Taiping Attractions

For a small town, Taiping has a great deal many attractions to see. We’re not counting food in this post though as that would make this long list much longer.

Most of Taiping’s attractions are outdoors so plan to go on a sunny or cloudy day before a storm hits.

However, there are a few historical gems that don’t require you to be outdoors. So get set to have an amazing day (or weekend) in Taiping!

21 Things To Do In Taiping

1. Admire The Rain Trees And Landscaping At The Stunning Taiping Lake Gardens

You cannot say you’ve been to Taiping without seeing the iconic Taiping Lake Gardens and the majestic rain trees that fringe upon the park.

The Iconic Taiping Lake Gardens - A Must See In Taiping
The Iconic Taiping Lake Gardens – A Must See In Taiping – Photo by Travelswithsun

The vast gardens can be reached from anywhere in Taiping easily with its central location. And there are many entrances to the park.

Allow at least an hour to walk around and see the lake, admire the landscape, traverse the jogging trails, cross the few bridges, spot monkeys, etc.

If there’s time, you can make your way to the jetty and try out the paddle boats.

Seeing that there is no entrance fee and that the park opens at 8am and closes at 10pm so many locals like to go here for their daily exercise.

Read more about Taiping Lake Gardens here.

2. Go For The Night Safari At Taiping Zoo

If you’re staying overnight in Taiping, it’s very well worth getting some tickets for the night safari at Taiping Zoo. Unless it’s raining heavily as the walkways are not sheltered.

The Night Safari Tram At Taiping Zoo
The Night Safari Tram At Taiping Zoo – Photo by Ravindran John Smith 159588474

Because while this long-standing zoo has animals from other countries (e.g., hippos, giraffes and cassowaries), it’s the local wildlife like kancil and orangutan that might interest you.

Generally-speaking, most of the animals are more active in the evening too.

Note: The zoo is currently undergoing some maintenance so some exhibitions may not be open.

Night safari tickets cost RM20/ adult and RM10 for children and seniors.

3. Visit The Perak Museum (Muzium Perak)

Escape the heat of the afternoon with a visit to the Perak Museum in Taiping. This is a family-friendly activity where all ages can learn a little more about Perak and Taiping.

Perak Museum - A Small But Interesting Place To Spend A Hot Or Rainy Afternoon
Perak Museum – A Small But Interesting Place To Spend A Hot Or Rainy Afternoon – Photo by Rushour 156171332

Including a section on the local wildlife in the area!

Note: Not wheelchair or stroller friendly

Perak Museum may not be a huge museum but it’s not expensive to enter (tickets cost RM2/pax or RM1/senior) and it is air-conditioned with numerous bilingual and detailed informative displays.

It might surprise you at how well-kept the museum is! Allocate an hour to fully explore this museum.

4. Check Out The Taiping Prison (Penjara Taiping)

Just opposite the Perak Museum, Taiping Prison is more of a quick stop than a full visit. Visitors can only look at the building from the outside.

Since there aren’t any signboards or information boards, you wouldn’t really know that this is in fact, a historical site in Taiping without first reading about it.

Unfortunately, all of the original records of the prison and its inmates never made it out of the Japanese occupation (1941 to 1945).

However, the structure of the building hasn’t changed much since its construction in 1879.

And you can stop by the souvenir shop here to purchase merchandise that are handmade by the inmates.

5. See The Taiping Old Market (Taiping Wet Market)

More than a hundred years old, the Taiping Wet Market or the Taiping Old Market is currently undergoing renovations with the completion date to be somewhere in 2022.

The market is walking distance to some hotels and you will come across it when you’re driving around the town. It is particularly striking because of its wooden facade.

Before the renovations began, this was a bustling place in the early morning with mainly fresh produce and meat being sold.

Of the two markets in Taiping, Taiping Old Market is considered the wet market.

6. Find The Old Taiping Clock Tower

Taiping actually has a new clock tower but the old Taiping clock tower (built in 1881) is still standing.

The Old Taiping Clock Tower Is No Longer In Operation
The Old Taiping Clock Tower Is No Longer In Operation – Photo by Ravindran John Smith 120834351

However, it has gone into a state of disrepair and the tourist information center that used to be here has closed too.

Despite that, this doesn’t stop tourists from coming to take a photo with the clock tower and its unusual architecture.

You can find the Taiping clock tower at Jalan Kota.

7. Stop At The Old Taiping Railway Station

Another well-known historical landmark in Taiping that has a newer counterpart is the Old Taiping Railway Station.

The Old Taiping Railway Station Shelters Food Stalls Now
The Old Taiping Railway Station Shelters Food Stalls Now – Photo by Ellinnur Bakarudin 173414715

And you might not know this but this was the very first railway station in Malaysia starting from 1885. In the days of tin mining, the route connected Kuala Sepetang (then known as Port Weld) and Taiping.

The original purpose of the train was to carry tin from the mines in Larut to the port to be shipped.

PS: Taiping was once the capital of Perak too.

These days, the Old Taiping Railway Station serves as a food hub with some food stalls and a couple of restaurants to boot.

