1 May 2014 – 3 May 2014

Recently during Labour Day, JourneyKita visited Sungai Lembing in Kuantan for a quick review on the newly opened TIMECAPSULE RETREAT. Nested just behind “Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Sungai Lembing” where it is easy to find. You can find shops & food stalls nearby at the town. I’d say 2 minutes drive & 10 minutes walk.

There are 2 concepts of stays where you can get comfortable in. 1 is the capsule & 2 is the cottage. They have 8 capsules all together & 4 beautiful white rooms in the cottage. Capsules are built only to rest & relax with separate bathrooms. Where else, cottage’s rooms are attached with bathroom. It is recommended to stay in the cottage  if you’re planning to take the whole family.


See that hole? You could actually stargaze if you’re lucky enough. So don’t forget to get your binoculars ready!



Like I mentioned, you can find places to eat & junk foods to munch here in their very own little town. It takes only 15 – 20 minutes walk from the beginning to the end of the town.

There are also ATVs & bicycles for rent. The guide will take you places you need to see.


Look out for this random little petrol pump in the middle of the town.


We did a very brief interview with Ms. Tan about the retreat owned by her & her husband Mr. Tan. It seems that the cottage was built ages ago & they bought the place over. The idea of rebuilding the place to make it as a retreat came right after they owned the cottage. I must say that the family is brilliant! They are in the midst of making the place more exciting. We shall wait!

When asked “So what can we do here besides getting to enjoy the capsule?” Ms. Tan shocked us with her answers.

Here are her suggestions.

  • 1. Panorama Hill
  • 2. Rainbow Waterfall
  • 3. Sungai Lembing Underground Tin Mines a.k.a The El Dorado of The East (The deepest tin mines in the world)
  • 4. Jambatan Gantung
  • 5. Stream near the hot spring
  • 6. Sungai Lembing Deer Farm
  • 7. Sungai Lembing Museum

And as for food;

  • 1. Sungai Lembing’s delicious Nasi Kukus Ayam Dara
  • 2. Sungai Lembing’s Stuffed Meat Steamed Tofu 
  • 3. Sungai Lembing’s Coconut Biscuit

So besides getting to experience the capsule, you get to do all the things listed above.

We managed to climb the Panorama Hill, experienced Sungai Lembing Underground Tin Mines, dipped our legs in the Stream and tried the delicious Nasi Kukus Ayam Dara and Stuffed Meat Steam Tofu. Both are must try.


If you’re thinking of having a bbq bonding session with family & friends in the woods surrounded by nature, I highly recommend Timecapsule.

Below is the stall selling Nasi Kukus Ayam Dara.


An old chinese lady approached us while we were having our plate of Nasi Kukus Ayam Dara. “Nasi Kukus sedapppp” she said. We managed to interview her and she was extremely friendly. She’s 87 y/o and she never left Sungai Lembing since she moved there at the aged of 7.


Timecapsule Retreat at night.



Woke up at 5am and started climbing at 5.30am. We started early because we wanted to see the sunrise. Was told that some prefers to start climbing as early as 3am.


It wasn’t easy. I stopped for a sip of water every 10 minutes. Wasn’t ready for a hike.

Going up, you can see houses lighted up as time ticks by. The view… beautiful.


Here we are on top of the Panorama Hill. It took us 45 minutes or so to reach the top. We reached the top right on time for sunrise. The view was breathtaking. We just couldn’t take our eyes away from the view.


We spent nearly an hour on top enjoying the magnificent view we can’t get in Kuala Lumpur & later took the thousands steps down the hill for our next adventure.

We experienced a sound walking down with us during our way down the hill. More like an animal in the bush following us taking a step after another. We reckoned it was a monkey or maybe a wild cat. But we when got down, a friend of us who happened to be our guide told us that there used to be panthers on the hill. Unfortunately, lately they don’t get to see any. They must have shifted somewhere safer & quieter.



He goes by the name “Apai”. He is Sg.Lembing’s local. You can find him if you need a guide to go hiking or trekking deep in the jungle. You can contact him at +6017 928 8985 . His rate starts from MYR300.00 per person.

