Bukit Larut © SRTG
The holiday retreat of Bukit Larut, known formerly as Maxwell Hill, is the oldest hill station in Malaysia and is situated seven miles (12km) from Taiping, at an altitude of 3343 feet (1,019m). Bukit Larut is located in the wettest part of the country and receives a lot of rain, but it is also blessedly cool compared to the lowlands. This peaceful hill station, founded in 1884, has resisted the sweep of commercialism and the limited accommodation and lack of development give Bukit Larut an old-world colonial charm which the more popular and commercial hill stations no longer have; eight charming little bungalows nestled on the hillside provide the only holiday accommodation at the station, which ensures that it can never be overcrowded. The journey to the top of the hill station is an exhilarating climb, through virgin tropical jungle, that can only be undertaken by four-wheel drive; private vehicles are not permitted at the hill station, but there is a Land Rover at the foot of the hill which makes the trip up regularly from 7am to 6pm. From the summit, magnificent panoramic views of the west coast of the Malaysian peninsula, from Penang to Pangkor, can be enjoyed. Bukit Larut is perhaps the most authentic of the hill stations and a delightful place to spend time on a Malaysian getaway.