And just beside it, is the newer Taiping Railway Station that the electric commuter train (locally known as the KTM train) makes a stop at.

8. Enjoy Cool Weather At Maxwell Hill (Bukit Larut)

Put on your hiking shoes and get ready for an early and rewarding trek up to chilly Maxwell Hill – the former hill resort of British colonials who wanted to take a break from the mainland heat.

Bukit Larut or Maxwell hill of Taiping - a town close to Ipoh - see the full list of Ipoh road trips on www.travelswithsun.com
Bukit Larut (a.k.a Maxwell hill) – Photo by Travelswithsun

If you’re not one for hiking, then you’ll have to jostle with the queue to get a ticket for one of the highly coveted slots to ride the jeeps up to hill.

PS: You cannot book the tickets in advance online or via WhatsApp

While there’s frankly not much to do on the Bukit Larut, the climate is noticeably much cooler and even the flora is different.

Pack a picnic and binoculars (for wildlife spotting) to make the most of your time up there. As there are toilets, a playground, and a few picnic tables.

Read more about Bukit Larut here.

Maxwell Hill Admin’s Office:

9. Marvel At The Amelia Earhart Mural

Painted in 2019, the giant mural of American female aviator, Amelia Earhart is relatively fresh so go and see it when you’re in Taiping!

It took 9 days to complete the massive 27m by 12m mural that stretches across the entire side of a building next to the Taiping Hospital.

The mural was painted (and privately commissioned for RM280,000) by Datuk Chen Teck Meng and Khok Chai Ong as a tribute to Amelia Earhart when she stopped in Taiping in 1937 to refuel during her solo attempt to fly round the world.

There is some local discontent as to why the subject matter for the mural was chosen over other historical milestones for Taiping.

Note that this the mural is in an open area that is void of shade or shelter from the elements. But you can park your car at the adjacent car park.

10. Spot The Taiping Hokkien Association Building

For many tourists, the Taiping Hokkien Association Building on Jalan Kota is a tempting location for a selfie. Other than that, visitors can’t freely go into the building.

The prominent building is occasionally the venue for weddings and other events too.

Its purpose dates back to 1918 as the headquarters for the Hokkien Association of Taiping which helped Fujian immigrants (lured by the prospect of making a fortune from the Larut tin mines) to settle.

11. Try Coffee At Aun Tong Coffee Mill

Open for most of the day, you don’t really have an excuse not to visit the Aun Tong Coffee Mill if you have time to spare! And there is no entrance fee!

Antong Coffee Mill Beans for Display
Photo credits to visitmalaysia.info

This is more than a coffee shop as you can witness how they roast and pack the coffee. In fact, the mill has been in operation since 1933.

For tourists, it’s quick stop to get some freshly made traditionally roasted coffee (by charcoal). Sometimes, they have durian coffee for sale too. Just ask the friendly staff.

Besides this, you can get in a few snaps with coffee making antiques and other props.

Note: Coffee tasting may or may not be available

11. Learn The History Behind Changchun Pu Villa (长春圃)

Part of Aun Tong Coffee Mill is dedicated to the Changchun Pu Villa – the history of this place is little known but has great significance.

It was where Sun Yat-sen’s confidante, concubine, and partner during the revolution, Chen Cuifen stayed in Malaysia for many years after her 20-year relationship with Sun Yat-sen ended.

You can learn more about the fate of the mysterious Chen Cuifen through old photographs and newspaper clippings inside the building next to Aun Tong Coffee Mill.

12. Get Schooled At Telegraph Museum Taiping

Due to open again in July 2022 following the pandemic, the Telegraph Museum in Taiping is run by Telekom Malaysia and showcases the history of telegraphs in Malaysia.

The museum has a fine curation of artifacts as well as helpful staff and interactive information boards. And it just costs RM8 (for locals) or RM15 (for foreigners) to enter.

Try your hand at sending an email with a morse code message. It’s a small museum but nonetheless impressive!

However, you can’t bring in any DSLR cameras into the museum.

13. Chill At Warisan Square (Dataran Warisan Taiping)

Not to be confused with the Warisan Square in Kota Kinabalu, the Datara Warisan Taiping is a well-lit public space best enjoyed on Sundays if you would like a livelier atmosphere.

Otherwise, it’s a free space to chill and have a walk in the evenings. Families like to come here to rent electric car rides for the kids.

You can get some pretty cool photographs here if you come during sunset too. And it’s not unheard of to have pre-wedding photoshoots here too.

There are toilets on site too and these are open 24/7.

14. Pay Respects At The Taiping War Cemetery/ Memorial

A war memorial might not be on most tourists’ lists (since it’s out of the town) but the Taiping War Cemetery is well looked after.

Peaceful Atmosphere At The Taiping War Cemetery
Peaceful Atmosphere At The Taiping War Cemetery – Photo by Lcchew 140244939

And without walking in, you can already see the distinct division between the Christian (for British soldiers) and Muslim burial sites (for Indian soldiers).

If the gates are open, you can wander in and read the names and engravings on the gravestones.

It feels very tranquil here, especially at sunrise.

