Day 1: Ipoh mali
So y’all have arrived in Ipoh? Hot ha? Make sure you’re there by around 11 am. If you took the train, then that’s even better because there is something called the Ipoh Heritage Trail and you can begin from there.
You can walk around and take a tour of the Old Town on foot. It will take about 1 – 2 hours to complete. There are many historical buildings to see and pose in front of. That’s the Birch Memorial Clock tower below. You will think you’re stuck in the old times if you choose to follow this tour.
If you have done the Penang Heritage Trail then you will absolutely love the Ipoh version. Be sure to have your camera! You will also find a lot of murals on this walk so let’s see how many you can find!
View the map below to see how to navigate the Trail. Thank heavens for Google maps!
I’m sure you will be hungry by the time you are done. Don’t worry because Ipoh is a food haven. There is food everywhere. I will let you discover that for yourself.
When you are done, you can head over to Kellie’s Castle. An actual castle you say? YES. It’s rumoured to be haunted as well. It’s an unfinished/ruined castle which is a remnant of the British colonial past located at Batu Gajah which is roughly half an hour’s drive from Ipoh. It’s been used for film sets too. You will be here for an hour or so. It closes at 6pm so make sure you don’t arrive later than that. I’ll admit, I was kinda spooked when I first came here. There was something so eerie and mysterious about the place.
Since it will probably be late afternoon, more towards the evening, let’s talk about where to stay. Head back to town and rest your weary bodies. We aren’t trying to break the bank here. We are students after all. We have books and stuff to save money for, right? I will give you the top best places I stayed in during my Ipoh adventures.
- Shamrock Guest House (rated best location in Ipoh for tourists)
- Bed & Bike Backpackers Studio (yes, they have bicycles to rent here too.)
- Heritage Hotel Ipoh (right next to an Equestrian club, go check out some horses)
- Le Metrotel (near a lot of famous eateries)
- Sarang Paloh Heritage Stay (my personal fave and a bit on the higher end price wise)
These places are in the RM130 to RM300 price range for your trip (2 days, 1 night) and prices are based on 3 guests. You can also check the web for other places as well. When you are all settled in, grab dinner and call it a night because the next day is gonna give you a work out!
Day 2: Spelunker’s Delight
Rise and Shine! Let’s make it 7am, okay? I mean it! There is much to do on this day. Ipoh is not for the sleepy. We are going caving today. Head out and stuff yourselves with a hearty breakfast. Please don’t eat nasi lemak. You will just feel sleepy afterwards.
We need to travel to a Gopeng, a place just outside Ipoh. Gopeng is considered a small town but it has a LOT to offer.
I present to you, Gua Tempurung! Nice day for spelunking in the largest natural limestone cave in Peninsular Malaysia. Let’s go! You need to be here at least around 10am. They close around 3.30pm.
There are 4 types of adventures:
- Golden Flowstone – which is dry and takes about 40 minutes to complete
- Top Of The World – also a dry adventure which takes about 1 hour and 45 minutes.
- Top Of The World & Short River Adventure – a wet adventure and takes roughly 2 hours and 30 minutes.
- Grand Tour – the most challenging adventure: be prepared to be totally wet and it takes 3 hours and 30 minutes to complete.
Before you decide to head over for some caving, you will need to make sure you packed the right attire. Try something sporty and quick drying. You will sweat and get wet (depending which tour you chose). Bring a torch light so you can see how awesome it is inside. You might want to bring a water proof bag for your expensive iPhones and Samsung edges if you decide to opt for tours 3 and 4.
Must go: 5/5 if you want to experience army crawling in the dark! You will need a change of clothes after toughing it out in here!
Take this as training for Lubang Nasib Bagus aka the Sarawak Chamber (in the deep dark hills of Sarawak. Come back in a few months and read about my trip there!).
You will never underestimate caves again after this. This expedition will have you ready for a good lunch!So you should be done by about 1pm. Hungry?! There are stalls outside Gua Tempurung so get some protein in you. The day is not over! We have a few hours to burn before heading back home.
Next up is Geruntum Falls. It’s half an hour away from Gopeng town. The good thing about Malaysia is that there are so many waterfalls to visit. Only this time, we are going waterfall abseiling.
I recommend making arrangements with an adventure company in order to experience the abseiling. There a few companies that make this possible but I had a wonderful experience with Riverbug Asia. Check out this link for more about this company (https://goo.gl/bLiqCi). The cost is RM110 and it’s worth every penny!
This waterfall is about four storeys high. Great for a beginner like you. You will go through a briefing on safety (thirty minutes of “don’t detach the safety hook” type of talk). Then you will be about an hour or more of pumping adrenalin and screaming for dear life!
It’s much more challenging than it looks. It’s absolutely crazy. Water hitting your face harder than ya mama ever did. Don’t try doing the dab as you go down. This is also not time to take a selfie for the Gram or Snapchat! Get your friends to take photos for you. Send your images/flicks and you could be featured on our Instagram page!
Abseiling plus Waterfalls = HELL YEAH!!! I really don’t have to say anything here. Just thank me later!
This activity will take about 2 hours to complete. By the time you are done, I am dead sure you will be too tired to do anything. Totally worth it! Stay hydrated by the way. What a way to end your last day. It’s time to head on home.
One more Special: Lost World of Tambun
You can’t go to Ipoh and say you went to Ipoh without visiting the Lost World of Tambun. I’m sure you have been to Sunway Lagoon in Kuala Lumpur. The Lost World of Tambun is the big brother! Just be prepared for the heat. So if you have another day to spare, spend it here before you head back home.
This huge theme park consists of the Water Park, Amusement Park, Tiger Valley, Tin Valley, Adventure Park, Petting Zoo and the Hot Springs & Spa. All of these except the Hot Springs close at 6pm. There is so much to do here. If you find kids disgusting and stuff, this place is not for you. It’s full of family and love! See all you can do there@ https://goo.gl/Tvm9PC .
Experience the typical setting of a street in Ipoh (Old Town). Plenty of Perak cuisine to go around too! You will really feel lost in time here.
They have their very own Tiger Valley! This is not “Cats the Musical”. Watch tigers play up close in the afternoon and you can see them eat too.
“Have a break, have a Kit Kat relax in a hot spring. Yes, they got that too. 42 degrees Celsius…oooouiiee!
So never ever let someone tell you that Ipoh is boring. They are lying! Get your friends and go and discover the greatness out there. Be safe and never go somewhere unplanned. If you have been to these places already or you have more time on your hands, you can always find out more @ http://www.malaysia.travel/en/places. Click “BY STATES” and select Perak (where Ipoh is located) and you can see more attractions. See ya soon!