DIGITAL ORCHARDNovember 15, 2014
What I've found from travelling is that the most unforgettable things usually happen by chance - this was particularly true of my spontaneous trip to Malaysia. After spending nearly three months in Thailand, my visa was about to expire and I knew that it was time to zip elsewhere in Asia but I just couldn't decide on where to go next. That was until I met some travellers who had just got back from Malaysia who were waxing lyrical about it. Their stories had piqued my curiosity and so I booked my flight and a day or two later I touched down in Kuala Lumpur.
If I'm honest, up until then I was never particularly desperate to visit Malaysia as I knew very little about it - but I certainly didn't regret my impulsive decision to visit. In fact I had a thoroughly amazing time there and visiting I-City was one of the absolute highlights, not just of my time in Malaysia but of my whole Asia trip.
I-City is a theme park located just outside of Kuala Lumpur. Despite its amusement rides, 'all-star' wax museum and indoor Arctic environment, it's a pretty lacklustre destination to visit during the day. However it's a totally different story at night. The 'Digital Orchard' is I-City's main focal point and it's well worth a visit once darkness has set in. From 7pm onwards the trees burst into light and transform it into another world with a spectrum of over 1 million LED bulbs. It's nothing short of spectacular.
Exploring the digital orchard is a truly immersive experience; almost like being in a dream or in another world - something that photographs could never to justice to. It reminded me a lot of Avatar, it's probably the closest thing to Pandora that you are going to get here on planet earth! It's surreal and weird...but in the good way - it's truly awe-inspiring.
The sprawling orchard of digital trees represent a strange juxtaposition of artificial and organic. They look weirdly natural in the darkness, like they could be some sort of freak of nature. What's more, the light-scape themes change with the season.
I wouldn't describe I-City as a tourist hotspot by any stretch of the imagination. It's is barely publicised and it's relatively inaccessible to get to from Kuala Lumpur city centre. In fact most tourists are unaware that it even exists and most of the visitors appeared to be locals. It's roughly a 30 - 40 minute drive from Kuala Lumpur city centre so I would say that getting a taxi if you want to visit. A friend of mine drove me there as a surprise on my last day in the city and I really can't think of a more memorable way to see out my time in Malaysia. It was truly unforgettable.