Nov 25, 2016 – Poring Hot Springs and the Rafflesia Flower

 

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The Raflessia Flower!

See more photos here: https://flic.kr/s/aHskPYLsq4

The Poring Host Springs is a very popular local tourist destination. It was a spectacular day as it decided not to rain (surprisingly). Lea, a biology student staying at our hostel, joined us for the day.

Because there is no direct public transit to the hot springs, we split a 1 hour taxi ride between the 4 of us which worked out much cheaper. Luckily, the Hot Springs, Butterfly Farm, Canopy Walkway are all within the same vicinity. The Hot Springs are set up like a mini resort, featuring the lovely nature around it. The water from the hot springs was HOT and in areas it smelled very sulfurous. Most people only stick their feet in and I only stuck my hand in because it was already too hot outside.

A few steps away was the Butterfly Farm, which was beautiful and quaint! I hadn’t really seen any of the species there before and they had both an outdoor section and one area partitioned off with netting that you can walk through.

The Canopy Walkway provided a great view of the canopy and the landscape. It was a little short for my liking, but still nice.

Just outside the entrance to the Hot Springs, there was signs to a Rafflesia flower – the largest flower in the world and the national flower of Malaysia. They bloom very seldom so we were lucky to be there at the right time. The flower was about 80 cm across, but they can grow to about 120 cm in diameter.

The Rafflesia flower is endangered because locals will try to destroy them if found on their property (even though the fine is great and you can go to jail). If the government finds out that you have a Rafflesia, you must section off the area to protect the flower. If anything touches it, an animal or human hand, the spot will turn black to start to die, leaving what looks like a burn mark. Locals can charge money to see the flower, however it is not as much as they would make producing vegetables. Currently, scientists are not able to grow the Rafflesia flower in labs because it is so difficult to tend to and grow.

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