Saturday, July 16, 2011

Cape Rachado ( a.k.a Tanjung Tuan )

Cape Rachado is also known as Tanjung Tuan, is a peninsular at the resort town of Port Dickson in Malaysia. The tip of the peninsular is a protected natural forest, it is also the site of the oldest functioning lighthouse in Malaysia. Built by the Portuguese, it witnessed the naval battle between the Dutch and Portuguese when the Dutch attempt to wrest control of the Strait of Malacca from the hands of the Portuguese. Today the lighthouse still serves its designed purpose, it used be accessible only from the beach but a paved road has since been built to make access a lot easier.

I took my campervan to the cape for an overnight stay. Leaving my home on Friday night after work, I drove to Port Dickson and reached there around 11pm. The next morning, due tight time constraint I was unable to spend much time there,  but I did managed to walk up to the light house to enjoy a great view of the Strait of Malacca. Port Dickson suffered badly from over development, but this place managed to preserves the natural beauty of the coast line that is missing from the rest of town where hotels and apartment choked the sea front. I will be back to this place for a longer stay.

The aerial view of Cape Rachado from Google Map. The white speck at the bottom left is the lighthouse. You can see the resort development is right at the door step of the reserved forest. Let's hope that it stops there.
The aerial view of the lighthouse at the southern tip of the cape.

My campervan at Pantai Cermin side of Cape Rachado, in the back ground is a converted VW campervan with European license  plate. The owner must have driven overland from Europe to Port Dickson.
Close up the VW camper, the curtains are up so either the occupants are still sleeping or they are out exploring the place. I was hoping that it is a Westfalia or an exotic Synco conversion, but it looks like a plain standard Transporter.
The sand at Pantai Cermin is red-brown type that is characteristic of Port Dickson. In the background is the reserved natural forest of Cape Rachado

The entrance gate the forest reserve, the road behind us leads directly to the lighthouse. The road is restricted to forest ranger's vehicle only. 

The forest has dense foliage and there some interesting looking leafs which were almost big enough for use as umbrella!

After walking for about 15 minutes, the dense foliage suddenly gave way to a vista of the lighthouse.

A close up of the lighthouse. Despite being centuries old, it is very well preserved and maintained. In the back is a modern radar station that monitors marine traffics in the strait.

The rugged shore just below the lighthouse at high tide, during low tide it is possible to walk around the cape.

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