How To Go To Ipoh From Kuala Lumpur - Travelswithsun

The journey from Kuala Lumpur to Ipoh is uncomplicated. This is despite the bountiful limestone ranges that surround Ipoh.

Electric trains connect the cities via the West Coastline. While cars and buses can use the North-South Express highway.

Whichever mode of transport you choose, you can expect at least 2.5 hours of travel time!

Table of contents:

What Is The Best Way To Travel From Kuala Lumpur To Ipoh?

If you don’t have your own car (or you’re not willing to drive), the best ways to get to Ipoh from Kuala Lumpur are by train or bus. Trains are comfortable and more dependable than buses. They are not limited by heavy traffic, but they are less frequent than buses.

Buses are the cheaper option between the two. They are often victim to heavy traffic on weekends and public holidays though. For private transport, there are tour services, charter taxis, and e-hailing services to consider.

Birch Memorial Clock Tower In Ipoh
A Famous Ipoh Landmark, Birch Memorial Clock Tower – Photo by Travelswithsun

1. Train

Taking the train is worth considering if you don’t have your own car. And if you want to travel during peak season (e.g. public holidays, weekends, school holidays, etc) because the highway traffic can get out of hand!

Particularly during the longer public holidays like Chinese New Year or Hari Raya. Sometimes it takes more than 5 hours to reach Ipoh because of the traffic! And don’t forget the return journey too.

That said, if you will be travelling during peak season, you will need to book your tickets early. Train tickets are very popular with university students who study in KL, but have hometowns up north.

Ipoh Train Station At Sunset
Ipoh Train Station At Sunset

1.1. Type Of Tickets, Duration & Price

There are different categories for the train according to duration. Of course, the cheapest train (ETS Silver) will make a stop at every station.

The priciest train (ETS Platimum) will only stop at a total of 4 stations! But there is Wi-Fi onboard as well.

CategoryDurationPrice Per AdultPrice Per Child
ETS Platinum (EP)2 hours, 29 minutesRM45RM27
ETS Gold (EG)2 hours, 40 minutesRM35RM22
ETS Silver (ES)2 hours, 50 minutesRM25RM17
Prices here may not be accurate. Do refer to the official KTMB website.


  • Tickets do sell out fast during peak season so keep that in mind and do not book last-minute!
  • Ticket prices and durations listed here are subject to changes by the train operator!
  • Prices listed above are based on a KL to Ipoh one-way trip
  • There is food for sale and toilets onboard the train

The Electric Train Service (ETS) or KTM from KL to Ipoh has several departure points in Kuala Lumpur. But Ipoh Railway Station is the endpoint.

From KL, there are 4 stations to choose from. Tourists will primarily go with the larger stations, like KL Sentral.

Take The Train From KL Sentral

KL Sentral is the largest transport hub in Malaysia.

And while waiting for the departure from KTM KL Sentral to Ipoh, passengers can browse or dine at the mall (NU Sentral) right inside the station!

Sunset View Of Ipoh From The Deck Gastrobar At The Top Of WEIL Hotel In Ipoh
Sunset View Of Ipoh From The Deck Gastrobar At The Top Of WEIL Hotel In Ipoh – Photo by Travelswithsun

Other facilities here include a luggage storage service and a counter for AirAsia flight tickets! Just be wary of pickpockets hiding among the crowds!

  • Journey Duration: ~2.5 hours
  • Cost: ~RM26 to RM37
  • Frequency: 5 times a day, from 8:30am; last train is at 9:40pm

Take The Train From Kuala Lumpur Station

First-timers to Kuala Lumpur often make the mistake of alighting at this older station (Kuala Lumpur Station) rather than at KL Sentral.

The heritage building was once the main train station in Kuala Lumpur. Now, it’s quite empty so if you want to avoid the crowds at KL Sentral, then this is an alternative.

Recent upgrades have improved some of the facilities. Including an area for Wi-Fi connection.

There is no air-conditioning here as the station relies on natural breeze instead.

If you need to withdraw some money, there are ATMs just outside. One of the drawbacks of this station is the excessive day parking fees!

  • Journey Duration: ~2.5 hours
  • Cost: ~RM25-RM35
  • Frequency: 5 times a day, from 8:30am; last train is at 9:40pm

1.2. How To Book A Train Ticket

You can buy tickets from the respective counters at the various stations. But it is advisable to book online instead (or book via easybook). Especially for popular dates and times.

You should book weeks ahead if you’re visiting Ipoh during major holidays (Chinese New Year and Hari Raya).

2. Bus

Taking the bus is the cheapest way to travel between Kuala Lumpur and Ipoh. But it’s also the slowest.

Unless you’re traveling on a public holiday or weekend, the KL to Ipoh bus usually takes ~3 to 3.5 hours to reach Ipoh. Depending on where you’re starting from in KL.

