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May 15, 2012, Malaysia

旅游配套大优惠

本年度首个马来西 亚旅游展吸引了 8 0个来自快车代 理、度假村、旅游 景点、旅行社,还 有砂拉越、森美 兰、霹雳、登嘉楼 等州和地方的旅游 代表参展, 展位 150个,为公众介 绍马国名胜,包括 即将投入服务的亚 洲首座乐高乐园 和今年初开放的 Kidzania职场体 验儿童室内主题乐 园。

莫美颜

本年度的首个马来西亚旅游展将 于今日(5月11日)至13日,一连三天 在新加坡展览中心4A展览厅登场。

这次展览由IBT投资私人有限公司 主办,新加坡快车代理商协会协办, 并获得马来西亚旅游局的支持。共吸 引了80个来自快车代理、度假村、旅 游景点、旅行社,还有砂拉越、森美 兰、霹雳、登嘉楼等州和地方的旅游 代表参展,展位150个,为公众介绍 马国名胜,包括即将投入服务的亚洲 首座乐高乐园和今年初开放的Kidzania 职场体验儿童室内主题乐园,并有 避暑胜地、高尔夫旅游、S p a旅 游,还有胜安航空和飞荧航空 (Firefly)提供的优惠机票 等等。伍星旅游和星运旅游 (TranStar)将展出两部顶 级快车。现场也有许多优惠旅游配套 供选择。

伍星旅游

▌云顶学校假期特别优惠,从108元 起。每间客房送1对云顶室外主题乐园 入门票,送1对FREEZE Show 入门票, 每天只限首50间房。

▌2天1夜怡保Sunway Lost World,从89 元起,包括主题乐园入门票。

▌4天槟城+马六甲之旅与新传媒艺人 杨志龙同游,双人折扣20元,赠送价 值250元礼包,先到先得。

▌4天金马仑+马六甲,国庆日特别出 发,双人折扣20元。

付全额者还有特别奖励。最低消 费每300元,可获得饮食餐券和伍星旅 游巴士模型扑满;每消费1200元可获 得电影礼券。伍星旅游还推出包赢幸 运抽奖,每消费300元可有一次幸运抽 奖机会。首奖是价值2150元的5天热浪 岛/苏梅岛/曼谷海上双人游。

星运旅游

▌3天云顶高原+马六甲历史之旅,每 人折扣15元。

▌3天邦咯岛海边度假村,每人折扣10 元。

联营假期

▌4天马六甲/金马伦/云顶游,双人 折扣80元,游览迷失乐园、永平UK羊 场、玫瑰山庄/蜜蜂园/草莓园/仙 人掌谷/有机蔬菜园/茶园。

▌3天双威瑚礁,238元起,赠送Water Park, Amusement Park, Wildlife Park, Extreme Park and Scream Park入门票。

迪沙鲁果园 (Desaru Fruit Farm)

▌两天迪沙鲁家庭欢乐游,乘坐渡 轮,原价238元,特价213元。

▌两天迪沙鲁品尝榴梿游,乘坐渡 轮,原价238元,特价213元。

贵宾旅运(WTS Travel)

▌3天两夜吉隆坡+云顶高原+Kidzania 职场体验儿童室内主题乐园,收费368 元起。

这次旅游展还有总值10万元以上 的奖品等待赢取,凡消费200元即可 获得一张抽奖固本,奖品包括游轮礼 券、酒店住宿、旅游礼券和旅游配套 等。每日也将分发150张10元旅游礼券 给出席者,先到先得。另外公众选购 旅游产品之余,还可欣赏文化表演, 参加舞台游戏及儿童娱乐节目,一家 大小同欢共乐。

马来西亚旅游展2012
日期:5月11日至13日
时间:上午10时至晚上10时
地点:新加坡博览中心4A展厅
入场免费

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Breathtaking beauty in Swat Valley

THE town of Kalam in Pakistan’s Swat district is a true gem of nature.

Words cannot truly describe the breathtaking beauty of this area, its gushing streams and splendid mountains. With the Afghanistan Taleban movement long gone from the area, Kalam is now resurging as one of Pakistan’s tourist spots.

In terms of altitude, Kalam is close to Murree, but it seems far higher than the other popular hill station because you’re surrounded by tall peaks as far as the eye can see. The most prominent peak is Falak Sar (5,918m), capped by pristine white snow. The valley is flooded with greenery, so lush that all I felt like doing there was lie down in the grass and gaze around.

One distinct feature of Kalam is the abundance of streams and waterfalls. The hotel where my family and I stayed, Walnut Heights, is situated on a hill beyond the main bazaar, right next to a stream that flows down into the lower part of town.

Every night, I lay on a sofa with my eyes closed, just giving in to the sense of tranquillity from the sound of water gushing down the hill.

But it would be a waste to make a 13-hour drive from Islamabad only to stay indoors. The air is so clean that it would be criminal not to step out and fill my lungs with its crispness.

With my family and a hotel employee named Waris Khan, I hiked up the hill for about half a day. It was lovely, with so much grass and colourful flowers. It was also an excellent vantage point from which to view the valley.

We had the most fun visiting Lake Mahodand, which is roughly 40km from Kalam in the Ushu area of Swat. We went in an open-top jeep that the hotel had arranged.

While bumpy and often uncomfortable, I wouldn’t have gone any other way; the lack of windows and a roof meant I could see all the glaciers and waterfalls which came into view. Falak Sar was also nearby, humbling us with its brilliance as we got nearer.

Mahodand itself was a real treat. Blue waters, graceful mountains and gorgeous meadows gave it the allure of a place one finds by accident. In reality, it is not so secret. Plenty of other tourists were there that day. Many just stood around and enjoyed the sight, while others rode horses and boats.

The presence of other tourists was slightly irksome because Mahodand is one of those places that you want to claim as your own; a private sanctuary where you can lie down and relax without a single care in the world.

Yet, the rush was also pleasing; it was an indication that Swat was back to its former glory as a tourist destination following the disastrous Taleban period.

The army’s operation in Swat, Operation Rah-e-Rast, ended successfully six years ago. Army checkpoints can be found frequently throughout the Swat Valley, and soldiers patrol on jeeps every so often. The region is now safe and stable, though the effects of the Taleban era are still felt by its people.

When I talked to a 10-grader from Mingora named Manzoor, I developed a better  understanding of the terrorist organisation’s rule, and the horror and hopelessness it had brought upon the people of Swat.

Life was at a standstill. People were forbidden from venturing too far from their homes.

Violating any of the draconian laws in place led to public beatings. Girls were not allowed to go to school and violence was the norm. My heart sank when Manzoor told me that he saw bombs go off on a regular basis, a sight that to this day traumatises him.

The scars of yesterday must not be forgotten. That said, memories of a bygone era takeaway from the pleasure Kalam brings.

While I am now back in Karachi and to the banality of a regular schedule, I am clinging to my fond memories of the serene Swat Valley. The heart keeps asking the mind: Will we go back soon?

DAWN/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

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