Monday, 9 May 2011

Nature overload @ Ubin

SK and I were back at Pulau Ubin again. This time two of his friends tagged along. During the weekend, the jetty was lined with rows of colourful flags flapping in the wind.

We walked beneath hundreds of red lanterns leading to the temple nearby.

The temple must be having some kind of celebration.

This is what I like about Pulau Ubin, the little island about 10 minutes ferry ride away. The air is clean and the place is a little unkempt where stray dogs and cats are allowed to roam around freely.

Here, fruit trees can be found everywhere. If you're willing to bash through the thick undergrowth, you may even find precious kampong durians on the ground. I know durian season is coming soon because I spotted many tiny durians by the road side.

From the large number of dilapidated houses, I can only conclude that most of the village folk have already moved to our main island for a more comfortable lifestyle.

One cannot simply jump to conclusions though. While I was taking a photo of the house below, the owner (an old man) suddenly emerged and shouted at me in Malay. I apologised and scrambled away quickly while he continued ranting away.

Some of the houses are pretty well kept. This yellow one is rather striking.

This is a house on stilts. In the past, many houses were built on stilts to prevent water from entering during heavy rainfall and floods.

I wouldn't mind living in this house with a nice big garden.

While most visitors to Pulau Ubin explore the island on a bike, we always go on foot because SK likes to stop and peek beneath leaves or inside crevices for spiders and scorpions.

It's easier for me to observe the vegetation and take photos too.

We decided to go to Chek Jawa Wetlands as we had never ventured to that area before.

It was a really long walk on a gravel path that took us through a rubber plantation and several Muslim cemeteries.

Finally we entered the compound of Chek Jawa. Everyone had to dismount and park their bike.

We had reached one end of the island, where we could see the shoreline and a long boardwalk ahead of us.

We were hoping to spot marine life like starfish and corals but due to the high tide, all we could see was water.

The sun was beating down on us and I actually got a tan from the walk above water.

The tide wasn't high enough to hide the exposed roots of the mangrove trees.

Just after we left the boardwalk, we stumbled upon a family of wild boars. I managed to take a photo of an adult as the babies scrambled into the forest.

Pulau Ubin has a big diversity of flora and fauna. This is the fruit of the attap palm which grows in soft mud and slow moving tidal water. It's an useful plant for the leaves are often used as roof material for thatched houses. The sweet edible sap of the plant can be made into alcohol, biodiesel or vinegar while the seeds can be eaten as a dessert.

I find the fruits of this tree rather intriguing. They look like cherries but I doubt they are edible.

As we were reaching the jetty, the loud calls of a bird led us to this discovery - a hornbill.

After seafood lunch at a restaurant, we headed to the jetty to catch a boat ride home. SK, the dog lover, couldn't help but cuddle the young dog at the jetty.

While we had fun at the island, it was nice to hop onto the boat and escape the scorching heat.

SK and friends.


Wen-ai said...

Thanks for sharing the wonderful pictures of Pulau Ubin! Will love to go with Little Beanie when she is a little bigger, hopefully PUlau Ubin will still retain its rustic charm then...

Blur Ting said...

Wen-ai - Remember to bring mozzie repellent!