Ipoh To Cameron Highlands

Despite Cameron Highlands being in another state (Pahang) from Ipoh (Perak), it is still possible to get to Cameron Highlands from Ipoh in 2 hours tops!

How? Locals prefer driving up and if you have your own car and don’t mind windy roads, you can very well drive up too.

But if you don’t have a car, there is always the local bus or renting a car. Or going with a tour package. Read on to find out more – it is easier than it looks!

  1. Self-Drive To Cameron Highlands
  2. Private Car To Cameron Highlands
  3. Public Bus To Cameron Highlands
  4. Ipoh Airport To Cameron Highlands
  5. How To Go From Cameron Highlands To Ipoh
  6. Travel Tips
  7. Frequently Asked Questions

1. Self-Drive From Ipoh To Cameron Highlands

You can bet that many locals will choose to make the journey from Ipoh to Cameron Highlands just to have lunch or breakfast at Ipoh before going up.

The food options in Ipoh are more plentiful (and tastier though we’re also biased) than in Cameron Highlands.

Winding Road On The Way To Cameron Highlands
Winding Road On The Way To Cameron Highlands

Ipoh To Cameron Highlands Distance & Route

There are 2 driving routes to Cameron Highlands from Ipoh. Both routes are prone to landslides during the rainy season.

It’s safer to travel in the daytime rather than in the evenings when heavy rains usually occur.

You’ll also need to be on high alert all the time when turning bends. These get progressively narrower as you go higher up.

getting up to Cameron Highlands
Windy roads are part of getting up to Cameron Highlands

And of the 2 routes, the newer route (via Simpang Pulai) is less windy and slightly shorter.

But you do get to stop by a local hotspot, the beautiful Lata Iskandar waterfall on your way up if you take the old Kampar road (Route 2).

Route 1: Via Simpang Pulai

Ipoh > Kampung Raja > Brinchang > Tanah Rata > Ringlet

Distance: 88.9km
Driving duration: About 2 hours

Tip: Possible toilet stops from Ipoh to Camerons:

  1. Petronas petrol station in Simpang Pulai
  2. Between Simpang Pulai and Cameron Highlands, there is another toilet stop on the left, at Avant Chocolate Flower Nursery.  
  3. Petrol station at Blue Valley Junction to Tanah Rata

Route 2: Via North-South Express Toll Road and Tapah, Perak

Ipoh > Kampar > Tapah > Ringlet > Tanah Rata > Brinchang

Distance: 114km
Driving duration: About 2 hours 40 minutes

2. Private Car To Cameron Highlands From Ipoh

If you haven’t got a car, you can always book a private car together with a guided tour!

And why not, right?

The driver acts as a guide too and can take you to all the spots you want to go to and more. Their experience with the road, weather, traffic, and local driving style will result in a smoother and less stressful journey.

Book a private tour to Cameron Highlands with RayTheTour by sending them a message through WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger.

2.1. Cameron Highlands Tour Package From Ipoh

A typical tour itinerary with RayTheTour begins with a pick-up (anywhere in Ipoh) at 9am. It’s usually a 2-hour trip one way using the new road and with light traffic.

The tour can cover popular attractions like the BOH tea plantation estate as well as the Lavender Garden and a strawberry garden,

Tea house at the Boh Tea Plantation, Cameron Highlands
Tea house at the Boh Tea Plantation, Cameron Highlands

But if you want to customize your tour to begin later (or earlier) so you can visit somewhere else in Ipoh first, then that’s not a problem either!

Free returns back to Ipoh are included in the package on the same date as the tour.

2.2. Advantages Of Taking A Private Car + Tour To Cameron Highlands

  • You don’t have to worry about driving or parking in an unfamiliar place
  • Affordable rates
  • Family-friendly
  • Trip is planned for you
  • Flexible tour itinerary – You can customize your own Cameron Highlands itinerary if you prefer to
  • Comfortable car
  • Pick up and drop off service within Ipoh
  • No need to share the ride with other strangers
  • Cheaper rates for large groups
  • Return trip included
  • You can make a new friend from Ipoh~

2.3. Disadvantages Of Taking A Private Car + Tour To Cameron Highlands

  • Expensive for solo travelers

3. Public Bus From Ipoh To Cameron Highlands

At RM18 to RM20 per person, taking the public bus is the most budget-friendly way to get to Cameron Highlands if you don’t have your own car.

However, taking the bus is at your own risk as the roads are narrow and windy. This is especially treacherous during the wet season.

Unititi Express Bus From Penang To Cameron Highlands
Unititi Express Bus To Cameron Highlands

Duration: Roughly 2.5 hours via Simpang Pulai from AmanJaya Bus Terminal (Ipoh) to Tanah Rata bus terminal (Cameron Highlands)

Note: Heavy traffic can impact this duration greatly.

