Cameron Highlands, Malaysia – The Best Attractions and Tours
The Cameron Highlands, which are located at a height of 1,500 meters, are one of the most impressive highlands in Malaysia. Popular for foreign tourists as well as locals, the Highlands attracts with a pleasant, cool climate and a variety of exciting activities and attractions. The breathtaking beautiful tea plantations, the neat old colonial houses, a mossy forest, jungle trekking and tropical waterfalls are just a few of the main attractions of the Cameron Highlands. A tour to the Highlands is a highlight of every trip to Malaysia, and it is really worth exploring the wonderful places to visit. But what are the best things to do at Cameron highlands?
In this travel guide, we will provide you with important information about visiting the Cameron Highlands, the best tours and where the ultimate must visit places are. Additionally, we will share our experiences and give you useful tips for planning a perfect tour.
Best things to do at Cameron Highlands
The Cameron Highlands offer its visitors a huge variety of fun activities and most memorable experiences. Unquestionably, the tea plantations are the main attractions of the highland. Not only the tea production is interesting, especially the scenic tea gardens have become a popular place of interest. But still, there are some more great places to discover and exciting things to do! We have put together the most beautiful attractions and activities that should not be missed.
Cameron Highland tea plantations
The tea plantations spread over the entire highlands and provide a fabulous green panorama. Not only tea lovers are delighted, also nature lovers and photographers are amazed by this scenic backdrop. Of course, visiting one of these tea plantations is a must-do on any Cameron Highlands trip.
A visit to the Bharat Tea Plantation is highly recommended. Here is the place where the most beautiful pictures of the Cameron Highlands are shot. Just because of this brilliant view, this tea plantation is really worth visiting. Tip: Early in the morning, the view over the tea plantations is the most beautiful. Then there are hardly any tourists around and the mood is just idyllic. If you like, you can buy delicious tea in the in-house shop or relax at the café. The entrance to the tea plantations costs 2 RM.
Another must visit of Cameron Highlands is the Sungai Palas BOH Tea Plantation. These tea fields are a major attraction and because of the many beautiful photo opportunities, a very popular tourist spot. If you are interested, you can take a short tea plantation tour, where you will learn the most important steps of tea production. In addition, you should visit the viewing terrace, from where you have wonderful views over the tea plantations.
Tip: Sungai Palas BOH Tea Plantation is on the way to the Mossy Forest, so you can combine a visit with a hiking tour.
Hiking to Gunung Brinchang & Mossy Forest
The Cameron Highlands are a fantastic area for hiking and jungle trekking. A variety of trails leads you through tea plantations, high mountains and through the deep jungles of the highlands. As a special tip, we would like to recommend the hike to Gunung Brinchang, with 2,032 meters, the highest mountain in the region. If you like to explore nature on your own, you will surely enjoy this tour.
The tour starts at the Boh Tea Plantation and leads over a narrow road around 1:20 hour up to Gunung Brinchang. During the hike, you will always enjoy a great panorama of the tea gardens and will see the field workers at work.
About 2 kilometers before the summit, you will reach a highlight of this hike, the Mossy Forest. This jungle is a real fairy-tale forest. Beautifully mossy and, above all, if you are in a small group or alone, really idyllic. To protect nature, there is a small circular path over boardwalks. The Mossy Forest is incredibly mystical and magical, especially in the morning or on a rainy day, and one of the must places to visit at Cameron Highlands. Reaching the summit of Gunung Brinchang, there is an observation tower, from which you have a great view of the surroundings.
Tip: The Gungung Brinchang can also be hiked on the trail No. 1 – a jungle trail. The walking time is around 2 hours. Unfortunately, the jungle trail is extremely muddy, steep and partly not well marked.
Visit a farm
In the Cameron Highlands you will find farms on all kinds of topics, but in our experience, they are not interesting for everyone. Whether strawberry farm, bee farm, rose farm, flower farm, cactus farm, lavender farm or butterfly farm – everything is marketed here. For example, butterflies of all conceivable colors, shapes and sizes can be watched at the Butterfly Farm. At a Strawberry Farm, you can taste strawberries and buy souvenirs. If you are interested, you can schedule a visit. Otherwise, you can safely skip these attractions.
