Don’t Miss This Amazing Lantern Festival in KL for Chinese New Year

Fo Guang Shan Dong Zen Temple, oh my goodness, why have I never heard of this place?

Last week I featured Thean Hou Temple for its magnificent display of lanterns for Chinese New Year which we visit yearly. Then, one of my kind followers here on Kuala Lumpur Kids, pointed me in the direction of FGS Dong Zen Temple and told me that this is not to be missed!

Located in Jenjarom in Selangor their impressive Lantern and Flora Festival starts this 14th of February and runs until 4th of March 2018. I find it hard to believe that I have NEVER been to this temple or their CNY event, but it looks amazing!

I’ve had to do a bit of research on the lantern festival and have shared some photos that I found on their FB page from previous years. It looks like it would be a beautiful event for the whole family and the perfect opportunity for some colourful photos.

They’ve published a full schedule of events with performances and everything else so I have included this in my photos below. If anyone goes, please let me know how it is!! If I weren’t at the Winter Olympics, I’d be there myself for their opening night! S x

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Come Climb with me! KL’s Climbing Gyms for Children!

Climbing to new heights for 2018!

After all the soft play centres we’ve reviewed, I thought we’d look at all the places offering little ones an introduction to climbing in KL. From small centres offering fun and interactive sessions, to larger facilities offering one on one instruction for building skill and confidence, there’s so many options in KL. The good news is, that most of these centres take children from as young as 4 years old and are ideal for the whole family. Check out the collection below and pop over to my FB post here where you’ll find all the links you’ll need to get in contact with these gyms directly . Happy climbing, S x

Rocky Basecamp:

Rocky Basecamp

Aeon Mall, Shah Alam

The first indoor speed climbing wall in Malaysia opened its doors in March 2017 on the 3rd level of Aeon Mall in Shah Alam.

With a fun wall, speed wall, boulder, and even trampolines for those who don’t want to climb, this is a great hangout in the mall.

Open daily from 10am to 10pm (from 11am weekdays) they accept climbers from 4 years old upwards.

Funtopia:

Funtopia

Courtyard Mall, Subang Jaya

This colorful, fun, set-up at Courtyard Mall is a real favourite of ours. While not the largest centre, it offers really original walls and shapes to climb, with an interactive wall that allows you to race against your friends. There is a suspended Rope Course, ‘The Slide’, and even a soft play area near the coffee shop for younger children.

Open daily from 10am to 10pm on weekends (from 12 noon during the week) there’s a range of prices, from a package allowing you access to all activities, or you can pay a la carte for specific obstacles, the choice is yours.

EnerZ Indoor Extreme:

EnerZ Indoor Extreme Park

Subang Jaya

This one is going on our to do list; we haven’t yet been but it looks pretty amazing!

Rock climbing is just one of many activities available in the huge space they have at their sports facility in Subang Jaya.

Known for being Asia’s largest indoor trampoline park, they also offer Sky Ropes with sky high obstacles, Ninja and Gladiator challenges, and even badminton courts.

Open on weekends from 10am to 9pm (from 1pm to 9pm on weekdays) you can rally make a day of it here.

Camp5 Indoor Climbing Gym:

Camp5

1 Utama Shopping Centre, Petaling Jaya

Camp5 is a staple in the world of climbing here in Kuala Lumpur and is located on the 5th floor of the ever-popular 1Utama. This was one of our first experiences of climbing and my two had a blast! Professionally run, children can get a good insight into the sport by taking the “1-hour experience only Taster” where they’ll be guided by an instructor. Lots of package options available and school camps too during the holidays.

Open on weekends from 10am to 9pm but only from 2pm in the week.

District21:

District21

IOI City Mall, Putrajaya

Located on level 1 if IOI Mall, their ‘Power Station’ is an interactive climbing zone for children over 15kg and combines sport with problem-solving. You can also take to their ‘Sky Trail’ with their low ropes course or try out go-karting!

Add to this the, trampoline park, free fall zone, and the maze, are there really is a lot of activities to enjoy, making it a great option for a day of fun.

