3D2N Ipoh Itinerary — As Recommended By A Local

Last month, we were looking for a last minute weekend getaway and settled on Ipoh since the flights were affordable. Here’s our 3D Ipoh Itinerary:

As we booked and packed for this trip within 12 hours, most of these were recommended by the owner of the hotel we stayed at.

Ipoh Railway Station – Ipoh itinerary
Ipoh Railway Station

Day 1

Route: Arrive – Lunch at Nam Heong – Concubine Lane – BookXcess – Ho Yan Hor Museum – Dinner at Hillview Cafe – Dessert at Fujiwara Tofa Shop

Kedai Makanan Nam Heong (南香茶餐室)

Kedai Makanan Nam Heong – Ipoh Itinerary
Kedai Makanan Nam Heong Shopfront

Ipoh is well known for its food, so what better way to kick off the trip than to have a meal at Kedai Makanan Nam Heong. Nam Heong is a coffee shop known for its Dim Sum and also believed to be one of the pioneers of white coffee in Ipoh. Besides Dim Sum and coffee, Nam Heong is also home to a number of hawker stalls that sells curry mee, char kway teow and economic rice — to name a few. We visited on a weekday during lunch time (around 12pm) and waited about 10 minutes before we got a table.

Food we ordered at Kedai Makanan Nam Heong – Ipoh Itinerary
Food we ordered at Kedai Makanan Nam Heong

We ordered prawn mee, char kway teow, iced coffee, an egg tart and siew mai to share. The char kway teow and egg tarts really stood out to me. The kway teow was Q (bouncy) and the custard of egg tarts were the right amount of sweet, tasted really good when eaten warm. The coffee was alright, I preferred the coffee from the shop across the street, Kedai Kopi Sin Yoon Loong.

Address: 2, Jalan Bandar Timah, 30000 Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
Opening hours: 8am – 5pm


Kedai Kopi Sin Yoon Loong (新源隆茶餐室)

Kaya Toast and 2 cups of Iced White Coffee at Kedai Kopi Sin Yoon Loong
Kaya Toast and Iced White Coffee at Kedai Kopi Sin Yoon Loong

Kedai Kopi Sin Yoon Loong is as equally popular as Kedai Makanan Nam Heong and with both just opposite each other, you can decide which you want to eat at for yourselves.

I only had iced coffee and kaya toast at this spot as I did not have enough stomach space for more food when I visited. I preferred the coffee at Sin Yoon Loong as it was more aromatic that the one at Nam Heong, which tasted slightly flat.

The house-made custard caramel seemed to be popular with patrons, so it could be something worth trying.

Address: 15A, Jalan Bandar Timah, 30000 Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
Opening hours: 6am – 5pm

Concubine Lane (二奶巷)

Concubine Lane (二奶巷)
Concubine Lane (二奶巷)

A short 5-minute walk away from Nam Heong and Sin Yoon Loong, Concubine Lane, now Lorong Panglima, is a narrow lane of shops. This lane reminded me of Taiwan shopping streets and sold mainly apparel, though there were a few eateries too.

Nearby are also:
Wife Lane (大奶巷), now Lorong Hale and
Second Concubine Lane (三奶巷), now Market Lane

A well-known mining tycoon, Yao Tet Shin, gifted 3 of these lanes to his 3 wives. Each wife managed their own lane and collected rental from the shop owners there.

Since Wife Lane (Lorong Hale) was gifted to his wife, one might think it would be the busiest and liveliest street, but Concubine Lane (Lorong Panglima) actually houses the most shops. Wife Lane was basically deserted when I visited.

Second Concubine Lane (三奶巷)

Second Concubine Lane also had nothing except Nam Chau Coffee Shop, which is pretty well known for their white coffee.

Note: Most shops in the Concubine Lane area close around 5pm, do visit the area early.

BookXcess

BookXcess is location in a building that used to house one of Ipoh’s busiest bank that now has been transformed into a bookstore. This spot is worth a stop even if you are not a bookworm. The store has preserved the old bank’s vault in its basement and it’ll definitely be a unique shopping experience.

Neon signs in BookXcess
Neon signs in BookXcess

Address: No. 91, Jalan Sultan Yussuf (Belfield Street), 30000 Ipoh, Perak
Opening hours: 10am – 8pm
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Ho Yan Hor Museum

This museum is dedicated to sharing the stories of the beginnings of Ho Yan Hor, a herbal tea brand and its founder Ho Kai Cheong. This museum is being housed in the original shophouse that Ho Kai Cheong stayed in Ipoh. You’ll not only learn about the life of Ho Kai Cheong, but also see artefacts like old furniture, pretty cool if you want to take a walk down memory lane as many of these items were used in the past in Singapore as well.

