Outdoor activities with children Cycling, hiking, rope course, swimming
A day in the life of a 7 years old girl
In Asia people are not much into outdoor activities with children unless it is well organized, for example by a school or club. There are many ways for outdoor activities with children. My friend Nazlina called me. Her daughter Johanna wanted to do the rope course.
"You do a rope course at Teluk Batik". It wasn't the first time Johanna mentioned it. Last year Nazlina and her two children Johan and Johanna were already the guest of Mr. Goh who has build the rope courses and is also responsible for the team building business in this area.
Johanna's idea was based on the week journey I had done with her brother Johan, with whom I had cycled Pangkor-Penang, a distance of 250km (that's at least what we cycled).
But Johan was 8 years old at the time. Johanna loves swimming, cycling, hiking, beach and sea. We have been hiking here in the jungle before. See this page about that trekking with both Johan and Johanna.
Thus Nazlina brought Johanna to my house and together we would do the rope course. The idea was simple, we would cycle from Sitiawan to Teluk Batik, do the rope course and come back. It turned out to be less simple.
At 9.30 am Johanna an I left my house in Sitiawan. I was cycling on my normal bike and Johanna had hers with her. We cycled in an hour to Teluk Batik. For a 7 years old it was quite an achievement to cycle the 10km in an hour.
We left the bicycles at the Marina Cove Resort and started our short jungle trek to the rope course. As it had been a year since Johanna had seen the rope course the first time (then her mom and brother had done the course), she asked me to do it first so she could see and learn.
Thus I did the course, while Johanna followed me, paying good attention to not only me but also to the butterflies and ants around her. When it was her time, she put her harness on and climb in the tree, connected herself save to the high wire and started her journey on the wire. See the video above.
Johanna at the quary with Teluk Batik beach in the back
Even for a grown up it's not an easy task let alone for a 7 years old who hardly reaches the high wires to herself in balance. The interesting thing here was that Johanna had no fear, no hesitation too when she arrived at a tree and had to go around it. We've seen much older children with far more troubles then Johanna.
Hmm... which way to go now?
After the course, she reminded me to go on hiking to the quarry on the Teluk Batik side. It's a short hike through the forest to a ridge where there's some cool views towards the Teluk Batik Resort and Teluk Batik beach.
Hard to see but it's a steep hill down, Johanna is the jungle guide
We hiked back through the jungle to the rope course area. From here we went down the hill for a bit of relaxing in the Marina Waterpark. Although the original idea was just to relax about an hour, it turned out to be 2 full hours. During the 2 hours Johanna, as a real water monster, showed an amount of energy I had expected after the hike and rope course.
There's no end to Johanna's energy today
We stopped at McDonalds for a well earned ice cream before moving on. Unfortunately for us, on the way home the rain started. It is monsoon season here in West Malaysia in December although it seldom rains at day time and even less a long time. But we were a little unlucky.
At 5pm we were back home, soaked but satisfied. We had a shower, a warm meal and a hot chocolate (milo).
Johanna is tired but satisfied
Even though I know Johanna and we do work with children with the rope course (usually around 10 years old), I was astonished to see the energy and pleasure Johanna showed. And when I see parents keeping their children at home in front of TV or computer, I just remember my day with Johanna and realize how much fun you can have with outdoor adventures.
I know, some parents will call me irresponsible. Others call me crazy. What those people have to realize is that all we do is within every safety margin possible AND on request of Johanna with acknowledgement of Johanna's mother Nazlina.
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