Monday, January 26, 2009


..........Alternatively, you can put up tent at the Sg Pauh campsite, which is located near the Forestry Department at Taman Sedia, a 5 minute drive to Tanah Rata or Brinchang...........

Cameron HighlandsĂȘ

Cameron Highlands is a highland region located about 20 km east of Ipoh and about 150km north of Kuala Lumpur in Pahang, Malaysia. At 5000 ft (1,500 m) above sea level it is the highest area on the mainland, and enjoys a cool climate, with temperatures no higher than 25°C and rarely falling below 10°C year round. Cameron Highlands takes its name from William Cameron, the surveyor who mapped the area in 1885. He was soon followed by tea planters, Chinese vegetable farmers and colonialists looking for a temperate climate. Over the years, the favourable temperature has attracted too much badly conceived development and many were left unchecked. Despite this, Cameron Highlands is still a relaxing destination worth a visit. From Tapah it is 47km up to Ringlet, the first village of the Highlands and primarily Malay town. After Ringlet is the main town of Tanah Rata. Tanah Rata has a large Indian population, descendants of Indian workers originally brought here to pick tea. After Tanah Rata town is Brinchang, a more modern Chinese town.

A visit to a tea plantation is a popular Highlands outing. The first tea was planted here in 1929 by JA Russell, who founded the Boh Tea Estate. Apart from the beautiful vista of tea trees planted at the mountain sides, you can also visit the factories to see tea production and purchase some tea from the shops. Boh’s Sungai Palas Tea Estate is up in the hills north of Brinchang, off the road to Gunung Brinchang. Public buses running between Tanah Rata and Kampung Raja pass the turn-off to Gunung Brinchang. From there it is 4km along the road past Robertson Rose Garden to the plantation entrance. You can also visit the Boh Tea Estate, southeast of Tanah Rata and 8km off the main road up to the Highlands. Robertson Rose Garden is worth a visit for its hilltop views.

Cameron Higlands is the leading producer of flowers in Malaysia. Most of the flower nurseries are centered around Bertam Valley and all along the way from Brinchang to Kg Raja. Common flowers are roses, chrysanthemum, carnations, dalia, geranium, fuschia and gladioli. Cactus nurseries are also found here. There are many strawberry farms in Cameron Highlands and the main season for strawberries is January. Some of the farms are Kasimani, KHM, EQ, Healthy and Raju Strawberry farm. There are also Vegetable farms which can be visited. The larger farms provide the vegetables for the nation’s consumption and not on the tourist trail. A butterfly Garden and Farm are located at Kea Farm. There are more than 300 varieties of butterflies and beetles, scorpions

and stick insects. There main tourist market to buy local produce can also be found at Kea Farm. Other markets are located along the mainroad from Ringlet to Kg. Raja. Other places of interest include the Sam Poh Temple, just below Brinchang about 1km off the main road. It is a typical Chinese temple with many statues and colours. It is signposted as the “Tokong Temple” from the intersection at the main road in front of Iris House Hotel. Located nearby is the Hindu temple, Sri Tehndayuthapany Swamy. It is adorned with bright sculptures created by artists from India. Gunung Brinchang at 2031m is the highest point and has breathtaking views. Drive the narrow and steep 7km road to reach here. Visit the Orang Asli (aboriginal People) settlement near Brinchang to see their simple way of life. You may need to hire a local Malay guide, who will also act as an interpreter. One of the most popular activities in Cameron Highlands is to enjoy Mother Nature. This can be done by doing jungle trekking and mountain hiking. There are up to 11 trails with varying degree of length and difficulty. The trails generally pass through relatively unspoiled jungle, and the cool weather makes hiking a pleasure. Many trails are available and it is safer to go in groups(especially for women) or hire guides for longer trails. Camping is another activity popular with the youth where you can pitch tent on the along the main range after a hike. Alternatively, you can put up tent at the Sg Pauh campsite, which is located near the Forestry Department at Taman Sedia, a 5 minute drive to Tanah Rata or Brinchang. Call the forestry departmnet at 605-4911384.

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