Over 200 years ago, before there was anything in Taiping, a man named Long Jaafar hopped on his elephant and went exploring. According to legend, during that fateful trip, Long happened upon a then precious metal, tin. In short order, people heard about the discovery and flocked to the area. Eventually, the region became known as Taiping – meaning “great peace.” And though Taiping has seen its fair share of heartache during the 19th and 20th centuries, today, it is a nature haven that is quickly becoming a hit with travellers from around the world.
Twenty-four hours in Taiping could be the rejuvenating mini break you’ve been craving.
Morning in Taiping, Perak
Rise and shine! You’ve got 24 hours in Taiping, Malaysia – so you’d better wake with the birds. Hopefully, you’ve made arraignments to rent a bicycle for the day. You’ll probably want to grab some rain gear before heading out the door; after all, Taiping enjoys the distinction of being the “wettest” town on the Malaysian Peninsula.
But don’t fret about the rain, because it translates into some of the most stunning natural floral displays in the world.
What is the best way to start your 24 hours in Taiping? Head “downtown” and find a place to indulge in a cup – or two – of antong coffee – a much-loved local beverage. Once you’re sufficiently caffeinated, take a walk through the town centre to experience the hustle and bustle of Taiping. Perhaps peruse Butik Bollywood on Barrack Road, one of the more popular fashion stores in the area.
After soaking in town life for an hour, it’s time to indulge in the tranquillity Taiping has to offer at the famous Lake Gardens, which have been stunning visitors since 1880. Ancient water trees provide a picturesque background – and ample photo opportunities.
Afternoon in Taiping, Perak
After the serenity of the Lake Gardens, perhaps make your way to the Perak Museum, one of the oldest art centres in Malaysia.
If you’re more the outdoors type, spend the afternoon in Bukit Larut – a.k.a., Maxwell Hill. Situated approximately 1200 meters above sea level, Bukit Larut is a nature oasis. A favourite spot for jungle treks and bird watching, the hill resort is relatively unspoiled by modern construction and still features British bungalows and English gardens from the days of colonization. But be warned: you need a permit to bring your own vehicle.
Evening in Taiping, Perak
It’s dinner time! There are plenty of local eateries to choose from, but one of the most popular amongst tourists is a place called Jia Ti Dao – a vegetarian establishment that consistently earns rave reviews on travel review websites. After dinner, walk off your meal at the beautifully manicured Taiping War Cemetery.
Night in Taiping, Perak
To top of your 24 hours in Taiping, be sure to book reservations at the Taiping Zoo’s night safari! It is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and you’re sure to see some exotic animals.
If you find yourself around the Malaysian peninsula, a “balik kampuna” —which is Malaysian for “return to the village” — is a must. So book a hotel in Taiping, and get exploring!