“What are those ducks doing?” asks one of our goggle-eyed friends during a walk around the property called ‘Eight Acres’. Uncle Kam, our tour guide turns to look and replies, nonchalant, “Oh, they’re mating.” Later, in the privacy of our shared accommodation, we four urbanites admit that we have never see such a thing before.
”At the time, though, we are forced to pay attention to Uncle Kam as he continues with his story about this eco-resort in Raub Pahang which recently won a prize for Best Eco Initiative. He says that when his son, Paul Kam (Group Managing director of ‘D Jungle Resorts’, which owns ‘Eight Acres’) first brought him to the property, it was the sound of water cascading from the waterfall nearby that convinced Uncle Kam to support his son’s dream to create this sanctuary. That was four years ago.
Today, ‘Eight Acres’ has evolved into a place that can only be described as a banquet for the senses. To appreciate its extraordinary beauty, you must set aside the creature comforts available at other resorts like air-conditioned accommodation, toiletries on demand and an à la carte menu.
Instead, embrace communal eating, apply liberal amounts of insect repellent and open your heart to the warmth and hospitality of its gracious hosts. In so doing, you may come to see that ‘Eight Acres’ is a place where the humans and animals don’t merely co-exist – they have just about switched places. Where the humans have been lovingly creating and building this place, the animals are involved in scandalous sexual behaviour, acts of horror and even attempted murder.
For instance, there’s Justin, who is in charge of all recreational activities, tenderly stroking an injured bird who made the mistake of flying into the ceiling fan. Uncle Kam monitored the planting of a whole host of trees on a particular section of the property, “because we wanted to create a colony for birds to come.”
”Then there is ‘Java House’, a structure brought over from Java, Indonesia, and reconstructed here on ‘Eight Acres’. Imagine the scene from its balcony during the twilight hour: a waterfall on your left, verdant tropical flora in the background with a majestic ‘Tualang’ tree right at the top, and row upon row of Heliconia and Hibiscus on your right. When night comes, the Orion constellation is prominent in a cloudless