MadMonkeyz Climbing Gym:

MadMonkeyz Climbing Gym

Wangsa Maju

While this may not be the largest centre, this cozy, neighbourhood climbing gym is great for children to try their hand at climbing. Set over two floors with thick crash pads, the beginner’s wall is a great place to start with colour coded routes to follow. Climbing here, and membership to the gym, is really extremely affordable so it’s definitely an option.

Open 10am to 7pm on weekends and holidays but from 2pm to 11pm Tuesday to Friday (evenings only on Monday)

Putrajaya Challenge Park

Precinct 5, Putrajaya

This is a little extra that I had to add here. The Challenge Park is a great space for families to hang out. Aside from it’s large outdoor skate park, mountain trails and ‘Thrill Park’ for biking enthusiasts, it also has a really impressive climbing area which I’ve never seen get very busy. The large hall is reserved for adults but the good news is, they have a FREE indoor climbing area for kids upstairs on the 1st floor! It’s a small space but perfect for the youngest of adventurers to have a go at climbing before they hit the big walls!

See Thean Hou Temple Glow this Chinese New Year

Thean Hou Temple, what can I say?

When it comes to Chinese New Year in Kuala Lumpur, this is my absolute number one place to visit.

With both the temple, and the road leading up the hill, being turned into an amazing sea of red lanterns, the atmosphere is quite magical. Go in the day, or in the evening, but whenever you go, you’ll be in for a real treat.

This year the celebrations will start from the 15th of February and will run until the 2nd of March.

In addition to the stunning display of lanterns, there’ll be dances, opera, and drum shows, taking us on a journey back in time to how the festivities unfolded in the olden days.

Don’t miss seeing the temple in all its glory this Chinese New Year, S x

Osaka – Kyoto; A Family moment in Japan.

Leaving our holidays in Australia behind, we managed to squeeze in a little Japanese break when we booked to travel via Osaka. Having never been before, it was a great way to see some of the sights in the ex-capital of the country, and tick yet another place off our list!

Flying into Osaka, we made the city centre our base which is about an hour away from the airport. There’s a host of hotels to choose from but ours was well located allowing us to walk around on foot or pop across to their central station for easy connections.

The weather may have been cooler than we’re used to but Osaka treated us to a cosy, festive market which certainly added an extra bit of magic to a trip at this time of year! The traditional German-style market was very popular and had everything you would expect; from hot chocolate and European food specialities, to Christmas decorations for sale and fairground rides for the little ones.

If you’re in Osaka for the lead up to Christmas, make a stop at the market located just under the Umeda Sky Building (which in itself is quite the attraction) and runs every year from approximately the third week in November until the 26th of December.

No visit to Osaka would be complete without a visit to Osaka Castle, one of Japan’s must-see sights. Set in a large park which you can enter free of charge, this is a nice place to have a wander, enjoy the beautiful gardens and feed the ducks on the lake, all while grabbing some nice shots of the castle itself.

We were there in winter, but I’m sure that visiting in spring with the cherry blossom is really a sight to be seen!

To visit the castle, there is a little box office selling tickets. Children under 15 are free of charge while adults pay 600 yen. Once inside you have floors and floors of exhibits to visit.

The idea is to start at the top, (also where the open-air viewing gallery gives views over the sprawling city below) and work your way down and through the history of Osaka, the castle, and its people. There are little displays with films running which the children really enjoyed, and on one floor you can pay a minimal fee to get dressed-up in traditional clothes for a photo shoot.

Of course if you’re in Osaka on a real family holiday and fancy hitting up Universal Studios, this would be an obvious hangout but I have to say that in the winter, coming from much warmer climates, I couldn’t have faced a day outside at a theme park!

While Osaka was nice to see, I have to say that Kyoto was the absolute highlight for me during our time in Japan this past holiday. The bullet train makes the trip from Osaka to Kyoto just a 15 minute journey away (although you can also take regular trains as well which still get you in under half an hour!) so it really is a visit that you need to combine with Osaka.