There are more than 20 bus operators that offer regular daily services for this route.

Departure Points (Kuala Lumpur):

  • Puduraya Bus Terminal
  • Hentian Duta Bus Terminal
  • TBS (Terminal Bersepadu Selatan)
Sri Maju Bus Station At Jalan Bendahara, Ipoh Town
Sri Maju Bus Station At Jalan Bendahara, Ipoh Town

Popular bus operators are:

  • Plusliner
  • Sri Maju
  • Transnasional
  • Konsortium Bas Express

Most buses from Kuala Lumpur are air-conditioned and will terminate at Ipoh Aman Jaya Bus Terminal which is 20 minutes’ drive from Ipoh Old Town!

Terminal Meru Raya (Terminal Amanjaya)
Terminal Meru Raya (Terminal Amanjaya)
Ticket Counter At Ipoh Amanjaya Bus Terminal
Ticket Counter At Ipoh Amanjaya Bus Terminal

Note: However, there is one bus operator (Sri Maju Group) that drops passengers closer to Ipoh Old Town & New Town at Jalan Bendahara.

Price Range: ~RM20-40 per person

It is advisable to book your bus tickets way ahead of any public holidays or weekends. This includes school holidays. You can get bus tickets on

Note: Since most buses do not have toilets onboard, the drivers will occasionally stop at rest stations along the route!

3. Self-Drive

Locals will choose this way if they have their own car.

Enroute to Ipoh on North–South Expressway
Enroute to Ipoh on North–South Expressway

It’s convenient, fast between 2-3 hours (depending on traffic and your driving skills), and not that expensive.

The best part is that you can travel at your own pace – stop at Batu Caves or Kellie’s Castle along the way to Ipoh!

Toll fees and petrol should come up to under RM100 one-way.

Exit 138 to Ipoh from North–South Expressway
Exit 138 to Ipoh from North–South Expressway

4. Taxi

Don’t want to drive or take public transport? Convenience and comfort come at a high cost! A one-way 2-hour taxi trip from Kuala Lumpur to Ipoh can set you back for close to RM500!

But you’ll be able to stop anywhere you want. And get picked up directly from your hotel.

5. Private Tour Service

Contact RayTheTour via WhatsApp to book a Private Day Tour In Ipoh or a Private Day Tour In Cameron Highlands.

Pickups are only from Ipoh though. They do not pick up from Kuala Lumpur.

Ipoh And Cameron Highlands Tour - Travelswithsun

The private tours that RayTheTour offers run on a flexible itinerary with typical tour hours of 9am to 6pm. That means:

  • You can choose where you want to go
  • Or leave it to the experienced local guides! Including stops at local venues for meals!

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1: What is the driving distance between Ipoh and Kuala Lumpur?

A1: ~200km. With light traffic, driving takes about 2 hours. It will be longer if you take a bus.

Q2: How Many Days Should You Stay In Ipoh?

A2: The journey from KL to Ipoh takes more than 2 hours. So, we don’t recommend making the trip unless you plan to stay in Ipoh for at least 4 hours. That is a reasonable window to see Ipoh Old Town and at least one cave temple.

But to make the most of your time in Ipoh, look at our suggested itinerary for a full day (or two days) in Ipoh.

Q3: What souvenirs can you buy while in Ipoh?

A3: Ipoh white coffee, peanut candy, and traditional biscuits like heong piah and kaya puffs!

Q4: What is Ipoh famous for?

A4: Tin mining history, British colonial architecture, Ipoh food, cave temples, limestone hills, etc.

Q5: What can you do in Ipoh at night?

A5: Indulge in hawker fare for supper or get a snow beer! Or find one of Ipoh’s hidden cocktail bars! See more suggestions on what do in Ipoh at night.

Ipoh Town Hall Seen From Across The Road (Fountain At Ipoh Train Station) At Night
Ipoh Town Hall Seen From Across The Road (Fountain At Ipoh Train Station) At Night – Photo by Travelswithsun

Q6: Where should you stay in Ipoh?

To save on transport costs, you might want to pick a hotel within walking distance from local eateries. Ipoh New Town is a good location to start with. Apartment homestays are also a popular choice for bigger groups.


Finding transport from Kuala Lumpur to Ipoh is straightforward with the use of daily buses and trains.

The route is popular among locals who crave a taste of the local food and will drive to Ipoh just to go food-hunting on the weekends!

How To Get From Ipoh To Cameron Highlands

For international visitors, Ipoh is a perfect stopping point for anyone interested in visiting Cameron Highlands! It takes 2 hours to reach Cameron Highlands from Ipoh (assuming traffic is not too heavy).

Ipoh Attractions

If you will be in Ipoh for a few days, we highly recommend checking out the local kopitiam culture, some museums and one or two cave temples. Refer to this list of Ipoh attractions for more ideas.

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