Thinking about making a trip from Penang to Ipoh? Ipoh like Penang, is famous for food and British colonial architecture. But that’s where the similarities end!
Ipoh’s gorgeous limestone hills set it apart in this side of Malaysia. You can see them as you approach Ipoh via the North-South Highway from Penang!
Depending on where you start from in Penang, there are several options when it comes to taking public transport. And that’s what this post will be about!
Table of contents:
- Penang To Ipoh By Train
- Penang To Ipoh By Bus
- Self-Drive From Penang To Ipoh
- Private Tour From Penang To Ipoh
- Frequently Asked Questions
Penang To Ipoh By Train
Travelling from Penang to Ipoh by train can be faster than driving to Ipoh! Especially on those busy public holidays!
The trains typically take ~1 hour, 40 minutes and up to 2 hours.
And you will end up right in Ipoh Old Town as the Electric Train Service (ETS) stops at Ipoh Railway Station!
Type of Tickets, Duration & Price:
Prices for the KTM from Penang to Ipoh may vary according to the train category.
|Train Category||Duration||Price Per Adult||Price Per Child|
|ETS Platinum (EP)||1 hour 40 minutes||RM42||RM25|
|ETS Gold (EG)||1 hour 40 minutes||RM33||RM21|
|ETS Silver (ES)||n/a||n/a||n/a|
Where To Buy Train Tickets To Ipoh:
Go online to buy tickets. Or head to their physical counter (KTM Office) at the Penang jetty. Which Penang locals often prefer (for convenience) over the KTM counter in the mainland at Butterworth.
Butterworth To Ipoh By Train
Because the train is not connected to the island:
The closest station to Penang Island is the Butterworth Railway Station. Which is on the mainland, and not on Penang Island!
So you’ll need to arrange another mode of transport for that! More details further down!
Penang To Ipoh Train Time
The following schedule is applicable starting from 1 Dec, 2019:
|Butterworth||Bukit Mertajam||Nibong Tebal||Parit Buntar||Taiping||Kuala Kangsar||Sungai Siput||Ipoh|
|5:15 am||5:26 am||n/a||5:43 am||6:12 am||6:28 am||n/a||6:57 am|
|6:05 am||6:16 am||n/a||6:33 am||7:02 am||7:18 am||n/a||7:47 am|
|7:30 am||7:41 am||7:53 am||7:57 am||8:26 am||8:42 am||8:54 am||9:12 am|
|1:10 pm||1:21 pm||n/a||1:38 pm||2:07 pm||2:23 pm||n/a||2:52 pm|
|4:00 pm||4:11 pm||n/a||4:28 pm||4:57 pm||5:13 pm||n/a||5:42 pm|
|6:33 pm||6:44 pm||n/a||7:01 pm||7:30 pm||7:46 pm||n/a||8:15 pm|
For the latest schedule, head to the main website.
How To Go To Ipoh From Penang Island By Train
As you can see from the schedule, there are less than 10 departures a day from Butterworth Railway Station.
Half of which are in the early morning.
Which leaves you with few after-lunch options unless you don’t mind starting your journey in the early hours of the morning!
Just remember that you still have to get to Butterworth Train Station from Penang Island!
Consider doing so a day ahead to cut out stress during your trip!
So how do you go about this first leg of the journey (Penang Island to Butterworth)?
Step 1: Take A Taxi Or Ferry From Penang Island To Butterworth Train Station
There are 2 different ways:
- Taxi – Right from your hotel; costs ~RM30-40 from George Town to Butterworth, 30-40 minutes
- Ferry (Rapid Ferry) – 20 minutes’ ferry ride for ~RM1 from Pangkalan Raja Tun Uda Ferry Terminal (10-20 minutes’ walk from George Town) to Pangkalan Sultan Abdul Halim Ferry Terminal in Butterworth
Step 2: Take Train (ETS) From Butterworth To Ipoh
Butterworth Railway Station is next to the port for the car ferry. A 10 minutes’ walk actually.
There is an air-conditioned waiting room that you can use while you wait for your train.
Maybe you’re thinking that taking the train is too much hassle:
Penang To Ipoh By Bus
Of course, there’s always the option of taking a bus!
There are regular bus services from both Penang Island and Butterworth.
But the buses will drop passengers off at Ipoh AmanJaya Bus Terminal. And not in Ipoh Old Town, where all first-comers should be!
Getting to Ipoh Old Town will then require either a 20-minute taxi ride. Or a ride on the local bus from Ipoh AmanJaya Bus Terminal to town.
