland, I am due to visit family in Taiping gardens this year again and hope to visit the famed Bukit Larut, I say famed as the family have all talked much about it, although because of it's inaccessability we have never been there. Considering I would be classed as a western tourist, I would like to see easier access to the site but please keep the heritage. Castle in Scotland generate huge finances for the economy, sites like this should be looked after and "refurbished" to generate local and international tourism I think. I wish you well, God Bless.

Michael Badger<mabadger@dircon.co.uk>

I and my family visited Maxwell Hill on a number of occasions in the mid-fifties (in the days of Eric Oliver) and again in 1992. Assuming that the accommodation has remained fairly rustic, I would suggest that keeping it that way would be a magnet for travellers who like something different. If they want to be pampered they can go to the Cameron Highlands! As for the transport, that adds to the fun as long as you aren't prone to car-sickness. Whatever happens, I wish you well. Bukit Larut is a beautiful and bewitching place. Michael Badger

Shirley Peterson<shirleyp@exemail.com.au>

Left alone!!!! we spent our fist xmas in malaysia up at Speedys rest house with our 1 year old daughter in 1962/3..my husband was stationed at Terendak camp malacca at the time..verytime I visit friends in malaysia now ..I always go up "the Hill" at least once during my visit. ShirleyP

Roger Forrest<roger.forrest@virgin.net>

I was stationed in Taiping in 1960. I have climbed Maxwell Hill through the jungle and been driven up in the back of a landrover! I recall feeling unwell driving up through the numerous hairpin bends and do not think that this will be an attractive option for today's middle-aged tourists? I was a great fan of the Government Rest Houses throughout Malaya but on return in 1994 I considered that the standards had fallen considerably. I doubt whether you could justify the expense of a cable car to the summit of Maxwell Hill, unless the facilities were considerably enhanced to cater for today's international tourists. What about a development that would cater for tourists wanting to know something of the history of the region,eg. the war againt the Japanese, Communist terrorists and the local flora and fauna? You could bring packages in to stay in the New Club, walk up Maxwell Hill, overnight in the jungle, 3-4 stay in Bukit Larut with daily organised tours, return to Taiping , overnight in the New Club before departure? Just an idea.

Sharifah<shmazwin@hotmail.com>

I believe that the "pampered in luxurious surroundings" describe Malaysians better than foreign tourists. Many foreign tourists prefer rustic and eco-friendly environments and sometimes even very basic accomodation BUT with good clean facilities. If the accomodation and facilities are old and dilapidated and badly maintained, not only will foreign tourists feel repelled, malaysians who are even more pampered will reject it totally. You should "upgrade" the facility by improving the quality of the current accomodation eg. refurbish the interior, bedding and toilets. BUT you should not change the environment in any way...the drive up on a land rover IS part of the charm, NOT a detractor. It is an ADVENTURE!!! It is impossible to satisfy "everybody". If it is not their cup of tea, they can go somewhere else. For those who want their holidays to be full of karaokes or shopping or late night clubbing, they can go somewhere else. You should have a target market and upgra de the place to suit that target market, not "everybody". You should capitalise on your old-world charm, beautiful surroundings and virgin jungles and terrain. THAT is your secret weapon. Leave nature be, working around it and within what has already been built..so long as you ensure you have good clean accomodation, good infrastruture eg high speed internet, satelite services, good and professional service from staff, good "nature" advisers and trail guides etc, you can have a beautifully preserved holiday destination which will appeal to those who love nature and yet still have "civilisation" at their fingertips IF they want it. It would be a PERFECT place to develop a health retreat i.e. where you offer clean air, quiet, natural surroundings and offer healthy detoxifying food, health-driven activities like yoga, pilates, personal trainers, detoxifying spas, professional medical supervision, dietician and nutritionists etc. Malaysia doesn't have this at all except maybe one in Sarawak. Package it well, then AlL those stressed-out yuppie pro fessionals will clamour to come!!! and pay big bucks too ..There are so few of these charming little places left and it is sad to see that many local authorities think "upgrading" means having to build fancy five star golf courses and big resorts with monstrous buildings...you can still have good facilities if it is well maintained and on par with the times...I suggest you study the boutique hotels of the world and learn how they preserve and maintain the old-world charm yet still able to provide 5 star and diamond services to their guests. In fact, study the hotels in Maldives, you can even retain some very "basic" but good accomodation for lower budget travellers who just want to get away from it all to a quiet nature-friendly place....PLEASE DO NOT CHANGE Bukit Larut into a glitzy tacky tourist place. There are many ways to get revenue without having to sacrifice the environment and good taste..thank you

EC<ooiengcheong@hotmail.com>

I have been stying at one of the government bangalow in Maxwell way back to yr 1994. I spent 5 days over there together with a group of church friends of about 8 persons.
The overall setup were good and just need only minor touch up, ie:
1) To upgrade the bathroom facilities. To make it more accpetable with regular supply of WARM water. I encountered water heater broken down during my stay!
2) To upgrade the furniture, as the old furniture almost worn out.
3) The most important thing: PUBLICITY. It is so hard to get infor on Maxwell hill during these days. Perak government should put in effort in getting this hill promote to all Malaysian. I bet Penagites will love the hill, as Penang hill offer not much accomodation.

