The tranquil hilltop town with its picturesque surroundings, is definitely the destination for those who seek nature. The cool atmosphere added with the chirpings of the wild birds and the cries of the gibbon add to the charm of this little town dubbed as ‘Little England’.
Fraser’s Hill is named after a Scottish explorer and trader James Louis Fraser who started tin mining and operated a primitive mule train activities in 1890s until the first decade of the twentieth century. However, the Fraser’s legacy came to an abrupt end when he went missing in 1900. In 1910, Bishop Ferguson Davie of Singapore combed the mountains in search of Fraser which proved fruitless but had on the other hand discovered a perfect hill resort and Fraser’s fate still remains a mystery till today.
The ‘Little England’ image comes from the beautiful highland flowers and landscape together with the colonial bungalows left behind by the English administrators. Sitting amidst the Pahang rainforest, at 1524m above sea level, this hill station has innumerable plants, birds and animal species. Consisting of 7 hills, the hilltop town exudes a quiet rustic air, cool throughout the year at an average of 20 degree Celsius. Initially it was an exclusive retreat for the British expatriates but in 1922 it was opened to the public.
Located about 104km, or a mere two-hour drive from Kuala Lumpur, Fraser’s Hill is in Raub district in east coast state of Pahang. Previously the last 8km to Fraser’s Hill known as ‘The Old Gap’ is used alternately every hour by the vehicles going up or down. But now they don’t have to wait for their turn to go up or down because there is a new one-way link road dedicated for uphill traffic while ‘The Old Gap’ is now for downhill traffic.
Once thru ‘The Old Gap’ and into Fraser’s Hill, you will feel as though you have gone back in time, with the granite coloured mock Tudor buildings dotting the landscape. The town is relatively small with much of the activities centered on a market square dominated by an ‘Enlish’ clock tower. Most of the town amenities are housed in colonial styled buildings. Fraser’s Hill has maintained much of its pristine beauty and offers rich flora and fauna for those who seek nature. Plants like bamboo orchid and pitcher plants still strive here. It is well known among bird watchers as the hill is home to more than 250 bird species and the venue for the international bird race for the last two decades.
Here are a few options to travel to Smokehouse Fraser Hill by public transport or Self Driving.
The KTM Komuter’s northern run from Kuala Lumpur reaches Kuala Kubu Baru (KKB), although you’ll need to switch trains in Rawang (platform 2 for trains to KKB) or Electric Train Service (ETS) train from KL Sentral to Kuala Kubu Bharu.
From Kuala Kubu Baru, you can hire a taxi or local driver for the going rate of RM80-RM100 one way. The cheapest option is to arrange with Mr. Kumar or Mr. Samy, to pick you up at KKB train station – he charges RM80 to Rm100 and generally be cheaper than others. It’s always better to book in advance by contacting Mr Kumar @ 012-6945218 or Mr. Samy @ 013-3910651. You may arrange to have your driver pick you up on your return trip.
Getting around Fraser’s Hill, your own car is the best option. However there is no petrol station up in Fraser’s Hill so remember to fill your tank before going uphill.
Leave Kuala Lumpur via the North South Expressway, head north towards Ipoh sign post. Exit the Expressway at the Kuala Kubu Bahru. Proceed toward the toll and turn right at the traffic light where the sign post states Kuala Kubu Bahru. After approximately 15 km you will see a Shell Station on your left side, turn left immediately after the petrol station proceed towards KKB then follow the signage to Bukit (Hill) Fraser. Please note that you are 9km from the summit, from the lower gate called “The Gap”.
Journey time: Expressway – 40 minutes.
From Expressway to Kuala Kubu Bahru – 20 minutes.
From Kuala Kubu Bahru to Fraser’s Hill – 60 minute.
Pleased refer to map attached below.
Apart from your own car, the easiest way is by using taxi from Kuala Lumpur. Normal KL taxis can’t do the trip, but you can arrange one from the Kuala Lumpur at KL Sentral, call Radio Teksi Selangor (tel. 03-26936211) or contact Mr Vincent (tel. 016 6807830 ). You can expect a quote around RM200 for a one-way transfer not including toll charges, but you can always negotiate, and more for a return trip.
Activities at Fraser’s Hill
This hill retreat is becoming a centre for bird watching aficionados. There are over 250 species of local and migratory birds flocking here together. The annual International Bird Race organised yearly on the month of June by the Fraser’s Hill Development Corporation is a collaboration with WWF Malaysia and the Malaysian Nature Society.
There are adventurous jungle trails ranging from half a kilometer to five kilometers long. There are eight well known trails, however only four are still open for public. They are Bishop Trail, Hemmant Trail, Rompin Trail and Abu Suradi Trail. These trails are popular with the birdwatchers and nature lovers however it’s advisable to get a professional guide’s assistance to explore them.
The beauty of Fraser’s Hill is best experience when you walk in the green splendour of a jungle trail. Small animals life like monkeys and squirrels also exotic plants and flowers can be spotted with luck. Jungle trails are graded and marked to indicate the varying degrees of difficulty.
The Jeriau Waterfalls is about 5km from the town centre. From the road, paved footpaths lead visitors to the waterfall. Public visitor facilities include a picnic area, shower rooms and changing area.
Royal Fraser’s Hill Golf Club is the first highland golf course in Peninsular Malaysia. Built on a former tin mine, it’s a short but tricky 9-hole golf course is available at the Royal Fraser’s Hill Golf Club. Its unique feature is the three-tiered 7th fairway, which takes the shape of a man’s body. It then narrows down at the landing area and widens again at the approach of the green. Green fees are RM31.50, from Monday to Saturday and RM42 on Sunday and public holidays.
The cool climate promotes a profusion of blooms in startling shades of colour. Freshly cut roses, dahlia, chrysanthemum, dairies, potted fuchsia or geranium can be bought here however most of them are distributed to florists in Kuantan.
At Fraser’s Hill one may go boating or fishing at Allan’s Water, a former reservoir turned recreational lake. Or you may just stroll along the 2km track along the lake savoring the cool mountain air amidst the lush vegetation.
The paddock at Fraser’s Hill provides horses and ponies for those who want to experience horseback riding in high country. There is nothing like the feeling of the rocking canter of a horse beneath you as the cool and invigorating mountain air whisper past your face.
Horseback riding is one of the most popular activities in Fraser’s Hill. The hire rate is from RM3 for children and RM4 for adult.
Archery is placed near to the horse paddock. Visitors need to pay only RM5 to RM6 per
10 arrows to try their skills.