20 Fun Things to Do in the Cameron Highlands on Your First Trip

20 Fun Things to Do in the Cameron Highlands on Your First Trip

An excellent choice for a weekend getaway, Cameron Highlands offers tea plantations, strawberry farms, and so much more!

Just a few hours’ drive from Kuala Lumpur lies the Cameron Highlands: a fresh and verdant destination filled with the most breathtaking sights. Here, you’ll find rolling tea plantations, vibrant flower gardens, hiking trails, captivating religious sites, and more! With an elevation of 4,750 feet, this district in Pahang, Malaysia is certainly a cool (in both senses of the word!) place to be. That said, it’s definitely your best bet for escaping the heat of big cities! 

It was named after Sir William Cameron, a British explorer and geologist who “founded” the area in 1885. Given its cool climate, this mountain town easily became a crowd favourite of the British from the late 1800s up until the mid-1900s. Apart from that, the agricultural land was also perfect for tea production. Hence, the abundance of English-style tea rooms as well as mansions around the area. 

Often planned as a side trip, I’ve initially heard that it’s a lovely place. However, I wasn’t prepared for the impressive views and variety of things to do in Cameron Highlands. There are also plenty of accommodation options for every budget, as well as plenty of places to eat and drink. (Hey, gotta stay energised all throughout!) So, shall we begin? 

Also read: 11 Best Airbnbs in Cameron Highlands for a Cooling Vacation

Exploring Cameron Highlands attractions

Many of its popular spots are located along one major road, so getting from one place to another is easy. I would really recommend renting a car for a seamless way of going around. But for those who don’t have their own transportation, you can either book day trips to Cameron Highlands, or take the local buses that run the length of the mountain road. 

Best things to do in Cameron Highlands

1. Marvel at the sea of green in tea plantations

tea plantations of Cameron Highlands

Image credit: Dipankar Mishra

Are verdant vistas and undulating hills covered with a blanket of lush leaves your cup of tea? Well then, we definitely recommend exploring some of the best tea plantations in Cameron Highlands. More than just the views, though, these places also offer tea-tasting opportunities, as well as the chance to learn more about the local tea industry. BOH Tea Plantation is among the most popular stops and the one that that I chose to visit. Although, there are also others such as Boh Sungai Palas Tea Centre and Bharat Tea Plantation.

2. Go picking at a strawberry farm

strawberry picking is one of the top things to do in cameron highlands

Image credit: shahibbul

As mentioned earlier, the cooler temperature makes it relatively easy for farmers to grow fruits like strawberries. In fact, it’s the only place in Malaysia with strawberry farms! You’ll find lots of these around the area, most of which allow visitors to look around and pick their own fruit.

Many strawberry farms in Cameron Highlands also sell a wide variety of strawberry-flavoured and strawberry-themed items; including milkshakes, jam, ice cream, and ornaments! Our top picks include Big Red Strawberry Farm, Healthy Strawberry Farm, and Raaju’s Hill Strawberry Farm

3. Taste the sweet life at a honey farm

honey farms in cameron highlands

Image credit: tang90246 via Canva Pro

Curious to know more about how bees make sweet, sticky honey? Visiting Cameron Highlands will give you the chance to find out! There are several honey farms, including the Cameron Tringkap Bee Farm, Ee Feng Gu Bee Farm, and Highlands Apiary Farm. Each provides interesting details about the life cycle of bees, as well as the production and purpose of honey. By the end of your visit, you’ll either have a greater appreciation for these striped creatures, a sense of sorrow for their insanely hardworking lives, or perhaps both.

Make sure to try out locally produced honey, meet the beekeepers, and buy honey-based goodies as a souvenir. On top of the obvious jars of honey and honey-flavoured treats, you’ll also find things like honey soaps and hair products.

4. See prickly plants at a cactus centre

cactus centre in cameron highlands

Image credit: Sarah W

There are two main cactus centres in Cameron Highlands: Cactus Valley and Cactus Point. Each is home to a large assortment of cacti; with angry spines big and small growing from plants of all different shapes, colours, and sizes. You’ll see cacti that come from various parts of the globe, as well as some that are pretty old. Both centres have other plants on display, too.

5. Feast your eyes on floral beauty at the Lavender Garden

Cameron Lavender Garden is surely one of the prettiest places to visit in Cameron Highlands. Home to a staggering assortment of lavender varieties, the gradient of purples, lilacs, mauves, and blues are dazzling. Wander along the well-maintained pathways, where the air is filled with distinct, strong aromas. You can learn more about the use of lavender, including its medicinal and therapeutic purposes. Oh, and did you know that it has culinary uses, too? Don’t forget to bring home some of the goods made from lavender!  

