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December 13, 2016 News No Comments

Tadom Hill Eco Camp

Turquoise blue water goes as far as the eye can see. Underneath, a bed of algae sits giving life to the fish who call this place their home. They come out for a breath and ripples of water echo into the hills that surround the lake. Over forty acres of limestone hills, blue bodies of water and forest stretch over the land – so fresh air and the sounds of nature are abundant. In the middle of all this beauty sits Tadom Hill Resorts. This unique resort is the creation of local Lucas Loo, who envisioned an ecologically sustainable getaway that is as tranquil and natural as its surroundings. Made almost entirely out of bamboo, the resort has a large space full of ingenious designs that allow it to seamlessly blend into the setting.

EcoClub Malaysia, in conjunction with KAGC, organized a weekend Eco Camp at Tadom Hill for over forty students. A bright day dawned on Tadom Hill, the breeze helping with the intense heat of the Malaysian sun. The team and students arrived at the resort at noon after a two hour journey from its HQ in Masjid Jamek. The students, filled with excitement and curiosity, hopped off the bus and gazed at the quirky and ingenious structure of Tadom Hill. After settling down, the students who were from different schools, played icebreaking games to get to know each other. A tasty lunch was served and slurped with absolute delight. Tadom Hill Resorts has two brands of resorts under its wing, Tadom Bamboo Camp and Tadom Bamboo Suites which are the campsite/dorms and premium chalets respectively. The students checked into Tadom Bamboo Camp tent site which shows rows of homely purple tents sheltered with palm leaf thatched roof, some of which overlooked the lake while others were closer to the recreational area. Students chose a friend to bunk with and headed in, with their sleeping bag in hand provided by Tadom Hill.

At the main hall Mr. Ng Chuck Chuan, Head of Green Engineering at KAGC, presented a talk about environmental conservation and the concept of sustainable development. The students and staff got to see sustainable development in their own eyes at Tadom Hill as bamboo is the main structural material used in the resort. Bamboo has a high compressive strength and low weight, making it the perfect natural building material. It is also abundant, as the plant can grow up to four feet per day and when harvested it still regrows without having to be harvested. Bamboo is even two to three times stronger than steel. The benefits of bamboo structures go past just construction ease, it is inexpensive and is sustainable. The plant releases nearly 35% more oxygen and absorbs nearly 35% carbon dioxide than most trees. The reusable plant is no contest to other building materials. Both students and staff alike were in awe over the ease of incorporating structure, design and a keen eye on the environment.

After the meeting, was free time and at Tadom Hill boring is not in the dictionary. By the blue lake is a 5m diving board fastened from, no other than, bamboo. Students lined up with their lifejackets on and took a leap of faith into the cool blue water. Right beside the diving platform are two rope swings; one hangs off a tree where the adventurous can swing like Tarzan on a vine into the water and another is a bamboo swing where swimmers can hover over the water while their legs are dipped in. The lake also offers handmade bamboo rafts, students perch on these swaying in the water relaxing to the waves. Laughter can be heard everywhere. It is a fun afternoon for everyone. On land there are also fun-filled activities offered by Tadom Hill. At the giant recreational area, some kids are playing with huge jengga blocks trying not to make the mass wooden sculpture fall over by carefully taking out the blocks one by one. Other kids are flexing their mind as they engage in a game of giant chess. Sports are also available for the kids, basketball, volleyball and Ping-Pong were also popular spots for the gusts. Time flew by as everyone mingled around with each other and tried their hand in the activities. Kevin, the head of EcoClub, was perched over the pit trying to make a fire for s’mores while everyone started to dig into their supper once the sun came down. The fire flickered while the sound of music and laughter filled the air. Marshmallows were being passed around to be skewered on a stick and melted in the fire, a sweet sticky dessert, and perfect for the game of charades that was being played around the fire. The first time left everyone in high spirits for day two.

The following morning, it was an early rise and shine. The day started off with exercise to keep everyone limber and active, led by no other by Mr. Kevin Chan. Music was blasting, legs were moving, and the occasional grunt and moan was heard. After the morning exercise, we headed to the café for breakfast where a local and western breakfast was served. Mr. Chuck organized a fun educational game to teach students about the environmental problems that we face in the future if we don’t take care of Mother Earth now. Mr. Chuck emphasized on resorting the planet and in the process of this we must be mindful of all the factors in our life to keep the planet alive. The man behind the curtain was then introduced, Mr. Lucas Loo, the genius mind behind Tadom Hill Resort. His inspirational story of how he decided to build Tadom Hill touched the hearts of everyone. Nobody could take their ears and eyes off the man who spoke about his resort with passion. He also shared his love for bamboo, the sustainable material used to build a vast majority of the resort. Mr. Loo led the audience to his workshop to learn how to construct a bamboo raft. The students were a chance to build and ride their raft, competing in teams of four! Adrenaline was rushing students when they took their rafts out the water, first testing the most important thing: if it floats. Once the timer went, off the students did too as they jetted off racing their handmade bamboo rafts. Spectators were cheering on, only for one team to rise among the rest. The winners were students from Hin Hua High School! After the race dinner proceeded with talks by Mr. Lew Voon Khong, who is the current Mr. Malaysia, and Ms Lumi, whom had volunteering work experience at Tadom Hill.

The final morning was an easy day for the students. To keep the students active physically and mentally, another exercise was conducted this time by Mr. Lew Voon Khong. A permaculture workshop went on to introduce the students and staff on how you can creatively redesign our environment and behavior in a world of less energy and resources. The last day everyone put their all into it for a much blessed experience at the resort.

Written by admin