Daily bus departures from Ipoh to Cameron Highlands start as early as 8:00am with the last departure at 6:30pm.

Update (April 2022): There are 3 departure times now – 12:30pm, 2:30pm and 3pm. This could change as demand for the trips increases. So do check the latest schedule!

Pick up point: AmanJaya Bus Terminal

Drop off point: Tanah Rata Bus Terminal

You should note that:

The AmanJaya Bus Terminal isn’t walking distance to the Ipoh town (or the Ipoh Railway Station) or the Ipoh airport (Sultan Azlan Shah Airport)!

Distance from Ipoh town: 18 minutes drive

Distance from Ipoh airport: 21 minutes drive

3.1. How To Get From Ipoh City Centre To AmanJaya Bus Terminal

You can take a Grab, taxi or the city buses to travel from Ipoh centre to AmanJaya Bus Terminal and vice versa.

AmanJaya Bus Terminal
AmanJaya Bus Terminal at Ipoh – photo credits to thestar.com.my

How about the train?

3.1.1. Ipoh KTM Train Station To AmanJaya Bus Terminal

From Ipoh Railway Station, walk for 500 meters (8 minutes walk) to Medan Kidd Bus Station to catch a bus (RM2) straight to AmanJaya Bus Terminal!

3.2. How To Get From Sultan Azlan Shah Airport To AmanJaya Bus Terminal

Consider the following options to get to AmanJaya Bus Terminal from the Ipoh airport:

  1. Taxi/Grab
  2. Public Bus (myBAS Ipoh) – Take the Route T37 bus to Medan Kidd first. Transfer to either the Route T30a or T30b bus to get to AmanJaya Bus Terminal.

Note: Ipoh has only one airport, Sultan Azlan Shah Airport.

Public Bus myBAS Ipoh
myBAS Ipoh – photo credits to thestar.com.my

Because there is no direct bus:

You may find a taxi or Grab more convenient to get from the Ipoh airport to AmanJaya Bus Terminal!

PS: The bus frequency is 60 minutes too!!

Operation Hours:

T37: 5:40am – 7:00pm
T30a: 6:00am – 9:00pm
T30b: 6:30am – 9:30pm

Click here for more info about the bus route.

3.3. AmanJaya Bus Operators

Bus Operators From Ipoh To Cameron Highlands

There are 5 bus operators that offer transfer services between Ipoh and Cameron Highlands:

  1. GT Bhai Express
  2. Unititi Express
  3. AHMUDI Express
  4. Perak Transit
  5. CS Travel

Check easybook.com or busonlineticket.com for the bus schedule and fare.

Update (April 2022): There are now just 2 bus operators making the journey between Ipoh and Cameron Highlands (CS Travel and Unititi Express). And there are 3 trips per day.

3.4. Advantages Of Taking A Bus To Cameron Highlands

  1. Cheap (if your group has less than 4 people)
  2. Saves you the trouble of driving
  3. Daily buses are available

3.5. Disadvantage Of Taking A Bus To Cameron Highlands

  1. Only one drop-off point (Tanah Rata bus terminal)
  2. Kind of dangerous!
  3. Will bypass Lata Iskandar Waterfall

By the way, hitchhiking is not a common practice in Malaysia.

Further reading:

4. How To Get From Ipoh Airport To Cameron Highlands

There is no flight or train to Cameron Highlands from Ipoh.

Sultan Azlan Shah Airport at Ipoh
Sultan Azlan Shah Airport at Ipoh

But you can take a flight to Ipoh’s only airport, Sultan Azlan Shah Airport from Johor, Singapore, Langkawi, etc.

Followed by the following modes of transport:

  1. Bus (not direct)
  2. Taxi/ Grab
  3. Private tour service

5. How To Go From Cameron Highlands To Ipoh

What about the journey back, you say?

If you’re relying on public transport, the bus is still the cheapest way to go. And there are regular buses from Cameron Highlands to Ipoh.

5.1. Cameron Highlands To Ipoh Distance

The distance between Cameron Highlands and Ipoh by road is ~90km and with little traffic and fair weather conditions, it takes around 2 hours back to Ipoh from Cameron Highlands.

5.2. Cameron Highlands To Ipoh By Bus

5.2.1. Bus Operators From Cameron Highlands To Ipoh

There are a total of 3 bus operators that provide the route from Cameron Highlands to Ipoh.

Update (April, 2022) – There are 2 bus operators now and the departure times are 8:30am, 3:30pm on weekdays and weekends.

