Mention Kelantan and most people would associate it with beautiful traditional handicraft such as batik and songket. But the eastern state, also known as the “blissful abode”, also showcases many hidden destinations that are rich in natural beauty.
Don’t believe us? Take a trip to Jeli, a quaint district located on the border of southern Thailand, and you’ll find yourself charmed by the sights of cascading waterfalls, beautiful streams, and lush greenery.
During a recent trip organised by Tourism Malaysia, FMT Lifestyle visited some of these locations and came away mesmerised.
To enjoy picturesque sunrise or sunset views, head over to this popular hiking area. There is a well-maintained trail to the top, along which one may opt to go on foot or drive up.
With mist in the air in the early hours of the morning, it can feel as though you’ve stepped into fluffy clouds – a wholly surreal experience. And the sight of the sun rising on the horizon and illuminating the area is breathtaking.
On a clear day, you might even spot Gunung Reng, a site of legend. As the story goes, a village once stood at the base of this mountain where, one day, a village nobleman held a feast – complete with a fighting match between cats and dogs on the roof of his house.
Suddenly, the sky turned dark. Later, an old woman discovered the village had been covered by a large stone – and that stone was what is now known as Gunung Reng.
At Lata Kashmir, supposedly named after the region in India, one will be dazzled by views of majestic mountains and made spellbound by crystal-clear waters.
During FMT Lifestyle’s visit, holidaymakers could be seen enjoying the scenery, splashing in the waters, and cooking up a storm at the barbecue pits.
There are even camping facilities provided by local business Lata Kashmir View. Its owner, Zulfadli Khuzaimah, also organises activities such as white-water rafting and water tubing, making this a fun place to spend the day and night.
The name Lata Janggut may leave one curious, given that the word “janggut” means “beard” in Malay.
According to 52-year-old Wan Azman Wan Musa, village head of Kampung Lata Janggut, the name is believed to have been inspired by the fact that the flow of the waterfall resembles a beard!
The path to the cascade is well maintained and runs along a lovely stream, with benches and chairs along the way for those who’d like to take a breather. Lifejackets and floats are also provided for those who wish to take a dip in the waters.
Another highlight of this place? An adorable resident monkey who is clearly accustomed to visitors in his “home”!
Lata Hokkaido, believed to have been named after the tourist region in Japan, is popular for picnicking – which is no surprise, given how the sound of gently flowing water accompanying your meal certainly allows for a serene experience.
So, bring along a hot thermos of coffee and enjoy a cuppa in these scenic surroundings. You may even opt to walk among the rocks, though do exercise some caution as they could be slippery!
Despite its name, Lata Turbo is far from fast-paced – instead, this is an idyllic and tranquil place. Located in Kampung Lawar Batu Melintang, the rustic steel bridge here is the perfect spot for photo taking, so whip out your phones and snap away!
The sound of the nearby waterfall is particularly relaxing, so – once you’re done sightseeing – close your eyes and immerse yourself in the calming sights and sounds of nature.
The highlight at Lata Dilwale, located less than five minutes away from Lata Turbo, is Air Terjun Mawoo, a breathtaking waterfall. It is said the place was named after a scenic waterfall featured in the Bollywood film “Dilwale”.
Getting to this picturesque location involves a challenging trek, and it is advisable to travel in a four-wheel drive. But the bumpy road is well worth it when one catches sight of the cascades.
On a sunny day, don’t miss taking photos of the waterfall against the bright blue sky and white clouds, which prove once again just how much exquisite beauty exists in the great outdoors.
This article was written as part of a Kelantan visit organised by Tourism Malaysia.