KUALA TERENGGANU, MALAYSIA: After nearly 30 years of uncertainty, Tasik Kenyir is set for comprehensive development.
Ten islands will be transformed into dedicated parks for exotic birds, snakes, deers and wild orchids as well as for interactive games and recreational areas.
Handicraft shops will also be set up at certain points on the new Tasik Kenyir-Aring-Gua Musang road.
The ambitious project is aimed at providing diversity to Tasik Kenyir's attractions. Currently, the area is known mostly as an angler's paradise.
"Tasik Kenyir is an asset but its potential has not been fully exploited for the tourism industry.
"It is only known as an angler's paradise and there is little else for others to see," said Menteri Besar Datuk Ahmad Said.
The new attractions would be welcomed by the few boat operators for whom business had been on a steady decline since 1999.
Ahmad said the Central Terengganu Development Authority would supervise the new places of interest and a budget was being worked out.
He pointed out that a new attraction had been added to Tasik Kenyir recently - the elephant sanctuary at Sungai Ketiar.
Ahmad said the National Park and Wildlife Department would erect an electric fence around an area measuring 15,000ha.
The area will be divided into three compartments of 5,000ha each.
"We will have 150 elephants at the sanctuary. The area will become an observation and training centre for wild elephants. Once trained, the elephants can become yet another source of attraction for visitors," he said.