Mohd Azhar Ibrahim<azhar.sangkelembai@gmail.com>

I think Bukit Larut should be left as it is - a peaceful mountain retreat where nature IS the attraction. Only those who know how to appreciate the natural surroundings should go there (and there are many), not gamblers, nightclubbers etc. This way, the pristine beauty and ambience of Bulit Larut will be preserved. Preservation and sustainability is of the key. Fraser's Hill and Cameron Highlands are already in a mess while Genting Highlands cannot really be called a retreat - people congregate there by the busloads!
If buildings have to be built, let it be wooden chalets like the ones in Sukau Rainforest Resort (Sarawak) and the Santubong Cultural Village (Sabah), with minimal effect to the environment.

Shu Kar Kai<kkshu@tm.com.my>

Bukit Larut should go on the great change to attract more tourists from oversea as well as local. The management need to change to look into tourism business not just to run like what they are doing now. A tourist place should not close and should be open 365 days and the services should upgraded like proper accomodations, workers and transports etc. With what Bukit Larut have now, I don't think the tourists would like to spend more than 30 minutes up there. I think the person in charge should start looking into developing the Bukit Larut and move toward wawasan 2020. Don't you think so?. After many many years now, Bukit Larut still unchange. Why ?. How long have to go like that ?. We have a beautiful Lake Garden but the worst Bukit Larut if to compare to Fraser Hill, Cameron Highland and some other tourist attraction hills. Please do some charges and development to it for the sake of the beautiful place in Taiping. We would like to see Taiping develop and known through the world otherwise I don't have to waste my time here writing in this page and you don't have to set up this homepage to get people comments. Thank you to those who put up this homepage for their hardwork and ideas. I love Taiping as much as you do and hope Taiping be one well knowns place for everyone.

Amani<kzarki@streamyx.com>

Let it be as it is. Cameron Highlands is all chewed up because there is easy access. Fraser's Hill is holding up better due to access problems. Part of the beauty of Bukit Larut is the Landrover trip. The main pull of Bukit Larut is Nature in all its glory. Picnickers go to a river because of the natural river, if you want to go swimming, go to a swimming pool. Europeans come to Malaysia not to eat burgers, but nasi lemak and roti canai. Let it be as it is. Its inaccessibilty is its attraction.

Suzie<suzie_c76@yahoo.com>

Develop Maxwell Hill carefully, as if it's not done properly you will never undo the environmental damage and Malaysia has too many examples of ?white elephants?, but then it?s State money going into it, so been cynical, perhaps who cares?

With regard to the gondola, to install such a system you need to install the physical means of accessing the area, which means a road. To develop the infrastructure on Maxwell?s Hill you also need to make sure that this road can handle the transport necessary to get building material to the construction site. Support services such as power, water and sewage are typically going to follow the same route, as their installation is made easier by this access. By the time you have completed this work, the road to Maxwell?s Hill is likely to have been developed to a stage where it?s no longer necessary to have a gondola.

In addition, has anybody looked at what is required to make Taiping an attractive destination for tourists, local and international, because you will only get good numbers of visitors to Maxwell if Taiping can and wants to be the hub.

Having spent a bit of time in Taiping, it leaves me with the impression that it is a place to relax, retire, eat and sleep. It does however have a long history and interesting history, a lot of this though is Colonial (First Capital of Malaya) which may create a few challenges with regard to ?embracing the past? to ?develop the future?

A visit to the local Museum and other interesting local features is going to reward you with a slice of what this past was but also an impression of a run down environment, waste, negligence and rubbish.

The Lake Garden is an enjoyable place to spend time in, but a trip to the Burmese Pools, will only show a trail of neglect and rubbish, making for a disgusting experience and a not uncommon one.

The commercial area of Taiping still show?s some of the old colonial charm, but many of the trees that used to line the roads have been cut down in the name of ?progress? and it would take a lot of work to turn Taiping into an extension of the Lake Garden and perhaps the title of ?Garden City?. And how many people know where to spot the damage / craters left via Japanese bombing in WW2? At the same time it would be a good idea to have the Health Dept run through the local eating places, because if you have ever looked at the back lanes, you will be totally disgusted, rubbish, food, rats and quite often the plates that served the customers are doing a second serving for the rats, before serving the customers again.

But all this aside I find Taiping a relaxing and enjoyable place and with a little thought there is the opportunity to compile together activities that span from the sea to the mountains and that provide tourists with a host of unique experiences, based around it?s natural attributes, geography, history and people.