Tanah Rata Bus Terminal At Cameron Highlands
Tanah Rata Bus Terminal At Cameron Highlands

Departure point: Cameron Highlands Bus Terminal (Tanah Rata Freesia Bus Station)

Arrival point: Ipoh AmanJaya Bus Terminal

Price range: About RM20

Bus Operators Pick Up Point Drop Off Point
Perak Transit Tanah Rata Freesia Bus Station Ipoh Amanjaya
Nova Highlands Resort & Residence
(Cameron Highlands)
CS Travel Tanah Rata Freesia Bus Station (Counter CS Travel) Ipoh Amanjaya
Unititi Express Tanah Rata Freesia Bus Station (Counter 1 and 6) Ipoh Amanjaya

It should be noted that some bus operators do offer additional departure points as well.

Check with your respective bus operator for more details.

5.2.2. Bus Schedule From Cameron Highlands To Ipoh

Out of all the available bus operators from Cameron Highlands to Ipoh, Perak Transit has the most departure times. With up to 7 departures daily.

See their bus schedule here:

Update (April 2022) – Perak Transit doesn’t cover Cameron Highlands currently. There are just 2 departure times – one at 8:30am by Unititi Express, and the second at 3:30pm by CS Travel & Tours

Tips

  • Have motion sickness pills ready – take one before you go if you’re prone to car sickness.
  • Use the toilet before you board the bus. There won’t be any toilet breaks or stopovers enroute to Ipoh.

5.2.3. Aman Jaya Bus Terminal To Ipoh Town

It happens that Ipoh Aman Jaya bus terminal is not in the city center of Ipoh.

So if you wish to get to the city center (Ipoh town), you can hop on the public city bus from Ipoh AmanJaya Bus Terminal to Ipoh town. It’s definitely cheaper than taking an e-hailing service.

Price range: RM2

5.3. Cameron Highlands To Ipoh Airport

In case you’re wondering:

There is, unfortunately, no direct bus from Cameron Highlands to Ipoh airport.

Ipoh Airport (Sultan Azlan Shah Airport)
Ipoh Airport (Sultan Azlan Shah Airport)

Buses will stop at Ipoh AmanJaya Bus Terminal instead.

From there, you have to take the public city bus to Ipoh airport. Or hire a car and driver via an e-hailing service.

6. Travel Tips

  • Public buses between towns in Cameron Highlands are not reliable. Local taxis can be pricey.
  • It’s best to have your own transport or take a private tour for the utmost convenience when traveling to and around Cameron Highlands.
  • Bring motion sickness pills for the windy drive.
  • Most of the Cameron Highlands attractions are not within walking distance away from each other
  • Ipoh town to AmanJaya Bus Terminal is around a 25 minutes drive.
  • Allow more time for potential delays if you’re taking public transport from Ipoh town to AmanJaya Bus Terminal. It is recommended to take a taxi or e-hailing service instead.
  • There is no express bus from Ipoh airport to Cameron Highlands.
View Of Boh Sungai Palas Tea Plantation Before The Entering The Plantation
View Of Boh Sungai Palas Tea Plantation Before The Entering The Plantation

Read more:

FAQ For Ipoh To Cameron Highlands

Q1: How long does it take to drive from Ipoh to Cameron Highlands?

A1: The road distance between Ipoh and Cameron Highlands is 91.4 km which is about 2 hours’ drive.

Q2: What are the main attractions at Cameron Highlands?

A2: The cooler climate, scenic tea plantations, strawberry farms, and jungle trails.

Q3: Is it dangerous to get to Cameron Highlands?

A3: The old road (via Tapah) frequently has landslides during the rainy season. Larger vehicles use this road too and hence, you have to be alert to look out for oncoming traffic at sharp bends.

Q4: When is the best time to visit Cameron Highlands?

A4: To avoid the holiday crowds and traffic, come during the off-peak season.

Read more: Best Time To Visit Cameron Highlands: Best Month & When Not To Go

Q5: What should I pack for Cameron Highlands?

A5: Bring at least one pair of long pants, socks, and a light jacket or sweater. And comfortable shoes or trekking shoes if you intend to go for the jungle hikes.  A rain parka will be useful during the rainy season.

Read more: 17 Best Hotels In Cameron Highlands

Q6: Is Grab available in Cameron Highlands?

A6: Yes, you can download and use the Grab app in Cameron Highlands. Especially in Tanah Rata. Though you should not expect to find a driver as quickly as in bigger cities. And as you get further from the towns, you might not have a steady signal to rely on.

Conclusion

Getting to Cameron Highlands from Ipoh is a straightforward process! Do as the locals do and drive up.

Or take a bus if you have a tight budget and ample time to allocate as buffer time to compensate for unforeseen delays (e.g. bad weather, high traffic, fallen trees).

You can check out all the available options right here in this post.

Want to explore your options? Check out these posts:

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