There’s an amazing amount to see in Kyoto; the place is full of temples and shrines and all things typical. We started out with a visit to the Sagano Bamboo Forest where pathways and walks around the area take you through the most impressive bamboo. There are plenty of shrines and temples within the forest that you can stop to visit, with photo opportunities galore, and even the chance to take your own little carriage around the lanes.

It was a nice walk to do and, as you can choose the length of the circuit you do, it is great for children too who get to run around a bit!

High on our list of things to see was the Kinaku-Ji (also known as Rokuon-Ji) a Zen Buddhist temple set in the middle of a lake with beautiful gardens to walk through.

The area around the lake is, for obvious reasons, a bit crowded but you get to walk around the majority of the temple so you will get a shot you like at some stage. After this, the walk takes you through shrines and gardens and market sellers. The temple on the lake really is beautiful and one worth seeing in Kyoto.

A big chunk of our afternoon was spent in the Old Town. Officially known as Higashiyama District, it is home to the most quaint, historical parts of the area.

From traditional little streets and buildings, to Japanese lanterns swaying in walkways, to people walking around in traditional costumes to set the scene, this is your little glimpse into old-style Japan. You could spend hours here discovering the backstreets, browsing gifts in shops, and checking out local eateries.

There are multiple places where you can hire a Japanese costume to dress up and feel as if you’re walking in the shoes of generations passed. I have to say that I loved the Old City so much that we will try to plan another trip back in another season that allows to us to enjoy the place a little bit more.

Last but by no means least, we had to visit the much-photographed Fushimi Inari Taisha which is one of the most impressive shrines in Kyoto.

The shrine sits at the base of Inari Mountain and includes trails around the area that cover a couple of kilometers. Famous for its stunning red shrines that you walk through as you slowly climb into the mountains, it really is such a stunning place and certainly attracts a lot of visitors but the further you walk, the less people there are which meant the calm and tranquility of the place was only ever just around the corner. We spent a good few hours here and watched the sunset from the mountain!

I fear we only touched the surface of all the beauty to be seen in Kyoto but that just inspires me to return at a different time of year to try and see the rest of the city. Kuala Lumpur to Osaka entails a flight of only about 6 hours so, while I’m not sure when we’ll make it back, I do know that for anyone considering Osaka as a getaway, I can highly recommend it, with the day trip (or longer!) to Kyoto being an absolute must! S x

A Weekend Full of Fun in Kuala Lumpur

January is soon coming to a close but with Chinese New Year celebrations already underway, there is so much going on this weekend! Check out the collection below that includes everything from “A Kids Day Out” with loads of fun activities, to a Science Fair, Baby Expo, and fun workshops! So many choices to make the most of the weekend ahead, S x

This looks like an amazing event!! Two days of fun at the Kids Day Out event at One South Street Mall and admission is FREE!

The School is back with another great event this weekend. Check out their Science Fair this Saturday and Sunday!

Arogya Holistic Care have a cute playgroup happening this Saturday for children aged 18 months to 5 years. Check out their FB tagged here to register!

Registration for this has already closed BUT it will be a great event to watch if you are at Atria Shopping Gallery this Sunday afternoon!

At Klang Parade it’s time for their Chinese New Year Kids Costume Competition! Event details for this and their Kids Talent Show are below 😉

KL Gateway Mall have activities and performances happening this weekend as Chinese New Year approaches.

Today’s Baby Expo is happening this weekend at Mid Valley Exhibition Centre.

Here are the special events happening this weekend at Sunway Velocity Mall

Subang Parade have a great line up of events this weekend with workshops and performances.

On the schedule for this week at 1 Mont’ Kiara are Chinese Fan Painting, performances, and the chance to meet the God of Prosperity.

CITTA Mall kick off their CNY celebrations this weekend with arts n crafts workshops, a Southern Lion Dance Showcase and lots more…..

Great Eastern Mall invite you to join them for performances, dances and acrobatics, as well as lots of other activities and giveaways..

Wen Dee Tan Illustration are holding a lovely event at Ilham Gallery this Saturday but spaces are limited so sign up today!

Plaza Arkadia Desa Park City is back with its weekend market for anyone near Desa ParkCity.

There’s another chance to join fun workshops this weekend for members at Kiddomo Universe. There are limited seats so sign up today!

