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MALAYSIA

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Perak ~ Taiping

History & Crafts Ipoh • Theme Park Resorts Taiping • Kuala Kangsar Gua Tempurung Belum Forest
Pangkor Island Maxwell Hill Other Places Tambun & Kuala Gula Perak Map

• Taiping Lake Gardens  • Taiping Zoo • Historical Buildings of Taiping •
• A historical walkabout Tour •


Taiping is Perak’s foremost historical town and was once a thriving mining town and used to be the capital of Perak. History buffs should not miss visiting Taiping, 95 km north of Ipoh.

Taiping meaning 'Eternal peace', was anything but. Formerly known as Larut, it was the scene of bloody feuds between Chinese secret societies that worked the lucrative tin mines in the 1870's. Even before the founding of Kuala Lumpur, Taiping prospered and it distinguished itself by having scored a number of firsts: first museum in the country, the first zoo, first English newspaper and even the first swimming pool. Taiping is also the wettest town in Peninsular Malaysia and receives the average annual rainfall of about 4,000mm as compared to the peninsula’s average
of 2,000mm – 2,500mm.


Taiping Lake Gardens
Taiping's disused mining pools have been cleverly turned into the beautiful and famous Taiping Lake Gardens. This 62 hectare park is one of the most beautiful parks in the country. It offers lush greenery, a beautiful lake and a colourful profusion of flowers sculptured around two lakes. Facilities available includes a rest house,
fishing and aqua-biking.


Taiping Zoo
Located within is the Taiping zoo, the only zoo in the northern region of Peninsula Malaysia and also the oldest zoo in Malaysia.
Officially known as Taman Mergastua Sultan Idris Shah, it covers an area of 34 acres. Here you can treat yourself to the exotic sights and sounds of some of Malaysia's wild animals in an enclave of natural settings with streams, lakes and abundance of flora.

There are 1300 animals of 180 species including birds, reptiles and mammals can be witnessed in the natural-looking enclosures. Among the wildlife here are the endangered species such as the whitehead eagle (Brahmini Kita/Halistur Indus), honey bears (Helactus Malayanus), black panthers, Orang Utans, the Malaysian elephants and tigers. There are also a host of animals from foreign lands including the African lions. To create an environment that is sensitive to the animals' natural habitat, Taiping Zoo is gradually introducing new open concept enclosures. One of the best managed zoos in the country, it offers Night Safari visit, which allows visitors to observe nocturnal animals from
8:00 to 11:00pm all year round.
Visiting hours are from 8:30am - 6:30pm daily, including public holidays.
For the latest information on Taiping Zoo, visit its official website at http://www.zootaiping.gov.my


Historical Buildings of Taiping
These buildings include - The Taiping Government Offices (built in 1895), Hokkien Association (1931), Police Station (circa 1900), Taiping Public Library (1881), all on Jln. Kota; King Edward VII School (1883) and St. George’s Institution (1915), both at Jln. Stesyen; Old Saints Church (1886), Fort Carnavon (1887), Taiping Goal (1879), Malay States Guides Barracks (1880s) and the Perak Museum (1903), all on Jalan Taming Sari.

The centre of Taiping is quite small so you will be able to cover most of the interesting buildings on foot. It is an excellent way of exploring the historical aspects of the town with a walkabout tour of its well preserved heritage buildings that hark back to a bygone era..


A Historical Walkabout Tour


Turn left and proceed to the end of Jalan Taming Sari and make a hairpin turn into Jalan Kota. Proceed northwards look out for the Hokkien Association Building. Built in 1931, it served as a clan house of the early settlers who migrated from Fujian province in China. Another fifty metres further away at the junction of Jalan Masjid and Jalan Kota stands the Masjid Lama (old Mosque). Dating back to 1887, the grounds house the mausoleum of a Muslim scholar named Sheikh Makhbuli.
Turn right at the first junction. to head to Jalan Idris and proceed to the Peking Hotel. The structure built in 1929, was once the premises of the Taiping rubber dealers association and sisplays rare trefold arches and narrow vertical windows.

Backtrack to Jalan Kota and head north towards the junction of Jalan Kota and Jalan Iskandar. Here turn left into the tree lined Jalan Pasar. Here the Tseng Lund Hakka Association building, resembling a temple, stands proudly since its construction in 1887. From here the Taiping Market, a relic of a bygone era, should already be beckoning you. Consisting of two buildings, the old and the new, the former made of ironwood timber and covered by iron sheet roof was built in 1884.

From Jalan Pasar get back on Jalan Kota to visit the Police Station. A timber building constructed in 1881, with its present structure completed in 1936, it is topped with a fortified clock tower and once served as a fire station (the first fire brigade of the Federated Malay States). Proceed to Jalan Sultan Abdullah where the well preserved building at No.19 still continues to serve as the premises of a trading company. In the 1930's, the building was a cigar factory built by a Burmese merchant who brought in Burmese women to roll cigars. During the Japanese occupation it functioned as a warehouse for military supplies. At Jalan Tokong stands the Cantonese Association and the Temple for the Immortal Girl within a common compound. Founded in 1887, the association was set up to preserve the interest of early immigrants from Kwangtung province in China.

A pair of lions, which are installed in 1954, guards the front courtyard. Inside the same compound , you will find the Temple for the Immortal Girl, built around 1940's and is dedicated in the deity Ho Sien-ku Miao. Turning left into Jalan Kota, at the end of which is the Public Library. Housed in a whitewashed building with a pillared porch that was constructed in 1882, it was the former premises of the Chartered Bank of India, Australia and China, which later became Standard Chartered Bank.

A leisurely stroll from there brings you to Jalan Esplande, which meets Jalan Kelab Baru. Here, near the base of a hillock are two Chinese tombstones dating back to mid 1880's. Atop the hillock stands the District Officer's residence. Built in 1890's it was once the home of the Secretary to the British Resident. Continue another 10 minutes to the former British Officers Mess. A right turn leads to Jalan Taming Sari where the All Saints Church is located. Founded in 1886, as the first Anglican Church in the Federated Malay States, the churchyard contains the graves of early British settlers, mostly having succumbed to malaria.


The grand finale is the Perak Museum at the end of Jalan Taming Sari. First opened in 1883, it is the oldest museum in the ountry. It houses an impressive collection of weapons, aboriginal implements, ornaments, and archeological treasures. Also on display are artifacts from Perak’s rich historical culture and heritage. There is even the skull of an elephant that charged a train
in the 1950's.

The statue of Colonel Walker, considered the father of the Malay States stands in front of the museum. Opposite the museum is Fort Caranavon, built in 1885, which is now a prison. Named after the Earl of Carnarvon, Secretary of State for the colonies, it was once used as a rehabilitation centre for captured communists during the Emergency years (1948-1960).

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[History & Crafts] [Ipoh] [Theme Park Resorts] [Taiping] [Kuala Kangsar] [Gua Tempurung] [Belum Forest] [Pangkor Island] [Maxwell Hill] [Other Places] [Tambun Cave & Kuala Gula]

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