Sunday, July 25, 2010

Little England, Pahang Malaysia

Where is the "Little England" in Peninsular Malaysia? No.. definitely not Cameron Highlands. This cool, pretty pristine area, i only got to know a little better after this year bird race....

Anybody still want to guess?Hint: unique montane forest.. which can also be found in Pahang and is also pretty close to Cameron Highlands. Every year (without fail), bird race always held there. It's where birders get to spend time searching high and low for low and high montane birds such as Cutia *hint *, Malayan Whistling Thrush *hint*, Silver-eared Mesia *hint*, Lesser racquet-tailed Drongo, Long-tailed Sibia...

Still guessing?
Yes.. it's known as Fraser's Hill (福隆港 in mandarin; Bukit Fraser in malay).

The Lower Gate, Gap (waiting for our turn to go up to Fraser's Hill)

Welcome to Fraser's Hill, Pahang (A Paradise Destination for Birders - Montane birds)

Fraser's Hill has been a popular ecotourism site for local and international visitors. It's not only a place for nature lovers, honeymoon for just married couple or retiree to relax, it's also a place for bird lovers and photographers. A lot of the nature lovers purposely visit Fraser's hill because of the uniqueness in flora and fauna which only can be found in Fraser's hill and also the bungalows.

From my own experience, i've met birders (bird lovers), nature lovers and photographers from all over the countries during bird race to :
1) have a good sight of the fauna eg. montane birds such as silver-eared mesia, silver-breasted broadbill, hornbills (guess which species), Fire-tufted Barbet. It's pretty easy to spot and take a good photographs of birds in Fraser's Hill because the birds are just less than 100m away from you.
2) nice weather as compared to other parts in Malaysia
3) pretty quiet and great place for holiday (get-away from busy-city life).

Number of birds you can find in Fraser's hill: approximately 260 species (such as Silver-eared Mesia, Red-headed Trogon, Long-tailed Broadbill, Silver-breasted Broadbill, Black-headed bulbul, Orange-bellied Leafbird, Mountain Fulvetta (just name a few)).

5 stars birds: Cutia ; Malayan Whistling Thrush (actually a few more..)

Fraser's Hill finally has its own interpretative centre.. just for birds. So if you want to know more about this centre, please proceed to the information centre at Puncak Inn Resort.

Unattractive and Unpleasant about Fraser's Hill
1) Public transport:
It used to have a bus service from Kuala Kubu Bharu. But it had been terminated. The only public transport which is still on service is Taxi which cost a bomb. The only way to travel to Fraser's Hill and within is by having your own car or rent a car.

2) Food:
Trying to get authentic local Malaysian Food is pretty tough in Fraser's Hill. During weekend (especially more tourists), most of the stalls at the food court will open. But during weekday, haha.. let me tell's pretty tough. I remembered my recent trip, i visited the one and only chinese stall in Fraser's hill almost every day (brunch and dinner). Pretty sad huh? There are a couple of malay stalls.. one of the stalls, the service is pretty bad. One of my friends have to wait for half an hour for her fried rice.

As for old english meal, you still can find. Some of the bungalows still serve very authentic old english meal and also the Smokehouse Restaurant. Just be prepared to bring more cash.

International Event
International Fraser's Hill Bird Race:
Falls on the 3rd weekend in June. For more information: visit...

This year's bunting for FH Bird Race. Spot silver-eared mesia and silver-breasted broadbill?

The schedule for this year FH Bird Race. Hooray to all the organisers, sponsors and volunteers from Malaysian Nature Society

How to get there?
By having a car is really convenient or hiring a taxi. This is because taxi is the only public transport available and willing bring visitors to Fraser's hill (beside the shuttle bus service offer by the resorts and bungalows).

Another reason to have your own or rent a car is a brilliant idea is when you want to travel from one birding site to another (such as bishop trail to High Pine Trail or Bishop Trail to Telekom Loop) within Fraser's hill.. it's really helps a lot especially when you try to have a good sight of the birds you have been wanting to see at the best & correct time).

KL - > Fraser's Hill
Follow the North-South Expressway. Then you'll pass through Rawang. Then you turn right which lead you to Kuala Kubu Bharu (KKB) town. Soon after, you'll connect to the highway (which lead to Raub) which can lead you to The Gap. The distance between the Gap and Fraser's hill is about 8km. (GPS coordinates: 3.711867, 101.736448)

Do remember that this 8km narrow road from the Gap to Fraser's hill operated in a "one way basis traffic-gate system". Each gate open for each way is only last 40 minutes. *Take note: Odd hours for traffic going up from the Gap; Even hours for traffic going down from fraser's hill. *

Take note: Do remember to fill up the petrol tank before you head up to Fraser's Hill. There is no petrol station at Fraser's hill. The only nearby one is at KKB.

Where to stay:
There are a lot of preferences for visitors about the accommodation in Fraser's Hill : Bungalows, Resorts and Campsite. I've stayed at Puncak Inn (still brand new as compared to others) which is directly opposite The clock Tower and Bird Interpretative Centre. The other one that i've stayed are Silver Park Resort and Pines Resort. Personally, i prefer Silver Park Resort and Puncak Inn.

That's it.. for my 1st birding site which i've been there for more than 2 times. Can't wait to go there to spot CUTIA.

References for Fraser's Hill
  1. Morten Strange : Birds of Fraser's Hill (Illustrated Guide and Checklist)
  2. Mike Chong and Sutari Supari: Khazanah Burung Bukit Fraser
  3. FHDC Bird Interpretative Centre, Fraser's Hill (Launched at 2010 Fraser's Hill Bird Race).
** Any suggestion or recommendation are most welcome! **

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