Strawberries at Gohtong

Idlan recovered sufficiently from a mini asthma attack he had the evening before. The weather was unfortunately rather gloomy, threatening to rain. There went our plan for Sunway Lagoon out of the window. Instead, why not take a drive up to Gohtong for a touch of strawberry picking. One of my friend Faz went there a couple of months back and had plenty to say about the place. I decided to gve it a go. Oh boy, was it not a hit with my boys especially Irfan?

The drive up was painless enough even though our new maid was prone to car sick. The boys could not stop chatting and they must be thinking I was kidding when I said they will be able to pick up the strawberries themselves. To reach there, I just took the Karak Highway, paid my RM5 toll and took the turn up towards Genting. A good 10 minutes climb and we reached Gohtong Jaya, a small township almost halfway up Genting. That was also the downhill terminal for the cable car ride up to Genting. They were closed for servicing for the month though, and will be opened again in time for Raya.

My parents-in-law used to drive up there once a month for a spot of fish head curry. Therefore it was not a town alien to us. However, the last time I was there was a good 2 years ago, well before the farm was opened. Right at the edge of the township, near the turn for the cable car station, you will see a sign for a left turn towards ‘Genting Strawberry Leisure Farm’. The farm was right in front of some apartment building and a sport complex. There were no designated parking however, so you can either park further down at the Gohtong shops or by the side of the road.

Strawberry picking - a rapidly acquired skill!Idlan happy with his lot - all 500g of them

Entrance was free, but you obviously had to pay for strawberries you picked. It wet us back RM8 per 100g, but the fruits were really fresh. The boys were given a pair of scissors and a rattan basket, and off they went. The strawberry were grown hydroponically, and arranged in neat rows with the fruits coming down waist high, just nice for children to scissor off the stalk and pick them up. After 15 minutes running around, the boys finally gave up and wanted to take the strawberry home. They took it to cashier and got them weigh. Before I knew it, RM100 was gone. They picked up more than 1 kg of strawberries in the end!

Entering the stalls and stands with our pickings.... orchids .......... cacti ........... and fresh green vegetables.Everything was clean and organised, and strawberry was not the only attractions at the farm. There were also cactus, orchids and fresh vegetables. Right at the very end were a warehouse full of mushrooms, grown in stacks of bottles - another attraction to the farm. There were also shops and stalls selling gifts, food and local produce. Since it was not a public holiday, we were free to mingle without a big crowd. After done with the shopping, we went to a chocolate factory right round the corner. It was hardly a factory - a converted shoplot which sells chocolates, complete with demonstration of how the chocolates was prepared. Another RM100 later and off we went.

Lastly the mushroom farm ........ with mushroom grown in bottles We then had a quick drive to the cable car station - that was when we found out that it was closed for maintenance. Puan Anita then had this crazy idea that we should drive up to Genting …. Which will be the subject of the next entry …….

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