In the area around the Cameron Highlands, there are some beautiful waterfalls to explore. Indeed, the most impressive waterfall is the Lata Iskandar. It’s located on the road between Tapah and the Cameron Highlands. This beautiful nature spot is right on the path and who has time, should definitely plan this natural jewel in a tour.
More central in the highlands, but not quite as spectacular, are the Thompson Falls, the Robinson Falls and the Parit Falls.
The Smokehouse is one of the most famous colonial houses in Cameron Highlands. It is located next to the golf course and has been spoiling its guests since 1939 with tea and delicious scones. With its dreamlike ambience, the Smokehouse is an absolute eye-catcher and is one of the insider tips for the area. A visit is really recommendable: It is a trip into the past, with a beautiful English garden and delicious food.
Tip: For a memorable and luxury stay at Cameron Highlands, spend a few days at this English country house. Not only for golf lovers, a great hotel recommendation!
The small town is the main city of the Cameron Highlands and offers its visitors a wide range of accommodation, shops, ATM, scooter rentals and restaurants. Also, the best food can be found here. Especially delicious is the food in one of the many Indian restaurants. Also, some hiking trails start in Tanah Rata. Every Friday and Saturday there is a night market in town. Here you will find local products such as fresh strawberries, vegetables, fruits and tea blends. But also souvenirs and culinary enjoyments are attracting visitors to this night market.
Best time to visit
The best travel times for the Cameron Highlands are in January & February and in June & July. It should rain the least during these months. Nevertheless, the highland region can be well visited all year round. The average temperature is between 15 and 25 degrees, whereas at night it can tend to be around 10 degrees.
How to get there
- From Kuala Lumpur: Buses operate regularly from Kuala Lumpur to Tanah Rata, Cameron Highlands. The journey by bus takes 4:40 hours and can be booked on site or online.
- From Penang: Another popular option is to travel from Penang to the Cameron Highlands. The bus ride from Penang Butterworth takes about 3:30 hours.
- From Singapore: You can either take the bus from Singapore to Cameron Highlands which takes around 9-10 hours or you can fly to Kuala Lumpur and continue by bus.
Here are the timetables:
Tip: The road to the Cameron Highlands is very winding. Travel pills can provide a good help.
The nearest airport is Kuala Lumpur. You can find cheap flights on Skyscanner. Getting there by rental car is also an option. Here you are going to find the perfect car.
There are several ways to travel the Cameron Highlands. Many visit the region on their own, spend the night in the Highlands and organize their tours on site. There is the possibility to rent a scooter, to explore the tea plantations and beautiful sights without a guided tour. For renting the scooter you pay about 60 RM per day including helmet and rain vest. Also, half day tours and full day tours can be booked at many hotels and agencies.
Another option is to book a day trip to the Cameron Highlands from Kuala Lumpur. If you like traveling in small groups, we can recommend a private tour through the highlands.
Where to stay
As mentioned above, the Cameron Highlands offer a wide range of accommodation options. Whether for backpacker who love to stay at a hostel or as a luxury traveller spending the night in the old colonial house hotel, everyone will find their perfect accommodation here. If you wonder how many days you should stay, we recommend at least 2 full days. Many stay for several days or even spend a holiday there.
We have put together the best accommodation for a pleasant stay:
- Hostel: The Hikers Sleep Port convinces not only with reasonable prices, but also with clean rooms, cozy atmosphere and delicious breakfast!
- Homestay: Do Chic In B & B is a really nice and cozy homestay. Very privately run and located in a quiet location.
- Luxury option: The Cameron Highlands Resort is currently the only 5-star hotel at Cameron Highlands. A really chic house in the British colonial style.
Conclusion: Are the Cameron Highlands worth a visit? We think so. For us, this region was one of the most impressive during our several-week trip through Malaysia. Sure, the region has become very touristy in recent years, but the landscapes are still beautiful. We recommend travelling in the morning and in the late afternoon, then you can escape the day tourists and enjoy the Cameron Highlands to the fullest.
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