This weekend in Kuala Lumpur for Families

From a petting zoo and puppies, to free open days, workshops, and coloring competitions; once again there’s a lot going on in KL and beyond this weekend! Starting today, family events are happening city-wide so be sure to join in the fun! S x

Popcorn Day!! Wow, that’s actually a thing?! ‘Pop’ over to Lot 10 Kuala Lumpur for a sweet treat this weekend! It runs from today until Sunday, 10am to 10pm.

The School are back with a family favourite as they welcome us all to their petting zoo on level G. Happening this Saturday and Sunday.

Alongside the petting zoo, The School is also offering you the chance to find a forever furry friend and ‘adopt a puppy’….

Global Art Nilai Impian have a colouring and drawing competition this Sunday the 21st of January from 10am at MesaMall Malaysia.

The Made Malaysia Festival is back and it starts today! Lots of music, crafts, travel bargains to be had but also fun and games for the little ones! Pop over to MITA Travel Fair from today until Sunday.

mademalaysia.fest

MuzArt Sri Hartamas have an arty open day on both Saturday and Sunday! Pop over to their location at Plaza Damas.

Kevin Build has some really interesting woodwork workshops for kids. If you can’t get in on the one this weekend, Check out his FB page tagged here for all dates and bookings.

Delve int books with your little ones this weekend at Publika. 长颈鹿故事館 Little Giraffe Book Club will have a wide range of books available in English, Mandarin, and Malay….

Thiam Guitar WorkShop happening at Sunway Velocity Mall but you will need to book your space!
Commune at Sunway Velocity

Workshops happening at Commune at Sunway Velocitybut you will need to book your space!
February date and times too courtesy of 7th Tone Creative

Kiddomo Universe has another special offer of a fun workshop for its VIPS! Check out the slime!!

If you’re in Cyberjaya, check out the new studio launch of KidzGem Creative Discovery Fun and games, as well as prizes to be won!

A Family trip ‘Down Under’ to Cairns.

Our December ‘Christmas’ getaway to Australia, was very much a last minute thing – we had planned to do a mini break to Borneo (to finally see my beloved Orangutans) and then suddenly, my husband came up with a plan to visit a part of Australia that we’d never been to before.

 

Very different from the high-rise, cosmopolitan city of Sydney, Cairns surprised us with it’s laid back feel, and a it’s small-scale high streets, but the friendly people, perfect weather, and it’s location, made it an ideal base for discovering the region.

 

Queensland has such a vast range of scenery and activities and we tried to cover as much ground as possible! From hiring a rental car and driving along the most stunning of coastal roads from Cairns up to Port Douglas, to a catamaran trip out to snorkel on the Great Barrier Reef, and cuddling up with koalas in Kuranda. We’ve done national parks, rainforests, beaches and mountains, we’ve travelled by scenic railway, boat and cable car, and it was all just amazing! The whole family loved everything we did and once again proved that Australia really is just such a beautiful place to go and discover.

So, what exactly did we get up to? Here you go with an overview of family-friendly activities in the region.

Cairns Esplanade:

Probably the biggest attraction in the city itself, and a true favourite with families, is the Esplande that stretches as far as the eye can see and offers just so much to both tourists and locals.

Beautiful walks along the coast with BBQ set-ups, and picnic spots, are just the beginning as you take in stunning views out to sea. For families, this is an ideal hangout with the main lagoon swimming pool being a real winner with everyone. The salt-water pool has water fountains and a fake beach as well as shaded areas for little ones and s just the hub of all things action! More importantly, it’s completely free of charge (as are the majority of the features on the esplanade.

Cairns itself was a really good base and offered us some free activities perfect for families along their esplanade. There are huge playgrounds, a free swimming pool with loads of fun features, a giant tree house, and a skate park, which make the area a really nice place to hang out.

A little further down the path you come across the impressive ‘Muddy’s playground which is a fabulous place for children to play, climb and run around or get their beach gear on and have a play in the water zone which was a welcome refreshment on a warm summer’s day.

The esplanade is also home to a skateboard park, the ‘Fun Ship’ playground and an impressive tree house that the kids go crazy for.

