"What are you talking about Fadli, camping in the middle of Kuala Lumpur? Are you joking?" that was the first question came out from my friend's mouth when I told them about my plan.
Yes! I survived #CARACAMP! Caracamp is the combination of "Caravan" and "Camping". About 300 participants had joined this event which held at Lanai, Malaysia Tourism Centre (MATIC) for 2 days from 12th till 13th November 2016.
First time ever
#CARACAMP had been successfully organized for the first time ever by Malaysia Caravan and Camping Industry Association with the support from strategic partner MATIC (Malaysia Tourism Center) and been fully supported by MOTAC (Ministry of Tourism and Culture of Malaysia), MITA (Malaysia Inbound Tourism Association) and MTC (Malaysia Tourism Council) . If you asked me what is the unique of this event, I can say this, where as can you experienced before and after you sleep, you will sight both of the Malaysia landmark buildings, which are KLCC Twin Tower and KL Tower?. Hopefully this is event will be continuously organized, might be twice a year or quarterly.
All the camps are ready
It had been participated by many organization and club such as Malaysia Caravan, Sendok Group, Tanah Aina, Johor Tourism Committee, Villa Container, Tanah Aina, Malaysia Hammockers, foodtruck vendors and retailers. 30 campers representing the Kingdom of Thailand also took part in this event. As this event also open to public, many took this chances to get to know about this organizations and groups.
Opening ceremony of the event by Mr. Zain Azrai (Director of MATIC), Mr. Uzaidi Udanis (President of MITA) with Mrs. Lisza Faisal (President of Malaysia Caravan & Camping Industry Association)
30 participants from Thailand had took part in the event
A lot of interesting activities
Along the events, a lot of activities had been planned by the organizers. The most interesting part was the traditional games competition as they had an international delegates. It was fun evening before the heavy rain falls. A lot of participants do enjoy the dance lesson which conducted by Papa J. They had learn Zapin, the Malay traditional dance, and "Poco-Poco". Suprisingly, as its look so fun, I also joined the dance, I can't remember when was the last time I dance, own, might me last month when I was traveling in Iran. At night, we had a campfire around the venue and a few local artist had entertained all the participants.
Local artist performances and campire had been set up
Participants learn the dance moves from Papa J
When we put a few organizations, clubs, medias, and travel bloggers together in one place, then the ideas exchanging happened. Everybody giving the opinions how to improve the event for the time and how's to promote this kind of the activities for the public. The most important is, everybody wants to improve the Malaysian tourism and Eco-tourism.
What need to improve for the future
As this event had been held for the first time, of course some aspects we need to improve from time to time. These are my opinion:
1. Less promotion for this event. Eventually they need to work more to promote for this event. During the media conference before the event, they can invite more blogger to cover the stories and not only for newspaper reporters. And they need to find someone (1 ambasador/influencer) for the event, such as Faiz Dickie (as example as he have many followers)
2. Actually this event can attract travelers and backpackers. They can invite few well-known travelers or travel writers to have talks or forum regarding certain travel topics and story sharing. So the event will be more full with knowledge sharing despite free & easy. As we know, Caravan Malaysia members also have so many interesting travel stories for them to share, what is the stage for? Despite having a non-well known artist with unfamiliar song.
3. As they promotes in the newspaper articles, their join fees for this event is too much. RM100 per camp is way too expensive Do you know if you want to rent out camp anywhere, it might be free or around RM5-RM10 only. That's is why we love camping, so we do not need to spend so much money on accomodation. We know that they need some expenses to run the event, but RM100 per camp is too much. For RM100, it might be attracted 10 camps, but what if only RM10, it will attract more campers, you will not suprise if LANAI is full.
4. Work with hostels around Kuala Lumpur, give them the pamplet, so more foreigners will us the events.
5. Couchsurfing. This is really good platform to promote the event. Couchsurfing Kuala Lumpur community has their gathering every weeks. Why don't they approach the community so their surfers can join the event. Couchsurfing is all about learning the culture as staying with locals. Couchsurfing also always have picnic activity and talks. Can find some couchsurfers to share their story during the "Sharing session" event.
6. Do they know that in Facebook there are a few active travelers group such as Malaysia Backpackers Club and Backpackers Buddies Malaysia. Work with their admins so they can "pin" the post or ask them to organized some activies. I am sure it will works as both of them have more than 100K followers. I heard MBC will organized a big outdoor event soon, and why not co-operate with them so it can be done together?
7. Foodtrucks - some foodtruck vendors contacted me asking how to join the event. That's show they still not really informed about the event.
Participants enjoying playing with the bubles
Malaysian Caravan (Facebook)
Let me introduce you one of interesting club, it's call Malaysian Caravan. Actually they not travel by Caravan but they explore overland to our neighbor using 4WD vehicles. A lot of journey they had done. What is interesting about the overland journey is they try to fill the journey with "knowledge and education", such as their previous journey called "Jejak Nusantara" where they were looking for the Malay heritage trails along the journey. Even though I always traveled, listening to their stories about what they had found along their journey was really addictive, its like you want more and more details. If you want to know about them, do follow them on facebook. You can join their next activities if you are interested.
Vehicle that been used by Malaysian Caravan overland tour. Awesome right!
Tanah Aina (Facebook)
Wow, glamorous camping trigger anything in your mind? Yes, its called GLAMPING (Glamor+Camping). I know, you might having an idea before, what if you want to camp in the forest but still want your comfortless. That's they want to bring to you. If you are looking for weekend gateway for your family, Tanah Aina might be the option. Stalk them in the facebook.
Glamping with Tanah Aina
Glamping with Tanah Aina
Caravan by Sendok Group (Facebook)
During this event, we had been introduced by the first Caravan been approved by JPH in Malaysia. It might be cost around RM240K+. It can fitted 4 peoples. We had a chance to stay in this caravan, what I can tell you is, my mind is now thinking to have 1 unit of this vehicle because it is so cool and comfortable. Hopefully, one day Malaysia will have many Caravan site available in every states.
Caravan by Sendok Group
This is really cool unit. When a container been converted to the luxury villa. It will cost around 65K USD per unit. Inside the villa, you will get everything as per your your house. Comfortable bed, sofa, and dream bathroom. They are planning to have a villa container at the caravan park as public will have an option to stay wherever they prefer. Imagine, in one family, the parents might want some comfortness and need something more comfortable, so they will rent out the villa container. But for the children, they are into fun, so they might choosing camping around.
In front of Villa Contena
Bathroom in Villa Contena
Inside the Villa Contena
Malaysia Hammockers (Facebook)
This group also participate in the event as they are also one of the interesting outdoor activities. Just bought a high quality of hammock and join the event of this group. They are quite active. They been hammocking everywhere in Malaysia.
Wow, hammocking in the city
Anyway, I had so much fun, I am looking forward for the next camping in the city event!#CARACAMP.... I survived..!