Sunday, November 26, 2017

[Malaysia 2017] 3D2N Birthday Trip To Cameron Highland!

Photo By: Elin Chow

My birthday was on 9th September and that was about 3 months ago. I have been procrastinating in writing about my birthday trip to Cameron Highlands. Well, admit it, you procrastinate. Everyone do, because writing is just plain hard at times.

So, my husband planned another family trip to Cameron Highlands again for my birthday. To be honest, I was not very excited about the trip, simply because I think it will not be fun to visit the same place twice in just a short span of 2 months (we just visited Cameron Highlands back in July).

Just like our previous trip, we took the Simpang Pulai route instead of the Tapah route because it is much wider, less steep and less winding. But this time, it took us almost 6 hours to reach our hotel in Tanah Rata.

9th September was a public holiday. As a result, Cameron Highlands was very crowded with tourists and we were caught in massive traffic jam around the towns and tourist attractions. Getting up to Cameron Highlands from Simpang Pulai means one will reach Brinchang first. From Brinchang, it is a 10 minutes drive to Tanah Rata. But it took us almost 2 hours just to get from Brinchang to Tanah Rata! That was really tiring and frustrating!

Heritage Hotel
Official Website: Heritage Hotel Cameron Highlands

Finally at 4 pm, we arrived at Heritage Hotel, a 3.5-star Tudor-style hotel located on a hill in the town of Tanah Rata.

Surrounded by lush tropical rainforest, the hotel offers a range of hotel rooms and suites to suit different needs. 

We checked into a deluxe room for one night. The room features a king sized bed, en-suite bathroom and a private balcony. However, the furnishing of the room looks really old and tired with a strong smell of old carpet. The bed also had a mushy smell but was clean.

Other in room amenities include a LCD flat screen TV with cable channels, a large built in closet, hairdryer, basic coffee and tea making facilities and a writing desk. However, there was no free Wifi provided in the room, which is a huge downside for me.  Free Wifi is necessary and important because mobile signal was extremely poor in the room as well. I am feeling incredibly annoyed for being unable to stay connected and access to my social media.

The room also comes with an ensuite bathroom equipped with a bath tub, large mirror and some basic toiletries. 

Basic toiletries provided include shower cap, shower gel, shampoo and disposable toothbrush and toothpaste.

The room opens out onto a balcony, offering a spectacular view of  the lush rainforest surrounding the hotel.

Highlands Steamboat

After settling down and freshening up, we proceeded out of the hotel for dinner. On our way to the restaurant, we were caught in another long traffic jam.

It took us about an hour to reach Highlands Steamboat, a steamboat restaurant located in Brinchang, next to Cameron Organic Steamboat.

Just like many other steamboat restaurants that you will find in Cameron Highlands, Highlands Steamboat also uses traditional charcoal stove instead of gas stove or induction cooker.

Minimum order is 2 pax and we ordered for 4 pax. Our order was served promptly and the ingredients were very fresh. Serving size was decent and easily sufficient for 5 pax. The broth also taste deep, rich and flavorful. It was delicious. We visited this restaurant the next day for dinner too.

After dinner, we planned to visit the Brinchang Night Market to grab some snacks and drinks. But we had to give up that idea because the night market was crazily crowded with people and there was no parking spaces available for us to park our car.

We finally got to our hotel at 9 pm after being stuck in the traffic jam for an hour. After washing up, we turned in early for the night.

Lavender Garden

After a night's sleep, I still woke up feeling exhausted. After having our breakfast at the hotel, we packed up and checked out of our room. We did not have any idea what to do or where to go for the day. After some discussion, we decided to visit the Lavender Garden to kill some time.

Located just before Tringkap town, approximately 9 km from Brinchang, Lavender Garden is one of the most popular tourist attraction in Cameron Highlands. The traffic jam got worst the next day and it took us about 2 hours to get here from Heritage Hotel. Parking spaces are pretty limited, so we have to park our car by the roadside.