Image Image

Apai took us to a stream near the hot spring. We didn’t go to the hot spring because it was said to be destroyed by the authorities. They tried to dig in deeper & bigger but it got worst instead. They should have just left it alone. Destroying nature is something we are against.

One more thing that we are against is LITTERING. We were quite disappointed when we reached the stream. The water was cold, the rocks were awesome but.. the rubbish aren’t cool. It wasn’t really pleasant looking. We found used polisterin, diapers, plastic bags, disposable forks & spoons, paper cups & plates you name it. It crushes our hearts instantly. There were rubbish bins provided but still, some citizens aren’t aware of how to normally use it.

Signs like “DILARANG MEMBUANG SAMPAH MERATA-RATA“, “SILA JAGA KEBERSIHAN” and “NO LITTERING” just doesn’t work anymore. It’s like those signs are hanged for no purpose. We need to have more of those Public Awareness Workshops instead of cutting down trees for human eyes and suffers the animals.


TIMECAPSULE RETREAT. The Cottage Interior.

In case if you’re wondering how does it look like in the cottage, below are some pictures for you.


After spending our morning climbing the Panorama Hill and dipping our legs in the stream, we went for a decent malay cuisine meal at Sg. Lembing’s town. 2 plates of rice, fried chickens, vegetables, curry gravy & 2 drinks costs us about RM12. Affordable & delicious when you’re hungry & tired.



I still have the brochure with me. It’s written in Bahasa Melayu. I’m not good in translating it to English so what I’ll do is, I’m going to copy some useful information &  interesting facts that you need to know from the brochure.

Here it goes.

“Sungai Lembing merupakan bandar yang terkaya pada masa dahulu kerana terowongnya adalah lombong bijih timah ke-2 terdalam selepas Bolivia dan terbesar didunia. Sungai Lembing pernah menjadi pengeluaran bijih timah utama Negeri Pahang dan mencapai kegemilangan pada tahun 1940-an hingga 1950-an dan lombong tersebut tidak lagi beroperasi selama 26 tahun sejak 1986 sehingga sekarang.

Ia juga mempunyai kolong-kolong yang terpanjang sehingga 1400 kaki ke 2000 kaki jika dibandingkan dengan lombong-lombong bijih timah lain yang terdapat di Asia Tenggara.

British menerokai Sungai Lembing pada Februari 1888 sebaik sahaja Almarhum Sultan Ahmad Muadzam Shah 1 telah bersetuju dengan cadangan sebuah syarikat bijih di London untuk menubuhkan Pahang Consolidated Company Limited di Sungai Lembing (P.C.C.L.)

Terowong Tabeto yang juga digelar “Tai Pei Tong” oleh penduduk tempatan. Lombong ini mencapai kedalaman maksima 500 meter. Bijih timah dihasilkan oleh Lombong Mayah yang terletak 4 kilometer jauh kedalam terowong.

Laluan masuk ke terowong yang diterokai 700 meter. Pergi dan balik berjumpal 1.4km.

Sewaktu era kegemilangannya lombong ini dikenali sebagai El-Dorado Timur bersempena nama lombong emasyang termashyur di Alaska. Ianya telah memacu pembangunan pekan perlombongan dan komuniti pemduduk di Sungai Lembing.”



“Didalam terowong terdapat “Lubang Sejuta” dimana proses penggalian secara haram oleh penggali terowong seramai 20 orang yang memberontak akibat tidak dibayar gaji pada satu ketika dahulu. Hasil daripada penggalian berjumlah RM2000 – RM3000 untuk satu malam dijual dipasaran haram. Kesemua jumlah yang diambil dianggarkan RM100 000. Ini yang dinamakan Lubang Sejuta.”



“Lubang Tikus pula adalah lubang yang digali dan ditinggalkan kerana tiada bijih timah yang terdapat didalamnya. Setelah galian buat sedalam 30 meter.”



“Bukit Kiew sebenarnya adalah lif simulator Lombong Tabeto yang dipanggil Kiew. Terdapat 14 aras dalam Tabeto. Terdapat kod deringan untuk menaiki lif ini. Setiap kod deringan menentukan jarak bergerak dan muatan untuk mengelakkan kemalangan.