Hooi Peng Kwan<hpkwan1@gmail.com>

I personally think we should have the cable car system to ferry visitors to the top of the hill. However, I also wish to caution that building the cable car may not draw enough visitors and may in turn run into huge losses that has been invested by the State Government or privately owned coporations. The investors involved should make sure there are enough visitors in order not to run into unprofitable projects.

Andrew<newheart35@yahoo.com>

I visited Bukit Larut in the beginning of 1984, a friend and me (He's German and I am Dutch) hiked up, got then stuck in a thunderstorm and had to spend the night there. Being faith missionaries we did not have much money on us (as we hadn't planned to stay up for the night) but the very sweet Indian/Malay care taker, whose name was Moses I believe, put us up for free in his own house, gave us his own bed (he slept himself on the floor)and make us breakfast the next morning while telling us aboutn his life and how he'd become a christian, which was an extremely interesting story. I really loved the quietness and the nature feeling, it was all so refreshing!We even nearly saw a black panther who had just been there!

So I always have very sweet memeories about that place and we went back up a few more times to visit our new friend, also by jeep, waiting half way for the other jeep coming down to pass us.

It's beautifull to see that Bukit Larut still has kept his own charm and hasn't been taken over by developers. So I am very happy by the way it is and the historical flavor is has kept. I would love to go there again and walk up, maube this time abit slower, ha! It was all in all a special experience in my life which I never forgot!

Loh Jun Seng<lj_seng@hotmail.com>

B.larut has to be upgrate.For example,build a playground on the top of the hill and renovate some of the accomodation available in B.larut.If possible,make a statement that"there is no ghost at B.larut,it is just a humour".I believe there would have more people daring to overnight at B.larut and have a thrill experience.

Mancina<mccina@yahoo.co.uk>

No to cable car, YES to improve facilities at Bukit Larut, The landrovers should stay, coz it is unique to Bukit Larut. We shud maintain the peace and tranquility of Bukit Larut. To many people going up Bukit Larut is not good for the environment. They will only create more rubbish and this will only effect the surrounding. I Love Taiping as it is NOW...to many development effects the beauty of it natural surrounding.

Nick Mercer<v.lowndes@btinternet.com>

I understqand peope need to make a living though does this need to be at the expense of tradition and individuality? Having never visisted Bukit Larut (yet) I am interested because it is undeveloped not despite of it. There are plenty of retreats with boutique type accommodation, infinity pools and luxury spas where the number of traditional untouched places is retreating fast. Keep it original - PLEASE

Roy<rukroy@yahoo.com.sg>

The route up the hill could be quite winding, steep and narrow at certain parts of the way.Having Landrovers are not very safe in the long run due to the above. Besides, the narrow and steep way does not allow to have more than one vehicle to utilise it. Moreover, the road condition could be aggravated with torrential rain that made it inaccessible by Landrovers. Thus, having an eco friendly cable car could be a very good alternative. The top of the hill could have more covered ways for people to enjoy the scenery during not so good weather. Outdoor jacuzzi and pool coupled with a cafe would be ideal too. Thank you.

KT<khengteik@hotmail.com>

Maxwell hill should NOT be upgraded at all... If needed, just a facelift... like cleaning up the place, redoing the roads, painting the chalets and mayb some minor renovation to make the place look nicer. Maxwell hill should not be made into another "Genting" it should be a place for pepole to relax and enjoy the beauty of nature. If the tourist that come here want to stay in luxury, then they should stay in kl.... However, as far as i know, most of the tourist that goes to Maxwell hill does not mind the condition of the accomodation, the landrovers or any other things... Its the experience of going uo Maxwell hill in the landrovers that alot of tourist enjoy.. They will be able to see for themself the beauty of the hill from up close.

Dan<dabadoo7@hotmail.com>

Hi All, Oh yea!! I think Taiping have great potential when come to tourism. I have been to many places, many countries... I think it is up to the local government city planning. I believe it is for us to see how other big city grow... what thing we should do and what to avoid. I think this type of web site in gathering the info is excellent if the input ever collect and considered. I'm wondering why cant we provide something like the "peak" in HK - perhaps in 20% of its scale and development.

Few things I think we have to do...
1. The old bungalow must refurbish. Rather than tear down the whole thing. I really hope govt can modernize them to very reasonable standard with current design... look at those design elsewhere - we can definitely position Maxwell to boutique hotel base with 5 stars ambience with 4 stars price! The last time I were there... the condition was really unpleasant... old, not too clean and furniture and bed are really not so good. I'm not sure if thing improve?

2. Prefer those remodeling have the combination of one of our many colonialization.... and to something represent Malaysia. Like house of British, house of Malaysia, house of Portuguse, house of Belanda.... something like that.

3. The road structure is actually pretty good. newer zip perhaps. However, I would say, most ppl I met working there are pleasant.

4. More advertisement... no one will know us if we speak up... however, a good city planning and facilities is a must in order to strike ppl attention to come here in right reason and make them come back again.

5. More tourist attraction...and promotion. I'm sure many many ppl would like to enjoy a great english breakfast up there after the morning/mountian walk!

