Eden of the Klang Valley

TRANQUILLITY: Dusun Tua sits just outside the city and is popular on weekends with those who go there looking for eco-friendly activities. Many of Dusun Tua's attractions sit alongside small villages, often giving visitors an insight into the life of the villagers, as they enjoy nature's offerings, writes Shanti Gunaratnam

THE weather is cool, the area is surrounded by lush greenery and dotted with traditional homes on both sides of the road.

Visitors to Hulu Langat's Dusun Tua will experience some of the coolest waters in its streams and waterfalls.

A favourite spot for many living in the Klang Valley and visitors from outstation, Dusun Tua offers a convenient weekend getaway amidst a serene kampung setting.

After a good swim or hours of playing in the waters in Dusun Tua, visitors often make a beeline for the fruit stalls, which sell some of the best local fruits including rambutan, mangosteen, langsat, guava and durian.

In fact, Dusun Tua, according to some village elders, got its name from the many fruit orchards there.

Siti Noriah Masud, 80, a mother of five moved there some four months ago because of the cooler climate in the area.

"On some nights, it is so cold that we rarely venture out after sunset. I used to live in Tapah before moving here with my son. I had assumed that Cameron Highlands was cold at night, but Dusun Tua can get just as cold at night because the whole area is surrounded by hills, mountains and lush greenery."

Siti Noriah discovered that the area got its name because there were many old orchards in the neighbourhood, some a few hundred years old.

"There are many orchards here.

"But what strikes me most is the cool climate and the lush greenery. You can spend the whole morning or afternoon walking around from kampung to kampung and you will never feel the heat," she adds.

Another resident, who declined to be named, said that he moved from Kelantan to Dusun Tua in the mid-80s because the land was reasonably priced then.

He says although it was rather difficult getting in and out of the Dusun Tua area nowadays during peak hours because of the infamous Cheras traffic jam, things were manageable then.

But these days, he says, the jam can start at your door step.

"The roads leading to Dusun Tua are still two lanes. With more housing estates coming up in Cheras and the nearby areas, and with more people moving to Dusun Tua, traffic is now very heavy on weekdays.

"On weekends traffic is heavy too because people come to relax at the Dusun Tua hot spring and Sungai Congkak waterfalls."

According to Dusun Tua state assemblyman Razaly Hassan, Dusun Tua is a favourite weekend destination for those who are into ecotourism as the area offers good places for swimming, kayaking, jungle trekking and hill climbing.

'The flora and fauna and the weather is a nice welcome for those looking to spend the weekend outdoors. Dusun Tua sits outside of the city and it does not take long for one to travel here.

He says although Dusun Tua has many nature-based attractions, the infrastructure could be improved. The roads need to be expanded and many things need to be done in and around the tourist spots to make things comfortable for visitors.

One of the major problems in the area is flash floods which occur during the rainy season.

"We need to have a proper flood alleviation plan for Dusun Tua along with public amenities at the tourist areas. Dusun Tua has many rivers, waterfalls and hot springs and we have to look after these places well so that everyone can enjoy the attractions here," Razaly adds.