The second day of our Highland Holiday (29 August 2012) saw us in Cameron Highlands for the day. Camerons is quite a distance from Moonriver Lodge where we stayed (30km or about 35 minutes to Brinchang, and 37km or about 45 minutes to Tanah Rata). Due to the distance, it was not practical to go back to the lodge for a rest so it was a full day's outing.
We started at the MARDI Agro Technology Park in Tanah Rata. It's one of our favourite places as we get to see a variety of flowers, vegetables, fruits and other plants. As during our previous visit the giant melons, tomatoes, and apple trees were among the boys' favourite.
[Julian feeling a brown pear]
[Justin admiring some flowers]
[The five of us at the MARDI station. Photo by Dad]
After lunch, we went to pick strawberries at Mountain Strawberry Farm in Sungei Palas. This time, one of the farm hands offered to take photos for us and he took some pretty interesting shots. The boys enjoyed themselves as they had eagerly anticipated this activity. One of the reasons for our choosing this farm was that it used to have a mini "zoo". However, the enclosures have since been poorly maintained. Nonetheless, the boys reported seeing a few ducks, geese, chickens, rabbits, and goats.
[Justin plucking strawberries]
[Justin showing off his loot]
[Julian aiming for a giant strawberry. Photo by the farm hand]
After paying for our strawberries, we headed to the Sungei Palas Boh Tea Centre. It was low harvest season and hence, we did not see any tea being processed when we toured the factory. After a quick walk-through of the factory, we had tea and cakes. A biplane was busy flying over the plantation which was a bonus for the boys as they are plane-lovers. We suspect the plane was releasing fertilisers over the plantation because we heard the sound of pellets falling on the roof of the tea centre at one point.
[The boys and Dad taking in the view]
[The Grands at Boh]
[The biplane making a pass]
We had wanted to visit Kea Farm next, but as we left Sungei Palas it started to rain. So we decided on Big Red Strawberry Farm instead as it was shaded. Somehow, this has become our "must visit" place in Camerons. Julian (and Justin) managed to do their vege inspection, and Angie caught up on some highland retail therapy at their souvenir shop.
We had an early dinner in Brinchang as our package at the lodge did not include the main meals on the second day. We were back at the lodge by about 7pm.
On the second night, the lodge owners were around and we joined them for a video presentation on interesting farming methods while the boys watched TV in the lounge.
On the whole, we enjoyed our stay in the highlands this round. What made this trip different and special was our stay at Moonriver Lodge. It offered an interesting blend of great hospitality (thanks to our host Misha and the lodge owners Albert and Nancy), simplicity, cosiness, and nature to complement the commercial and touristy Cameron Highlands.