Display in Ho Yan Hor Museum
Display in Ho Yan Hor Museum

You’ll also get to try various Ho Yan Hor herbal tea when you’re done with the museum gallery, all for free and decide for yourselves if you want to purchase any.

I personally really enjoyed this stop even though I had never heard of Ho Yan Hor and there wasn’t any hard selling involved. We stopped by this museum because it was recommended by our hotel owner.

Address: 1, Jalan Bijeh Timah, 30000 Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
Opening hours: 10am – 4pm, closed on Mondays
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Kafe Best Hillview (山景美食中心) 

Seating outside Kafe Hillview
Seating outside Kafe Hillview

Kafe Hillview is a coffeeshop nearby our hotel and was recommended by our hotel owner. We ordered a claypot rice with lup cheong (MYR 9, ≈ SGD 2.80 ), sambal sotong (around MYR 8 if i remember correctly), a few sticks of satay and a fruit juice to share. I don’t remember the exact prices of every dish as there weren’t receipts and I didn’t take pictures of the menu oops.

Claypot Rice and Sambal Sotong
Claypot Rice and Sambal Sotong

The dishes were so affordable, from a Singaporean’s point of view at least, and it was also a great location to soak in the local ambience. We were there on a weekday and we were the only tourists there, but the same could be said for all the other locations we checked out during the trip.

Note: Kafe Hillview is a dinner spot, it only opens at night

Address: Malaysia, Perak, Ipoh, Taman Jubilee, Jalan Sultan Iskandar, 邮政编码: 30000
Opening hours: 7pm – 10pm

Fujiwara Tofa Shop (怡保藤原豆腐花店)

Tofu Fa and Soya Drink
Tofu Fa and Soya Drink

Located diagonally opposite Kafe Hillview is Palo 101, an area with bars and eateries. Fujiwara Tofa Shop, a shop with decor inspired by the hit Japanese street racing manga series, is notably one of the most well known shops here. Fujiwara Tofa Shop is known for its tofu fa (tofa pudding/beancurd) and soya drink, but also serves main courses like nasi lemak.

We got a ginger sugar tofu fa (MYR 4.90, ≈ SGD 1.50) and a small Fujiwara Soya (MYR 4.90, ≈ SGD 1.50) to share. I noticed that they only give 1 spoon per bowl of tofu fa, so if you’re looking to share the dessert but hate sharing utensils, this is something to note. As I’m not a fan of tofu fa, I don’t think I can give a fair review on the dessert. The decor of the shop is cute, but the service wasn’t the best, in my opinion.

Address: PALO 101, 187, Ipoh Jalan Sultan Iskandar, Taman Jubilee 30000 Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
Opening hours: 12pm – 10pm

Day 2

Route: Lost World of Tambun – Dinner at Five Thousand Years

Lost World of Tambun

Entrance of Lost World of Tambun

The Lost World of Tambun is an all-in-one theme park with a petting zoo, hot springs and a hotel. If you’re an animal lover, you’ll definitely enjoy the petting zoo portion of this theme park. There are animal feeding sessions and shows, remember to plan your day in advance if you want to catch the sessions and shows.

Different parts of the park are available during the day and night, you can check the park map for information. Night park ticket rates are cheaper because there are less things available at night. The entrance ticket allows you to stay in the park throughout the day, but the night park tickets only allow access to areas open at night.

Tiger show

We only had around 3 hours at the park as it was a last minute decision to visit (we decided at 2pm and got to the park at 3pm haha). Tickets were expensive (MYR 117.00, ≈ SGD 36) in my opinion, but that could be because we only spent 3 hours there. You can get cheaper tickets if you book online, but since this was a last minute decision for us, we could only do walk-ins.

Goats enclosure

Despite the short time spent there, we managed to cover most of the ground and saw most of the animals in the zoo area. We also noticed that everyone, except us, was in swimwear. Most would soak in the pools and walk around in their swimsuits. There are also a number of food stalls and cabanas for rent, so you can definitely spend an entire day here.

