We recently left Penang, Malaysia for Kuala Lumpur — about five hours away by car — and we’re loving it here! But on the way, we took a short trip to the Cameron Highlands, Ipoh, and also visited Orang Utan Island rehabilitation center to view some of our closer primate relatives.
Our first stop was Orang Utan island, in the middle of a large lake, where some of the last of this amazing animal are being protected. In the Malay language, orang means person, and utan means forest. These forest people are even more intelligent and human-like than I expected. For example, I saw an orangutan pick up a long stick and put it through a fence to draw a piece of fruit closer to him. I also saw him use it as a weapon to hit his friend when he tried to take the fruit for himself. The babies in diapers were especially cute.
We then drove to the Cameron Highlands, a mountain town at the end of a very winding road, first settled by the British in the early 1900’s. We hadn’t booked a hotel in advance and just thought we’d look around once we got there, but we all felt so exhausted and car sick from the drive, that all we wanted to do was rest at a nice place. After the first hotel we checked was closed, we gave up looking and settled on the Heritage Hotel, which was fortunately a lovely hotel with a large room, beautiful views out the window, and a great dinner and breakfast buffet, for $115/night.
The Cameron Highlands has many farms, and the next day we toured a tea plantation, a strawberry farm, and a bee farm. The tea plantation was an especially beautiful sight to behold, with rolling hills of tea plants, and we learned a lot about how the crops are farmed. There are other things to do in the Cameron Highlands, and we enjoyed the cooler temperatures, but because it made us so sick to drive anywhere on the winding roads, we decided we’d had enough, and drove back to the town of Ipoh at the bottom of the mountain to spend the night.
We were really impressed with Ipoh. It’s a clean and spacious city surrounded by jagged limestone mountains covered in foliage. The size and overall feel of the city reminded me a lot of Salt Lake City, where we grew up.
The next day, before leaving Ipoh, we walked around an impressive temple we passed the day before that was built right into the side of the mountain cave, called Ling Sen Tong. You can see more pictures in the gallery below.
From Penang to Cameron Highlands, to Kuala Lumpur, the drive was beautiful all the way, and we enjoyed the greenery, the mountains, and the clean and fast roads. There is a lot to love about Malaysia, and we’re glad to be exploring more of it. Here’s a little video and some photos we took along the way.
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Sick in Kuching, Borneo Malaysia
15 Jul 2012
Elephants at Kuala Gandah
12 Feb 2012
The Batu Caves
03 Feb 2012
I especially liked visiting the orang utan. So glad we were able to do that. I could have watched them all day long. They really were so human-like and so much fun to see all the different things they did. :)
Me first time visiting malaysia for 7 days hope your reviews might help me and me from mauritius .
Those Cameron Highlands are amazing – so lush and green. It’s like every time you turn a corner there is some new incredible thing to look at, experience, do or eat!
LOL to the giant strawberry photo.
When you say cooler temperatures – what are we talking? 60 degrees? 70?
Yes, 60’s and low 70’s at night, and 70’s and low 80’s in the day. It was a refreshing change, but the roads were too much for me.
Great video. The orangutans were very interesting. I love how the small one just flopped on the grass and rolled around. Reminds of Sam as a kid. :)
How far is the Cameron Highlands from where you are currently staying? It’s nice that there is a cooler place to escape to if you want, but I’m sure the winding roads would do me in, as well. The tend to make me both stressed out and carsick. Looks like the girls enjoyed the strawberry farm.
Aysia is getting so big. :)
Cameron Highlands is probably 2 hours from Kuala Lumpur by car, but there are other closer places to escape to, like the Genting Highlands, which we’ll be visiting in a couple weeks. The heat in Kuala Lumpur isn’t bothering as much as we thought it would, though.
What a beautiful place. Those Orangutans are so funny. I really enjoyed the video, especially the very last part of little Aysia, such a sweetheart.
Wow… so green and beautiful! And I’m sure it’s even more stunning in person. The orangutans are darling. :) Thanks for posting the video and pictures!!
These are amazing pictures. Sheesh, it looks like there is a McDonald’s everywhere!
Hi ,Cameron looks amazing.Thank you.We are planning a trip to Ipoh(Lost world) and cameron Highland next month,how long is the drive from Ipoh to to Cameron.
is there any tour organiser at ipoh for cameron island
I’m sure there is, but we didn’t use one.