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Tambun Hot Springs, Ipoh
This divided back postcard by Union Postale Universelle Straits Settlements, shows the hot spring at Tambun, Ipoh. It was posted to France on 28 August 1913, with a 3 cents Straits Settlements stamp.
It shows three men in front of the geyser, believed to be two Europeand in Topi and an Orang Asli. Close behind the geyser are the Limestone cliffs.
Stepping forward from 1911, the pools were developed over the years and in the 1960's there were two man-made pools as well as a few natural ones. Imagine, one could apparently see live fishes flourishing in the hot water! This is also where people boiled their eggs.
The small pool was used for holding the hot water, for sediments to settle. Unlike normal swimming pools where there are pumps, filters and chlorination plants, the water in the Main Pool, where the public swam, was replaced once a week on Mondays, when the place was closed. We were told that on this day, the main pool would be drained, and hot water from the small pool was transfered over and mixed with normal water to cool it down.
The pools would be open from Tuesdays to Sundays, but local advice was to go on Wednesdeys, because on Tuesdays, the water was still too hot. From Thursdays to Sundays, it would be getting crowded and the water more contaminated.
A reader remembers that there were signboards on the side of the pools. On the smaller pool it said,’Lukewarm’ whilst the one on the bigger said, ‘Just Bearable'!
Today 2012, the natural pools have been turned over to Commercial Enterprise.