Travel Thru’ The Lens: 4WD to Lata Berembun + Kuala Lumpur

Pictures of glamour shots of the lion shaking his head, the mane dancing wildly and majestically in the wind, blowing dust and golden sunlight reflected creating that halo effect. Ahhhh….

Then again we are in the green zone. We ain’t in the Amazon and I am not keen to meet the Boa. But what I would really love to do is to go bashing through the jungle trek with the huge wheeled 4 wheel drives and zipped up the mountain so as to be greeted by a majestic waterfall.

That dream was fulfilled last weekend.  And what a fulfilment it was! Lata (Waterfall) Berembun is close to 7 stories high (at least it looked that to me and that makes me feel really small) and the amount of water gushing down was not deafening as some would think (no, the fake waterfall at Jurong bird park don’t count).  I was actually sick with the nose running the iron man triathlon for the past week so was quite apprehensive going down the water making the nose run another marathon.  Still, I don’t drive hundreds of kilometres from Singapore not to go into the water. I jumped without any Rose urging me not to (my Rose is at home enjoying the Singapore oven weather).

The water was cold. It was like there was an iceberg perched on top of the waterfall and what we have are melted ice.  Guess what, that pesky cold/flu that was haunting me for the past week was gone in an instance.  Somehow, the body adjusted the body heat quickly to counter the cold. What left was that jolt of freshness through your bones and marrow. The muscle ache was gone instantly (it came back after the OSIM massage effect riding the 4WD), the mind was suddenly alert, the body was planted with a new set of energizer batteries. It was good!  It doesn’t take long to understand with Joe of Waterfall Surivors/Explorers took the conservation upon themselves to preserve waterfalls. I would say waterfalls provided that natural remedy for our aching urban bodies. I would even say it is God’s gift to us (I will take up with Abba about a waterfall next to my heavenly home).

Here are some photos from the 3 days 2 nights trip. I think the program is good enough that I will do it again in July. If you are interested, do let me know.

We drove from Singapore at 5.30am and reached KL at 12pm. We checked into Somerset Lorong Ceylon for the duration of the stay. Dominic and Lee Yee Yee picked us up at 2pm to drive to Klang for a Herbal Pork Rib Soup at Klang Lek Bak Kut Teh and then a shoot at the Little India and round off the day with the sunset shoot of the area.  Food as usual was fantastic and the sunset was magnificent. What surprises us most is the friendly atmosphere we encounter there and we lament of the lack of the same back home. We got lots of beautiful photos of the place.

The bag of stuff that makes Ah Lek Bak Kut Teh Legendary

Siaoleng is so into the broth.

Even the vegetables looked super delicious

Check out the amount of ingredients in this pot. This is what has been missing in Singapore no thanks to higher costs of doing business that squeezed our food portions to tiny proportions.

A much closer look! You won’t regret it!

This is what Ah Lek is famous for too. The dry version Bak Kut Teh. The generous special thick sauce covered the ingredients to give that ommph that bursts with tastes once the meat gets in your mouth. More rice please!

We also get to choose the tea we want to drink by choosing a packet out of a basket. This is a special chrysanthemum tea. We drank it the proper way. Soak the tea with hot water first. Pour the hot tea over the cups to ‘sterilise’ it and perhaps imbue some of the fragrance unto the cups. Pour hot water the second time and let the tea infuse with the water and enjoy! Hot weather? Who cares?!?!


Jasmine taking a shot assisted by Joanna Ng

Klang’s Little India. Looks like they are ready for Deepavali! Yee checking her settings

Obviously food is more important! Michelle couldn’t resist.

Waiting for Masala Tea and Thosa. Long Siao Leng, Joanna Ng, Tanner Tan, Jasmine Wang, Lee Yee Yee, Dominic Koo, Michelle Goh & Magdalene Teo-Yong

Mag having fun as kitchen inspector.

Hardly see this back home now. We have one just below the Singapore flyer at the fake hawker street stall.

Street Vendors taking our pictures…

…as we took their’s.

The street may be small but a lot of things is happening.

Mag giving the intro to the place.

Klang’s Sunset at various stages of sun setting. Note the colour changes has on the way the camera record the colours. All x100 vivid settings. All shot with x100 Panoramic feature in portrait orientation to avoid distortion.

Not forgetting we can have some fun with Dominic and Yee. Yes i know…not close enough. Now I want to see the picture by the real couple.

Blue Hour’s not done yet. The Indian Mosque against the blue cast of the sunset skies.

By the time we got back to KL city, it was time for supper with Athena just arriving from Singapore. Somerset service apartments is very near to the famous street of Jalan Alor where the good food resides. We promptly make our way down.

Along the club street of Bukit Bintang (aka Changkat Bukit Bintang). It reminds me of the time when Holland Village was this vibrant. Long Siow Leng, Athena Tan, Joanna Ng, Jasmine Wang and Tanner Tan.

At the head of Jalan Alor. Food Street. Just pick any restaurant. The quality is that good.


Ready to eat.

Fried Kway Teow

KL Wanton Mee with black sauce.

Personal Favourite: Special Fried Carrot Cake

KL Fried Hokkien Mee. Missing this would be akin to missing the Petronas Towers. However there is a better stall down the street (just too tired to walk).

Last but not least. The special orh luak (oysters). The egg crisp is unlike those we saw in Taiwan where it was chewy. Singapore’s basically is fried egg mixed with oysters. They fried the oyster to a delicious aroma with special sauce and then put them into this egg crisp ‘hut’. For lack of the better description: it was mouth nirvana!