Last but not least... I think Taiping really need a better quality hotel downtown. Something better than Legend Inn as we grow. It is a great value if we can utilize the history that we have plus the modern Malaysia culture we have since development since independence. We need more building and structure in this way. Most of all, pls protect the tree and environment. we have the greatest lake garden in the world, I think is close to world class standard! Thx you all for collecting the input.
Love you, Taiping!
with best rgds,
Dan

Eunice Tan<hwee_mei80@yahoo.com>

Hi...Eunice here. Plan to go Bukit Larut by Nov, to explore the green & natural environment. Keep away from city life. Should keep it as natural as it is, jz be itself. If develop to suit tourism taste, it will lost its natural and attractive side.

Zarir<athlon25@gmail.com>

1. eco cable car
2. more new eco chalet
3. have a view platform like a gunung mat cincang in langkawi.

Khairul<nickhasa@yahoo.com.sg>

I would say that Bukit Larut should be left how it is ,natural. Urbanization will cost all the valuables history to be gone forever. I would advice that only facilities upgrade is done to the place. About the " getting there issue" by jeep should remain as it is . Why ? That's simple. Why do tourist come here ? The answer is for them to experience something that they cannot experience back in thier homeland. Why can't they experience it back at thier home because ,like Singapore , it is full with urbanization. They do not have chance to experience jungle trekking in thier own country. Imagine the whole world without forest and jungles, It will be way different. So lets give our children and upcoming generation chance to experience. Thank You.

Chee Wah LIEW<cliew@tiscali.co.uk>

I have always enjoyed visits up to Bukit Larut. Although I do not live in Taiping anymore, I always make it a point to pay homage to it whenever I go back. There is so much to see and enjoy everytime I visit. I now have two teenage children and they always have a super time on our trips up there - from the jeep rides to wildlife observations and experience. So please, please NO UPGRADES, Just RENOVATION to its former glory.

Azizah Akil<azizah_akil@yahoo.com>

Bukit Larut should maintain its originality. I would suggest you have some entertainment at night, horse riding, campings (small group)and playground for children. Tourist normally come with their family. What are the attraction for young children?. Have a small trainlike vehicle (if u have been to Southfolk Range in Dallas) Have the colonial hse decorate in the ancient way, every room, tourist will look forward to this. They like thing to be original. My last suggestion is plant more lovely flowers, this is the best weather for spring flowers. People are dying to plant flowers from overseas!! so do it. ALL THE BEST.

Zakhir<mzakhir@pd.jaring.my>

accomodation should be upgraded, i've been there a few years ago. it happen during night time, where i can feel the mite are walking all over my body. all of my family member are complaining about it. about the transport it is fun rather than a cable car because we will disturb the ecology of the forest during construction. by using a land rover is better than enough because you can't find it any where in malaysia.

Lya<comel792002@yahoo.com>

I've been there last week and I think "Bukit Larut" capable become one of famous places to visit to if the area is equip with facility like cable car (or if not, modify the road so that it won't go too narrow to pass by). Apart of that, It also has a spectacular view that will be more attractive if the accomodation provided there similar like in Cameroon...like colonial british home....However, it was a great experience to be there.

Miex06<ppkpzarimi@yahoo.com>

Hi.. 3 years ago i went to bukit larut with my friend and i feel that place is very nice... until this year , nothing have change... what i can see, same like 3 years ago... i heard before, Taiping Local Concil want to take that resort to develope for our eco-tourism.. what happened now... is' it not fair to blame anybody when less tourist came to visited that place. Bukit Larut among the olderst history hill in malaysia.. How can that sentimental value from the hill a losing someday.. Please.. do something before our herritage will losing forever... Please........

Everesta<everesta@yahoo.com>

Remain the way it is...Tourist seeking modern convenience can head towards Genting while those seeking more colonial can consider Fraser Hill, Maxwell Hill or lesser extent Cameron Highlands. Let's make repeat our mistake. I think the existing way to get up adds to the charm of this place, not the other way round. Having said that, a little more maintenance on the accomodation is all that is required to get the tourist here.

Andrew Phua<romman@wildmail.com>

I'm Andrew, from Singapore. My wife is from Taiping and I've fell in love with the town since my first trip there. It's almost everything I want in a small town as opposed to the "artificial environment" in Singapore. In fact, I'd love to retire in Taiping. One of the reason is Bukit Larut. I miss the days of waking up to the sight of the hill covered by mist. I'd think a cable car system would spoil the image of the hill and makes it look like Genting, etc. The rovers would do just fine. Maybe what the tourism authorities can do is to improve the accommodation to cater to a different range of tourists. Especially eco-tourists. They should also promote packages that include the hill, in addition to other sites in Taiping and its vicinity. Well, I hope it basically stays the same as it is now... Andrew

Jia Wei<jiaweijw@hotmail.com>

Perfect as it is now. Don't make any drastic changes or it'll disrupt its natural beauty that's in the brink of extinction. The photo shots are really wonderful! Never knew such place existed since I don't travel much. But I will certainly make my way to Taiping by the end of the year, during my semester holidays. Need to get a camera 1st XD

Tan Kia Meng<tan_kia_meng@hotmail.com>

Of course it should stay the way it is. The accomodation could be improved so that sleeping is more comfortable and there is running hot water (I remember the very cold baths!!). Why should it always be about making more money? Bakit Larut or Maxwell's Hills is our heritage and it should be maintained in the style that it has always been - laid back and absolutely magical. No cable cars, please! Keep the jeeps.

