It’s been a few months that I hang out in Kuala Lumpur but in fact, I never made the effort of trying to go out of The City. Therefore, in order to fix that, I decided to do a trip to a waterfall around the city. I like waterfalls, they are usually beautiful, the water is fresh and pure (which is quite nice considering the weather). So I started to search some informations on google.
Truth to be told, it was much harder than I originally expected: most of the waterfalls around the city seems to be quite polluted and infested with leeches according to the reviews found on the internet. In the end, I settled for Chamang waterfall because the place seemed to get the approbation of every person who went there.
To get to the waterfall I first had to reach the city of Bentong (about 1h north of KL). To go there, I have to admit, it was pretty easy. I had to take the but from Pekeliling terminal station which is conveniently situated right between the bus terminal and the metro terminal in Titiwangsa which makes it a very easy place to reach.
To take the bus itself, I tried to gather some information from the internet, but they appeared quickly to be inaccurate. I arrived there to take the bus at 8am and got informed that the next one would be 9:15am (while the station indicated a bus at 8am). It wasn’t a bit deal, so I waited until 9:15am and bought a ticket for 5,60RM to go to Bentong. From there, I had good hopes there would be an easy way to reach the waterfalls.
Once in Bentong, I decided to look directly for a way to return (to avoid any bad surprises later on) and checked the bus station for information. The price of a return was 5,60RM, as much as I paid to get there and there were buses planned until 7:55pm and it was still morning; which meant I had plenty of time.
Then I looked around for a bus to the falls themselves. And found… nothing… I left KL thinking that I would find a way to reach the falls in Bentong and even if my internet searches were unfruitful, I was convinced there was some kind of facility to get there. But, as it happened… It appears there is no public transportation to the falls at all. I was quite disappointed to learn that; in a place this close to KL, I was expecting better. I decided then to check the taxi station right next to the bus station…
The people in the taxi station were not really enthusiastic when I said I wanted to go to the falls; they were looking like they didn’t want to drive there at all. One of them eventually (after about 15mn waiting) offered to take me there for… 30RM and to take me back for the same price. I refused, the price is way too expensive (and I didn’t have this much on me anyway), so I started to walk toward the falls through the city. I was lucky enough to find a nice person who offered me a ride to the falls. After she drove me there, I realized how foolish it was to try to get there on foot.
It was really far from Bentong, at least 5 km and walking under Malaysian’s sun is not a good idea.
Anyway, she dropped me in a parking just aside the falls, it was quite full but the falls are large enough not to appear crowded. I first wanted to swim a bit, to cool down. Everyone was bathing on the same part of the stream and therefore I decided to look for a better place by moving down the flow. Truth to be told there isn’t really any… it’s too fast and dangerous on some of its portions and even when it is not, the current makes it not very comfortable. At least the water was fresh and pure and without any leach but I was hoping for something a bit more quiet with a few small pools that would allow me to safely swim.
After I satisfied my need for freshness, I went to admire the falls themselves. From the parking, it was already looking quite impressive, but from a closer point of vue, it is just stunning. The falls are very large and powerful, just grandiose! However this power comes with a price, quite a few signs warned me on my way there, that those are dangerous and that they kill several people a year. With such warning, and witnessing the difficulty of the ascension myself, I renounced to climb the upper (and most difficult) part. I kinda regret it and at the same time, I am pretty sure I would have snapped my neck trying.
In the end, I came back the same way I arrived: hitchhiking. And got a bit of trouble finding a bus to KL, not that there are none, just that too many people were taking it… I had to wait about 2h to finally be on my way back to KL.
In the meantime, I visited a small Buddhist temple near the bus station, cute place, nice to visit if you have 15mn to kill, but not worth the whole trip by itself.
All in all: Really nice place to stop by, for a couple of hours, but unless you have a car, getting there and going back is either a hassle or expensive
Address of Chamang Waterfall