The Paya Indah Wetlands in Dengkil, Selangor, were opened in 2001 after a number of years of transforming old, disused mining land and ponds into lakes. These lakes – covering an area of 450 hectares – were then filled with fish, lotus plants and water lilies. As the area came to be more habitable to wildlife as a sanctuary, it began to see migratory birds coming periodically and other animals also started to live in the area.
This provided the opportunity for conservation and research activities as well as providing the public with healthy outdoor activities like fishing, boating, cycling, bird-watching and nature walks. Those who would like to spend more than just a day can stay at chalets on the grounds.
Some of the resident animals there include three hippopotamuses, presented by Botswana’s government when the wetlands opened 18 years ago. They can be viewed and fed by visitors but only with food that is provided by the management.
Besides tortoises, there are also said to be at least 57 crocodiles in the lakes. Although some of their may have found their way to the lakes via nearby rivers, many were also caught in other states and then sent to the Paya Indah Wetlands. There is a pond where they can be fed but caution is needed when doing so.
How to get there
For those driving there from other parts of the Klang Valley, the easy way to head towards the area is to find a route to the KL International Airport (KLIA). The ELITE highway (AH2) would be the most suitable to use and after turning off towards the highway to the airport, take the left turn at the interchange towards the Sepang International Circuit. You will then reach a roundabout where you take the first exit to the left and head towards the road to Nilai (32). Turn left at the junction and head towards Kg Bukit Changgang. After that, look for the road through Kg. Lenang (on the left) which will take you all the way to the Paya Indah Wetlands.
Those who have Google Maps or Waze should be able to get directions by entering Paya Indah Wetlands in the destination box.
The Paya Indah Wetlands are open 7 days a week from 7:30 am to 7:.00 pm. However, on Fridays, the grounds will be closed from 12:15 pm to 2:45 pm. There’s no entrance fee.