The Fraser’s Hill International Bird Race 2019 has been moved to 22 and 23 June, versus having it in the early part of the year. This year also marks the 32nd year that the bird race has been held here in Pahang, Malaysia.
Over the years, thousands of bird watchers and photographers have attended the bird race in Fraser’s Hill, coming from all over Malaysia, neighbouring countries and even from out of Southeast Asia.
Known as the oldest bird watching event in Malaysia, the 32nd Fraser’s Hill International Bird Race is a homegrown name that has captivated not only the locals but the international birders.
Fraser’s Hill International Bird Race 2019
Every year, the Fraser’s Hill International Bird Race is held at the main Fraser’s Hill Clock Tower area, where birders will congregate before the flag off.
VIPs and Tourism Officials are invited to officiate the event, which sees over 100 participants that will explore the cooling highlands here.
Teams of three persons will participate in a two-day race, which lets them travel on foot around Fraser’s Hill. Their objective is to spot the most number of species of birds within the time allocated.
Participants need to register beforehand with Pahang Tourism by downloading the form and submitting it to the tourism board.
Do not be surprised when you see large numbers of bird watchers at popular spots around Fraser’s Hill. Most of the time, they will spot the birds and move on to other locations.
Apart from the bird race, there are also many other activities conducted for visitors and participants, and the overall experience creates one massive bird and nature event.
Fraser’s Hill Bird Photography Contest
For the bird photographers, the competition will be divided into three main categories which are;
Advanced Category – This is for the serious and experienced bird watchers who habitually return to Fraser’s Hill for bird watching.
Novice Category – This is suitable for those who have just taken up bird watching or bird photography as a new hobby.
Local Category – This is created especially for the residents who know the birds’ whereabouts in Fraser’s Hill.
On a side note, they should also open up a special category for social media birding, where participants can actually submit their bird photos on a social media platform.
I hope that they would put this into consideration soon, and more birders, bird watchers, and bird photographers are getting really active on social media.
Activities at Fraser’s Hill Bird Race 2019
Among the many activities listed below, some of them require pre-registering to participate; therefore, you should check which ones you want to participate in.
Bird Race – This is the main event, which requires teams of three and pre-registration. The race starts at 1.00 PM on the 22nd of June and ends at 12.00 noon the following day.
Bird Photography Contest – This is open to anyone, and you can register at the event.
Bird Talk – Bird talks are conducted in the evenings, and guests to share their expertise on various birding topics.
Conservation Talks – Also, another session where conservation for nature and birds are shared.
Exhibition – An exhibition is usually held for bird photography.
Bazaar Vendors – About 15 to 20 vendors promote or sell bird watching equipment, and others include various NGOs, conservationists, and not forgetting the food and drink vendors.
Guided Tours – A free guided tour is available and based on a first-come, first-serve basis, where you need to sign up at the main tent.
Where to Stay at Fraser’s Hill?
If you are planning to stay overnight at Fraser’s Hill, there are a few places you can choose from, but you really need to book well in advance, as during the event, most of the hotels will be fully booked.
Shahzan Inn Fraser’s Hill – Probably the most popular hotel here, as it is located in the town centre, making it convenient for logistics.
Puncak Inn Hotel – This hotel will most likely be the first to be fully booked as it is located smack centre of the event. Most of the officials or participants will stay here. The event takes place in front of this hotel.
Puncak Inn Apartments – For the same brand as above, they also offer apartment-style accommodation, mostly for large groups.
Ye Olde Smokehouse – This one will appeal to those who like a rustic and homely feeling. Ye Olde Smokehouse Frasers Hill is based on the traditional English Mock Tudor cottage style house.
TM Resort Fraser’s Hill Bungalow – A commercial bungalow-style resort that is practical and suitable for all walks of life. This hotel is a trip down memory lane with very 80’s or 90’s style decoration.
Silverpark Apartments – Apartment-style living, effortless and basic. Rooms are so common, do not expect much here. Prices are cheap and usually rented by groups versus singles of couples.
Fraser’s Hill Pine Resort – A 2-Star resort apartment-style accommodation located about 1 kilometre from the event. Also very apartment-style, and suitable for groups.
Bungalows at Fraser’s Hill
Some locals prefer to stay in the old-style colonial bungalows, which are often cheaper but very basic. And in most cases, they contact the bungalows directly to book them.
The Fraser’s Hill bungalows are;
Banglo Bank Pertanian Malaysia
Fraser’s Hill Holiday Bungalow
High Pines Bungalow
Stephen’s Place Bungalow
Can I Make A Day Trip To Fraser’s Hill?
Yes, you can, and it only takes less than three hours to drive up to Fraser’s Hill from Kuala Lumpur. Some people will do this by leaving early in the morning and depart from Fraser’s Hill in the evening.
Please take note that the road up to Fraser’s Hill is winding, and in the mornings, it can get really foggy. Make sure you have your fog lights or enough driving experience to take the trip up.
The road system is pretty good where it is a one-way road up and a one-way road down; hence you need not worry about oncoming traffic once you reach The Gap, which is the starting point up to Fraser’s Hill.
Where Is Fraser’s Hill?
Fraser’s Hill or Bukit Fraser is located on the west side of the state of Pahang. It sits by Pahang and Selangor’s border, and the closest town is Kuala Kubu Baharu in Selangor or Raub in Pahang.
Most visitors will be departing from Kuala Lumpur; hence you will be passing the town of Kuala Kubu Baharu before reaching The Gap and heading up to Fraser’s Hill.
How To Go To Fraser’s Hill?
The best way to travel to Fraser’s Hill is by car. Most locals will self-drive up to Fraser’s Hill from around Malaysia as it is convenient to drive there. The distance from Kuala Lumpur is around 100 kilometres.
If you are a visitor, you can always rent a car and self-drive up to Fraser’s Hill. Car rental companies charge anywhere from RM150 and above per day for a simple basic car.
Please note that there is no petrol station at Fraser’s Hill for those travelling via your own vehicle. This means that you need to fill up your petrol tank at Kuala Kubu Baharu town before proceeding up the hill. Trust me; you must do this.
There used to be a special bus service that goes up to Fraser’s Hill from Kuala Kubu Baharu, using one of those nostalgic and classic buses from the 70s, but I am afraid that service does not run anymore.
How To Go To Frasers Hill From Kuala Kubu Baharu?
If you are taking public transport, it will only stop at Kuala Kubu Baharu or KKB, as it is commonly called. From KKB, there are taxi’s that ferry visitors up to Fraser’s Hill, and this cost around RM80 to RM100 one way and for up to four persons.
If you choose to take the taxi, make sure you negotiate your return trip down with the taxi driver. Or better to get his contact number for this.
Alternatively, you can also ask the hotels to arrange transport back to KKB or even directly to Kuala Lumpur.
Fraser’s Hill International Bird Race Contact Information
No 33 & 33A, ICT Hub (Indian Town), Jalan Putra Square 4,
25000 Kuantan, Pahang Darul Makmur
Tel : 09-568 1623 / 1624 / 7001
If you are new to bird watching or want to know more about this interesting hobby and sport, I would highly recommend you take a trip here during the Fraser’s Hill International Bird Race to see what goes on.
You will definitely learn something, and the cool climate conditions, may even further enhance your interest in bird watching or bird photography. It does not matter if you are young or old or even using a simple camera; the people here are friendly and willing to assist you with questions.
Trust me, as this is the pioneer bird watching event in Malaysia, there will be the who’s who in bird watching here, and it is one of the best places to start. Even I will be there, so I hope to see you at Fraser’s Hill International Bird Race 2019.