Malaysia, with its tropical climate of sunshine and rain all year round, makes it an ideal nature paradise. Besides rainforests, mountains, limestone caves, islands, rivers and waterfalls, there are also many parks and gardens where one can enjoy a breath of fresh air, a relaxing stroll, beautiful blooms and greenery. Here are five such places you can visit:
1. Orchid Park, Kuala Lumpur
A quiet place in the heart of the city, the Orchid Park is located on a hill, supposedly the highest point in the Perdana Botanical Gardens area in Kuala Lumpur. It houses over 800 species of orchids.
The park has a semi-circle pergola (shaded passageway with pillars supporting cross-beams and open lattice) for the epiphytic or climbing orchids, and a rock garden for the terrestrial or ground ones. There are also other flora woven into the landscape of the garden.
Admission is free on weekdays, and RM1 on Saturdays, Sundays, and public holidays.
2. Hibiscus Park, Kuala Lumpur
Located next to the Orchid Park is the Hibiscus Park. It houses several species of the bunga raya, Malaysia’s national flower. There is also a waterfall, fountains, and a few pools within a garden, as well as a colonial-style building that is used as an exhibition hall and gallery.
Admission to the park is free.
3. The Secret Garden, 1Utama Shopping Centre, Petaling Jaya
You’d hardly expect to see a garden in a mall, but just take the lifts to the upper roof of 1Utama Shopping Centre in Petaling Jaya, Selangor, and you’ll be greeted by a sanctuary of colourful plants and flowers in a beautiful landscape.
At 2,787sqm, it claims to be the largest rooftop garden in South-East Asia, and features around 500 species of plants. It is a popular spot for photography, especially among Instagrammers. Admission to the garden is free.
4. Sarawak Orchid Garden, Kuching
The Dewan Bandaraya Kuching Utara Orchid Garden – or simply, the Sarawak Orchid Garden – is located opposite the Kuching waterfront near Fort Margherita, the Astana and State Legislative Assembly Building.
The 6.2ha property houses a collection of 75,000 plants of 82 species, in a nursery and display area. Among these are Sarawak’s state flower, the Normah Orchid, and a wide range of Borneo orchids. You can get to the garden by land or by crossing Sarawak River in a penambang or river boat.
Admission is free; Closed on Mondays.
5. Putrajaya Botanical Gardens, Putrajaya
The Putrajaya Botanical Gardens, located in the federal administrative centre of Malaysia, is the largest botanical garden in the country. The 92ha garden offers more than 700 species of flora. It’s a good place for a walk, jog, cycle or picnic.
Some attractions here include the African Collection, Bougainvillea Tunnel, Canna Walk, Floral Steps, Fern Garden, Heliconia Trail, Hibiscus Walk, Orchid Path, Palm Hill, Pandanus Walk, Tropical America Collection, and Vine Garden. Within the gardens are a huge sundial, canopy bridge, gazebos and picnic shelters. You can also go boating on the lake.
Admission is free.