Walk around the streets and you’ll come across a host of tourist offices offering a vast array of excursions. There are often both half day and full day options, pick-ups from hotels included and a range of boats to take you out on your seaward adventures. Coming from South East Asia, I will admit that the prices are a bit of a shock to the system, but no trip to Oz would be complete without truly seeing the sights so we booked a couple of trips as well as opting for a car rental for two days to be able to explore by ourselves (which proved to be very cost effective and prefect for our family who love to be spontaneous and go off the beaten track).

Kuranda:

This is an absolute must on any trip to the region, as we loved this full day of adventure. Kuranda is a village in the mountainous rainforest outside of Cairns. While I believe you can drive there, the tourist attraction that it has become gives you the opportunity to make the most of all it’s beauty by offering different modes of transport to and from the village.

Our day began with a two-hour journey on their scenic railway and it soon became apparent how it got it’s name. Old style carriages allow you to sit back and enjoy endless views as you make your way up to the village.

There are a couple of stops along the way as you meander your way through Barron Gorge and rumble over impressive bridges with one stop allowing you to get off and have some photo opportunities at Barron Falls for any waterfall fanatics.

There’s commentary throughout the journey with facts on the area and it also lets you know in advance as to when to have your cameras at the ready for viewpoints coming up ahead. While it is a two-hour ride, the time passed quickly and even the youngest of children enjoyed the whole experience.

Once at the top of the mountain you arrive at Kuranda and have free time to wander around. There is a lot to do but it’s up to you how you spend your time. There are some bigger attractions like the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary, Birdworld Kuranda and also the Koala Gardens (of which we did the latter, but more about that in just a moment!) or you can take in a river boat cruise, enjoy shops, cafes, a street didgeridoo performance, the local playground, or the lovely market selling a host of goodies.

I’d seen photos of the Kuranda Koala Gardens and secretly hoped my children would pester ‘daddy’ enough to take them….. yes, you got it, mission accomplished!

Queensland is the only state in Australia that still allows people to physically hold a koala so we knew that, besides seeing the animals themselves, we could be in for much more of a treat should we decide to have a cuddle with a koala. It isn’t a massive place but the koalas are just gorgeous and photographing them is relatively easy as they do love to laze around in their trees!

We were nicely surprised that there was also a large enclosure that we could go into, grab some food, and feed the kangaroos and wallabies! I can’t believe how close we could get to the animals allowing the little ones to hand-feed them and take photos.

There were also lizards and a few other friends to make but of course, it did come down to having a photo taken while holding a koala which both myself and my daughter decided would be one of those unforgettable moments – and it was. The whole set-up is very well organized and two keepers are with you and the animals the whole time. The koalas are extremely well looked after, are on a little rotation so are never out doing photos for more than half an hour, and you are given strict instructions on how to handle your new little friend.

Charlie, our (not so little) koala was the perfect gentleman and clung on to us for photos like a pro and while the experience doesn’t last for long, it was something that all of us will always remember. Thank you Charlie x

Once we’d finished up in Kuranda, it was time to make our way back down to Cairns, this time on the Skyrail; the most impressive of cable car rides you may ever take!

You can just ride down to the entrance, but you can also choose to get off at several different stations along the way to take in nature trails, waterfalls and wildlife. We decided that as we were there we would make the most of the moment and got off at every given opportunity so we felt we saw the rainforest in it’s entirety and really enjoyed it.

Green Island:

A boat trip, or in this case, a catamaran, was on the top of our list for obvious reasons. It’s not every day you get to holiday so close to the Great Barrier Reef and with its reputation, it was a wonder that we were not about to miss.

There are many options, but with two children, we opted for a catamaran trip out to Green Island which is less than an hour’s travel time from the port in Cairns.

You can choose a morning departure for the full day trip or a lunch time departure for the half-day version of the same tour.

Either way, you will enjoy a very scenic trip out on the waters until you reach Green Island with the option to sit out on deck or indoors.

