sign in a cave in Laos

29 July 2012

Bukit Jawa, Lenggong, 2012

I first visited Bukit Jawa in 2007.

Bukit Jawa is the oldest Paleolithic site in Malaysia along with the neighbouring Temelong and Lawin areas. It has been dated at around 200,000 years old. It is located at Kampung Gelok, about 7 km north of Lenggong in Perak. It is not cave related.

On 30 June 2012 the Lenggong Valley was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site. I visited Bukit Jawa again on 20 July 2012.

There had been a few changes over the 5 years. I was surprised to see a large wooden shelter
whereas on my previous visit a simple attap roof just covered the dig site
The simple 6 runged wooden ladder had gone and a more elaborate wooden staircase with hand rails had replaced it, BUT this was in pieces and roped off.
We had to walk up the slope on the left side of the building. The dig site was the same
but there was no fence around it as there was in this 2007 photo
I wondered why such a large shelter had been built, considering the dig only occupied a very small area.
There was a notice inside but it was quite hard to read in the relative dark and it was hard to take photos with the reflective surface
There were many signs of termites attacking the wood
and I wondered how long the structure would last, considering the stairs have already broken in less than 5 years. Also the concrete supports for the posts seem to be just placed on sand, and I wonder how long they will last.

Considering Bukit Jawa is such an important place in Malaysia's prehistory, and now that Lenggong has got World Heritage status, it is such a pity that this site is not maintained.

© Liz Price
No reproduction without permission

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