Swashna<swashnagal@hotmail.com>

i want there to be some development in the sense that it provides some theme park or to be eco-friendly perhaps a park with peculiar species of plants.there should be some major purpose for tourist to go up there and not just go there and feel the cold climate and jungle surroundings.a beautiful botanical garden with well manicured plants and cable car will be a gd idea.bukit larut too should provide more standard accomodation and few nice restaurants tht caters to the taste of foreigners and locals.if there is domino pizza or a road house grill on a mountain, i'm sure even local Taiping people will go up often as people always amused with new things.

Ainol<mah1lawyer@yahoo.co.uk>

maxwell hills always attracted tourists. Key word: Hills! Why? Cool, clean air, freshness, different views, nature walks, a window iinto nature. We are the visitors there, nature the hosts. Nature prepares the game plan, and we, we relish it. U only need to look at other hill resorts to know the price to pay for development. Mention cable car and u will have a multitude of developers and contractors queing up i make money out of it. But what happens to the hills? they lose their very essence of being untouched, pristine, a retreat for the world weary. If trees fall because they are old, it is natures way of preparing for new life. But if u fell trees, it is un-nature-l and u and i and our children may not have to pay for it, but what about our heirs, our great-great grandkids? Global warming is touching all our lifes, killing many, man and nature. Are we who love taiping going to let it happen to us, on our homeground? to our hills? they are our hills, u know. All those people who have come to those hills, it belongs to us all and it is incumbent upon us to preserve it. I have memories on maxwell hills, and i'd like my heirs to have theirs too. Wouldnt u? Money can be made, not by exploiting the hills, but by rejoicing in them. Please, let us not sacrifce our hills in the name of development and change.

Michael Chan<maikel_chan@yahoo.com>

This place has plenty of memories for everyone who has ever visited. Maintenance of the place is the best choice. keep the old struture design as it may not worth alot in modern eyes, but it is definitely a herritage. A little touch up of paint, strenghthen the structure if needed, change some new beds maybe and curtains, and especially the bathroom/toilet. Maybe a little touching up or replacement will do well for the old inn. What i have learned from staying away from home is that tourists do not want to go from one city to live in another city for a holiday. Maybe the small shop in teh corner hiding between the inn and the office should be enlarged but thats about it. At the current trends, people are looking for more authenticity compared to having a good time. All of this is important if maxell hill is to be marketed to tourists. But i would like to add a note that all of the people who did their best in taking care of this special place, Thank You from the bottom of my heart. This is a place where everyone from Taiping will visit. From seniors who takes morning hikes up and down the hill, to the teenagers and childrens who sees it as an adventure away from home. Keep the jeep, it is an authentic experience. Maybe a little more trash bins around the track as people tend to hike more and there are not many rubbish bins around the trail up the hill and especially around the inn. I hope it will all still be the same when I get back.

Zainal Abidin Ahmad<azainal@fastmail.fm>

Let Bukt Larut as it is. Maintain the current environment. Foreign tourists like this environment and same goes to city people in Malaysia. Put more effort in promoting this Bukit Larut so that more people aware the exist of our attractive Bukit Larut.

PS<pswong661@yahoo.com>

maintain eco friendly as possible. Only things need to be done is the soft infrastructure such as toilets needs to be maintained in better state. Hygiene standard must be met. This is one of the challenge that we need to look into.

JI<sri_rossi46@yahoo.com>

i am realy hoping that the bunglows will be claned, n the water condition is terrible. pls lower the rental 2 coz its not worth 2 stay in a uncleaned bunglow....

Koong<carol.koong@health.wa.gov.au>

No, don't think it should be "upgraded" and doing so will loose it's touch indeed. Continuous maintenance as necessary would do. Keep everything the same, colour, landscaping etc etc. Only thing that may need upgrading is the bedding and the toilets. People of today, prefer modern comforts in their bedding and bathroom areas. They go there for a holiday, to seek adventure, explore, seek fond memories of the past but at the end of the day, they want to relax in comforts where possible. Keep the jeeps, no cables. I have lost touch with Taiping but I personally think this place attracts more old Taipingnites than real tourists. And I think the type of tourists who visits this place woudl like a hike, or are the mobile adventurous types who would be more into hiking up or taking a vehicle than using a cable car. My family and I have been visit this place since i was about 3 years old. Taking the jeep up and the older ones standing on the back on the jeep clinging on, was just so much fun! Haven't been there for years but if I am right, we used to refer to it as the "haunted house"? Keep it as it is. JMO

