The Cool Climate of the Cameron Highlands
Cameron Highlands Travel Blog› entry 8 of 9 › view all entries
We have now been in the Cameron Highlands for three days, staying in a small town called Tanah Rata. The minute we stepped off the bus we felt at home as the rain hit our faces and we actually shivered due to the wind :-). The best way to describe this area of Malaysia is Scotland, with a jungle. This is definitely the my favourite place on the trip so far, it's beautiful and the views are spectacular. Everything up here is far more natural than the cities, with 'sites' such as tea plantations, strawberry farms (admittedly these aren't aren't that fascinating as they're everywhere in England too), honey bee farms, and some amazing jungle walks. There is also a mock-tudor English tea-room called Ye Olde Smokehouse, which to Rhodri's and my delight (and Chris' dismay) they had a grand piano in a pleasant little conservatory.
The tour on one day took us around some of the main sites in the area. We started off with the Sam Poh Buddhist Temple which had some great golden statues, including a big grinning Buddha playing the lute, which was amusing! Our second stop was a fantastic rose garden, not so much for the roses but for the maze-like paths of the place. You'd think you'd reached the top of the hill, finally, when lo and behold, more of it appears! (After a while this did start to get annoying...) The best part was emerging from one of the paths, turning around to see the view, only to be met with a giant fibre-glass shoe. Brilliant! After the strawberry farm, which is much the same as the ones found in England, thus doesn't warrant a description (oh all right then - it was full of strawberries) we arrived at the butterfly farm.
Next stop - tea plantation. This is one of the best views I have ever seen - acres and acres of different-toned-green fields spread before us, very aptly described as "the carpet of Malaysia". Up close, these are all small green bushes of tea leaves, laid in rows no higher than your knees. They must be pruned regularly as they can grow quite high - once this happens, they turn brown.
Chris wasn't well the following day so, leaving behind to rest, Rhodri and I trekked up an unchartered path though the thick of the jungle to find some carniverous plants (and there was me thinking Rhodri had got over his obsession ;-)).
A visit to Robinson's Waterfall (which was only water, and not fruit juice as I was expecting ;-)) and a look at another tea plantation saw us coming to the end of our time in Cameron Highlands. Tomorrow we head north to the Pulau Perenthian (or however you spell it), which will be hotter and far more beachy - something Chris and I have yet to experience on this trip. From there shall come my next report :-)