If you’re planning to stay in one of the many Malaysian hotels on your next trip to Ipoh, you might be wondering what you can do in this small but fascinating city. Located in the centre of the Malaysia peninsula, Ipoh features many interesting caves, temples and historical sites that are perfect for cultural travelers. Here’s our top 5 attractions in Ipoh.
Lost World of Tambun is a family theme park that’s perfect for a day just for the kids. The water park features hot springs and some slides, and a great river ride for the kids to enjoy. There’s a mini-zoo and a picnic area where the family can see and hear some Malaysian wildlife. It’s a great daytrip (or you can stay overnight, too) for the whole family.
This Christian institution founded by the Lasalle brotherhood in 1912 is a famous historical landmark in Ipoh. It first started as a small school in a bungalow, but quickly grew to bigger proportions as the Christian student population grew. The Gothic architecture is almost unique in Asia (only 3 such buildings were built in the entire continent) and has a fascinating history that changes between school, British army hospital and Japanese military base. A must for architecture and history buffs!
This park is probably the most famous public park in Ipoh, and also the biggest. Situated in the heart of the city, this park is a green oasis for Ipohans and tourists alike. There are some playing fields, lakes with pedal boats for rent, nice paths for walking and little pavilions everywhere. The Japanese-style garden is perfect for a romantic walk or a nice family picnic. There’s even a kid’s playground if they get too restless. Perfect for a quiet day in between more busy attractions.
It’s rare that museums are free of charge, but this one is. This museum features exhibits about local history: the city’s foundation and development, the mining industry and the forestry industry. The building itself is a piece of history, as it was built for Malay dignitaries until the British transformed it into a fortress and war shelter. Fascinating stuff for the history lovers!
A trip to Ipoh is wasted if you don’t take some time to visit the Gua Tempurung caves. Part natural wonder and part religious site, these caves are probably the best-known attraction of Ipoh. Entrance is free, but paying for a guide is recommended. Bring good walking shoes (the caves are extensive) and possibly a change of clothes. There are 1600 steps to climb if you want to go all the way up!
As usual, it’s always good to take out travel insurance before going overseas, especially if you want to try spelunking in the caves. Ipoh is small but has tons of things to do and see, and we promise you won’t be disappointed with our top 5!