15. Buy Mushrooms At Wonder Farm Mushroom

This next Taiping attraction is a little way out of the town but Wonder Farm Mushroom is not your typical farm as you can learn how to cultivate mushrooms here!

Reishi (Lingzhi) Mushrooms At Wonder Farm Mushroom Sdn Bhd
Reishi (Lingzhi) Mushrooms At Wonder Farm Mushroom Sdn Bhd

However, it’s best to call ahead to make sure they are prepared for your visit!

If you’re just buying mushrooms (or mushroom powder), they are quite affordable here. They have a wide variety of mushrooms too. Including some that you may not have seen in the supermarkets before!

Either way, entry and the detailed tours are free, and it is really interesting to see so many different mushrooms in one place!

16. Explore Kota Ngah Ibrahim

It’s easy to give Kota Ngah Ibrahim a miss if you’re just passing through Taiping. However, you would be missing out on a wonderful place to learn more about the history of this site.

Kota Ngah Ibrahim (Ngah Ibrahim's Fort)
Photo credits to nabielaabdaziz

This was the home (and tin warehouse) of the former Ngah Ibrahim who was actually one of the richest men in Perak in the late 19th century.

The building later served as a teachers’ college and primary school before its current state as a museum.

There is no entrance fee either. And you can include it as part of your driving route to Kuala Sepetang.

Expect to take 20 minutes to an hour to stroll around the place at your leisure.

17. Enjoy Nature At Taman Botani Perak

If you’ve seen Taiping Lake Gardens before, it might interest you to know that there is another nice park in Taiping.

Taman Botani Perak - The Lesser Known Park In Taiping
Taman Botani Perak – The Lesser Known Park In Taiping – Photo credits to ee44 (Instagram)

Taman Botani Perak does have an entrance fee though (RM2/ pax). The shady park is accessible for strollers and it is generally well-maintained.

There are toilets, neat paths and plenty of parking too. For those that want to see flowers, there are not many here and it is mostly greenery.

  • Location: 34000 Taiping, Perak
  • Opening hours: 8:30am to 7pm
  • Driving distance from Taiping town: 8 minutes, 3km

18. Play Golf At Spritzer Eco Park

This small but shaded park that is a distance away from Taiping town has its own on-site café with western meals (STG). The Spritzer Eco Park doesn’t charge any entrance fees.

Spritzer Ecopark at Taiping Town
Photo credits to visitmalaysia.info

It is a comfortable location for a jog or for a walk among trees.

Kids (and adults) can look forward to the small mini golf section (this is a paid activity and costs RM12 for adults or RM8 for kids).

The visitor center is not always open (open on weekdays) but visitors can take a look at how Spritzer mineral water is processed too.

PS: There are sightings of dogs and monkeys here

19. Take Some Photos At Galeri Perbandaran Taiping (First Galleria)

Admittedly, there’s not much to do at (previously named First Galleria) but if you’re looking for a photo opportunity, an old diesel train and a century-old pedestrian foot bridge from Bukit Mertajam make for unique backdrops.

A few years back, there were volunteer-guided tours in the gallery and those were something special and very educational besides. But at the moment, the tours are not running.

20. Gaze Upon St. George Secondary School

St. George Secondary School (or SGI) is an all-boys public school that was founded back in 1914 following a suggestion for a Catholic school for boys.

At the start, the school began in a more modest 3-story building. The structure today combines Neo-Grec and Neo-Romanesque architecture.

Classes are still in session today so you can only see the impressive building from afar.

21. Bukit Jana Fall

Families and nature lovers can visit Bukit Jana Fall for free. From Taiping, it’s a 20-minute drive to the entrance.

Clear Pools At Bukit Jana Fall In Kamunting
Clear Pools At Bukit Jana Fall In Kamunting – Photo by Kamarul Shuib

Getting to this place is easiest by driving. But it is also possible to cycle here. Once you reach the entrance, you do need to walk in.

Note: Save yourself a trip and check the weather before driving all the way here!

With its clean waterfalls and cool shallow pools that are suitable for wading and splashing in, Bukit Jana Fall, Kamunting is an alternative to the Burmese Pool in Taiping which is sadly, in a very sorry state.

There are on-site toilets as well as a hut that can be rented out for RM30/day.

BONUS: Kamunting Lake Gardens (Taman Tasik Kamunting)

Not quite rivalling the beauty of Taiping Lake Gardens, Kamunting Lake Gardens are still a sight to behold.

Beautiful Scenery At Kamunting Lake Gardens
Beautiful Scenery At Kamunting Lake Gardens – Photo by Amir Ash Burn

In comparison to Taiping Lake Gardens, the landscaping is simpler but Kamunting Lake Gardens is still an ideal venue for an evening jog or walk.

Or cycling as there is bicycle rental for children under 12 years old.

You’ll like it if you find Taiping Lake Gardens too busy for your taste.

Conclusion

History buffs and those who like to be outdoors will particularly enjoy their time in Taiping. But Taiping has a few inexpensive family-friendly places to visit too!

Furthermore, many of these Taiping attractions are part of the ambitious Taiping Heritage Trail too.

Read more:

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