Address: 1, Persiaran Lagun Sunway, Sunway City, 31150 Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
Opening hours: 11am – 6pm (weekdays), 10am – 6pm (weekdays)
Hot Springs and Night Park: 6pm – 11pm

Ticket prices:
Adults: MYR 117 (≈ SGD 36)
Child (12 years and below) and Senior Citizens (60 years and above): MYR 110 (≈ SGD 34)
Hot Spring and Night Park:
Adults MYR 75 (≈ SGD 36)
Child (12 years and below) and Senior Citizens (60 years and above): MYR 66 (≈ SGD 23)

Five Thousand Years (五千年)

Entrance of Five Thousand Years
Entrance of Five Thousand Years

We left the Lost World of Tambun around 6pm because we wanted to check out this Chinese restaurant recommended to me by a friend. He visited Ipoh a month before I did and this was recommended to him by a local when he asked around for recommendations.

The food was pretty pricey for Ipoh’s standards but they were so good that I think this restaurant was the highlight of my entire trip. We got a fried rice, coca cola chicken, spicy sliced potato, 2 squid skewers, soup of the day and 2 drinks. The total came up to almost MYR 120 (≈ SGD 37).

Food we ordered
Cola chicken, spicy sliced potato, fried rice and skewers

My only gripe about the restaurant is that many items were sold out even though we were there before 7pm. We also saw a seated couple leave after looking at the menu, presumably due to number of sold out items.

The decor of this restaurant was also very photo-worthy and if you come around 9pm, you’ll likely be able to enjoy live music as well! They have a band that plays every night that should start around 9pm, but I am not sure if it’s the same musicians playing every night.

Address: 19, Jalan Medan Ipoh 2, Taman Ipoh Timur, 31400 Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
Opening hours: 12pm – 1am
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Day 3

Route: Kek Long Tong – Restoran Tauge Ayam Lou Wong (老黄芽菜鸡沙河粉) – Home

Kek Long Tong

Deity Statues in Kek Long Tong Cave Temple
Deity statues in Kek Long Tong Cave Temple

There are a number of cave temples in Ipoh and from research, they look pretty similar to one another. I chose to visit Kek Long Tong because I saw really nice pictures of the garden online and this was also in the hotel owner’s list of recommendations.

Garden in the backyard of Kek Long Tong Temple
Garden in the backyard of Kek Long Tong Temple

Kek Long Tong is a cave temple with a number of deity statues and a large garden, which consists of a walking/jogging path, a reflexology path and gazebos. Bicycles and boats are also available for rent. Bicycles are 2 pax (MYR 6, ≈ SGD 1.90) or 4 pax (MYR 10, ≈ SGD 3.10) for 30 minutes. Boats cost MYR 12 (≈ SGD 3.80) for 2 pax boats and MYR 20 (≈ SGD 6.20) for 4 pax boats.

Address: Pesiaran Sepakat 3, TMN ENDAH JAYA, 31350 Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
Opening hours: 9am – 4.30pm
Entrance fee: Free

If you are driving, there are a few other locations nearby you may wish to check out:

Qing Xin Ling Leisure & Cultural Village
Sam Poh Tong Temple
Ling Sen Tong Temple

We did not drive and decided to go for a meal before heading to the airport.

Restoran Tauge Ayam Lou Wong (老黄芽菜鸡沙河粉)

Noodles and chicken at Tauge Ayam Lou Wong

Bean Sprout Chicken Rice is a famous dish in Ipoh and Restoran Tauge Ayam Lou Wong is something that appears in many lists online. Since it was nearby the hotel, we decided to give it a try.

The restaurant was filled with locals and the staff all spoke in cantonese. We got 2 bowls of noodles (粉), a plate of chicken to share and a cup of lemon tea. I loved the noodle and soup it came in was really tasty but the chicken was lacklustre as it was slightly tough. I know that we should have ordered tauge but I really hate tauge so we gave it a miss. Our bill came up to MYR 31 (≈ SGD 9.80).

Address: 49, Jalan Yau Tet Shin, Taman Jubilee, 30000 Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
Opening hours: 10.30am – 9.30pm

If you have time to spare, or are in the mood for some colonial-style buildings, you can also check out the Ipoh Railway Station, or you could also get to your next destination via KTM train from the railway station.

Where to Stay in Ipoh?

We stayed at Bedrock Hotel, a boutique hotel in Ipoh. The rooms were a little dated, but the star of the show here was the service. Many reviewers online also agreed that the staff and hotel owner provided warm service from the start to the end of their stay.

Address: 13-15, Jalan Che Tak, Taman Jubilee, 30300 Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
Price: From SGD 75/night

Getting Around Ipoh

Ipoh is divided into 2 – Old Town and New Town. Attractions within the Old Town are within walking distance and we walked from one spot to the other. For locations that were further such as the cave temple, we took a Grab. Grab is widely available in Ipoh and it is affordable.

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