Family Fun @ Awana

by Diana Tan, Nov 3, 2001 | Destinations: Malaysia / Pahang
Cone painting at the Eco Sports Club.

Cone painting at the Eco Sports Club.

Cone painting at the Eco Sports Club.
Indoor abseiling at the Eco Sports Club.
Indoor rock climbing at the Eco Sports Club.

Think Genting Highlands, think gambling. Wrong.

Genting Highlands in the state of Pahang, West Malaysia is located 2,000 metres above sea level. It is popular with local and foreign visitors for its cool weather and as a gambling haven for those people whose adrenalin runs high when dealing with chips and dice.

For families who seek not the fast wheeling and dealing but a respite from the heat of the lowlands, there is the Awana Golf & Country Resort, located mid-point of the highlands. The weather at Awana may not be as cold as at the peak but it means that children could have outdoor fun minus the clumsy and thick sweaters. Indeed kids could have fun beyond pool activities at the Awana condotel.

At the Eco Sports Club located within the Awana Resort, children from four years of age can enjoy both indoor and outdoor eco sports activities. The Club offers a holistic outdoor program that provides adventure, challenge, fun and relaxation. It opened its doors in 1998 setting a new trend in lifestyle sports in a natural environment. It boasts a range of activities ranging from indoor and outdoor abseiling, indoor and outdoor rock climbing, jungle trekking, mountain biking, outdoor camp, mini golf, donkey and horse rides.

When my family last visited, our three children indulged in hands-on craft activities such as greeting cards, cone painting, plasticine and clay fun. We have stored their pride and effort somewhere in drawers in our home and once in a while we spent time reminiscing the fun we had at Awana.

The Club might turn your very young child to be the next Picasso; just let them participate in the colouring modules. You need not fuss about the mess they made for the cleaning is taken care of by the Club. So let your child's imagination run wild. To nurture green fingers, the Club offers eco planting. Selected species of plants are picked from the surrounding rainforest and children are taught the finer points of planting them in pots of soil. I think this is a superb way to get our urban kids to feel, touch and experience sand and dirt.

For the adventurous and strenuous activities, experienced instructors are on hand to teach and ensure the safety of children. These include sports such as abseiling and rock climbing. Safety helmets and ropes are used at all times. Both indoor and outdoor versions of abseiling and rock climbing are offered. More challenging trails are available for older children and adults.

During our visit, my two older girls also had fun at indoor rock climbing although they were not game enough to climb any higher than half the height of the wall. My five year old son, well, he managed to climb two rungs of a rope ladder and already felt exhilarated. Hubby and I were not left out of the fun because we had a wonderful time at mini-golf with the children, never mind that the golf balls were rolling everywhere except towards the hole.

Had we stayed longer, we might consider the challenging outdoor camp or nature trek. What better way to rough it out as a family and to see my urbanite children's reaction as they stay outdoor in the jungle that surround the resort and live with weird and never-seen-before creepy crawlies. I can almost hear their screams and I can imagine the squirmy feelings as they face the various wonders of mother nature in the rainforest. In all honesty I suspect that my children might beg to differ from this decision.

Depending on your sense of adventure, jungle treks of varying distance and terrain are offered. Each trail offers a distinctive and rich educational experience. The charge for an overnight camp-out includes the rental of tents and meals.

The Eco Sports Club is also open to corporate groups. While we were there, we observed a group of company employees yelling, screaming, laughing, and clearly having fun, as they partook of the different activities in the outdoor obstacle course.

Well, if fun such as these could bond the family and employees better, then I am sure time and money are worthily spent.

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Other Sports Activities

Table Tennis, Badminton, Squash, Tennis, Mountain Biking.
Equipment could be rented from the Sports Complex.
Coaches are available for tennis, badminton, squash and mini-golf for a fee.

How to book
Activities start from RM3.00 per child and are available daily. Prior booking and special arrangement accepted.

Eco Sports Complex
Level 4
Awana Genting Highlands Golf & Country Resort
8th Mile, Genting Highlands
69000 Pahang Darul Makmur
Tel: (603) 211 3015 Ext 7619

Awana Golf & Country Resort (condotel)
Tel: (603) 262 3555
Fax: (603) 261 6611

How to get there

Located just 54km north of Kuala Lumpur, it takes an hour to reach Genting Highlands from the capital. Self-drive or hire a taxi to take you up to the highlands. Once up at Awana, visitors have a choice of a thrilling cable car ride up to the peak where the casino beckons and the Genting Theme Park comprising both indoor and outdoor adventure attractions await.

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