6. Visit the fragrant Rose Valley

Rose Valley

Image credit: Sarah W

The charming Rose Valley is all about delicate fragrances and beautiful colours. You’ll probably be surprised by the huge number of rose varieties that are grown here — 450 different species to be exact! And yes, these come in all shapes and sizes.

7. Check out the enchanting Butterfly Farm

Butterfly Farm in Cameron Highlands

Image credit: Adam Jones

If you’ve ever wanted to enter a tropical garden filled with colourful butterflies flitting through the air and sitting on flowers, the Butterfly Farm is sure to delight. It’s also one of the oldest Cameron Highlands attractions that’s popular with children and adults alike. 

The facility also has a large collection of creepy crawlies. Watch insects, spiders, and reptiles with a mixture of curiosity, intrigue, revulsion, and horror. Other creatures that call the farm home include ducks and fish.

8. Learn more about agriculture at the Agro Technology Park

MARDI Agro Technology Park

Image credit: Bryn Pinzgauer

Interested in local farming practices and agriculture? Then a visit to the MARDI Agro Technology Park is definitely a must-add to your things to do in Cameron Highlands! (FYI — the acronym stands for Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute). It also happens to be the oldest MARDI research station in the country, which they’ve fortunately opened to the public. 

Spanning 42 hectares, this expansive park makes for a one-stop-shop, what with their impressive number of gardens that grow different plants; from tea and roses to fruits and herbs. It comprises six main areas: the English Garden, Herb Garden, Orchid Garden, Rose Garden, research centre and an information centre. The latter is where tourists can also buy interesting souvenirs like plants and seeds!

9. Travel back to the past at Time Tunnel

Time Tunnel

Image credit: Sarah W

One of my absolute favourite Cameron Highlands attractions is the fantastic Time Tunnel. It’s also sometimes referred to as the “Local Museum.” It’s essentially a homage to local culture from decades past through over a thousand artefacts, photographs, and interesting curios. More than just a museum, though, it also lets you experience life in bygone times; from immersing in different scenes, to playing with various curios for fantastic photographs!

Drink at an old kopitiam, play with vintage games, step into a hairdressing shop, hop on a vintage motorcycle, and more. The memorabilia collection is equally impressive, and it’s a great place to learn more about local life following the Japanese occupation.

10. Admire indigenous creations at Mah Meri Art Gallery

How about adding indigenous art to your list of things to do in Cameron Highlands? At the Mah Meri Art Gallery, you’ll find delicate and intricate works of the Mah Mehri ethnic group. Their name translates to “jungle man” in Malay, and the group is renowned for their impressive wood-carving skills — usually in the form of masks, sculptures, and other wooden carvings. In fact, these have even been awarded the UNESCO Seal of Excellence! So, go on and take your time admiring those sophisticated details. 

11. Tour Sam Poh Temple

Statuary at Sam Poh Buddhist Temple

Image credit: Adam Jones

Sam Poh Temple is the largest Buddhist temple complex in Cameron Highlands. The walls of the main temple display hundreds of small ceramic images of the Lord Buddha, and there are many other Buddha statues and pictures to admire. The scent of incense hangs heavy in the air, and you could spot local Buddhists visiting to pray and make merit. There’s also plenty of imagery from Chinese folklore.

12. Soak up spirituality at Sri Thendayuthapani Swamy

One of the area’s few Hindu places of worship, Sri Thendayuthapani Swamy is home to many ornate, colourful statues. It’s also the largest Hindu temple in the area. Constructed in the Nadu style, which is common among Tamil groups, the temple is a good stop for people interested in religious culture.

13. Walk through the Mossy Forest

Mossy Forest of Cameron Highlands

Image credit: Shaun@KL

Located at the top of Gunung Brinchang, the Mossy Forest is one of the area’s highest peaks and overall a great place to experience the natural world. It gets its name from the thick layer of moss covering the forest grounds. But don’t worry, there’s a boardwalk that makes exploring the area easy! You can also choose to go by car, although you’ll have to be extra careful if it gets foggy. 

Enjoy the sweeping views of the surroundings, while allowing the dense foliage and tall trees to provide you plenty of shade. Having been around for over 200,000 years now, the forest is home to a diverse array of flora and fauna.  

14. Explore more hiking trails

hiking in cameron highlands

Image credit: Honza Soukup

Cameron Highlands is undoubtedly one of the best places to go hiking in Malaysia. After all, it has a vast network of walking trails — most of which were built way back in World War 2 through the jungles and mountains. That said, there are plentiful opportunities for exploring the great outdoors! Most of the trails begin or end in Tanah Rata, which is where you might want to find accommodation if you’re planning to hike more than once. 

Image credit: Nelly Astana via Canva Pro

While independent hiking is possible among the selection of marked routes, there are also trails that you’ll need a guide to accompany you. Whichever you go with, make sure to keep an eye out for large birds, curious pitcher plants, and the famous rafflesia — whose flowers are the largest in the world! 

