Last weekend along with my usual overland friends and Kevin, we made a trip to the Semai’s Settlement at Gopeng, Perak. It is about 7-10km drive through the palm oil plantation from Gopeng town. If you intend to visit Gopeng town, you will easily get there by Wazing to “Gopeng”.
Upon reaching Gopeng town we stopped for lunch at the food court which serves a variety of local cuisines. I had the Kari Mee which I found was very delicious. Just lookout for stall no 228. They also serve the traditional kaya toasted bread with locally blended “kopi peng”.
Right after lunch we proceeded to our location having to driving the village and eventually passing by the resorts which are known for the water rafting activities.
If you watch the video below, the road into the settlement is not that bad, I’d think a standard sedan vehicle can drive through it but not when it’s wet. After about 15 mins drive through the palm oil plantation we finally arrived at the Settlement.
Upon reaching we immediately went to pick out our campsite and I picked mine just where we stopped on the hill. The weather was about 39 degrees Celsius that afternoon but we all managed with a few cans of ice cold beers.
The place is well taken care off by the Chief (We all him Ah Chin) as you can see in the picture below. They earn a living by rearing cows and fish (mainly tong san and sultan fish) and growing vegetables. They sell they’re produce to a local dealer except his fishes. He mentioned that he doesn’t sell his fishes commercially but only by special request. These fishes fetch a very expensive price in the market and he doesn’t like to be caught up in the bargaining process because he knows that he feeds his fish well.
The Sultan Fish for dinner
If you’re thinking of having your family over here and staying the night over, it’s possible only that you’ve to be prepared to immerse in the wilderness. Bathing in the river and sleeping in traditional Orang Asli huts or you may pitch your tent “anywhere” across the settlement. His place is not built for tourist at this moment so most of the facilities is back to basics for them to live and you’ve to make do with whatever there is. I suppose if you really want bathing toilets, you may ask to use they’re family bathroom.
The Traditional Semai Huts
We were told that Ah Chin’s family will be preparing dinner for us and one of the dishes will be his prized fish which you can see in the video. Its about 4-5kg each. He took out 2 of them and if I’m not mistaken it costs about RM 85/kg on the market, maybe more.
We all had dinner at the “guest house”/ Rumah Tamu and we were served with Nasi Kunyit, Wild Boar, Musang, Petai, Kancil meat for dinner. It was delicious and the cili padi that went with it was sweet, kicking spicy!
The earlier caught Sultan Fish
Wild Boar Meat
After dinner we sat for tea at the rumah tamu because when I headed to my hammock, it was so hot that I had to get out of it and join them for tea at the rumah tamu. We boiled water at their traditional kitchen and sat till about 2am listening to his stories of how me built up the settlement from scratch to what it is today.
The following morning, I was awaken by Richard asking me to follow them to tour the undeveloped places of the land which Ah Chin intend to clear it up for campsites and open up the place to tourist. Unfortunately I left my phone in the hammock and not have pictures of it.
Overall I enjoyed this new camping experience apart from the usual ones because we have the luxury of cooked meals and a well maintained site. If you’d like to make a trip here, drop me a note, I do not have his contact number, even if I did we won’t be able to reach him because there is no mobile coverage at the settlement. Ah Chin mentioned that he goes to Gopeng Town daily for business but not sure what time. So if I want to reach out to him, I have to get in touch with my friend Ah Loo.
To my next post, Everyday is an Adventure, Live it to the Fullest!
And enjoy the short video I’ve compiled of the trip.
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