Disini juga terdapat “Tramp” pengangkutan untuk pekerja dan juga untuk membawa bijih timah naik dan turun. Setiapa kali perjalanannya hanya 6 orang sahaja dibenarkan naik. 

Simulator digunakan untuk membawa dan menurunkan pekerja ke tempat bekerja mengikut tahap-tahap yang telah ditentukan. Ianya seakan-akan lif asal yang membawa pekerja.

Terdapat juga pelbagai peralatan-peralatan yang digunakan untuk menggali bijih timah seperti cangkul, tukul, pahat, dynamit, kereta sorang dan lain-lain.

Kejadian Stalaktit adalah sangat lazim didalam gua dimana air yang turun di syiling membentuk stalaktit.”



  • – Patung pekerja
  • – Lokomotif
  • – Papan kenyataan
  • – Lubang sejuta
  • – Lubang tikus
  • – Bukit kiew
  • – Tramp
  • – Simulator
  • – Peralatan-peralatan yang digunakan
  • – Kejadian Stalaktit
  • – Gambaran sebenar operasi perlombongan
  • – Tayangan video




9.00 pagi – 6.00 petang”


The sun slowly begins to fade. We headed back to Timecapsule Retreat and freshen up for dinner.

I also managed to finish the write-up for Australia here at Sungai Lembing. 


So there you are, Sungai Lembing. We will definitely be back for the rainbow waterfall & more of those stuffed tofu & ayam dara.

Do drop us a comment if you want to know more.

Below are ways to contact Time Capsule Retreat;

Here is a little costing we made for you.

Food: RM5 – 7  (per person/per meal)

Timecapsule Retreat: Kindly refer to details stated above.

Hiking / Trekking Tour: RM300 (Apai)

Sungai Lembing Underground Tin Mines: RM15/person



Photographed by Fadza Ishak
Written by Nina Zainorin

Connect with us: fadzaninatravel[at]
I : @journeykita


  1. issit near the nasi kukus ayam dara to the capsule ?. and how about breakfast ? and you go there during weekdays or weekend?.. i really appreciate if you cud tell me , as im maybe going next weekdays. how much per night in capsule ?thank you

    1. Hi Hanna,

      Sorry for the late reply. Yes it is nearby. You can walk if you want down the hill about 15mins. If you have bicycle, car or motorcycle it’ll be faster. Its just a small town where everything happen there 🙂

  2. Is the nasi kukus by Malay /Chinese? Coz I plan to visit there but now is fasting month, so I’m thinking we might ‘miss’ that if operate by Malay? Also, the link above is not working, may I know what is the price for the Capsule?

  3. I like how you have intricately described Capsule Retreat, integrating both history and travel narrative. It is interesting, if not useful as we are driving up north to experience this place in two weeks’ time. Thanks for the heads- up.

    1. Hi!

      It is fun. You should experience it yourself sleep in the capsule. The town is friendly, the owner is friendly and what more can we say about the nature.
      Have fun and enjoy your stay! We sure do hope we have the chance to stay there again one day.


  4. Hai,

    Such a tempting review! Btw, it is walking distance from the capsule to the bukit panorama? or perhaps can I rent a bicycle in the town? Am thinking to drive there but if the town have everything and each place near to others, why bother to have such pain from exhausted driving. Lol! Looking forward to your respond. Thank you 😀

  5. Hello 🙂 i would like to ask if the atv & bicycle is provided for rental by the time capsule retreat ppl or by the tour guides?

  6. Will be dangerous for a small family (3 of us) climb bkt panorama by ourselves ? What’s size of bed which fixed into time capsules?

  7. hye sis,i need you opinion and advice. am planning to come here after raya with my bestfriend, seriously bestfriend. we both wanna go hiking and everything there,to release our tension from working and study. but our budget is so little, is there any possible if we can share the capsule even if we’re not married?? i know its wrong, but we didnt do just that we have a really tight budget. ihope u understand.

    1. Hi,

      you may hike the panorama hill without having to sleepover though. U can start by arriving 5am at the hill and start from there. It is only a sunrise view, so it’ll last maybe 30mins-45mins. Then you guys can grab a bite to eat and head home. No need to pull an overnight 😉


      Fadza & Nina

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