That fact that we have a car now allows us a bit more freedom to explore the wonders of our adopted country. This was a long weekend and although Steve still has a lot to do to wrap up the semester, we were able to get away for an overnight excursion to the Cameron Highlands. We stayed at Bala’s Chalet which is one of the oldest colonial buildings in the Highlands. Built during the pre-war era it has been preserved in its original structure. It originally opened as a boarding school in 1934 for European expatriate children and its owner and headmistress, Miss Griffith Jones O.B.E. passed on her love for nature by preserving the school’s surroundings in its natural habitat.

It’s present owner, a local gentleman, bought the property after the school closed down and turned it into a guesthouse and has carefully preserved the original Tudor concept. The peace and tranquillity combined with the natural surroundings in the cool Cameron Highlands climate make it a great place to escape for a weekend. The rooms are maintained in the style of the original decor and furnishings so are very quaint.

Although the hotel was quite full, the chalets are built at various levels up the side of the hill and there are multiple little nooks and crannies, balconies and little gardens to sit quietly in. Following a lovely Indian dinner, which the hotel is famous for, we had the conservatory to ourselves for the entire evening. Our friends, Peter and Joan are wonderful travel companions and we thoroughly enjoyed our time together.

The view from our window was breathtaking and it was a marvel just to explore the gardens and the amazing flowers that grow everywhere, including on the tile roofs. Although we were only there one night, we came away feeling very refreshed and ready to face the challenges of the month ahead.