Published: Friday January 18, 2013 MYT 8:41:00 PM
Updated: Friday January 18, 2013 MYT 9:09:01 PM
UPM first varsity in country to offer nature packages to tourists
By YUEN MEIKENG
KUALA LUMPUR: Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) has become the first university in the country to offer tourism packages to visitors.
The university, which boasts of a sprawling 1,100ha-wide area of natural surroundings in Serdang, will offer nature trails and even a chance for visitors to milk a cow.
"There is no need for visitors to go to places like New Zealand in order to experience such unique things, now that UPM is offering the same chance," said Tourism Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ng Yen Yen, who launched the UPM's "Mother Nature Tour Trail" at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium here Friday.
She was speaking to reporters after a soft launch and media walk-about of the three-day Visit Malaysia Year (VMY) 2014 promotional campaign tourism carnival.
She said the UPM could also introduce cycling and horse riding in the campus grounds for visitors to behold its scenic landscape.
"UPM also has an abundance of natural assets including various species of tropical trees and a beautiful waterfall," Dr Ng said.
She said the university and ministry had to enlist the help of three local travel agencies - TM Tours & Travel, Mitra Kembara and Poto Travel & Tours - to offer 13 tour packages.
The tour packages, a collaborative effort between UPM, Tourism Malaysia and the ministry, consist of agricultural and educational tours at the Ayer Hitam forest reserve, equine centre, deer farm, cattle farm and human anatomy museum.
The university will also give tourists a glimpse of its vast bio-diversity, with over 100,000 specimens in its museums and 16,000 life specimens.
The packages are priced from RM88.
On another matter, Dr Ng said she targeted a total of 40,000 visitors to attend the three-day VMY 2014 promotional campaign tourism carnival.
The carnival, to be held until Sunday, will feature various exhibitions and bazaars for visitors in an effort to promote the tourism industry in Malaysia.
Visitors are advised to come early as parking at the stadium is limited.
Alternatively, visitors can park their vehicles for free at the Technology Park Malaysia. Shuttle services are provided for visitors to ferry them from there to the carnival.
The public can also take a train along the Ampang-Sri Petaling Line to the Bukit Jalil station for free today on Saturday).
For more information on the UPM tour packages, call the tourism infoline at 1-300-88-5050 (within Malaysia) or log on to Tourism Malaysia.