Teatime in Cameroon Highlands, Malaysia


The bus was creeping up the mountains trough dense lush rainforest and high green covered mountains. Hairpin curves near deep ravines that would have us grabbing our seat if it wasn’t for the mesmerizing view.

Villagers are building houses out of palm leafs on the side of the streets and stalls selling fresh fruit and juice are setup in front of almost every hut. The highlands feels very rural with tiny settlements scattered all over this big mountain area, roughly the size of Singapore. The exception is the small towns that houses food markets, convenient stores, hostels and hotels, everything you need to get by with your day, no more, no less.

After 5 hours we arrive in the sleepy town of Tanah Rata. Strolling trough town towards our hotel we are met by the scent of pine trees mixed with the scent of moist rainforest and freshly cooked Malay, Chinese and Indian food from the many hawker stalls. The air is fresh and cool and it feels great to be able to breathe again after weeks of heavy pollution in Kuala Lumpur and Singapore. The sun is setting over the mountains and we fall asleep almost instantly after arriving at the hotel after a long day on the bus.

The next morning we are picked up by a minibus that is taking us to the Boh tea plantation and other various excursions like a strawberry farm and a buddhist temple. We where later joined by a retired couple from Canada who sold there house to go backpacking around the world. I love to see wanderlust in all forms and ages. Hope that i’m keeping up the traveling at that age.

The chinese driver was handling the hairpins like a pro but i must say that the honking before every turn was a reminder that fellow drivers might not be as cautious. One of the Canadians asked the bus driver what the green bushes by the side of the road was. His response was ”tea plants”, we were getting closer to our destination. Boh, tea plantation.

After the next bend we were met by an amazing  view of rolling green hills of miles and miles of luscious tea plants. From a distance the thick vegetation looks almost like thick green moss.

Although I’ve been enjoying a cup of tea every morning for years now this was my first encounter with an actual tea plant. Arriving at the plantation we went inside the factory to see the full process from plant to finished tea. It was interesting but the real draw-point was the mountainside of endless tea plants.

The factory itself looked like a modern farm and the scent of processed tea was close to that of wet hay, making you think more of a cattle farm then a tea plantation. I guess it was one of those ”you think you know but you have no idea” moments.

All in all it was a great experience which will probably enrich my experience of my daily cup of tea.