Next morning we take the ride out of KL city towards Kuantan passed Genting and Colmar Tropicale and then passed Bentong Town into the mountains. There we were at a village to wait for the 4WD to bring us up to the waterfalls. We had our breakfast in the hotel and yet, we really needed that daily pick me up called coffee. Nothing beats streetside town coffee shop kopi.

We reached the town. Now where are we?

Oh we are at Raub!

No harm trying their version of Wanton Mee. I say: the mee and the sauce makes a huge difference to Singapore’s version.

My daily pick me up. The caffeine level in this cup is good for the brain.

Our ride. Check those wheels. SUVs please stand-a-side

From plantations…

to hills…

…to muddy roads.  All in the name of adventure!

We got stuck!

And then we got unstuck! Mag hanging on for dear life.

She seems happy….weird.

The amount of water passing through. Looks promising enough.

By the time we reached the waterfalls, my bones nearly gave way too. What a magnificent sight to behold in this super hot weather! JUMP IN!

Cold! Super cold! Taken with Nikon D200 with Dicapac.

How come they not affected??

Super full of energy. The water is that refreshing lor!

Its contagious! You sure this is the way to avoid leeches?

Next to the falls.

Positive demonstration of Dicapac in action. Yes it floats. Yes it can go down 5 meters. Took an underwater shot of the girls….errr….better don’t show.

Berembun. Up close and personal. Powerful!

Athena doing the same.

Ah Dom do a positive V sign demonstration on how to float with grace.

Another graceful one floating by.

Some trekking to the mid level of the waterfalls. The one  in orange: LSL. Super fast.

The yoga must be doing some good. After climbing and trekking through slippery non existent track, she still look so fresh!?

Me leh? Yah Yah only…my knees was killing me.

Dom, Yee and Alvin preparing the makan by the water. Not exactly atas but it is a nice experience! (Expose to falls then focus on faces add fill in flash).

Had enough fun. And so time to do some shots of the water.

Ladies and Gentlemen, the beautiful Lata Berembun.

Our small little resting hut. Introducing sun flare into the lens for that added effect.

The water system using the ND 8

The pros and cons of using the big stopper (ok 8 is not that big but…). Personally I would like to see the stream lines so you can see how the water flows. Too little of it like the bottom makes the picture lack a bit of character and too empty as a result. Do experiment to find the best shutter speed to use to get a good balance of silkiness and lines.

A group shot before we go. And introducing Alvin!

Jetstar Spokeswoman? Gawd….even the orange is their colour!

We missed the sunset overlooking KL City then again the sunset on the way back is beautiful too!

The picture says it all. All our bones turns to mush. But it was fun!!

After all the fun is food again! This time we are still eating at Bukit Tinggi aka Colmar Tropical area, but not at our usual haunt at canton kitchen but Kampung Restaurant.

Our spread. From the bottom anti clockwise: The special ngoh hiang, catfish, 4 seasons beans, pork with special black sauce, calamari (sotong don’t sound atas), kampong chicken and then…those balls.

We really made Alvin feel out of place… so much so he is thinking of getting DSLR.

After dinner and reaching the hotel, our body is really aching to the point that sleep could be hampered. We actually went down to a Thai massage parlour and get those muscles back in to position again. But it was worth it. Will do it again!

On the 3rd day is the day we are to leave KL. The girls decided that dim sum seems to be the right thing to do (when we go KL, it feels like tropical Hong Kong sometimes).

The Har Kaw. A bit of peek a boo…

Special salted egg siew mai.

Preserved Egg with Tofu Wrap

Special Curry Noodle. This. Is. AWESOME!!

Drunken Chicken Noodles. Awesome x 3!!

I will always try the dim sum place char siew bao without fail. If their bao is good, their dim sum is not far away in terms of quality. That’s me. 

After a bit of walking around, we packed our bags and checked out of the serviced apartments. But we have one more thing at the request of Athena the SPIN Goddess. She says she wanted to go to this ‘Fullhouse’. Sounds like some korean drama series movie set. When we got there, I was not that wrong. Greeted us was the fan club of Big Bang (maybe they have that Eureka moment when they are choosing their band’s name). And the we are forced to sit at the patio. Well it may be a bit hot but we got a beautiful diffused light for our food photography with the Korean boy band “Fantastic Baby” playing in the background (Kartika would have approved).  The lunch was good and we went back with happy stomachs and wonderful memories.  I will be back again in July!

No this is not Fullhouse. It is Ghost House. And when you see dilapidated house it can only mean one thing: black and white. I would have stayed longer if not for the mosquitos

Wah~~ Strike a POSE! VOGUE!

Miss Long becomes our model liao lor.

Yup. At least one black and white shot.

Fullhouse Portugese Chicken.

Mag swears by its club sandwich. It is really good too!

They have desserts too. 3 for 30 MYR.

Crème brûlée

I have slated another trip to Lata Berembun in July for NTU Alumni Club but SPIN members are welcome to join in as well. This time round there will be twenty slots and we will be taking the luxurious bus to KL.  The tentative plan is food trail around KL. 2nd day will be the waterfall day and the third day would be free and easy before returning back to Singapore. If you are interested, please do contact me for more information.


    • Hi Shannon, we actually went over from KL. Have to learn very early in the morning and we came back pretty late.

      If you are doing your own driving, then you have to call the 4WD operator to do pick you up in the small town. The nearest hotel would be Colmar Tropicale then.


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