Lavender Garden is open daily, from 9 am to 6 pm. Entry is not free. It costs RM 10 per adult and RM 7 per child to enter the attraction, which I feel is a little too expensive.

Stepping into the attraction, we were greeted by a purple field of lavender flowers.The lavenders are planted on a large plot of land in the centre of the attraction with artificial lavender scent permeating the air at the entrance. Other than lavenders, there are some others flowers like yellow daisies, camellias and peonies planted as well.

At the end of the garden, you will find a few shops selling a selection of lavender-related products. This is where you can pick up some souvenirs and gifts for your friends and families before exiting.

All around the garden, there are plenty of photo opportunities. The attraction is packed with people, so it was almost impossible to take a good picture with the lavenders because of crowds.

There is also a cafe here offering a selection of lavender-based pastries, ice cream and drinks.

At the end, there is also a small strawberry farm where visitors can pick their own strawberry and take them home for a price. 

Lavender Garden is just the typical tourist place for tourists to visit and take some photos. If you love flowers, this place is worth a visit.

Bharat Cameron Valley Tea Plantation

Leaving Lavender Garden, we visited the Bharat Cameron Valley Tea Plantation for an afternoon tea break. We chose to sit on the second floor, which offers an incredible view over the scenic tea plantations and mountains.

We ordered some scones and tea while enjoying the cool air and fantastic view of the tea plantations below. As expected, the cafe is overpriced and the taste of the scones are pretty disappointing as well.

However, this is a great place to take photos with the tea plantations and mountains. 

Copthorne Hotel
Official Website: Copthorne Hotel Cameron Highlands

After being struck in the traffic jam for 2 hours, we finally arrived at Copthorne Hotel, a 4-star Tudor style hotel located in Brinchang, within walking distance to Butterfly Garden and Kea Farm.

Originally known as Hotel Equatorial, Copthorne Hotel offers 316 rooms and apartments - Superior, Deluxe, Premier and 1-bedroom apartment to suit different needs and budget. Surrounded by mountains and valley, it is one of the largest and highest hotel in Cameron Highlands.

Stepping into the hotel, we were greeted by a humongous lobby. State flags adorn the walls, stone laid foundation, iron chandeliers and nicely tiled stone flooring. It felt as though I have walked into a medieval castle! 

Superior Room
We booked a Superior and Deluxe room at Copthorne Hotel. Superior room was nothing impressive. Measuring 31 sqm, the Superior room features a king sized bed, LCD flat screen TV, built-in closet, working desk and ensuite bathroom. The furnishing looks pretty dated and tired. Wifi is available for free, but connection is poor and weak. 

The ensuite bathroom is spacious with basic toiletries like soap, shampoo and disposable toothbrush and toothpaste provided.

Deluxe Room
Decorated in warm colors, the deluxe room is the same size as the superior room and comes with a balcony. The deluxe room features a king sized bed, built in closet, working desk, a large sofa and  ensuite bathroom.

Bathroom is bright and modernly decorated with toiletries provided.

Basic coffee and tea making facilities are provided in all the rooms as well.

The balcony offers spectacular view over Brinchang valley and mountains. After freshening up, we visited Highland Steamboat again for dinner. We spent the rest of the night chilling in our room at the hotel because we expected the night market to be crazily crowded too.

The last morning before we departed for home, we visited the Kea Farm after checking out of our room. Traffic was still bad in Cameron Highlands that morning, but slightly better than the day before. After filling our car with locally grown vegetables and fruits, we departed for home via the Tapah route.

Overall, it was not a very enjoyable trip. We spent most of our time stuck in traffic jams. It was just a total waste of time. At the end of each day, we were just exhausted. For anyone who hate the crowds and traffic jams, please avoid visiting Cameron Highlands on public holidays or school holidays.

Be sure to follow me on my Facebook or Twitter to get the latest updates on my travel adventures! Also, do not forget to share my blog posts with your family and friends if you find them helpful. In the meantime, you might also want to check My Wanderlust page for some of my other travel adventures.

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