Cameron Highlands Halal Guide
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The Cameron Highlands is situated in Pahang, West Malaysia. It is approximately 85 km from Ipoh or about 200 km from Kuala Lumpur. The retreat has a diverse population of more than 43,000 people.
The Cameron Highlands is one of Malaysia’s most extensive hill stations. It covers an area of 712 km², about the size of Singapore, At 5,000 ft (1,500 m) above sea level it is also the highest point in Malaysia accessible by road. The British surveyor, Sir William Cameron, was credited with “discovering” the highlands during a mapping expedition of the Pahang-Perak border area in 1885. The area developed starting in the 1920s when it was confirmed that many varieties of fruits and vegetables, including tea, can be grown. Tea was the main reason for the development of this area by the British. Additionally, many British settlers came to this area as a “retreat” from the hot, humid climate of the rest of Malaysia. After years of extensive work in difficult conditions, a road was built linkind Tapah and Tanah Rata, allowing the settlement of the highlands. Following this, tea planters and vegetable growers who found the climate suitable for their crops moved in the highlands. Today, there are four main roads into the area: two to the west, to Ipoh and to Tapah; and two to the east, to Gua Musang and Kuala Lipis.
Climate is extremely mild for Malaysian standards: the mean annual temperature is 18 °C. During the day, the temperature seldom rises above 25 °C; at night, it can drop to as low as 12 °C.
Overall, much of the retreat is still forested (estimated at 71 percent) and hosts a rich ecosystem. Please refer to #See for more information on the wildlife in the Cameron Highlands. There are eight mountains at the retreat. They are Mount (Malay: Gunung) Batu Brinchang (2,031 m), Mount Berembun (1,840 m), Mount Irau (2,091 m), Mount Jasar (1,696 m), Mount Mentigi (1,563 m), Mount Perdah (1,576 m) and Mount Siku (1,916 m). Jungle trails lead visitors to scenic spots, waterfalls and aboriginal villages.
The towns lie in a string of settlements approximately 25 km long. From north to south these are:
Kampung Raja – one of the larger towns; close to the roads to Ipoh and Gua Musang Brinchang – Starting point to Gunung Brinchang (2032 m), Boh tea plantations and numerous farms (strawberries!) Taman Tringkap Kea Farm Brinchang Tanah Rata – the main town of the Camerons, favorite of backpackers. Starting point to Gunung Beremban (1840 m) and Bharat tea plantations. Ringlet – one of the larger towns; close to the roads to Tapah and Kuala Lipis Bertam Valey
The highlands can be accessed by road from both coasts, though most travellers enter from the west. Ipoh has a road up to the highlands via Simpang Pulai, the other route from the west is further south, via Tapah. The main road from the east passes through Gua Musang; there is also a more circuitous route from Kuala Lipis (both of which are on the Jungle Railway).
Approaching from the west
- From Ipoh, take an air-conditioned PerakTransit bus service (Stall D2, RM20, 2-3hr, 8:30AM, 10AM 11:30AM, 12:30 PM 3PM, 5PM, 7PM) to Tanah Rata from Ipoh’s Amanajaya bus terminal (10 km from the town center). You can get there from Medan Kidd bus terminal near the train station, by taking either the T30a, T30b or 116 bus (1.80 RM every 30min). The buses to the highlands travel via Simpang Pulai and stop at towns such as Kampong Raja and Brinchang. Be sure to let the driver know if you need one of these towns.
- From Kuala Lumpur, buses to Tanah Rata leave from Terminal Bersepadu Selatan (RM30-RM39, 4½ hr, 8:30AM–3:30PM though mainly in the morning). Some buses can be booked online.
- From Penang, Unititi Express bus picks up passengers from Prangin Mall in Georgetown to Tanah Rata for RM35 (7:15AM and 1:30PM). However, the bus from Tanah Rata to Penang (RM32, 8AM and 2:30PM) will stop at Sungai Nibong and you might need to take a local bus or a taxi to Georgetown.
- From Singapore, overnight VIP buses operated by Grassland and Fivestar leave from the Golden Mile tower/complex (SG$55-SG$65, 10 hr). Buses stop at Ringlet, Lakehouse, Brinchang Hotel, Equatorial Hotel, Heritage Hotel and Tanah Rata.
You can get tickets on https://www.easybook.com/en-my
Approaching from the east
From Taman Negara: It is actually possible to go to Cameron Highlands from Taman Negara using only local buses. The best option is to leave the National Park with the first bus going to Jerantut and ask the driver/ticket seller the way to Cameron Highland. But the journey is pretty much :
Kuala Tahn to Jerantut RM7; 10AM. Jerantut to Benta RM7; Benta to Raub RM5.25. Raub to Tanah Rata RM12 (Cameron Highlands). You will be in Cameron Highlands by the end of day.
This is, indeed a long journey with several connections but could suit some travellers as the total price of the journey is around RM30, compared to the RM90 asked by private mini-van companies.
Travel to Cameron Highlands by car
From North-South Expressway, exit the expressway at Tapah and then proceed via route 59 straight to the highlands. It takes about 1 hour 30 min to reach the first town of Ringlet.
Alternatively, you can exit the expressway at Simpang Pulai, Ipoh and proceed via route 145 to Cameron Highlands. It takes about 1 hour to reach the first town, Kampung Raja. Condition of this route is significantly better than Route 59 from Tapah.
By shuttle mini van
You can also use mini van transfer to get to Cameron Highlands:
- From Kuala Lumpur-pick up at Swiss Inn, Jl. Sultan, Chinatown. Noon daily RM35, duration: 4½ hr
- From Penang-pick up at Georgetown, 8AM daily RM50, duration: 4½ hr
- From Taman Negara-pick up at Kuala Tembeling Jetty. RM85, duration: 5½ hr
- For reservation: ☎ +60 4 2626 171 (Banana Travel & Tours) ☎ +60 5 491 5823 (Kang Tours & Travel)
A taxi station is located at about 100 m east of the bus station along Jalan Besar road. Taxi fares are subject to negotiation as most of the taxi drivers are notorious for not using the meters. Be prepared to negotiate hard.
The resort is made up of eight neighbourhoods. The three townships are Ringlet, Tanah Rata and Brinchang. The five settlements are the Bertam Valley, Kea Farm, Tringkap, Kuala Terla and Kampung Raja. All are separated from one another by a considerable distance. The most popular towns of the retreat are Tanah Rata and Brinchang. They are about 4 km apart.
One of the best ways to see the area is to walk. Do bring along an umbrella just in case it rains.
Travel to Cameron Highlands by car
The resort has a good network of roads. If you are planning to get off the beaten track, renting a car may be a good option.
Motorcycles can be rented at some of the guest houses and in Tanah Rata city centre. You must have a license to ride a motorcycle. Be extra careful while driving: e.g., when taking a blind corner don’t assume some lunatic won’t be in your lane overtaking someone.
The taxi fare between Tanah Rata and Brinchang is RM6. You can hire a taxi for 2 hr for RM50. This rate is approved by the government.
By van charter
You can plan an itinerary of your own by hiring a 10-seater van. Make sure you confirm the charges before making any decisions.