The Cameron Highlands are a visually stunning place to get active in the great outdoors. Considerably cooler then the Malaysian coast, it’s the perfect climate for putting on some walking shoes and stretching your legs. There are various fascinating attractions in the Cameron Highlands so sightseeing is really just a brief distractions whilst hiking between different beauty spots.
You can set off with a map and some brief directions by yourself or take along a local guide for an organised tour. A great deal of Cameron Higlands attractions revolve around the agricultural industries that exist in the higher climbs. This means there are plenty of opportunities to indulge your tastebuds and then walk off the evidence.
Cameron Highlands Butterfly Farm
A great stopping off point on hillside walks is the Butterfly Farm by Kea Farm. There are beautiful butterflies and different insects plus a wide variety of flowering plants and even some reptiles. This can be part of a tour that usually also includes Orang Asli Village and a tea factory. website: www.cameronbutterflyfarm.com.my.
Strawberries are another staple crop which thrives in the temperate climate of the Cameron Highlands. For those that fancy picking their own juicy fruits there are a number of farms where you can put indulge yourself. Prices are based on the weight of strawberries picked. Homemade jams and preserves are also great value and utterly delicious. There are farms all over the Cameron Highlands but Big Red Strawberry Farm comes highly recommended. website: www.holidaycameron.com.
Tea plantations in the Cameron Highlands
The Cameron Highlands are famous for lush tea plantations and no trip would be complete without learning about the picking and drying process and sampling some of the delicious local varieties. Tea was introduced by the British and it soon became the major industry for local people. There’s nothing more rewarding after a hike than gazing over the picturesque countryside with a brew. Boh Tea Plantation’s Sungei Palas Tea Centre is the biggest around. Open: 09:00-16:30 (closed Monday); Admission: Free; Jalan Gunung Brinchang, tel: +60 5 496 2096, website: www.boh.com.my.
Time Tunnel Gallery
This enthralling museum delves into the life of Malaysia’s foremost hillstation and maintains a fascinating record of the development of the area. There are countless photographs which document the various industries of the region, including a huge collection of memorabilia on Jim Thompson and a Merdeka section. This is a real must visit for those who wish to learn about the history behind the Cameron Highlands. website: www.timetunnel.cameronhighlands.com.
Bees are essential for any agricultural community as they aid pollination and therefore the production of fruit. A necessary and delicious by-product of this is sweet honey and there are a few honey farms in the vicinity which are great to visit, learn about the process and sample some of the derivative products. Ee Feng Gu Honey Bee Farm is one of the best. website: www.eefenggu.com.
Fruit and veg farms
It’s not just tea and strawberries that you can get up close to in the Cameron Highlands – although that may well be enough for some people. There are all manner of vegetable farms dotted across the verdant landscape.
Many of them have visitors centres where you can learn about their staple crops and sample a few local specialities. Everyone is extremely friendly so if you see a sign as you walk past a particularly inviting field then it’s perfectly fine to pop in and look around.
Cameron Highlands markets
There are markets all over the Cameron Highlands but one of the main day market is situated around Kea Farm. This is the best place to pick up all the sumptuous fruit you want and the perfect for stocking up on supplies before or during a hike. There is a weekend market every Saturday night in Brinchang which features both raw and prepared foodstuffs and some great casual dining options. Haggling is essential to get the best prices but that is half the fun.
Flower nurseries in the Cameron Highlands
Nowhere in Malaysia grows as many flowers as the Cameron Highlands with the Bertam Valley and Brinchang the major production centres. A dazzling array of blooms are always on show in specially-controlled greenhouses generating a true kaleidoscope of colour. Carnations, roses, chrysanthemum, geraniums, dalias, gladioli and fuschia are particularly suited to the environment and most nurseries have gorgeous specimens on sale.