We must have looked like the oddest people in town. At least, that was the look that we were getting from locals who drove past us in their cars or on motorbikes as we wandered along the winding road. If it wasn’t odd looks that we were getting, it was looks of amusement at seeing two foreigners walking along the main road through the mountains. One man laughed and waved at us. “Hey, I like you guys!” he said as he zoomed past.
We were just out for a walk, but apparently that is not the way to get to tea plantations in the Cameron Highlands.
We were on our way to the Cameron Valley Tea Estate, located around 4km outside of Tanah Rata. There are countless tea plantation tours that you can join from town, but being the type of people who prefer to make our own way around, we decided to skip the tour and take ourselves on our own tour. When I looked at my map, I could see the Cameron Valley Tea Estate located not far out of town; certainly a walkable distance.
Our walk took us through Tanah Rata and out into the forest covered mountains that make up the Cameron Highlands of Malaysia. We followed the main road that runs through the area, winding its way along the steep sides of the mountains.
After a few kilometres of walking while covering our mouths to escape exhaust fumes (and several very odd looks from passersby), we had our first view of the tea plantation clinging to a steep hill side off in the distance. With renewed energy, we continued along the winding road, joined by a couple of stray dogs on our quest to visit a tea plantation.
By the time we reached the Cameron Valley Tea Estate, we were definitely in need of a cup of tea… As it happens, they have tea at the Cameron Valley Tea Estate.
The tea house, with an impressive panoramic view of the tea plantation below, has a wide variety of teas and dishes on the menu. We settled with a healthy choice of mint green tea, and cancelled out that healthy choice with some fresh scones with cream and jam. Our argument was that we had to walk all the way back uphill into town. Plus it just wouldn’t be proper to visit a tea house and not have the scones with our pot of tea.
Satisfied with our fill of tea and scones, we wandered off, again on our own, for a walk through the tea plantation. The views really couldn’t be beat. Rows upon rows of lush green tea bushes spread out down the valley below and up the other side. These views alone were well worth the walk.
Eventually we climbed our way out of the tea plantation and began the 4 kilometre walk back into Tanah Rata, but as is often the case, the walk back didn’t feel as long as the walk there.
If you head to the Cameron Highlands, definitely visit one of the beautiful tea estates.