15. Gaze upon lovely waterfalls

things to do in cameron highlands

Image credit: RichardMc

Chasing some waterfalls is certainly among the best things to do in Cameron Highlands. Thompson Falls, for one, offers a peaceful ambience and lovely views, especially from the top. You can also paddle in the pool at the bottom of the falls! There’s also Parit Fall, which requires a short hike to reach, so it has relatively fewer visitors. However, it can’t be accessed during periods of intense rains. Another would be Robinson Falls, which you can also access through jungle trails. Unlike most waterfalls, though, you’ll have to take the stairs down (rather than up) to get to the spot. 

16. Play a round of golf

Image credit: justhavealook via Canva Pro

The 18-hole Cameron Highlands Golf Course presents a challenge for keen golfing enthusiasts. Equipment is available to rent on-site, so no need to worry in case you forgot to bring your own! The course provides breathtaking views of the mountains and tea plantations, while some of the more difficult areas will take you through rugged terrain and past scenic streams.

17. Shop at the local markets

local market in cameron highlands

Image credit: Craig Morey

Providing a window into local life, the markets in Cameron Highlands offer an assortment of street food, clothing, and other day-to-day items. Many also cater to tourists, with an array of souvenirs and trinkets and, of course, local products like tea, honey, and strawberries. 

For the best local produce, we recommend checking out a pasar pagi (traditional morning market) — such as KEA Farm Market! Take your pick among the many fresh fruits and vegetables that you can bring home with you… or even cook later in the day. So, that being said…

18. Whip up a “homecooked” steamboat

things to do in cameron highlands

Image credit: ModernPracticality via Canva Pro

For those not yet in the know, steamboat cuisine is essentially Malaysia’s take on Chinese hotpot. And the Cameron Highlands is one of the best places to enjoy this, what with the cold weather and cosy vibe. While there are a handful of eateries in the area that offer this, many locals would recommend having it at home. Or in the case of tourists, then at your Airbnb or other home rentals!

Drop by the pasar pagi early in the day, where you can grab ingredients like meat, organic veggies, noodles, fish balls, and tofu. Steamboats certainly make for a great dinner after a long day of exploring Cameron Highlands attractions!

Insider tip: Google “colourful corn Cameron Highlands” and keep an eye out for these at the local market. You’re welcome. 

Also read: These Are The Best Dishes to Try in Every Malaysian State

19. Enjoy British cream tea

British cream tea

Image credit: Sarah W

The Malaysian hill station was a popular retreat during the times of British colonization, favoured for its beautiful landscapes and cooler temperatures. Look closely and you’ll spot several reminders from the colonial era, including black and white architecture that is reminiscent of the Tudor times in England. Another enduring legacy is the cream tea. Indulge in a British scone, complete with jam and cream, while sipping a warm cup of local tea.

20. Visit an Orang Asli village

Similar to many Southeast Asian destinations supposedly founded by Westerners, Cameron Highlands has been home to natives long before the British came in. Case in point: the Orang Asli. The name itself means “original people” in Malay, and it refers to the indigenous groups living in Peninsular Malaysia. They’re also quite a diverse collection of peoples; each with their own language, culture, and localities. What they do have in common, though, is their intrinsic ties to the rainforest. So, make sure to add this to your list of things to do in Cameron Highlands!

You’ll find several Orang Asli villages around the area; some are on the main road, while others are in the middle of the jungle. Either way, it’s certainly worth taking a guided tour to a traditional working village and learning about a tribe’s traditions. This ranges from hunting and gathering techniques to agricultural practices. Just remember to remain respectful of their traditions and to not be that culturally appropriative tourist.

Also read: 2D1N Cameron Highlands Itinerary for Your Next Getaway

There really are so many terrific things to do in Cameron Highlands. And this list is a great place to start, especially if it’s your first time!

Itching to see more places in Malaysia when it’s safe again? We’ve got you covered with this roundup of the country’s must-visit destinations. And if you’re travelling as a foreigner, best to check out this list of do’s and dont’s, too.

Featured image credit: mishradipankar 

About Authors

Sarah W
Sarah W

Sarah W is a travelling cat-lover who enjoys exploring places that are a little bit quirky or away from headline attractions. Favourite things include delicious falafel, snuggling under a thick duvet, (badly) belting out karaoke at the top of her lungs, and, of course, her family, friends, and furry pets.


Marcy Miniano
Marcy Miniano

A fast-talking caffeine-dependent wordsmith, Marcy has never been one to shy away from sharing a good story or two. If she’s not in a quiet coffee shop somewhere, she enjoys spending afternoons in a museum or art gallery — whether it’s around Metro Manila or a foreign city she’s visiting. She wishes to retire in a winter village someday, so she can fulfil her lifelong dream of wearing turtlenecks all year round and owning a pet penguin.


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