Far away from the scorching heat of the plains lies the Cameron Highlands, one of Malaysia’s largest hill stations and a popular hideaway for locals and tourists alike. The place offers a host of activities like visiting indigenous strawberry farms and rose gardens, trekking to tea plantations, shopping for farm fresh produce and enjoying meals in charming Tudor-style resorts.
Situated in Western Malaysia, 1500 meters above sea level, the Cameron Highlands consists of picturesque townships like Ringlet, Tanah Rata, Brinchang, Tringkap, Kuala Terla, and Kampung Raja. Greenery and oodles of tranquility pervade these townships that make them one of most sought after vacation spots all year round.
Cameron Highlands Attractions & Things to do
Tea Plantations: A visit to the Cameron Highlands is incomplete without tasting a fine cup of tea and having a first-hand experience of how tea is processed. The BOH Tea Plantations, the leading tea grower of Malaysia, has four tea gardens in the Cameron Highlands. The Bharat Tea Plantation extends over acres of undulating slopes, with two tea houses that serve fresh tea, cakes, scones, English biscuits and strawberry jam to the weary travelers.
Mossy Forest: Known as the Peak of Cameron Highlands, these high mountains are able to absorb moisture directly from the clouds, so they are referred to as ‘mossy forests’ or ‘cloud forests’. Various hiking trails take the visitor through a rich fauna and flora. Hikers are advised to watch out for pitcher plants, orchids, monkeys, birds and snakes.
Gunung Brinchang: From an altitude of 2032 meters above sea level, the spectacular view of the morning sun can be seen at Gunung Brinchang. The tourists visiting the Cameron Highlands don’t miss this once-in-a-lifetime experience.
World’s Largest Flower: The Cameron Highlands is home to the rare Rafflesia, a parasitic plant that only grows in primary rainforests. It is also the world’s largest individual flower, characterized by reddish brown petals.
Orang Asli Village: A 40-minute drive from Tanah Rata takes travelers to the Eastern Valleys, home of the indigenous Orang Asli people. Tours organized with ecological guides give visitors a glimpse into the traditions and lifestyle of the tribe. One can interact with the members of the tribe, explore traditional bamboo huts, hold the blowpipe used by them to hunt birds and little monkeys, learn about their food, musical instruments and also know about the herbs they use for medical treatments.
Spring Flower Nursery: The Cameron Highlands is the flower hub of Malaysia. A rich variety of chrysanthemums, carnations, roses, fuchsia, dahlia, gladioli and geranium could be spotted in flower nurseries and markets.
Strawberry Farms: Juicy red strawberries are the soul of Cameron Highlands. The Big Red Strawberry Farm, known as Taman Agro Tourism, is located in Brinchang and is a hotspot for tasting strawberry with ice cream.
In addition, Cameron Highlands has a variety of other attractions such as Rose Garden, Lavender Garden, Cactus Farm, The Time Tunnel Gallery, The Lake House, Robinson Waterfall, Grapes Farm, Butterfly Farms and the Honey Bee Farm.
Hotels in Cameron Highlands
The Cameron Highlands keeps buzzing with travelers throughout the year.A variety of budget hotels, luxurious resorts and heritage chalets cater to different tastes. The KRS Pines Guest House in Tanah Rata is an affordable and comfortable place for the budget travelers. While the Strawberry Park Resort at Brinchang is a neo-Tudor chalet meant for high-end travelers, Daniel’s Lodge mainly caters to the backpackers by providing pocket-friendly rooms with internet access.
Cameron Highland Map
1. The Highlands are named after British surveyor, Sir William Cameron, who first discovered “a sort of vortex on the mountains, while for a (reasonably) wide area we have gentle slopes and plateau land.” But it wasn’t until Sir George Maxwell’s review that the place was developed into a hill station.
2. On the Easter of 1967, American millionaire Jim Thompson walked into the woods at Cameron Highlands and he was never found again. His disappearance led to the launch of the largest high-profile manhunt Malaysia has ever seen. Over 400 policemen, soldiers, helicopters, aboriginal trackers and a psychic investigator tried to find him for more than a month, but in vain.
3. The Smokehouse Hotel reminds onlookers of colonial England with its neo-Tudor architecture. It was initially built as a six-room property by Englishman Douglas Warin in 1937 to cater to homesick Britons.
Where is Cameron Highlands?
The Cameron Highlands is nestled on the east side of the border between the states of of Pahang and Perag in West Malaysia. It is 200 km from Kuala Lumpur and 85 km from Ipoh. The highlands can be accessed easily from both the coasts, although most travelers enter from the west.
How to Reach Cameron Highlands?
Buses are easily available from both Ipoh and Kuala Lumpur to Tanah Rata. Online booking facilities for buses, minivan transfers and cars on rent are also available.
Sultan Azlan Shah Airport is the nearest airport located 84 km from the Highlands. It takes approximately 1 hour 48 minutes to reach the airport via Route 185. The airport caters to few flights from Singapore and Indonesia.
The nearest international airport is Kuala Lumpur International Airport. It takes around three and a half hours to make the journey from there to the Highlands.
Best Time to Visit Cameron Highlands
The climate of Cameron Highlands is best described as cold and humid, namely ‘cooling wet’. Visitors are encouraged to wear jackets and windbreakers as the place experiences rainfall throughout the year. Early mornings and late evenings usually witness a lot of mist. May to July is the best time to visit for those who do not like much rain. Heavy rain occurs from September, which sees a steep rise in landslides. However, it is the time when travelers find the flora in full bloom.
Image credits : Bjørn Christian Tørrissen
MS20150812Published On: Monday, April 20th, 2015