saykee<sawsaykee@yahoo.com>

Eco tourism is the answer as Maxwell Hill has lots to offer. More comfortable resort accommodation is the key to attract more foreign tourist to spend nights in Maxwell/Taiping. Beside luxury accommodation, clean, friendly and economical backpacker lodge is not less important to attract more tourist. Doubt that Maxwell Hill can accommodate the high volumn of tourist bring in by cable car. Just not enough flat land up there. And I envisage there might not have enough tourist to make the cable car profitable and will end up as a white elephant project. Proper study needed before the cable car service is kick off. More regular and flexible Landrover service should do. A proper design jungle track with guide not only can relief the pressure on Landrover service but can be a attraction as well. Mat Salleh will like it compare to walking on the tar road!!! ***Something extra*** At the same time, more tourist packages need to be planed to put Taiping in the world tourism map. e.g. Maxwell Hill Adventurous tracking, Matang Mangrove Forest exploration, Charcoal Making Tour, Sepatang Fishing Cruise, Taiping Historical Tour, Pokok Assam "Hiong Pia" Factory, Taiping Food Tour....

Lee<dcclee@yahoo.com>

Maintian it as near to natural as possible. Development will spoilt the natural scene and will bring more rubbish, more concrete building and structure (which is not natural anymore), more destroy to the historical buildings... I strongly disagree. Look at those so called "developed" leisure places like Genting Highland, Fraser's Hill, etc. they are all very commercialised, the nature scene just remain as a very small part of it. Look at Genting, before the Theme Park is built, all the families can go to the lake relax and even picnic there. What happen now? There is only a small garden left outside the huge concrete structure which is free for famailies. Within 2 minutes, I have finished walk one round of the petatic garden. If you are not paying, u do not have many places to go. This is what we call "Development" and "Commercial". Do we want this happen to Maxwell Hill ? To maintain it's nature, it's origin should be the main thing to do. Don't worry, the nature lovers will go. When there are more and more commercial places keep mushrooming, Maxwell Hill will be another "Pear" to be treasured. Please... Please do not kill the nature. We do not want concrete struture. We do not want to see Starbucks is there. No meaning.Where else u can go up the hill via landrover? That is unique experience. When we travel, we look for new experience, we look for things that we do not have in our daily lives. Going up a hill via landrover isn't it a very special and unforgetable experience? Especially to those are from downtown who take buses or drive every day. Foreign tourist will go for NATURE. They do not want CONCRETE, because they have already had plenty in their home country. When they go to Malaysia, they would want to try Malaysian culture, Malaysian living style and Malaysian food. If what we have are almost the same like what they have, what for they come to our country.

Peter Redmond<peterinsa@hotmail.co.uk>

Keep the Jeep! I remember an occasion in the early 60s when I phoned and asked if a Jeep was available to pick up four of us. We arrived at the top of Maxwell Hill to find the building almost empty and painters redecorating the place. I said to the man with whom I had arranged the transport "You didn't say that you had the painters in. Why didn't you tell me when I booked?" To which he replied "You didn't ask"!

Rajan<agniruthran@yahoo.com>

Of course it a good idea to upgrade the hill with the intention to attract tourist, but it must be done meticulously by taking into account of every aspect of development. We do not want to see the hill become a concrete playground for greedy developers. A proper system must be studied before any attempt is taken to upgrade the hill. Mother Nature has build the hill with the most finest touch over the span of millions of years and we do not want to see even a tiny creature dissapear from the respective environment in the name of development. An eco friendly cable car system will cater for wider group of people, but every square inch of the hill must be thoroughly investigated. I am not afraid of tigers, leopards, cobras or pythons that is believed to roam freely in the hill, but am afraid of only the so-called civilised HUMAN BEING.

soup<soupscience@gmail.com>

"... tourists used to being pampered in more luxurios surroundings" This is dependent on the type of tourists you want. My take is that Mt. Kinabalu is crowded with backpackers asking for the cheapest accomodation. So prices, in their case, is a factor. And they have scale and numbers. And they are the ones who like to hike. IMHO, cleanliness is of utmost importance. First thing I look, anywhere I go, is the bathroom/toilet. Dirty toilets put travellers off. In other words, there's nothing like a wet cloth and a lick of paint to brighten up any place. I cant remember if there was one but a small (and dimly lit!) shop with basic amenities (like beer!) might be useful, if you have enough visitors. Travellers doing hikes usually want peace and quietude, to get away from the city, the bright lights (especially the bright lights). It makes no sense to me to see to put in all mods cons when they are really trying to feel the night, see the stars and listen to the crickets. More important, I think, is the marketing of Bukit Larut and Taiping itself - as a getaway from city life for the locals and as a little known, undiscoverd and "primitive" hill (all the others are a little too developed) for tourists who tend to miss Taiping, concentrating on Cameron Highlands (which they complain is really nothing to write home about) and Penang (because all the guidebooks encourage them to) Was there many many years ago and i loved it from what I can remember. Will do a return trip soon though ;-) Hope this helps, they are just an opinion of a traveller who likes to hike. And I know I represent a greater percentage of travellers (not holiday-makers or tourists)

