Lake Chini - Tasek Chini, Pahang, Malaysia

by Mentiga Fatiha | 8:59 PM in |

Ensconced within a quiet corner of Pahang is the legendary Tasik Chini (Lake Chini). The colourful folklore and legends of this enchanting lake reflect the imagination of the original people, the Orang Asli (aborigines) of the Jakun tribe. It involves tales of evil, magic and of mysterious dragons believed to be the denizens of the lake.

Colourful and intriguing, but the pristine nature of this ancient body of water begs certain questions to be answered in terms of ecological management and the protection of the enclave's delicate ecosystem.

Myths and Legends

One facet of the legend tells of the story of a nomadic group of Jakun who were clearing the jungle to grow food crops. As they were working, an old woman suddenly appeared, claiming that she was the owner of the land and that whoever wished to clear theTrying out a blowpipe at an Orang Asli settlement. area of the trees must obtain permission from her. Upon accepting the profound apologies of the wandering group, the old woman allowed them to continue with their task. However, before leaving, she struck her walking stick into the ground to stamp her ownership of this piece of real estate. She warned the group not to remove it - ever.

As the men continued with their work, they heard one of their dogs barking at a decaying log. One of the Jakuns threw a stick at the log, causing a stream of blood to gush out from it. The man ran to his friends in fear but the others steered clear of him - believing that he had been possessed by demons. However, since the dogs kept barking at the log, the other men decided to investigate. Upon inspection they found a pool of blood around the log.

In fear they hurled their own sticks at the log, whereupon the sky suddenly turned dark. Thunder roared, lightning flashed and a deluge of rain began. The men grabbed their belongings and ran for cover, but in the confusion one of them pulled the old woman's stick from the ground. Immediately water gushed from the hole made by the stick. The water flowed for many years, thereby creating what is today known as Tasik Chini.

For want of a logical explanation, the group of Jakuns concluded that the log was actually the manifestation of the dragon, Naga Seri Gumum. Through the years, much has been said about the mysteries and magic of the lake and its environs. Besides the belief that deep beneath the dark waters of the lake lurks a monster, people also talk about a sunken Khmer city that had at one time existed in the area. Several years back, an archaeological expedition was mounted to study the area but results are still wanting.

Accommodation

Decent and comfortable accommodation is available at the park. Reasonably-priced chalets take the work out of looking for a suitable place to spend the nights. For the more adventurous, you can rough it out at the designated camping sites. Over in the town of Temerloh there are hotels, lodges, inns and a rest house. For list of accommodation please click here.

LOCATION :
Lake Chini is located near Bandar Chini.
GETTING THERE :
By Road : Access to the lake is by road to Kampung Belimbing, about 100 kilometers, south west of Kuantan and then on by boat through the winding Chini river. Alternatively, you can go by road via the Segamat Highway through the new town of Chini, and then continue travelling for 15 minutes through palm oil estate roads to the lake.

From Kuala Lumpur to FELDA Chini :
Maraliner Express Coach,
Kompleks Bangunan MARA,
21 Jalan Raja Laut.
Nearest LRT station is at Jalan Raja Laut (opposite the Sime Darby building).
Tel: +6 03-2697 9797

The Puduraya Bus Terminal,
Tel: +6 03-2078 7024

Daily departures: 9.00 a.m. 4.00 p.m.

Approximate travel time: 6 hours

Estimated fare: RM17.30 one-way (please check current fare)


From Kuantan to FELDA Chini :
Stesen Bas Kuantan,
Bus no. 121 plies the Kuantan FELDA-Chini. route five times daily at two hourly intervals.

Departures : 5 times daily. First bus leaves at 8.30 a.m.

Estimated fare: RM4.75 one-way (please call ahead to confirm current fare)

CONTACT :
Forestry Office,
Temerloh/Bera
28000 Temerloh,
Pahang Darul Makmur.
Tel : +609-2962755

Fax: +609-2962359

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