Our trip included either snorkeling (with the basic equipment) or a ride on a glass-bottom boat. Upon arriving at the island. While I’m sure the latter is lovely (and a great option for people with younger children) we decided that we had to get wet, and get in with the fish!

On the island itself there are a number of things to do. If you want to just relax on the beach, you can. If you want to wander around and explore the rainforest, there are decked pathways around the island. There are cafes and restaurants, a swimming pool (reserved for certain tour companies) and even the Marineland Croc Park for those of you wanting to see some really impressive reptiles!

Our first stop was the water sports centre where we grabbed our snorkelling gear and the. Headed for the beach. While it is clearly a popular tourist attraction, it wasn’t crowded and we even found some fairly deserted areas for some photos and to just enjoy the moment.

Snorkelling was fun and child-friendly with shallow waters and small floating buoys attaches in certain places for you to be able to hold on to. While we did enjoy it (and my son was so proud to have spotted his first sting ray!) let’s just say that you won’t get the richness of colours and fish as you would if you went further afield to the outer reef. It’s a lovely trip to do but go for the whole experience of an island getaway and not just the snorkelling…. ! There are plenty of other (admittedly more expensive) options for going out to the Great Barrier Reef so just décidé with agents what it is you’re looking for.

 

The Coast: From Cairns to Port Douglas:

For our first day of car rental we wanted beaches, and the coast, and stunning view points, and we weren’t disappointed! Heading out from the city of Cairns there’s a beautiful coastal road that will take you to numerous beaches and coves, allowing you to stop where and when you want before reaching Port Douglas

One of our main stops was at Palm Cove which I would recommend to anyone! A fabulous stretch of beach with lovely sand, a safe cordoned off area for swimming in the sea, a playground in the shade, and lots of cafes, restaurants and little shops along the beach front.

we were there in the morning and although it was school holidays, at that time in the day, it was almost deserted! Perfect for long walks and enjoying the light breeze before the crowds arrive.

The magnificent stretch of highway is a pleasant, at times windy, drive that offers constant views out over the big blue. We made some impromptu stops and each time we’re just so in awe of the beauty of the clean beaches and palm trees.

Another stop we made, and one that is clearly signposted, was the viewpoint named “Rex Lookout”. It’s set up for people to stop as they pass by and has parking spaces on both sides of the road. A stunning spot for some photos.

Ellis Beach was another lovely area and, although the journey from Cairns to Port Douglas is about 60km, it’s a picture postcard everywhere you look. Port Douglas itself is quaint and a little busier with some nice boutique shops, cafes, eateries and places to picnic with playgrounds and everything else.

Daintree National Park / Mossman Gorge:

Once we were at Port Douglas we realized we’d easily be able to combine our trip with a visit to Daintree National Park which is where Mossman’s Gorge is nestled into the rugged rainforest.

It was a spot my husband was particularly interested in seeing and ended up being a lovely ‘get back to nature’ moment and a really enjoyable experience.

Once at Daintree you’ll either need to walk the 2km to the entrance of the rainforest or take a little shuttle bus that services the route. The walk isn’t a difficult one but it is generally hot and humid but it is manageable if you have the time. The bus is expensive for the distance it covers with a family ticket costing us over $20.

Once at the entrance you are free to walk around the rainforest at your own pace. There are proper boardwalks to make getting around easy and if you’re lucky you might even spot Forest Dragons on the tree trunks!

The main attraction here is, needless to say, Mossman Gorge, which pulls the crowds to say the least. A beautiful spot for some photography and also a chance for a paddle (or a swim if you’re brave enough!) in the chilly water as it runs through the rainforest.

The rocks and small sandy area make it a great natural playground for children, and swimming is allowed. Take your swim suits and towels but be prepared for cooler waters if, like us, you’re coming from the warm seawater of Palm Cove! My goodness it was chilly but also one of those ‘once in a lifetime’ moments that makes you get stuck in and, quite frankly, once you’re in, you soon forget about the water temperature!

However, the Gorge does come with its warnings of when and where it is safe to go into the waters. Due to the risk of flash floods, it’s not always a good idea, so please heed the warnings and watch the little ones! The rocks submerged in the water are slippery making it difficult to get a good grip and there is a current that could easily whisk a weaker swimmer downstream. But don’t let this put you off; it’s beautiful and a really lovely slice of pure nature that is worth the stop.

