Most probably you’ve never heard about Ipoh before. I didn’t know it before my colleague who is from Ipoh told me about it. She said Ipoh isn’t very special and it’s just a very local city. Just what I wanted! I didn’t want to see only the typical sightseeing stuff in Malaysia but explore the authentic life there. I booked one night in Ipoh and got there with a long distance bus from Kuala Lumpur. Once arrived with the long distance bus in Ipoh you need to change to another local bus which brings you to the city center. As I arrived quite late, I just went to my hostel and looked for some dinner. I found a very nice and delicious restaurant with local Malaysian food. More details will follow later. First, I want to tell you my favorite things to do in Ipoh.
My Favorite Things to do in Ipoh
As I said before, Ipoh doesn’t have a lot of sightseeing points. One of the best things to do in Ipoh is to explore the city by foot. I felt in love with the cute, little shophouses there. Ipoh is a mid-size city which has a lot of small coffee shops (Ipoh is famous for its White Coffee. You shouldn’t miss that!) and craft shops within the shophouses.
Start your stroll in the old town with its charismatic laneways and historical buildings. Ipoh is also home of cool street art. There is a trail which passes through all the best heritage structures and street art. You can find a map of the street art walk here:
Another interesting thing to do in Ipoh is Little India with some glittering shops and fine eateries.
If you have more than one day in Ipoh, you can also visit the cave temples which are 5 km outside of Ipoh city. Surrounded by beautiful nature, the Kek Lok Tong Cave Temple is the most popular one. The temple is free of admission. But please be aware to dress properly as it is a holy place.
Where And What To Eat in Ipoh
As mentioned before, I found a very good Malaysian restaurant by a fortunate coincident. Warteg Ipoh has the best local food in town and a super friendly service. The waitress there introduced all dishes to me and recommended her favorites. I can say that everything I’ve tried was delicious. Highly recommended!
Ipoh has some famous dishes you shouldn’t miss:
- Dry Curry Mee – A spicy curry paste on noodles with prawn and chicken
- Ngah Choy Kai – Bean sprouts chicken
- Hakka Mee – Noodles with minced pork… the Malaysian way of Spaghetti Bolognese. Yummy!
- Satay Chicken – Chicken sticks usually served with with peanut sauce
- Wat Tan Hor – Again noodles with a brownish egg sauce
- Golden Char Kuey Tiaw – A combination of yellow mee and kuey tiaw. It’s the Malaysian version of Pad Thai and a must-try
- Mixed Fruit Shaved Ice – Typical dessert in Malaysia. The shaved ice is topped with different kind of fruits, beans and a very delicious sauce.
Where to Stay In Ipoh
I booked the Mari Hostel in Ipoh. The hostel offers a good value for money and the location is good. You find the above recommended restaurant Warteg Ipoh just around the corner as well as plenty of other bars and restaurants. The old town including the murals is a 15 minutes walk away from Mari Hostel.