Thushani Keasarjoo<mamaroach83@hotmail.com>

I would love to have Maxwell Hill jus the way as it is now..It shouldn't be changed like Genting or Cameron.Why change it or upgrade it?Foreign and local tourist come here to view the spectacular and beautiful view of the old Maxwell Hill.Why change the old bungalows into luxury ones?The old bungalows and its historical surroundings are the keys that allure most tourist there.Plus ,Maxwell Hill is unique because of its jeep rides.It is the best rides one can experience no where.Changing into cable car would only cause a great loss to Maxwell Hill..So please don't Change anything but only Maintain it as it is.Keep it clean.Thank you.

John Banwell<pursewarden59@yahoo.com.hk>

I am going to go to Maxwell Hill soon (I live in Singapore). I hope that it is not upgraded as I don't want to see too many tourists! Congratulations on your many fine photos!John Banwell. Singapore

Nisha <missfeet-g@yahoo.com>

I grew up in Taiping.I look back with fond memories of holidays spent in the bunglows and jungle tracking during the weekends.Who could ever forget the jeep rides? It was an adventure by itself! Maxwell is beautiful as it is. Take away the old bunglows, replace it with luxurious surroundings and cable cars and you end up taking away the essence of it all. None of the stuff that will make it just another Genting's or Fraser,please. Just keep it clean.

cmhan<meawhan_chai@yahoo.co.uk>

Wow.........Maxwell Hill is a very very nice and peaceful place.There are varies kind of flowers and trees.My friend and I had been to here at 30 and 31 July..We took a lot of pictures and we enjoy very much up there.We stayed at the chalet named NEST. The weather was cool and the air was fresh. We go up to this hill by the jeep. We enjoyed very much there.How I want Maxwell Hill be? I think we no need to build hotel and cabel car there.These will pollute the environment.I think we should keep the environment clean and do not keep littering the rubbish everywhere.Well, I hope there will some guides to take us for jungle trekking in this clean and natural Maxwell Hill.Maxwell Hill...I love you.

Ong Chong<laiste24@yahoo.com.au>

I left Taiping in 1966 for UK. I returned for the first time in 1998 and went up Maxwell Hills. The Land Rovers were the same as when I first left 32 years ago!! The Rest House in Tea Gardens was falling to bits. The others Rest Houses further up were also in sorry states. Maxwell Hills is a beautiful place. It is an asset to Taiping. No other towns or cities in Malaysia has such a site so close and accessible to a major population area. I totally agree with an eco development to boost Taiping up and put it in the world map. Eco tourism is the go today. The affluent people from the West are paying top $ to see nature and Taiping can offer it. Taiping must go eco. Cable car is a good idea. The present road up is impossible to improve. A new road system would defeat the whole eco idea. New accomodation for the tourist should blend with nature, so no high rise hotels. Eco tourist want to live with nature, but they also want their comfort. So any development must be well planned and not left to money hungry developers whose interest are to come in and make a quick kill and in the end kill the whole place. Development should only be given to people with a vision for the future and for the people of Taiping. Afterall, Maxwell Hills belongs to Taiping. I was born and bred in Taiping, attending KE School (Tigers are OK). I don't want outsiders coming in to spoilt my lovely home town. Ong Chong

Paul Lincoln<paul@codedpixels.org>

I would really hate to see Bukit Larut go the way of Genting and Cameron. The terrible large white apartments in Cameron are an eyesore to the lush green hills. Perhaps this is indicative that there is a need for architecture sympathetic to the surroundings. Tall structures should somehow blend well with the natural features. Back to Bukit Larut, I like the exclusivity (not everyone wants to leave their car and go up in a Land Rover) I think the Land Rover becomes a physical transition from the rush of the lowlands that transports you to this magical place. The houses should stay the same, but some more effort will be needed to make it more comfortable, thus making it an oasis getaway. I'm symapthetic to the capital concerns of the area but cable cars and 'more' activity is definitely going to have negative effects on the ecology. (think of that poor tiger running around at night!)- SUMMARY: keep it the way it is abeit plusher more pampering accommodation within the old buildings.

Chong Kar Fatt<kfchongsam@yahoo.com>

1.Chalets to be upgraded, more promo on the chalets. 2.Have more chalets like those in G Jerai, Kedah. 3.Have a jungle trek up with guide's, certainly a number of hikers are interested to camp up there with a camping ground.

