The Cameron Highlands is only a few hours drive away from Kuala Lumpur. It is the highest and coldest place in Malaysia, which means that it is essentially like British summer time all year around somewhere around 25 degrees celcius. I stayed in Tanah Rata, which is the main tourist town in Highlands, the other two towns being Ringlet and Brinchang. Lots of the main walking trails start around Tanah Rata making it a good location for a few days.


One of the occasional views on the trails

I was visiting in November, which is the rainy season. While I was there the mornings were dry and humid, but by late afternoon, there was a daily thunderstorm. As a result my walks were fairly short, but they had some steep climbs. I followed some of the set trails, which were fairly well marked and well worn, so they were easy enough to follow. All of the trails were marked on and that turned out to be my main means of navigation. Admittedly it's not best practice to rely on a mobile phone, but I had a battery pack capable of recharging my phone 3 times to mitigate the risk. The maps provided at the local shops were fairly spartan, so this is the best option.

The navigation was straightforward and the walks went through some thick forest, technically not jungle due to the altitude, but I think that is the only difference. I didn't see too many animals on the walk, but given some of the inhabitants there, that is probably a good thing!


A trail marker


The start of trail 10

Most of the trail markers looked like this and were normal found at key points, where you could accidentally deviate down the wrong path.

The first day I covered trail 10. This only took a couple of hours and featured one steep climb. I was going to come down trail 11, but couldn't as it was closed due to the weather. This was understandable due to the amount of erosion some of the trails are facing.


Erosion on trail 10


Snake! (Although it looks like a worm)


A millipede

As I was walking back from my walk on trail 10 along the road, I spotted this little snake. Ok it looks like a worm in the photo, but it definetly moved like a snake and was obviously warming up on the road. Shortly followed by this millipede, I needed a ruler to show that it was a fairly decent size.

The second day I started on part of trail 4 passing one small waterfall, leading to trail 6, then crossing over to trail 3 and I finished on trail 8 ending at Robinson falls. This featured several steep climbs and took around 4-5 hours.


Robinson Falls lower section


Robinson Falls upper drop

This was a fairly impressive waterfall. Robinson's falls actually had several sections, so the overall drop must of been quite. Also the advantage of going when it rains is that waterfalls look better.


Banana plant and log on trail 8

This is a wild banana plant. I've seen many banana plants before, but first one I've seen growing wild.

Cameron Highlands is also Malaysia only tea growing area. I think most of it is sold internally. So I spent my last day visiting the tea plantation and some of the local sights. This tea plantation was 3000 acres and was owned by the Boh tea company. Apparently they harvest the tea leaves every 3 weeks year round. In the last 10 years they've started using machinery, but on the steep sides it is workers with shears. An improvement from picking by hand, but still a tough job in the heat and walking up hill and getting paid 26 cents per kg of leaves. It took 5kg of tea leaves to make 1kg of finished tea. I think most of the tea is for internal consumption.


Tea plantation


The buddhist temple in Brinchang


Strawberry Farm

Also strawberries are big in this area, as it is the only place they can be grown in Malaysia. due to the climate they grow them year round and now grow them in pots. Personally I didn't have the flavour as those grown more traditionally. I had a excellent few days in the Cameron Highland, it offered some fantastic walking and was an interesting and unique place to visit in Malaysia.


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