The lakes of Malaysia are of interest not only to sports, casual nature and adventure lovers but also to naturalists, botanists and zoologists.
This is because the lakes (or "tasik" in Malay) happen to be the habitat of a plethora of flora and fauna, with some more species just waiting to be discovered.
The large lakes found in Malaysia
include the verdant and placid natural lakes of Tasik Bera and Tasik
Chini in Pahang, the amazing ox-bow lakes that swell during the rainy
seasons in Sabah and Sarawak, and Tasik Kenyir, the largest man-made
lake in South-east Asia.
While the natural lakes of Malaysia and their surroundings are also homes and livelihood to many indigenous people, there are also many more recreational lakes and lake gardens that are created from past tin-mine pools.
Some of these water bodies were formed when reservoirs and hydro-electric power generators were constructed and several rivers were deliberately dammed for the purpose.
In fact, the National Lakes Information Database of Malaysia, compiled by the National Hydraulic Research Institute of Malaysia (NAHRIM) lists about 90 lakes, both natural and man-made, found in Malaysia.
These pools of clean water are mostly utilized to provide water supply for homes and industrial uses, and so are important and critical to humans.
But besides being a source of water for consumption and domestic uses (after the necessary filtration processes) the lakes of Malaysia are also used for other purposes.
Some are utilized for irrigation, silt retention and flood control -- necessary to the country especially during the rainy seasons.
And some of them are utilized for hydropower, others for recreation, and also as sources of natural supply and farming of fishes, etc.
Usually the lakes that are transformed into recreational areas, like water-parks and theme parks, are former tin-mining pits, abandoned when the mines are no longer economical to run, due to low demand for tin and depletion of the lodes.
Unlike a natural lake, the waters in abandoned tin mines are usually contaminated with metal, making it quite uninhabitable except for the strongest of fishes. So they are better utilized for recreational purposes especially when they are located near towns and residential areas.
The lakes of Malaysia are not just places to go fishing or boating. As mentioned, there is a great variety of wildlife and nature in and around them, that are of interest to every nature and wildlife lovers, and scientists doing research works.
Natural lakes of Malaysia such as Tasik Dayang Bunting in Langkawi, Kedah and Tasik Chini are also great places to swim, have a picnic and relax.
There are lakes in Malaysia that are established for hydro-electric installations, such as Tasik Kenyir, Tasik Chenderoh and Tasik Temenggor.
Though man-made, they have grown 'wild' over the years and a variety of birds, insects and fish have inhabited the areas, making them popular for birders, wildlife and nature lovers.
Some lakes are also Lake Gardens, and they are popular spots for locals to go for picnics, exercise and jogging.
And a few of these places even have fun water-activities for families such as boat-rides, kayaking, canoeing and water-cycles.
The placid and serene surroundings of especially the natural lakes will make you forget the stress and strains of daily life in towns and cities, and will surely rejuvenate you.
Because when you surround yourself with nature’s negative ions that are in abundance around the big bodies of water and surrounding forests, you’re neutralising (or anti-aging) your body, recharging it. Get set for a new YOU.
So check the travel brochures, take a vacation and visit these wonderful lakes of Malaysia.
Take care of the environment.
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