"Kampar - what can I say?" Kampar by su_jen

Kampar Travel Guide: 18 reviews and 57 photos


I live here for approximate two years. It was dreadful. Not because the town was bad, but because I protested coming to this town. I was somewhat forced to come here to study. I did not like the idea at all but mom and dad asked me to give it a shot. So I did, I was hell for me. It was my first time away from my family, not that it bother me, but being in a town where the local (mostly Chinese) speak a different dialect (Cantonese and Mandarin) mostly.. I speak Hokkien, very little Mandarin and hopeless Cantonese... so it was bad from the beginning. The college was small, a temporary location before the actual one is develop, a whole row of shop... just not my idea of college life... The first thing you notice upon arrival to Kampar from North, is the Chinese cemetary!! Being brought up in a Chinese family, well I should say my family and friends, cemetary spots are always known to be a spooky place and are always haunted especially at night, and that particular spot at night is particularly dark... everytime we pass through it, I would get goosebumps!! Talking about it right now ... I'm getting goosebumps!

Okie, let's change topic...Things got fairly better after I get to know my roommate, and housemates. Thankfully, most of them were from the state I was from: Kedah.. so almost all of them speak Hokkien which was a great relief for me. I started to get to know there were quite a few other classmates that speak Hokkien, and some really good friends. The school that I went to use English and Malaysian as primary language, so my mandarin usage was limited only to tutoring classes etc. My understanding of Cantonese was only from watching movies/dramas from Hong Kong haha, so ordering food from the restaurant/cafeteria was soooooooooo hard, I had to ask my friends to translate for me. Eventually, I learnt the dialects, but still speak very brokenly...

A few weeks after settling down, I had the itch to explore the town, I was thinking to myself there has to be something to do, something interesting in this town. I remembered this town being the mining town, and discovered lots of abandoned mines all over the place. Heard a lot of stories about those mines too.. mostly about kids swimming in them and drowned because the mines were so deep and there's current that pulls them down or something like that. The abandoned mines were spectacular, like lakes... We tried to fish there but nothing bite into our lines, but it was much fun. I love being at the waters, no matter what type of water fresh water, salt water, as long as there's water :) We got to know some of the locals, made some really good friends, we hang out throughout the night, snacking and drinking (just tea, mind you ;) -- this activity known as "yam-cha" literally means "drink tea" but actually mean - going out and grab a bite ... made friends with the locals.. they taught us how to short the prepaid phone cards and use them for free haha, I was making TONS of international call free of charge each lasted for at least 3-4 hours.. it was fun... but the phone company later found out, upgrade their system and that was a bummer
Anyway, the locals also introduced us to a waterfall. One of my favorite spot in Kampar, it's outside the town center, about 4-5 miles from the cemetary hehe, there should be a sign that says waterfall, or "air terjun" in Malaysian, I remember making a left turn into the small and winding road, after the end of the road, there will be a smaller road going up a small hill, and windier it goes up and up it goes lots of vegatation left and right, small huts/houses randomly stead.. about 2 miles up... You will reach to a point where you will see an opening and a few parking spots... then there's a smaller opening maybe enough for a bike or a really small car to go up some more... well I usually hike up that way. Anyway, this fall is great, my friend (pictured) and I always always hike up to the very top most of the falls after the end of the very last class. It was almost routine. At the very topmost of the fall, the water is definitely cleaner haha (god knows what happened in the middle) the water of course always "dirtier" at the bottom, so we always opt for as high as we can get. The water is so refreshingly cool and nice. At the top, the pool is quite deep maybe about 9-10 feet at the deepest, and lots of rocks. Oh yeah, tons of rocks ranging from pebbles to boulders can be seen from climb. The climb takes about 15-30 mins depending on how fast you can go, and the current of the water, and slipperyness (if there's such word) of the rocks... Rocks are very slimy and slippery so beware.
There was this one time, it was a quiet afternoon after class, we rushed there to cool down and what a surprise we discovered! A guy was "sun-bathing" on top of the rocks... well this may not sound funny to you, but being in a Muslim country and all that Muslim stuff, this ought to be a rare occasion, well a funny one to us haha, so first thing came in mind... we looked at each other and laughed our heads off, that dude did not even cover up, instead he erected himself and tries to show off his so called valuables... that made us laugh even more. So, after a while he got slightly embarassed? walked off in the woods with his clothes, and vanished... And so, we "got" out spot back and this time to ourselves hehe

oh yea, fyi the waterfalls pictures were stolen from random website I searched from Google :D pardon my rudeness

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Good memories
  • Cons:Bad memories?
  • In a nutshell:Small town with lots of mines
  • Last visit to Kampar: Dec 1999
  • Intro Updated Sep 6, 2004
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