Patrick<pmollahan@talk21.com>

I have been to Taiping about ten times since 1988. Every time I go I go up Maxwell Hill. There have not been many changes except i think the last time I visited there was construction work on a mosque. First time I went I enjoyed a nioce cold beer on the verandah. But next time I was a bit disapointed as there was no beer only lukewarm orange juice. I know not everyone drinks alcohol in malaysia, but you need to cater for the tourists. Also I dont think you should even contemplate making access easier by introducing cable cars etc. It will totally destroy the place. Going up in the landrover is an experience and gives you time to appreciate the back breaking work needed to build that road. Glad to see that they still use the old landrovers. I'm told by the drivers that they are the only vehicle that can do the job without breaking down. I'll be back.

Ben Koh<benkoh@optusnet.com.au>

I think BB should be developed up to international level like a better transport( eg.cable car) up the resort, entertainment/recreation centers and hotels facilities or even a modern sport center. The history of Taiping and BB will certainly attract lots of tourists. This will indirectly develop Taiping town and its surroundings.

JY<latamedison@hotmail.com>

Making a cable car system could be destructive to parts of Bukit Larut. Landrovers are a quaint way of transportation. Keep up the inns and cabins, renovate a bit if need be; just make sure the rooms and bathrooms are spick and span. Shower not that necessary - too cold to take one!

Yivon Tai<yivon_tai@hotmail.com>

Yeah..David is right... I love Maxwell Hill as it is ...No changes arenecessary ..Just keep the place clean & no littering people!

David <panmaule@aol.com>

Leave Maxwell's Hill the way it is in my opinion, half the appeal is it's beautiful rustic nature.

AK<alicethkong@yahoo.co.uk>

Its much better than 30 years ago when I was there. The sleeping quarters and the surrounding are a far cry from those days. I been living in overseas for years and would of course like to visit this Maxwell Hill again as a tourist. I hate the jeep journey. A cable car is good, a small runway would be better. Yes, some good restaurants and a few neat apartments for short term rental would be excellent.

caong<caong22@hotmail.com>

Before any development are to take place up in Bkt.Larut, there must maintenance.Right now a lot of what used to be clearings are now undergrowths.The buildings are very special,you do not see them around town,they just need to be renovated.Many tourists,now a days,are more interested in eco-tourism and I feel Bkt.Larut with minimun development,will be a good place to visit.There is no need to have 'nightspots',a walk during the night and the sights of glittering Taiping is all you need.

Muzaffar<muzaffar_mohamed@yahoo.com>

I agree that Bukit Larut does need to be upgraded. However, the new developements must not come to the extent of destroying the beauty of Bukit Larut. The hills are not wide in nature like Fraser's Hill and Cameron Highlands. Therefore, only limited developement would be suitable. Area of concerns should cover how could the hills handle the increase in visitors if the cable-car system(like the one in Langkawi & Genting) be built. New housing facilities would need new water supply and better sanitation system. How would the hills handle waste disposal? These were among the reasons why earlier proposals to develope Bukit Larut were rejected.

Joe Glover<lethargicjoe@yahoo.co.uk>

Hi Kayes and all Taiping Talkers. With the terrific views to be had from a cable car travelling above the tree line. Bukit Larut would be like a magnet to visiters. I travelled on the skyrail gondola above the rain-forest on a visit to Kuranda in Queensland Australia it was magnificent. But the cost of it would be very high indeed. Best regards. Joe Glover.

Shirley Liu<shirleymal60@hotmail.com>

First of all,good works on this topic,Kayes.Well, I haven't been to Bukit Larut for ages. No idea how is it,but from the photos; I can see this resort is improving.The bungalows are restored and some even renovated. This is a good signs. If possible,the roads leading up to the hill resort can be widen so that the tourists can drive up instead of the landrovers,the only transport can be travel by the tourists.That means a big and nice car park will be needed up there. The present style of accommodation should be remain.It is the only hill resort in Malaysia that have such bungalows that left behind.Isn't it nice?Kind of special style. How about a self-service restaurant.?So that the toruists don't have to bring their foods and cook there.Just relax and have a meal at the restaurant. The surroundings,especially the greens,the woods should be well maintain,keep it up nice and clean.As less concrete as possible in this resorts should be the best.Nature is what the tourists need in this resort. Will visit this resort for sure in my next visit back to Malaysia.!!

Poh<thebard@pd.jaring.my>

One of the many charming features of Bukit Larut is that it exudes a magical atmosphere that time has stood still. This atmosphere should be maintained. However, I must agree with Kayes about the accommodation. The exterior of the buildings can be kept as they are ( with some coats of paint, perhaps?) but the interior and the furniture should be 'upgraded'. It need not be luxurious, but must be clean and perhaps, cosy. Of course, with the 'upgrading', the rate for rental must also be raised. Perhaps one or two of the bungalows can also be run as 3, 4 or 5 star hotels. This will encourage tourists (local and foreign) to stay a couple of nights and enjoy this beautiful hill resort. Right now, If someone wants to spend a quiet weekend on Bukit Larut without having to bother about cooking, he has nowhere to stay.

 

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