PUTRAJAYA parks and botanical gardens are hidden gems in the administrative capital. However, not many are able to appreciate their beauty in a seamless manner.
There are plans afoot to link two or three of the parks via a nature trail.
“We want to have a Putrajaya park trail to link two or three parks within Putrajaya and promote it to hotels and tour operators,” said Putrajaya Corporation (PPj) Landscape and Park Department development deputy director Haslinda Khalid.
It will involve a nature walk at Taman Rimba Alam, photo-taking opportunities at Taman Saujana Hijau, and end with a picnic at Taman Wawasan.
Haslinda said currently, only Taman Wetland and Taman Botani are linked via a walkway for pedestrians and cyclists.
“When the federal administrative capital was first planned, it was to have 13 public parks. Only three have yet to be developed.
“The masterplan is for each park to serve the surrounding neighbourhoods. Hence, they are scattered all over.”
Haslinda said PPj would also consider introducing dedicated bicycle lanes within Putrajaya in the near future.
There is an existing Putrajaya Inter-Parks Ride (PIPR) programme held on the last Saturday of the month, which cover different routes and parks.
“There are also the monthly Langkah Ceria (Fun Walk) and Kayuhan Ceria (Fun Ride) programmes that promote walking and cycling in Putrajaya,” said Haslinda.
Developed as an “intelligent garden city,” some 40% of Putrajaya is preserved for nature with 60,000 plants.
Some of the more popular parks are Taman Botani, Taman Cabaran, Taman Wawasan and Taman Wetland.
Others include Taman Ekuestrian, Taman Pancarona, Taman Putra Perdana, Taman Selatan and Taman Warisan Pertanian.
Touted as Putrajaya’s best-kept secret, Taman Wawasan offers various viewing platforms.
Conceptualised as the principal metropolitan park, the 55.4ha park is located on the northern section of Putrajaya’s Core Island area in Precinct 2.
The park is built on two hills with a ridge between them to take advantage of its natural topography.
“Taman Wawasan is the only park in Putrajaya with rainwater harvesting features.
“It serves as one of the urban parks and green lungs for the Core Island area,” said Haslinda.
Its attractions include a pebble beach, lotus pond, hibiscus boulevard, amphitheatre and viewing platform overlooking Dataran Putra, Putra Mosque and Perdana Putra — the Prime Minister’s Office.
It also has gazebos, themed playgrounds and jogging tracks.
Taman Saujana Hijau
Taman Saujana Hijau transports visitors to a tropical high country landscape.
Lush greenery and pine trees decorate the hilly terrain of this 41ha park located in Precinct 11.
Within the park are three thematic gardens, which are identifiable by their pavilions — European, English and Chinese.
The highest point in the park is the European Pavilion.
Taman Saujana Hijau evokes the feel of a European park with its temperate landscape and plants.
“This park features a collection of gymnosperm or evergreen, non-flowering trees such as pines, firs, cypresses, junipers and other conifers,” said Haslinda.
Besides being an ideal place for family outings and recreational activities, the park is a popular spot for wedding and outdoor photography.
Taman Rimba Alam
Taman Rimba Alam was conceptualised as a showcase of urban forestry, combining a sustainable tropical forest ecosystem with a metropolitan recreational park.
The 161.8ha park is bordered by the Diplomatic Enclave and the residential developments of Precinct 14 and 15.
Opened to the public in 2009, the park houses an arboretum with some 400 forest species from all over Malaysia.
The arboretum is a place for education, research, conservation, preservation and recreation.
Taman Rimba Alam also has some of the original rubber and oil palm trees from the Sedgeley and Prang Besar estates, from which Putrajaya was developed.
“We hope to make this park a suitable ecological system for wildlife like hedgehog, snake, fox, wildcat and wild boar,” said Haslinda.
The Lowland Dipterocarp Forest has trees such as cengal, meranti, keruing, resak and nyatoh, as well as various bamboo, rattan and palm species.
There are camping/picnic grounds, lookout platforms, nature trails, a horse trail and stables.
A Nature Interpretive Centre/ Forest Education Centre and chalets will be built in the future.