Price range: ~RM15-30 per person
Book bus tickets on:
Penang Island To Ipoh By Bus
No need to worry about not finding a suitable time to leave. There are plenty of Pick Up Points for direct bus routes from Penang Island to Ipoh!
|George Town||Island||~10 times/day|
|Sungai Nibong||Island||~20 times/day|
Different bus operators have different pick up points on Penang Island.
|Bus Operators||Pick Up Point||Drop Off Point|
|Sri Maju Group||Sungai Nibong||Ipoh AmanJaya|
|Ipoh – Jalan Bendahara|
|Billion Stars||Penang Komtar||Ipoh AmanJaya|
|NEW ASIAN||Penang Komtar||Ipoh AmanJaya|
|Unititi Express||Penang Komtar||Ipoh AmanJaya|
|CS Travel||Sungai Nibong||Ipoh AmanJaya|
|Perak Transit||Sungai Nibong||Ipoh AmanJaya|
Butterworth To Ipoh By Bus
If you don’t mind hopping on a ferry from George Town to Butterworth:
You can take a shorter bus ride from Butterworth to Ipoh! Buses are more frequent here too.
|Chai Leng Park – Caltex||Mainland||<2 times/day|
|Penang Sentral (Butterworth)||Mainland||>20 times/day|
If you refer to the table below, there is just 1 bus operator (NEW ASIAN) that picks up passengers from Chai Leng Park (Caltex).
|Bus Operators||Pick Up Point||Drop Off Point|
|Sri Maju Group||Penang Sentral||Ipoh AmanJaya|
|Ipoh – Jalan Bendahara|
|Konsortium Bas Ekspres||Penang Sentral||Ipoh AmanJaya|
|NEW ASIAN||Chai Leng Park – Caltex||Ipoh AmanJaya|
|Unititi Express||Penang Sentral||Ipoh AmanJaya|
|KPB Ekspress||Penang Sentral||Ipoh AmanJaya|
|CS Travel||Penang Sentral||Ipoh AmanJaya|
|Perak Transit||Penang Sentral||Ipoh AmanJaya|
|Express Kesatuan||Penang Sentral||Ipoh AmanJaya|
|Transnasional||Penang Sentral||Ipoh AmanJaya|
|Cepat & Cekap Express||Penang Sentral||Ipoh AmanJaya|
|Jengka Liner||Penang Sentral||Ipoh AmanJaya|
Self-Drive From Penang To Ipoh
If you choose to drive all the way, you’ll have to cross one of the two bridges that connect Penang Island to the mainland.
Regardless which bridge you choose, you will continue the drive via the North-South Highway (E1). Where you can expect 2 to 2.5 hours on the road.
Route 1: Old bridge
- From an industrial site with many factories and workers
- Avoid during lunch hours and rush hour
- Shorter bridge crossing
- More time on the North-South Highway
Route 2: New bridge
- Longer bridge crossing
- Bridge toll fee is higher
- Usually less traffic on this bridge
- Less time on the North-South Highway
Private Tour From Penang To Ipoh
Want a local’s point of view while you visit Ipoh?
Take a private tour in Ipoh with Travelswithsun/RayTheTour to see:
For 4pax to 5pax, we offer the following package:
Day 2: Ipoh day tour
Day 4: Cameron Highlands to Kuala Lumpur transfer with some sightseeing along the way
Price range: ~RM2800 (RM180/person/day for 4 pax group) total for transport and sightseeing every day with a private guide!
Penang To Ipoh By Flight
There are currently no flights between Ipoh and Penang. The distance is just not economical for a commercial flight!
Frequently Asked Questions About Getting To Ipoh From Penang
Q1: What is the driving distance from Penang to Ipoh?
A1: ~124 kilometers.
Q2: Is Ipoh worth visiting?
A2: Yes, Ipoh offers a different scene from Penang. Tin mining history, abundant cave temples among the limestone hills to explore, Kellie’s Castle and, it is the birthplace of Ipoh white coffee!
Q3: What can I buy in Ipoh?
A3: Get Ipoh pastries and white coffee powder fresh while you’re in Ipoh! These make welcome Ipoh souvenirs to bring home!
Q4: What is Ipoh known for?
A4: Ipoh is most famous for Ipoh food. An endless list of commendable hawker centers and kopitiams make it hard to decide which to try first!
Q5: What is there to do in Ipoh at night?
A5: Ipoh nightlife leans towards a slower pace. Have delightful snow beer or a cocktail at one of the new hidden bars around Ipoh Old Town! There are a couple of night clubs too if you really want to dance!
Penang is an island and with that in mind, it takes a little more effort to get from Penang to Ipoh via public transport.
Driving is a preferable option as you won’t have to make any unnecessary transits or stops!
Or you can take a tour package that includes the transfer from Penang to Ipoh! Stopping along the way to see an orangutan sanctuary!