Atherton Tablelands:

The Tablelands is a highland area about a 2-hour drive from Cairns but, as with our other road trip, there are so many stops, attractions and viewpoints along the way, that you can easily break the journey up.

The region is a mix of rainforest and wetlands and offers nature walks, waterfalls, lakes, some amazing wildlife, and even Gallo Dairyland which is perfect for children (and anyone who fancies testing homemade chocolates!)

Initially our main focus in the region was the waterfall circuit. It’s a specific route in the area which circles around and leads you one after another to some of the most beautiful waterfalls. Millaa Millaa was our first stop and is probably the most impressive!

Such a stunning spot to sit and enjoy a picnic and great for a swim so be sure to take the necessary with you on your day trip! This is easily accessible with children and there’s a parking area, shower/changing rooms and toilets, but nowhere (that I saw) to buy drinks or anything else so take your water bottles with you.

The next waterfall on the circuit was Zillow Falls which we did make a short stop at but you don’t have full access to the falls itself and just catch the water running off the cliff edge, needless to say, with no swimming available.

This meant we could move swiftly on to the next waterfall, Ellinjaa Falls, pictures above while my daughter takes in the scene! From the car park it’s probably less than 10 minutes to reach the water and a few hundred meters to stealthily go along rocky paths to a nice spot for photos, swimming, and enjoying the cool water.

Malinda Falls is another one to look out for, although we enjoyed this spot not for the waterfall but I stead the forest walk that saw us coming across wild tree kangaroos! Such a lovely surprise and there must have been 5 or 6 of them jumping around looking for food etc. So lucky!

The waterfall circuit continues and if you want to do just that, you really could fill your day with some beautiful sights. We had a few other places on our to-do-list so did a couple of stops off at stops for their renowned fig trees, namely ‘The Curtain’ and ‘The Cathedral’ both of which are signposted from the main road and only need a few minutes walk from each of the parking areas.

There are a couple of lakes in the area; Lake Eacham and Lake Barrine, of which did the latter. Picnic areas, people rolling up with their own kayaks and SUPs and just generally enjoying some time on the water.

There’s a tea house/cafe on the water’s edge and some lovely walks to do in the area. A great place to stretch your legs and for the little ones to run around and play if you’ve been driving for too long!

I think there’s probably more I could say about our trip but, as this started as a small over view and has already become a full-blown novel, I fear I should stop!

Cairns was great; the region is just magnificent and it is great for families. My husband got in a SCUBA diving trip, we got some shopping done, there’s a little market on a Saturday morning on the esplanade and enough restaurants and bars to suit every taste.

Australia never fails to impress; Cairns, you were amazing! S x

The New Jungle Gym at Genting Highlands is Open!

A new year, and a new play centre has opened, and it’s perfect for families heading out of the city. As well as featuring the new Jungle Gym here, I have also included it in my Ultimate Soft Play Album for ease here so you can get the updated list whenever you need it!

Jungle Gym up at Genting Highlands is finally open and it looks like fun!

With its signature large play area with multiple slides, climbing structures, and fun activities, there is also a dedicated space for toddlers, a cosy reading corner and the mini cinema for movie screenings!

A nice addition for families when heading up to the highlands which I’m going to need to try soon!

Photo Courtesy of Jungle Gym

All photos courtesy of Jungle Gym. Their FB page featuring all their soft play centres can be found here.

Exciting Book Launch for Kids in KL

This coming weekend, why not get back to nature and discover the rain forest with Timo the Tapir!

Amal Rimba Books have not one, but two events this weekend based on the cute book “Why don’t I look like you’ that follows the adventures of a little Tapir who doesn’t look like his mum!

On Saturday, join fun outdoors activities at FRIM with a jungle walk, storytelling, adopt-a-tree, and lunch.

On Sunday, meet the authors of the book, enjoy a storytelling sessions and get your own copy of the book signed over at Kinokuniya at KLCC. Be sure to sign up to guarantee your place! S x