Cameron Highlands is the smallest district in Pahang which is located in the north-western corner of the state. One of the most popular hill resort in the country, this highland paradise still retains much of the charm of an English village. Although massive development in the last decade has changed the landscape of the highlands, it remains a popular destination for those who wanting to to escape the hot weather of the lowlands.
Being a primarily agricultural domain, you will find an abundance of vegetables and fruits farms dotted all over the highlands. Cameron Highlands is also the leading producer of flowers and tea in Malaysia. Be prepared for a lovely sight of tea plantations and beautiful flowers you won’t see flourishing elsewhere in Malaysia.
Located on the Titiwangsa Range at about 1500 metres above sea-level, the temperature here can drop to 16 ˚C or lower at certain times. The weather here remains at the lower 20′s most of the time.
Cameron Highlands is made up of 4 main townships followed by smaller settlements at different elevations. The first town from the south is Ringlet, followed by Tanah Rata, Brinchang, Kea Farm, Tringkap, Kuala Terla and Kampung Raja.
If you’re taking the old road via Tapah, this is the first town you will reach after after the 1 hour drive through the rainforest. Located at an elevation of 1,200 metres above sea-level, Ringlet is one of the main agricultural hub for the highlands. There is nothing much to do here for the typical tourist besides stopping for fuel as this is one of of the towns with petrol stations. Bertam Valley which is located about 5km away is one of the main flower and vegetable producers in Cameron Highlands. The nearest hotel is the LakeHouse which is less then 5 minutes drive from here.
Further up is Tanah Rata which is about 12 km’s (20 minutes drive) from Ringlet. This is the administrative capital of Cameron Highlands where all the government offices, hospital and the district police station is located. The main bus station is also located here and this is where you would be able to get your transportation needs within and out of the highlands sorted out. Most of the chalets and guest houses are located here in and around Tanah Rata, Almost all the jungle trekking and waterfall trails starts around Tanah Rata
Local tours and transfers can be obtained from the various tour operators in town. Money changers and internet cafe’s can also be found here. Tanah Rata would be a nice place to enjoy the highlands, especially during the weekdays. It is much more quieter compared to Brinchang where most of the big hotels and restaurants are located.
Next is Brinchang which is about 4 km’s (10 minutes drive) from Tanah Rata. This is where you will find most of the tourist hotels and restaurants. The night market which is open every Saturday night and on holidays, features all kinds of vegetables, flowers, fruits and other products of the highlands. This place can get really crowded during the weekends and holiday season. Traffic jams and parking problems can be a nightmare during this time. Next to Ringlet, this is the only other town with petrol stations so keep your fuel tank in check.
Kea Farm, Tringkap, Kuala Terla & Kampung Raja
Beyond Brinchang, the road leads to all the way to Blue Valley. Most of the tourist spots are located around this route. This is where you will find the markets, vegetable farms, flower gardens, bee gardens and butterfly gardens. The road also branches out to the Sungai Palas tea plantation from here where you can visit the factory or have a cup of tea while enjoying the breathtaking view of the plantation.
If you continue on the main road heading north, it will be downhill from Kea Farm onwards. You will see vegetables farms all the way from here to Tringkap and beyond. Tringkap is a small farming community where you can find stalls along the road selling local produce. Fifteen minutes away is Kuala Terla, another small farming community. Kampung Raja is the last town on the map. Since the opening of the Simpang Pulai road, this town has become the gateway to the highlands from the north. From here, you can head west to Ipoh or east to Gua Musang in Kelantan.