Cameron Highlands: Tea Time

5 Min. Read

If you happen to be exploring peninsular Malaysia and are looking for a peaceful and relaxing spot to unwind with a cup of tea… 

then look no further than the colonial town of Cameron Highlands.

An excellent stop to enjoy some nature trails and recharge your batteries if you’re criss-crossing through SE Asia.

Mossy Forest life

Located in the Pahang district in northern Malaysia, the Cameron Highlands is home to a unique subtropical ecosystem with 8 mountains, fruit & vegetable farms galore, flower nurseries and numerous tea plantations.

Everything very green.

Developed in the 1930’s and originally planned as a health sanatorium, this hill station was extensively used by the British colonials during their time there and is one of the oldest tourist spots in all of Malaysia.

The plateau’s highest elevation is at 5,259 ft. above sea level and is noted for its cool weather, sometimes dropping to as low as 9 Celsius (48 Fahrenheit), making it a good place to escape Malaysia’s hot summers.

And luckily for them, the area was also found to be suitable for the production of tea. 

(Nice for the British.)

The area itself was named after the British explorer and geologist, William Cameron, after being commissioned by the colonial government to map out the Pahong-Perak region in 1885.

And he uncovered the regions true potential.

Cameron Highlands seemed to have just about everything: Rivers, waterfalls, mossy forests and lakes. This made the area even more appealing to the settlers there and soon afterwards, farmlands, nurseries, orchards and tea plantations began to pop up. Along with of course many hotels, residences and country clubs.

Tea Plantations

Despite the land being developed and settled, 71% of the area is still forested and is home to over 700 plant species, making it a very diverse and interesting ecosystem in Malaysia and SE Asia in general.

Now you may be wondering what is there to do here.

The answer is A lot.

Especially if you’re a green thumb.

Like my Mom, now that I think of it.

Cameron Highlands has a Lavender Farm, a Strawberry Farm, a Bee Farm, Flower gardens, a Cactus Farm, Farmers Markets, a Butterfly garden and so much more.

A beautiful Chinese Temple. (Sam Poh)

Numerous waterfalls. (Thompson Falls, Robinson Falls and Parit Falls)

And of course, the BOH Tea Estate. The popular tea company  which has been making tea since 1929 and a fine example of the region’s numerous tea plantations.

In short, there is no shortage of relaxing activities in the area.

Believe me.

How to get to Cameron Highlands.

Unfortunately the The Cameron Highlands is not accessible by the Malaysian railway (KTM), yet there are several bus services operating back and forth from Kuala Lumpur, Ipoh, Penang and Tapah.

And obviously, you can also arrive by car. 

Route 59, highway 185 and highway 102 all lead to the Cameron Highlands depending on wherever you’re coming from; Georgetown, Kuala Lumpur, etc.

When to Visit

Because of the elevation, the Cameron Highlands is pretty cool throughout most of the year. It does rain from time to time but less so during the winter and summer months.

It also sometimes gets crowded during the weekends and holidays, so I would consider at least spending two nights in the area to enjoy it properly.

Where to Stay

There are numerous hotels in the area along with some hostels. Be sure to book in advance for a nicer hotel. If you are backpacking through Malaysia you may also want to book a lower budget hotel or hostel in advance but you probably wouldn’t have to much trouble finding a place to sleep even if you show up without any reservations.

Budget:

Traveller Bunker Hostel: $5-$6

Mid-Range:

Kea Garden Guest House: $10-$15


And there you have it!

A little sneak peek of the Cameron Highlands!

How you may feel when you get here.

Just in case you get lost… (I totally didn’t).

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