The Cameron Highlands is a stunning hill station in central peninsular Malaysia, and has become a popular destination for backpackers in South-East Asia. Roughly the size of Singapore, the Cameron Highlands covers a large stretch of land, and there’s plenty to do, see, and explore. I spent 4 nights in the Cameron Highlands, and compiled a this Backpacker’s Guide to the Cameron Highlands to share some information for those cruising out this way soon.
Hostels & Accommodation in the Cameron Higlands:
Just recently opened in 2017, this is becoming the hottest new hostel and place to stay in the Cameron Highlands. It’s beautifully designed, has a vibrant atmosphere, and perfectly located in the center of all the action. Amazing staff, comfy beds, and super budget-friendly rooms!
This is another top choice for those backpacking through the Cameron Highlands, and I really loved my time here! While the accommodations can be simple, they are super friendly, centrally located, and will definitely help you plan out your visit! :-) Check rates & availability.
A popular place to stay among backpackers in the Cameron Highlands. Located on the corner of the same street as Kisabalu, you’ll climb 3-stories to the reception. The staff are really nice, there’s a great communal area to meet people, and it will provide a great place to relax. Check rates and availability. :-)
TRAVEL HACK: Stay at an AIRBNB to get $38 OFF
While this isn’t ideal if you’re traveling solo, if you’re with a group of friends there are some amazing apartments in the Cameron Highlands. If you create a new account, you’ll get $38 off your first stay over $70, so you can get a really great place for dirt cheap!
Things To Do in the Cameron Highlands:
For most visitors only staying for 1-3 days, the best thing you can do simply book one of the package tours to explore the attractions in the area. There are countless travel agencies who can organize one of these tours for you, and they all deliver a similar experience. These are most of the highlights of all the tours:
- Mt. Brinchang.
- The Mosst Forest.
- Jungle Trekking (Short & Long)
- Tea Plantation & Factory.
- Butterfly Farm.
- Strawberry Picking.
- Cactus Point.
- Rafflesia flower.
There are three different companies to choose from. Don’t worry about picking the right one, as they pretty much all do the exact same thing.
I only chose to do the half-day tour, because it was cheaper, and covered all the main things I actually wanted to see. Besides I heard from people that the Butterfly farm was a waste of time. But there are some great full-day exploration options.
Best Places to Eat in the Cameron Highlands:
The Curry House
Probably the first thing you’ll recognize when you get off your bus is this restaurant on the corner. A big sign above flashing delicious sounding words like “Tandori Chicken” and “Naan”. A wide selection of Indian and Malaysian food, you definitely should try this place one. It can be a little bit more expensive than other places, but it’s worth it to splurge on one meal.
Tip: Bring your own drink to restaurant. They don’t really care, and their drinks were a bit expensive.
There are two places right next to each other that pretty much sell the exact same thing. When you take a look at the menu, only focus on the “set” deals they have available. That’s where your going to get the most bang for your buck. Just walk down along the main street past curry house and Starbucks, and you’ll find this amazing restaurant.
The Banana Leaf set meal is really good, and at the Tandori Chicken + Naan set is an absolute must try.
General Thoughts & Advice
The Cameron Highlands can be a great and affordable place to chill for a few days. A lot of backpackers come through for a quick 1 day stop, do a package tour, and then leave. You can do that, but if you are looking for a nice place to detox, breathe some fresh air, and eat some good food – this a is a great option.
Make sure you shop around for the different tour companies. Look at what each package contains, if they include or exclude entrance fees, and figure out exactly what you want to do. If you have a group of people, remember, there’s power in numbers. You can probably negotiate them down to a lower price per person.
Where To Next:
The Cameron Highlands are centrally located in Malaysia, so that makes it’s the perfect jumping off point to several of Malaysia’s tourist destinations. It really just depends on your Malaysia Itinerary, and how much time you have in the country!
Penang / Langkawi: A popular decision is to head to the West coast of Malaysia and check out Penang and Langkawi. Two amazing islands, with very different vibes. Penang for some culture and food, Langawi for some fun in the sun and waterfall exploring. Check out all my Langkawi Blog Posts.
Teman Negara: Visit and trek through the oldest rainforest in the world, with the tallest canopy walk in the world! You can take a boat + bus combo from the Cameron Highlands to Teman Negara for 70 MYR.
Kuala Lumpur: The amazing capital of Malaysia, you can’t visit this amazing country with experiencing all the Amazing Things to do in Kuala Lumpur.
Perhentian Islands: Head on over to the tropical paradise islands that is the Perhentian Kecil and Perhentian Besar. These islands are truly magical, and will keep you there longer than expected!
Backpacking in the Cameron Highlands and Malaysia is truly an amazing experience, and I personally can’t wait to get back again in the future. Thanks for reading everyone. I hope this helps you plan your visit to the Cameron Highlands a little bit easier. If you ever have any questions, feel free to shoot me an email or message me on social-media!
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you book through these links I will receive a very small commission at no extra cost to you. This helps with the cost of running the site, and basically just help me buy my next beer along my travels. : )