You’ll find a variety of Ipoh attractions within the city limits. Tour the Old Town to see the well maintained, white neo-classical buildings built when many British tin mining companies were doing a booming business here. Both Ipoh Town Hall and its railway station are in this style. Gunung Lang Recreational Park is a nice natural reprieve that has a cool boardwalk over the edge of a lake with small limestone formations, an artificial waterfall, boat rides, and viewing towers to take in the lush gardens and hillsides from on high. A fun attraction, but it doesn’t come close to matching what you’ll find outside Ipoh.
Gua Tempurung is the best introduction to the many caves in Ipoh. It is one of the longest on Peninsular Malaysia at three kilometres, half of which has a river. Part of it has been turned into a show cave, which actually enhances the experience rather than taking away from it. Moody orange lighting illuminates the limestone walls, stalactites and stalagmites, while walkways make it easier to enjoy the tour without worrying about your footing. Daring travellers who want more excitement and a challenge will opt for some of the different tours that plunge deeper into the dark cave system.
You don’t have to make the 20-kilometre trip to Gua Tempurung to get a cave experience. Just come to Sam Poh Tong (Cavern of Triple Gems), which is a collection of temples perched on an untouched mountain in southeast Ipoh. First you will pass Ling Sen Tong, a temple often hazy with incense smoke, before reaching Nam Thean Thong, which has a set of stairs that climbs through the mountain to a gorgeous viewpoint on the other side – tiring but worth it. Your real reward for scaling the hundreds of steps will be Sam Poh Tong Temple itself. With its bonsai trees and quiet fish pond, the entrance will definitely fascinate you for at least a few minutes, before you enter the tunnel and emerge in an opening with limestone walls on every side. This is where the peaceful temple sits quietly next to a tortoise pond, a beautiful structure with red roof trimmings on its many levels. It is a very spiritual place, especially when the light cascades through the stone formations.
On top of all this caving, you can also find white-water rafting tours, abseiling activities and trekking in the Perak province. One of the best ways to find out about trails is to ask the locals. There are all levels of difficulty depending on how much of a challenge you want.
You don’t have to be fearless to have an adventure in Malaysia, just get yourself to Ipoh! Book your flight to Malaysia and take your pick from Ipoh accommodation selection to get started.
Hotels in Ipoh start at AU$16 per night. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.