Kuala Kangsar - the Royal City
Kuala Kangsar is located near Taiping and Ipoh and about 90 km from Pangkor island. As a royal city there's a few not to miss sites to visit.
There are a few options to cycle to Kuala Kangsar. If you come from either Betong or Penang via Baling, check these page for details:
If you come from Penang, you will stay most likely in Taiping, and continue to Kuala Kangsar this way:
For more ideas how to continue from Kuala Kangsar, check my Cycling in Perak page.
So what is interesting in town?
The town center is quite small but it stretches a little out in especially the western direction to Taiping for some kilometers.
It's why I always advice those who come from the north to skip the last part of road 76 and take the junction to Sauk (A11, which is a much more attractive road), plus... the last kilometers on road 76 do go quite a bit up and down.
There are a few hotels in Kuala Kangsar (Double Lion is OK). Although you can get a decent meal in town, it's not as extensive or as good as for example in Taiping or Ipoh.
The golden domes are a well known landmark in Malaysia. It is said to be one of the most beautiful Mosques in Malaysia. The Mosque was build by the government architect AB Hubback. You will find Moorish as Mogul style elements back in the design.
The Ubiah Mosque is certainly worth the effort to go there.
The Sultans palace is nearby, you won't have a nice clear view of the palace from nearby but if you cycle out of town to Ipoh, you might have some decent views from the opposite riverbank.
On a short distance from Ubiah Mosque is Sultan Azlan Shah Gallery. This is another former palace which was called Istana Hulu or Istana Kota. It was build in 1903 during the reign of the 30th Sultan of Perak. Today the Gallery features many faces by the now Sultan of Perak: books, souvenirs, etc.
In the area around the Sultans palace and the Ubiah Mosque you can find many heritage houses. Some are nicely restored to its former glory, others could have been done better. The house in the photo above is over 100 years old but I feel the restoration is so so done.
The Istana Kenangan is also known as Istana Lembah dan Istana Tepas. It was built as a temporary mausoleum for Duli Yang Maha Mufia Sultan Iskander Shah (Marhum Kadasallah) while awaiting the completion of Istana Iskanderiah.
Build in 1926, it is now converted into the Royal Perak Museum. It is worth a visit showing plenty of artifacts.
In the city center you will find several reminders of the military existence in town.
Kuala Kangsar has a small Christian community with a nice church next almost next to the main bus station in town.
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Taiping, city of everlasting peace
My favorite city in Perak is Taiping. It's still a very relaxed little town with a zoo, Lake Gardens, Bukit Larut and more.
River trekking Taiping
We did a river trekking in Taiping, a fantastic experience wading through a local fast flowing (and quite cool) river
Taiping to Ipoh
Two roads are possible to cycle from Taiping to Ipoh, one is the #1 going to Kuala Kangsar and north out to Ipoh, the other leads through Bruas.
A third one goes from Kuala Kangsar south to join the Bruas - Parit road.
Cycling in Perak
Perak is for many travelers merely a passing by, either on the way to Cameron Highlands, Penang or Kuala Lumpur.
For cyclists it is a very interesting state. With mostly flat roads and enough to keep you busy for a week or so, Perak has more then it gets:
South Perak does not include many places worth a visit but Teluk Intan should have your attention. Not only for the famous Leaning Tower but also for it's long and very visible history: