21 Must-See Ipoh Attractions (Especially For First-Time Visitors)!

21 Must-See Ipoh Attractions (Especially For First-Time Visitors)!

Not sure what to do in Ipoh, Malaysia? Don’t worry, we are here to help.

From incredible limestone cave temples to the rich history of the Hakka miners, Ipoh is teeming with wonders and excitement. 

In our Ipoh travel blog post, we will talk about the best Ipoh attractions you must see, especially if you are visiting for the first time!

Enjoy!

Ipoh Attraction Map

Above is a comprehensive interactive Ipoh tourist map containing the 21+ things to do and places to visit in Ipoh. We have created it specifically for this Ipoh blog post.

Knowing where the attractions are located will help you plan your perfect itinerary for Ipoh. On the upper left corner of the map is a toggle that will allow you to dive into the details of each Ipoh attraction.

If you have any questions about the interactive map, don’t hesitate to leave a comment down below!

What To Do In Ipoh: 21 Best Tourist Attractions In Ipoh, Malaysia

1. Learn About Tin Mining At Han Chin Pet Soo Museum

Ipoh is a very different city compared to Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia. On the surface, it seems impossible that these two cities actually belong to the same country.

That is because the two cities have a significantly different history. Ipoh was found because of the fact that tin deposits were located nearby in the 1880s. To this present day, there are many mining operations and quarries in the area.

The Han Chin Pet Soo Museum is the perfect place to learn about the early history of Ipoh and the Hakka miners. The Hakkas are Han Chinese people whose ancestral homes are mainly in Hakka-speaking provinces in China.

A visit to the Han Chin Pet Soo is a great introductory course to the rich heritage of the Perak State of Malaysia. The best part is that the visit is free and comes with a tour guide. However, there is a recommended donation of 10 Malaysian Ringgit to help preserve such an important heritage building of Ipoh.

You must reserve your timeslot for your visit at Ipoh World Official Site

2. Visit The Majestic Ipoh Railway Station

The Ipoh Railway Station is one of Ipoh’s most iconic landmarks. Considered as the Taj Mahal of Ipoh, the railway station is one of the most beautiful places to visit in Ipoh. Locals love it so much that they built one of the best hotels in Ipoh, the Majestic Hotel, inside the station! (Note: The hotel is under renovation until 2023.)

Besides its beauty, the transportation hub is also used by numerous travelers daily. It has connections to many cities in Malaysia, including Kuala Lumpur and Penang.

The Ipoh Railway Station is one of my favorite places to watch the sunset in Ipoh. The fading light emphasizes the beauty of this remarkable building. After the sun has set, there is an evening water show. The water shoots from the ground and locals and travelers alike jump in to cool down from the suffocating heat of Malaysia.

If you are not sure what to do in Ipoh at night, you won’t have a bad time at Ipoh Railway Station.

3. Check Out The Must-Visit Concubine Lane

Concubine Lane is one of the most popular attractions in Ipoh and it is easy to see why. A traditional street filled with street food vendors, souvenir stores, and many restored historical buildings, Concubine Street summarizes Ipoh in one small little street.

What is more interesting about the action-packed street is its history. Concubine Lane is actually one of three concubine lanes.

There are two other concubine lanes: Wife Lane (Hale Lane) and Second Concubine Lane(Market Lane). According to the locals, the mining tycoon Yau Tet Shin gave one street to each of his three wives. The wives would make money by collecting rents from the shops along their streets.

Nowadays, the other two concubine lanes are rather quiet and unpopular, but the Concubine Lane itself is a must-visit place in Ipoh.

4. Take A Day Trip To Cameron Highlands

Located a little under 2 hours away from the Ipoh is a nature paradise called Cameron Highlands. Though it is recommended to spend a few days exploring the amazing attractions in Cameron Highlands, a day trip from Ipoh is still a nice experience.

Known for its massive tea plantations, strawberries farms, beautiful hikes, Cameron Highlands is the ideal place to take a break from the noise and pollution of Ipoh. At an elevation of ~1100 meters to ~1800 meters, the weather and air-quality are much better.

The one place you must visit on your Cameron Highlands day trip is the BOH Tea Centre. Not only will you get to see the massive tea farm, but you can also get a free tour of the tea-processing facility!

You can take a bus from Ipoh to Cameron Highlands. However, I recommend you to rent a car because you can have the flexibility of deciding which places to visit in Cameron Highlands!

5. Learn About The History Of Ipoh On The Ipoh Heritage Trail

If visiting the Han Chin Pet Soo sparked your interest in the rich history of Ipoh, then you will love the self-guided Ipoh Heritage Trail. With a total of 27 points of interest, this Ipoh activity takes you on a 4-mile around both Ipoh’s Old Town and New Town.

If Ipoh’s weather is too much for you, you are more than welcome to shorten the duration of this trail! That is the magic of self-guided tours!

The trail starts at the Ipoh Railway Station and ends at the Birch Memorial, passing through other famous places in Ipoh such as the Town Hall and Old Post Office.

Covering so many attractions in Ipoh, the Ipoh Heritage Trail is one of the best activities for sightseeing!

The trail usually takes around 2.5 hours to complete. Plan accordingly!

Click here to find out more about Heritage Trail and the 27 points of interest!

6. Check Out The Sunday Market At Memory Lane

If you happen to be in Ipoh on a Sunday, make sure you don’t miss the famous Sunday Morning Market at Jalan Horley. Also known as loken or Memory Lane, this flea market features vintage items that will make you feel old. DVDs of movies from the late 1990s, old toys, flip phones, many of these merchandises will surely bring a sense of nostalgia.

Similar to Ah Ma House in the hidden-gem town Sekinchan, the Memory Lane market is like stepping in a time machine. As you stroll down this busy street, you will be reminded of the good old times!

Though the items might seem worthless, there is a chance you might find a valuable antique there! If you are a collector of vintage things, don’t miss this Ipoh tourist attraction!

Just be aware that the market is only opened on Sunday and goes from around 6 AM to 1 PM. 

7. Admire At Ipoh’s Street Art and Murals

We knew that Penang has some of the best street arts in Malaysia, but we were surprised to find that Ipoh was also riddled with amazing murals.

Most of the street art in Ipoh are scattered throughout the old town, but travelers can find a large concentration of them at Ipoh Mural and Mural’s Art Lane.

The murals in Ipoh are very realistic, oftentimes offering a glimpse into the daily lives of an Ipoh resident.

Make sure you don’t miss the magical trishaw 3D mural. It is one of the most magical places for photography in Ipoh!

8. Check Out The “Haunted” Kellie’s Castle

A castle might be a strange thing to find in Malaysia, especially in a place like Ipoh. As a result, the abandoned Kellie’s castle is one of the most interesting places in Ipoh. Why is there an abandoned castle in the middle of the Malaysian jungle? Let me tell you.

William Kellie Smith was a Scotsman that moved to Malaysia to seek fortune and wealth. After several unsuccessful business ventures, he eventually found prosperity in the rubber industry. With his newfound success and newly-wed wife, he wanted to build her a mansion, one that is more extravagant than any other at the time. Many different styles of architecture can be seen in the building, including Moorish and Roman influences.

Unfortunately, his plan to finish the mansion was cut short when he passed away from pneumonia. When he died, the mansion was given to his wife, who lived in Scotland. His wife never visited the mansion and eventually sold it to a private company in Malaysia.

The building now sits unfinished amidst the jungle of palm trees and has become a top attraction in Ipoh. Rumors have it that Kellie’s Castle is haunted. A ghostly figure of a man has been seen walking down the corridors of the second floor at night!

9. Hike To The Highest Point in Ipoh (Bukit Kledang) For Stunning Views

If you are an outdoorsy person and don’t mind the debilitating heat, there is a hike in Ipoh perfect for you: Bukit Kledang.

Bukit Kledang, or Kledang Hill, simply refers to the peak of the mountain. There are actually many trails of varying difficulty that lead up there. The full trail is a 9.3 km loop that starts at the bottom and takes you to the top of the Kledang Hill, bypassing the famous “exercise corner”, a place with stunning views of Ipoh.

As the tallest peak in Ipoh, summiting this mountain is no easy task. Hikers need to gain over 800 meters in order to reach the summit, which is made more difficult by the steep trail. The full trail usually takes a little more than 3 hours to complete.

Though there are better hikes in Cameron Highlands than the hike to Bukit Kledang, hiking Bukit Kledang allows for an amazing view of Ipoh. Just be careful when you hike up, it is easy to catch a heat stroke if you are not used to the weather. Try to avoid the midday sun if possible!

I recommend installing the app Alltrails before starting your hike so you know the exact location of the trail!

Visit A Unique Ipoh Cave Temple: One Of The Most Interesting Places In Ipoh

1. Perak Cave Temple (Perak Tong Cave Temple)

With over 30 caves temples around Ipoh,  it might be different to pick the perfect one. If you had to choose one for your Ipoh itinerary, then Perak Tong Cave Temple (or Kek Lok Tong) has to be the one.

Featuring intricate cave formations, exquisite religious artifacts and paintings, and a stunning panoramic view (after a short hike) of Perak, this Ipoh cave temple has everything a tourist might be looking for.

The entrance is also completely free! Is there any con to the Perak Cave Temple? Well yes, it is a little far from the old town of Ipoh. However, every cave temple in Ipoh is a bit far from the center. A taxi is needed to reach the limestone cave temples in Ipoh.

The most majestic feature of this cave temple is the 40-foot sitting Buddha whose presence amplifies the sacredness of the cave. Surrounding the Buddha are vivid murals of deities that are sworn to protect the Buddha. Beautifully depicted, the murals of the cave are like paintings in an art museum.

At the back of the cave is a small hiking trail (~450 steps) that takes you to the top of the hill. Though a bit of an effort (especially in the heat), the view from above is worth the sweat and tears (hopefully not the latter).

2. Kek Lok Tong 

Massive cave formation, interesting geological features, serene garden surrounded by limestone hills, Kek Lok Tong just might be the best place to visit in Ipoh.

Whereas the Perak Tong Cave Temple takes pride in its beautiful views after a strenuous hike, seeing the best of Kek Lok Tong requires minimal effort.

As you enter through the massive opening, you will be immediately greeted by religious artifacts, stalactites, and stalagmites. Navigate through the cave and arrive at the back, where a beautiful and peaceful garden resides.

The garden is the most outstanding feature of this Ipoh cave temple. Take a casual stroll along its well-maintained path, feel the serenity coming from the lily and the fish pond, and observe the funny statues lined across the path. Visitors can spend hours here, relaxing and being at one with nature.

Similar to Perak Tong Cave Temple, Kek Lok Tong is free-to-enter and a short ride from Ipoh center. However, unlike the Perak Tong Cave Temple, there are many other redeeming cave temples nearby. Some of those will be discussed below!

3. Sam Poh Tong Temple

Sam Poh Tong Temple gains its recognition from being the oldest and the main cave temple in Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia.

It is also known as the largest cave in Malaysia and contains a wide variety of artifacts including the reclining Buddha statue.

However, the temple is starting to lose its glory as fewer and fewer donations are received annually to maintain it.

When you visit Sam Pog Tong Temple, make sure you wear comfortable shoes as there is a short climb. Navigate through the cave and you will reach the rear of the temple, where a semi-hidden tortoise sanctuary resides! Tortoise is a symbol of longevity and it is quite common to see them living in temples.

Surprisingly, visitors are allowed to feed the tortoises! Just resist the urge to take them home!

Sam Poh Tong Temple is free to visit but it closes quite early!

4. Ling Sen Tong Temple

Ling Sen Tong Temple is situated on the foot of a limestone hill, so it doesn’t exactly fit the definition of a “cave temple”.

Ling Sen Tong is the home to many colorful and carefully crafted statues, all located inside a medium-sized garden. There is no physical activity that needs to be done, unlike Perak Cave Temple or Sam Tong Poh Temple.

Featuring the 12 Chinese Zodiac and characters and deities from Buddhism and Chinese mythology, the Ling Sen Tong is one of the best places to go in Ipoh for anyone interested in Buddhism.

The colorful architecture and statues also make a great spot for Instagram photos!

Ling Sen Tong is free to visit but donations are always appreciated when it comes to temples.

Enjoy Some Of The Best Food In Ipoh

1. Delicious Dessert and Street Food At Tong Sui Kai

If you are missing the hawker stalls and street food experience in Kuala Lumpur, don’t worry! Tong Sui Kai is the famous equivalence in Ipoh. Tong Sui Kai is Pinyin in Chinese and literally translates to Dessert Street.

One of the best things to do in Ipoh at night is to visit the Tong Sui Kai for some tasty desserts. Strangely, it is popular for locals to eat desserts at late into the night. It’s almost like they are trying to get diabetes!

You will see how popular Tong Sui Kai is when you arrive. Numerous stalls lined up on the side of the streets and plastic chairs and tables are crammed together. There are many vendors, each serving their own specialty. You can find an array of cuisines here, from Chinese to Malay to Indian. Your cravings will be satisfied here!

When we visited, we did not see any tourist here, which only means that this is a great spot. Don’t miss this hidden gem in Ipoh on your visit!

Tong Sui Kai is opened from 6 PM to 2 AM. If you are hungry after enjoying Ipoh’s nightlife, then come satisfy your munchies at Tong Sui Kai!

2. Iconic Ipoh Bean Sprouts Chicken Rice At Lou Wong

Before we even arrived in Ipoh, we heard of the famous bean sprouts chicken rice. A skeptic myself, I wasn’t convinced how magical a simple bean sprouts chicken rice could be.

Well, let’s just say I am a believer now.

The simple bean sprouts chicken rice is exactly what it sounds like, chicken with rice with a side of bean sprouts.

What they don’t tell you is the texture of the chicken, the perfect seasoning and crispiness of the bean sprouts, and the perfectly cooked and flavored rice. The combination of the three simple ingredients served with haste and affordability was the perfect meal anyone could ask for.

If you are not sure where to go in Ipoh for the best bean sprouts chicken rice, head over to Lou Wong. A Chinese restaurant in Ipoh with a lot of history, Lou Wong’s chicken rice is something you must not miss on your first-time visit!

3. Try Out Some Authentic Chinese Dim Sum

With such a heavy influence from Chinese culture in Ipoh, travelers will find plenty of exotic and delicious Chinese cuisine. One of the best food in Ipoh is the Dim Sum.

For those of you unfamiliar with the Dim Sum, they are small plates that usually come in a bamboo basket, depending on how they were prepared. A dim sum restaurant is usually a gathering place for friends and families where they would order a variety of dim sum to share with the whole table.

The typical dim sum dishes are Siu Mai, Feng Zhao (chicken feet), and Har Gow, though there are over a hundred kinds of dim sum.

Luckily for you, you don’t have to visit China or Hong Kong to try some authentic dim sum. Ipoh has many great dim sum restaurants run by Chinese immigrants.

The dim sum restaurant in Ipoh I recommend is Ming Court Hong Kong Dim Sum. It is a lively place that serves some of the freshest Dim Sum in town! 

Note: Dim Sum is a great option for lunch or breakfast in Ipoh, but it is not a dinner option!

4. Have A Cup of The Famous Ipoh White Coffee

If there is a drink that Ipoh is famous for, it has to the white coffee. It is a drink that originated from Ipoh in the Perak region of Malaysia, a drink so famous that Lonely Planet has named Ipoh one of the top three coffee towns in Asia!

Ipoh white coffee is different in that the coffee beans are roasted with palm oil margarine. The final product is then served with condensed milk, creating the creamy color light color. However, the name didn’t originate from the color of the coffee, but rather from the process of using only margarine to roast the coffee.

For me, I personally drink my coffee black so I wasn’t a huge fan of the white coffee. It did have a buttery and sweet taste that I found interesting. The white coffee is definitely worth a try in Ipoh.

But where to try it? Good question.

With an influx of tourist looking to sample out the best white coffee, many coffee shops in Ipoh has sprung up.

If you want an authentic white coffee experience, the best place in Ipoh is Sin Yoon Long. This coffee shop in Ipoh still follows the original recipe. Other great places are the Nam Heong White Coffee and the Old Town White Coffee, with the latter being an international chain. 

Quirky Things To Do In Ipoh, Malaysia

1. Platform 9 1/2: The Harry Potter Themed-Cafe

Though most of Ipoh attractions are cultural, there are some quirky things to do in Ipoh as well. The one that comes to my mind is the Platform 9 1/2 Cafe.

Situated inside the popular Concubine Lane, a visit to this themed cafe is a must if you are a Harry Potter fan.

The cafe serves a variety of drinks, including the famous Butterbeer from the franchise. However, its stunning decoration is what draws many visitors daily. Visitors can put on costumes such as witch’s hat, wands, and even cloaks to take photos in the Hogwarts look-alike environment.

Though it is marketed as a cafe, only drinks are served inside. If you wish to put on the costumes and take photos, you must first make a purchase. Make sure you arrive at off-peak hours as the place could get crowded. Sadly, many visitors can hog the limited costumes for prolonged periods of time!

2. Visit The Hipster BookXcess Kong Heng Ipoh Bookstore

BookXcess is a Malaysia bookstore chain known for its affordability and a wide variety of books. Unlike most bookstores in Malaysia that are bland and boring, stepping into the BookXcess Kong Heng in Ipoh is like stepping into an art exhibit.

On the ground floor is your typical bookstore, featuring books of various kinds. The fun begins when you venture into the basement led by alluring neon signs. If you follow the suggestive neon signs that say “Let’s get down and nerdy” and “Yes, even deeper”, you will eventually reach the basement of the bookstore.

Now that is where the magic is. The basement of BookXcess Kong Heng Ipog is actually the old vault of one of the busiest banks in Ipoh.

As you enter, you will see massive metal vault doors that lead to the once-in-use safety boxes. While there isn’t much materialistic wealth in there anymore, there is plenty of knowledge (Well, knowledge is wealth!). The old safe rooms are now used as part of the bookstore, displaying a huge array of books available for purchase!

One of the basement vaults is dedicated to the works of the influential film director Yasmin Ahmad.

3. Check Out Ipoh Upside Down World or Funtasy House Trick Art

If you are traveling in Malaysia with kids, take them to Ipoh Upside Down World for a few hours of fun and trickery.

The Ipoh Upside Down World is a trick art museum that features rooms where things look like they are upside down. With a little bit of creativity, visitors can spend hours here fabricating the perfect gravity-defying photo!

Though the place only contains several rooms, each room is built meticulously and is fun for all ages.

Another popular trick art museum is the Funtasy House Trick Art. It is the bigger and more popular version of Ipoh Upside Down World. Where Ipoh Upside Down World focuses on environments that appear upside down, the Funtasy Trick Art also contains other types of trick art!

When visiting these places, it is important that you avoid peak hours!

4. The Instagram-Worthy Catch A Toy Store And Art Exhibit

From the name, you might think that Catch-A-Toy is your typical crane machine arcade. Though on the surface it might look like it, there are secrets that many visitors aren’t aware of.

Many of the Catch-A-Toy stores boast incredible interior decor, making it one of the most places in Ipoh for photography. The one Catch-A-Toy that swept me off my feet was the Catch-A-Toy @ New Town.

This store only features a few crane machine, but its most impressive feature is the stunning art in the rear. The art exhibit somewhat resembles the revolutionary art museum at teamLab Borderless Tokyo. Now you won’t have to take a trip to Tokyo to see the cool art exhibition!

Where To Stay In Ipoh, Malaysia

Best Hostel in Ipoh- De Cafe & Rest House

If you are looking for a cheap hostel for a comfortable stay, then look no further. DeCafe & Rest House features spacious capsule-styled beds, unique interior decor, and clean facilities. At the entrance of the hostel is a cafe where guests can enjoy a delicious cafe conveniently.

If you are not sure what to see in Ipoh, staying at De Cafe & Rest House will guarantee that you are within close proximity to the best Ipoh activities!

Click here for more details!

Best Budget Hotel in Ipoh- D Eastern Hotel

Affordable hotels in Ipoh are abundant, but finding the one that is not shady and located in the perfect location can be difficult. Luckily for you, D Eastern Hotel is here.

Located in close proximity to the best tourist attractions in Ipoh, visitors can maximize the thing they do on their Ipoh trip. The rooms are large with comfortable beds, guaranteeing guests a perfect stay!

Click here for more details!

Best Luxury Hotel in Ipoh- The Banjaran Hotspring Retreat

If you are looking for the ultimate luxury experience in Ipoh, then a stay at The Banjaran Hotspring Retreat is a must. Nestled in the stunning limestone hills of the region, guests can relax and promote their wellbeing with their geothermal hot springs, steam caves, or ice baths.

Besides its outstanding facilities, the peaceful enivornment is the perfect place to stay in Ipoh for nature-lovers. If you can afford it, you will 100 percent love The Banjaran Hotspring Retreat!

Click here for more details!

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This is the end of our guide on the best Ipoh attractions. Hopefully, it has given you a rough idea of the things to do in Ipoh, Malaysia!

Any questions? Leave a comment!

Disclaimer: Some of the links above are affiliate links. That means if you book or make a purchase through the links, we will earn a small commission at no extra cost to you! The money will help run this site! Thank you 🙂

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Sky Mirror Kuala Selangor Review: Is It Worth It?

Sky Mirror Kuala Selangor Review: Is It Worth It?

Thinking about visiting Sky Mirror in Kuala Selangor?

Not sure if it is worth the trip or where to find the best tours? We are here to help. 

Below we will discuss our experience at Sky Mirror, one of the so-claimed best things to do in Malaysia.

Enjoy!

What Is The Sky Mirror (Sasaran Beach) In Kuala Selangor?

The Sky Mirror in Kuala Selangor is one of the most impressive hidden gems in Malaysia. During high tide, this secret island is completely invisible to the naked eye and undetectable because it is submerged. The miracle happens at low tide.

During low tide, a sandbank known as the Sasaran Beach (Sky Mirror) appears 1.74 nautical miles away from the fishing village of Jeram, in the middle of the Straits of Malacca Sea.

This natural phenomenon creates a place where shallow water covers the entire “island”. The golden opportunity provides the perfect setting for photographers, as the shallow water fabricates the perfect reflection and the illusion of scale. Any photographer will unquestionably find the Sky Mirror in Malaysia to be a photographer’s paradise.

Sky Mirror is often called as Malaysia’s “Salar de Uyuni”, or the Uyuni Salt Flats in Bolivia.

Sky Mirror Kuala Selangor Price

If you are thinking about visiting the Sky Mirror in Kuala Selangor, you must be wondering about the price. Luckily, the Sky Mirror in Kuala Selangor price is quite affordable, but you can only visit with a tour company.

It is impossible to do it without a tour because the place is located about 30 minutes away from Kuala Selangor in the open sea. Even if you had your own boat, it would be difficult to locate this secret island as it is not on the map.

Only tour companies know the location of this hidden attraction in Malaysia.

The price for Sky Mirror for a Malaysian citizen is around 80 Ringgit. For a non-citizen, the price is around 100 Ringgit. For children, the price is 60 or 90 Ringgit, depending on if you are a Malaysian citizen or not.

Those are the prices for a Sky Mirror tour without transportation to Kuala Selangor. If you have decided to visit Sky Mirror in Kuala Selangor from Kuala Lumpur, you must ask to be picked up or arrange your own transportation. It takes about an hour to drive from Kuala Lumpur to Kuala Selangor.

Since the tours are usually early in the morning, it is recommended that you stay nearby.

When we visited, the tour started at 6:30 AM in the morning and we were back by 9:30 AM, but the schedule depends on the tide table.

Check out this tour of Sky Mirror that includes pick-up from Kuala Lumpur and a visit to Sekinchan! 

We stayed in OYO 89410 Z&H Hotel in Kuala Selangor. It was affordable and located adjacent to the river next to some of the best seafood restaurants in Kuala Selangor. I highly recommend it.

However, some people do find Kuala Selangor quite boring. There’s an exciting town 30 minutes away called Sekinchan that many visitors stay at instead. The rice paddies there are utterly breath-taking! 

Kuala Selangor Sky Mirror Tour Companies

Though there are many Sky Mirror tour companies in Kuala Selangor, not all of them are reputable and provide the proper equipment.

The one that we went with was called Sky Mirror Official, or so they claimed. They offered fair prices (though a tad above average), great equipment, and a generally good experience. No complaints whatsoever!

Another popular tour company is called Sky Mirror Malaysia. Though we did not use them, they have great reviews at a more affordable price. Their website also looks very reputable. If I were to go again, I would not hesitate choosing this Sky Mirror tour company in Kuala Selangor.

The last option, which is sometimes my favorite option, is to use Klook. Klook is a reputable online booking company that offers tours at low prices, sometimes even lower than in-person. If you can arrive at Kuala Selangor by yourself, consider this cheap Sky Mirror tour.

It seemed to us that every company contained roughly the same experience for Sky Mirror. All the boats arrived at around the same time, spent roughly the same amount of time on the Sasaran Beach, then headed back to Kuala Selangor.

The general rule of thumb is to not go for a tour company that is offering ridiculously low prices and has no/little reviews. 

Is It Worth It? Full Review Of Sky Mirror In Kuala Selangor, Malaysia

I think the ultimate question that everyone has is whether the Sky Mirror in Kuala Selangor is worth the trip and money.

The answer is: Yes and No.

If you are looking for a Salar de Uyuni aka Salt Flats experience, you will be disappointed. The place does not look like anything compared to the Salt Flats in Bolivia. The pictures are deceiving because the tour guides artificially fabricate a location on the beach to create the perfect reflection.

After a 30-minute boat ride from Kuala Selangor, we arrived at the Sky Mirror. The tour guides immediately start working and digging to produce the perfect puddle. The waves had left the sandbank with many raised ridges, making it impossible to take the famous reflection photos Sky Mirror is known for.

The guides used shovels and boards to funnel the water. After about 30 minutes of digging, it was finally ready. The visitors took turns standing in front of the artificially-made puddle to take the so-called perfect photo.

If you just want cool photos, then you will find that at Sky Mirror. However, if you are expecting a similar experience as Salar de Uyuni, you will be disappointed.

The one redeeming factor that the tour companies do no tell you about Sky Mirror is the abundance of marine life there. As the tide drops and the sandbank reveals itself, the marine life that was living on the sandbank also appears. It was incredibly fun to walk around and observe the numerous sea creatures that were left on the sandbank. We saw crabs, shells, more shells, and even some unidentifiable sea creatures!

As we were preparing to return, we saw a very odd phenomenon. The crabs that live under the sand all came out and starting marching towards the sea. I am talking about thousands of tiny little crabs crawling on the sand. That moment is one of the most unforgettable moments I had traveling in Malaysia.

Though not the perfect place, Sasaran Beach is still extremely beautiful. The fact that you are on an island only available a few hours a day in the middle of the sea is an incredible adventure.

For as far as your eyes can reach, there is nothing but the sea and the horizon.

Conclusion: If you are already in Malaysia and happen to be nearby (Kuala Lumpur or Ipoh), then spend a day or a weekend at Kuala Selangor and the Sky Mirror. After all, it is still a unique and enjoyable place and I would recommend it.

Visitors typically spend the morning at Sky Mirror and the evening on the popular fireflies tour.

However, if you intend on arriving to Malaysia with the sole purpose of seeing this “Asia Salar de Uyuni”, save yourself the trip. There are many places worth coming to Malaysia for such as nature-paradise Sabah and beach-heaven Langkawi, but Sky Mirror should not be your main focus.  

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This is our full review of our experience at Sky Mirror in Kuala Selangor. We hope it has given you an idea of whether you should visit it or not! 

Any question? Leave them in the comments!

Disclaimer: Some of the links above are affiliate links. That means if you book or make a purchase through the links, we will earn a small commission at no extra cost to you! The money will help run this site! Thank you 🙂

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11 BEST Things To Do In Sekinchan: The PERFECT Sekinchan Day Trip

11 BEST Things To Do In Sekinchan: The PERFECT Sekinchan Day Trip

Not sure what to do in Sekinchan? Don’t worry, we were in your shoes once.

With the recent boom of tourism to Sekinchan because of a TVB Drama called Outbound Love, Sekinchan is still a hidden gem in Malaysia with not much information.

That is why we have written this guide on the top things to do in Sekinchan and how you can do them all on a day trip!

Enjoy!

How To Get To Sekinchan?

Sekinchan is a small fishing village located in the Sabak Bernam District of Selangor, about 100 kilometers away from Kuala Lumpur. The most convenient option to visit Sekinchan is by renting a car in Kuala Lumpur and taking the 1.5-hour drive.

Though there is public transportation that goes from Kuala Lumpur to Sekinchan, the route requires many stops and a longer time (~2 to 2.5 hours). If you want to do a Sekinchan day trip, it is highly recommended to drive from Kuala Lumpur.

If you insist on taking a bus from KL to Sekinchan, head over to Pudu Sentral (Puduraya) and catch the SPT to Teluk Inan. The bus will pass by Sekinchan where you can disembark.

It is also possible to come from the north as well. Ipoh is a common departure point for Sekinchan. The drive from Ipoh to Sekinchan could take up to 3 hours, making it an unrealistic option for a day trip to Sekinchan. Public buses are also available from Ipoh to Sekinchan, though that would take a much longer time.

Is A Sekinchan Day Trip Enough?

One of the most common questions I get asked about Sekinchan is “Is a Sekinchan one day trip enough?” The answer is: Probably yes.

Sekinchan is beautiful but it is a small fishing village after all. One day in Sekinchan is plenty to see the main Sekinchan attractions.

If you are visiting Sekinchan, chances are you will have your own car or motorcycle. Having your own transportation allows you to easily jump from one Sekinchan attraction to another. Taxi-hailing apps such as Grab can be unreliable in a small town like Sekinchan.

A popular option for traveling in town is by bicycle. There are bicycle rental companies in town with various types of bikes for rent!

Though if you want to enjoy some of the nearby attractions in Kuala Selangor such as the fireflies and Sky Mirror, you might want to consider staying in Sekinchan for 2 days. A weekend in Sekinchan is the ideal amount of time to explore and relax in this beautiful seaside town with stunning rice paddies!

If you are going from KL to Sekinchan, check out our special Sekinchan day tour with Sky Mirror!

Best Time To Visit Sekinchan, Malaysia

If you are visiting Sekinchan, you probably want to see the lush paddy fields. If that is the case, it is important that you come at the right time and not when the rice was just harvested. 

Generally, from the middle of March to May and the middle of September to November, you will encounter lush rice paddies. December is harvest season so you won’t find anything.

Depending on how the season is going, the schedule might be a little different than anticipated. It is wise to check with your accommodation in Sekinchan before arriving to check the condition of the paddy fields!

We visited early March and found that some of the fields were already cleared out. The owner of our homestay said the farmers had cleared it a few days ago. If we arrived a few days early or a few weeks later, the paddy fields would’ve been in full bloom!

What To Do In Sekinchan: 11 Best Things To Do In Sekinchan, Malaysia

1. Check Out Amazing Sekinchan Paddy Fields

Though Sekinchan is a fishing village, it is a lot more famous for its beautiful stretches of rice paddies. These rice paddies dominate the landscapes of Sekinchan, and it is probably the best thing to do in Sekinchan.

Visiting the Sekinchan rice paddy fields is a must if you come from a stressful city such as Kuala Lumpur as they remind you of the simpler days. Watch the rice plants flow freely in the wind, listen to the sounds of the birds, and feel your worries dissipate from your body.

Similar to the rice paddies in Bali or Vietnam, they are very picturesque. Blue skies, tall rice plants, and a beautiful flower dress, you have yourself the perfect Instagram photo! Sekinchan is unquestionably one of the most beautiful places in Malaysia!

2. Rent a Bicycle And Ride Around Town

Riding a bicycle is one of the best ways to explore Sekinchan and the paddy fields around it. If you are in Sekinchan without any type of transportation (car or motorcycle), a bicycle will allow you to visit some of the places outside of town.

Luckily for you, there are a few bicycle rental shops in Sekinchan. The most reliable of which is the AMG Bicycle Renting Sekinchan.

Featuring anything from the single-person bike to a family bike (4 persons), AMG Bicycle Renting Sekinchan has a bicycle for any type of travelers. If you are too lazy to paddle, they also have electronic bikes for a higher price! 

Be careful if you plan on riding a bicycle in Sekinchan. There is no such thing as a bike lane in Sekinchan!

3. Dine At the Unique N16 Cafe

Any travelers looking for a unique dining establishment must not miss N16 Cafe in Sekinchan. Using an old school bus, the owner has renovated it to become a cafe.

The food is decent but the most promising feature is the spectacular view of the paddy fields nearby. Sip on a cup of home-brewed coffee, have a cake, and enjoy the stunning visuals inside and outside the bus cafe!

The cafe is built on top of a freight container that acts as the kitchen. There is free parking nearby and the famous accommodation Padi Box is right next door. If you are staying in Padi Box (which is what we did), you surely cannot miss the N16 Cafe. 

N16 Cafe has air conditioning, making it the perfect place to relax after a visit to the other Sekinchan attractions nearby. 

4. Make a Wish At The Sekinchan Wishing Tree

Located on Pantai Redang (Beach Redang), the Sekinchan Wishing Tree is one of the best places to visit in Sekinchan.

As you approach the wishing tree, you will see the numerous red ribbons hanging off the tree. These ribbons are written with wishes from other visitors.

To get your own ribbon, you must make a donation at the adjacent temple. Each red ribbon is tied to an ancient Chinese coin. When tossing your ribbon on the tree, try to get it as high as possible. Legend says that the higher the ribbon lands, the most likely your wish is going to come true!

Don’t forget to keep your wish a secret!

Wishing-Tree-Sekinchan

Credit: Flickr

5. Chill At Pantai Redang Beach

If you are already at the Sekinchan Wishing Tree, then Pantai Redang is literally right at your doorstep. Though the quality of the beach cannot compare to those of Langkawi, Pantai Redang still attracts plenty of people on the weekends and holidays.

If you are traveling with family in Malaysia, Pantai Redang is the perfect place to bring your kids. They can spend hours running up and down the soft sands, observing kite-flyers, and swimming in the cold soothing water.

It is impossible to not love the beach in the hot and humid weather of Malaysia!

If you have time, grab a coconut, have some seafood nearby, and wait for the breath-taking sunset to unfold in front of your eyes!

6. Wander Around The Sekinchan Fishing Village

Though Sekinchan is famous for its rice paddies, the village itself is meant to be a fishing village. When you are not taking photos at the rice paddies, stroll around the old streets of Sekinchan. You will encounter numerous seafood restaurants and vendors selling various types of dried seafood.

Not only do you get to see the ending products, but you can also see the difficult types of equipment and ship that fishermen use. If you are from a big city like I am, then the contrast of a small fishing village will be quite interesting.

7. Stuff Yourself With Some Fresh Sekinchan Seafood

One of the many pros of a fishing village is the accessibility to fresh and delicious seafood. Sekinchan is no exception.

The fishing village is populated with many high-quality seafood restaurants at affordable prices. If you are from the western parts of the world, chances are you have never encountered some of those kinds of seafood.

Dishes such as oyster omelet, mantis shrimp, and shark meat are all popular local cuisine. If you are feeling adventurous, make sure you give those a try!

A highly-recommended place for seafood in Sekinchan is Loong Hua Restaurant. Though I have not been there myself, I have heard great things about it! If not, Restoren Wan Lau was personally recommended by a Malaysian friend!

8. Learn About Rice Harvesting At The Paddy Gallery

Besides admiring the lush paddies, one of the best activities in Sekinchan is to learn about the entire process from start to finish. 

The Paddy Gallery is an active rice-processing facility as well as a museum featuring exhibits on harvesting and more. Visitors will learn each and every step of the process from the rice paddies to the rice grains we see in the supermarkets.

On the ground floor of the establishment are shops where visitors can purchase souvenirs, snacks, and even rice produced there! On the first floor is the informational museum, where the entrance fee is 5 RM. 

It is worth the low price for so much information. Rice might be simple on the service, but the procedure to get it down to the grains is scientific and interesting!

The Paddy Gallery is located in the middle of the paddy fields, offering unparalleled views of the lush surroundings. However, it is quite a trek to arrive. I recommend either renting a bicycle or driving there!

9. Indulge In Fresh Mango Smoothies At Mango King

Located on the outskirts is one of the best things to do in Sekinchan, especially if you have a sweet tooth. Mango King is a small stall located in the midst of the paddy fields, just down the road from the Paddy Gallery.

Here you will find the freshest and sweetest mangoes and mango smoothies in Sekinchan. If there is anything I learned from backpacking Malaysia, it is that nothing beats a refreshing mango smoothie or slushie in the hot Malaysian sun.

After trying their mango specialties, you may want to purchase those seriously addicting mangoes! Thank God they are so affordable!

Mango King also sells snacks and other kinds of beverages!

10. Go Back In Time At Ah Ma House (Grandma’s House)

Ah Ma House is a unique attraction in Sekinchan. Featuring a conglomerate of old things such as film cameras, the Game Boy, the refrigerator-sized TVs, and other items that are beyond my time, stepping into Ah Ma House is like stepping into a time machine. 

If I had taken my parents there, they would’ve enjoyed the trip down memory lane tremendously. For me, I was only able to recognize a few of the items. Even then, a sense of nostalgia rushed over me as I stood in awe in the traditional Chinese house.

Besides the antique items and cool historic house, Ah Ma House is known for its home-made cookies and crackers. Those snacks brought back some childhood memories for me. Don’t hesitate to try them when you get the chance!

Across from Ah Ma House is another attraction called the Kampung Atuk (or Grandpa). Though it was closed when we visited, it had empty stands with displays selling traditional snacks. It must be a popular spot in Sekinchan on the weekends or holidays!

11. Visit Kuala Selangor For Fireflies and Sky Mirror

If you have more than one day in Sekinchan, consider visiting the neighboring town Kuala Selangor. Kuala Selangor is a small seaside town similar to Sekinchan, but it has two of the top attractions in Malaysia: Fireflies and Sky Mirror.

Because seeing the fireflies is a night-time activity, it might be difficult to participate if you are on a day trip to Sekinchan. If you can afford to spend more than 1 day in Sekinchan, seeing the fireflies is a must.

Numerous colonies of fireflies roam freely in the mangroves of Kuala Selangor. With the pitch darkness, the flickering of their lights is like stars in the sky!

Sky Mirror is another place worth visiting near Sekinchan. It is a shallow sandbank that appears only during low tides. The result? A magical place where the ground reflects the sky and everything around it. It is somewhat similar to the Salar de Uyuni (Salt Flats) in Bolivia. 

All boats to Sky Mirror depart in the early morning, so it is recommended to stay in Sekinchan on Kuala Selangor the night before.

If interested, check out our affordable Fireflies tour and Sky Mirror tour

Where To Stay In Sekinchan, Malaysia

Best Unique Hotel In Sekinchan – Padi Box

If there is another thing Sekinchan is famous for, it’s the freight container hotel and homestays. If you are used to staying in 5-star hotels and think this is outrageous, let me convince you otherwise. 

The most famous container hotel in Sekinchan is Padi Box. Using recycled freight containers as building structures, this eco-friendly accommodation is not only stylish but strangely comfortable. 

The decor of the hotel is adorable, and there are plenty of open areas to get some sun and admire at the rice paddies. It has the amenities of a standard hotel but in a generally fun and relaxing atmosphere. 

If you are traveling to Sekinchan as a pair or couple, make sure you check out the Padi Box standard 2-person room or the 2-person room with private balcony, perfect for Instagram photos!

Traveling as a family? check out the 4-person rooms here and the 6-person rooms here.

(If you are new to Airbnb, don’t forget to use this coupon code for credits to possibly stay 1 night FREE at Padi Box!)

I highly recommend staying at one of these container hotels in Sekinchan if possible. The other more luxurious container hotel is called Farm Ville Cafe & Homestay.

Best Hotel In Sekinchan – The One Boutique Hotel

If you are looking for a standard clean and comfortable hotel, then consider The One Boutique Hotel. One of the most popular hotels in Sekinchan, The One Boutique provides spacious rooms at an affordable price. Though you won’t find the utmost luxury here, you will find sufficient amenities!

Click here for more details!

Like this post? Don’t forget to save it on Pinterest! 🙂

Things To Do in Sekinchan Pinterest

This is the end of our guide on the things to do in Sekinchan, Malaysia. Hopefully, this has given you an idea of what to do on your Sekinchan trip! 

Any question? Leave them in the comments!

Disclaimer: Some of the links above are affiliate links. That means if you book or make a purchase through the links, we will earn a small commission at no extra cost to you! The money will help run this site! Thank you 🙂

Things To Do in Sekinchan Pinterest
The PERFECT 2 Days In Kuala Lumpur Itinerary: The Best Of KL

The PERFECT 2 Days In Kuala Lumpur Itinerary: The Best Of KL

Are you planning on spending 2 days in Kuala Lumpur?

Looking for a Kuala Lumpur itinerary that will guide you on your Malaysia trip?

Look no further!

Having spent a reasonable amount of time in KL, I have created this Kuala Lumpur 2-day itinerary designed for anyone looking to see the best of KL and then get out!

Enjoy!

Is 2 Days In Kuala Lumpur Enough?

Before you continue reading this blog post about Kuala Lumpur, you must first decide if 2 days in Kuala Lumpur is enough.

In general, if you are the average traveler that only visits the best attractions in a city, then 2 days in KL should be sufficient.

The transportation system of Kuala Lumpur is very efficient and taxi-hailing apps such as Grab are very cheap. It makes traveling in Kuala Lumpur so effortless.

As the capital of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur feels like any other big metropolitan city. There is traffic, there is noise, and there is pollution. It is by no means a relaxing place to spend your Malaysia vacation. Travelers usually come to Kuala Lumpur for transit reasons.

However, that does not mean that there aren’t notable attractions in Kuala Lumpur. There are quite a few, but 2 days in Kuala Lumpur is enough to visit them all!

KL Itinerary Map: Things To Do In Kuala Lumpur In 2 Days

Below is an interactive map outlining the things to do in Kuala Lumpur in 2 days. The sequence of numbers is the order in which you will visit these places in Kuala Lumpur. From my own experience and extensive research, it is the best way to maximize your short visit to Kuala Lumpur.

There is a toggle at the upper left corner of the map. By clicking on it, you will be able to see each of the activities more detailedly. 

Weather In Kuala Lumpur

Before we start with a detailed guide on our Kuala Lumpur itinerary, we have to understand the weather in Kuala Lumpur.

Kuala Lumpur’s climate, like most southeast Asia cities, is extremely hot and humid all-year-round.

It makes exploring the city quite difficult, especially during the midday. I highly recommend you to do all the sightseeing in Kuala Lumpur in the early morning and evening. Spend the afternoon when the sun is the strongest resting in your accommodation, or chilling in a cafe, or hanging out in the air-conditioned malls. 

Heatstroke is common in Malaysia, especially for foreigners. Make sure you drink lots of water and keep hydrated!

The PERFECT 2 Days Kuala Lumpur Itinerary

Morning Of Day 1: Batu Caves

Welcome to Kuala Lumpur, “The Garden City Of Lights”. Rise and shine early because the first place we are visiting on our 2 days Kuala Lumpur itinerary is the famous Batu Caves. Known for its Instagram-worthy stairs, impressive cave systems, and unique religious complexes, Batu Caves is a must-see in Kuala Lumpur.

Batu Caves consist of a total of three massive caves and many smaller ones.  At the entrance of the main cave, you will find a towering statue of a Hindu God.

As you carefully make your way up a 272-step climb, you will be attacked accompanied by some friendly neighbors: monkeys. Though the monkeys are adorable, they will get their hands on anything they can take. Water bottle, sunglasses, insect repellent, GoPros, potato chips, nothing is safe around these monkeys. 

Once you finish your treacherous climb, you will be rewarded with stunning views of the city down below. The adventure doesn’t stop there though, as you have just arrived at the entrance of the sacred cave – Cathedral Cave. Here you will find several Hindu shrines where you can see the Hindu influences in Malaysia.

During the annual festival of Thaipusam, Batu Caves can attract up to more than one million pilgrims!

If you want more history and information about the sacred Batu Caves, check out this local tour!

Though the Cathedral Cave is probably the most popular cave in Batu Caves, there is another one that is worth seeing – the Ramayana Cave. 

The Ramayana Cave houses paintings and scenes of Hindu gods as well as numerous human-size statues.

By utilizing the public transportation system of KL, you can easily get to Batu Caves. Take the KLM Komuter Line on any of the stops and get off at the last stop of the line, Batu Caves. Once you have arrived, get out of the station and you will be there!

The whole journey takes about 45 minutes to an hour, depending on if you need to find your way to one of the stations for the KLM Komuter Line.

Batu Caves are completely free to enter. Aim to arrive as early as possible to beat the afternoon heat and to enjoy this sacred place without an overwhelming crowd. The opening hours of Batu Caves are from 6 AM to 9 PM. I recommend arriving no later than 10 AM.

However, the Ramayana Cave has an admission fee of 5 MYR (Malaysian Ringgit). 

Afternoon Of Day 1: Chinatown (Petaling Street), National Mosque Of Malaysia

By the time you have returned back to the center of Kuala Lumpur after visiting Batu Caves, it should be around midday. If you can handle the heat, you can head towards Chinatown, especially Petaling Street Market. If you cannot, go back to your hotel to rest and head out a little later in the day!

Malaysia is a melting pot of many different cultures and ethnicities. From Indian to Malaysian to Chinese, you can find bits of every culture integrated into the everyday life of Kuala Lumpur. Experiencing Malaysia is about experiencing the different cultures that make up the impressively diverse country.

Chinatown is the hotspot for Chinese culture (if you couldn’t tell by the name). Here you will find a heavy concentration of Chinese cuisine, culture, and influences. Unlike most parts of Kuala Lumpur that have been modernized, Chinatown still retains most of its historic structures. Bustling street markets, cheap street food, affordable accommodation, Chinatown is one of my favorite places to stay in Kuala Lumpur.

Though a stroll down Chinatown will present you with excitements left and right, there are a few specific spots worth checking out. They are the Petaling Street Market, Sri Maha Mariamman Temple, Kwai Chai Hong. If you have not heard of any of those, don’t worry. I’ll go into detail on why they are worth visiting!

Petaling Street Market is the perfect model of the street markets that southeast Asia is famous for. Dirt-cheap prices, knock-off items, street food, miscellaneous merchandise, sweat, crowds, noise, it’s the full package. 

You can spend hours wandering around, laughing at the terrible spellings on the fake clothing or trying the strange local food such as the infamous durian.

After you have shopped til’ you dropped, take a break at the nearby Sri Maha Mariamman Temple. As the oldest Hindu temple in Kuala Lumpur, Sri Maha Mariamman is one of the best places to visit in KL. With Spanish and Italian tiles, precious jewels, and gold in its design, the elegance of the temple contrasts starkly with the cheap Petaling Street. 

Sri Maha Mariamman’s location at the edge of Chinatown is another perfect example of the harmony of Buddhism and Hinduism in Kuala Lumpur. Take a moment to look at the intricate artwork and paintings and understand the importance of Hinduism in Malaysia.

The Sri Mahamariamman Temple

You can only visit a temple for so long before you get tired of it. After making a brief stop at the Sri Maha Mariamman temple, head over to Kwai Chai Hong. A small alley filled with cool interactive murals, Kwai Chai Hong is one of the most picturesque spots in Kuala Lumpur. 

As you can tell by the name, this tourist attraction is influenced by the Chinese. Many of the murals represent the daily lives of local Malaysians and the Chinese immigrants, such as the barbershop mural.

Unlike other small cities such as Ipoh and Penang where street arts inundate the streets, a heavily-populated metropolitan city like Kuala Lumpur rarely sees any. Take advantage of this opportunity to enjoy some local arts! 

After exploring all of Chinatown, it is time to visit another top attraction in Kuala Lumpur: The National Mosque of Malaysia (also known as Masjid Negara). A national symbol of Islam, the National Mosque of Malaysia is able to accommodate 15,000 people at one time.

The impressive structure has a unique geometric decor, featuring abstract shapes and lattices. The aesthetic of the mosque is so tunning it can double as a museum!

The mosque spans a huge 13 acres, but the part you must visit is the Grand Hall. Non-Muslims visitors are allowed inside outside of prayer times. If you are dressed inappropriately, there are robes and scarves for rent at the entrance of the mosque. 

Kuala Lumpur Malaysia National-Mosque-03

Night Of Day 1: Petronas Tower, KLCC Park

After a visit to the National Mosque of Malaysia, it is time for the highlight of our Kuala Lumpur 2 day itinerary – The Petronas Tower (also known as Petronas Twin Towers).

Any visit to Malaysia would not be complete without seeing the iconic Petronas Towers, whose glory as the tallest building in the world lasted from 1998 to 2004. Though several skyscrapers are now much taller than the Petronas Twin Towers, the impressive engineering feat will never be forgotten.

Many places in KL offer unobstructed views of the magnificent Petronas Tower. Our favorite is the KLCC Park adjacent to the twin towers. Similar to the Central Park in New York City, the KLCC provides green spaces to a heavily urbanized city. Sitting in the 50-acre park at night is like finding a haven in the chaos.

The KLCC Park has daily water and light shows to accompany the breath-taking views of the Petronas Towers. The shows are scheduled for 8 PM, 9 PM, and 10 PM. 

Other amazing places to see the Petrona Towers are the nearby rooftop bars. Though I personally have not been, I have heard great things about them. The most notable place is the Sky Bar on the 33rd floor of the Traders Hotel.

You do not need to be a guest there to visit their Sky Bar. However, you might need to make a reservation depending on if you are visiting Kuala Lumpur on the weekend or during peak season.

If you want to visit the Petronas Tower Observatory Deck, you are more than welcome to do so. Just keep in mind that it closes at 9 PM. On Monday, the observatory deck is closed all day. It costs 80 RM for adults and 33 RM for children, but they are on a first come first serve basis. Tickets can be purchased online here to save all the hassle. 

After you are done drooling over the views of the Petronas Tower, you are more than welcome to wander around if you still have energy. From my experience, the heat and humidity made me much more tired in general. The first day of our Kuala Lumpur itinerary for 2 days ends here!

Good night!

Morning Of Day 2: Thean Hou Temple, Central Market

Are you ready for another exciting day on our 2 days in Kuala Lumpur itinerary? In the morning, you will explore one of the oldest religious relics in Malaysia, the Thean Hou Temple. 

Originally built by Hainanese immigrants in 1987, the Thean Hou Temple is one of the oldest Chinese temples in Kuala Lumpur.

Many visitors come to Thean Hou just for the picturesque photo. That is great. In fact, Thean Hou is one of the most beautiful temples I have been to in Malaysia. Featuring ornate Chinese architecture and seas of dainty lanterns, Thean Hou is a photographer’s paradise.

However, Thean Hou is also a very important temple. Dedicated to the Chinese sea goddess Mazu, blessings from the temple are essentials for anyone working at sea.

Unlike the national mosque that requires a specific attire, Thean Hou does not have a dress code. There is also no entrance fee! Just keep in mind that it opens at 9 AM so don’t come here too early!

After a civilized visit to the temple, its time to head back to the scramble. This time around, we won’t be going to the Petaling Street Market for our fun, but the Central Market Kuala Lumpur.

Started off as a wet market in 1888, the Central Market has become one of the most iconic landmarks in Malaysia. Not only does it function as a market, but it symbolizes the heritage of cultures of the multi-racial country. Here you will find vendors with merchandise from various backgrounds: Chinese, Malays, and Indians.

Central Market is one of the best places to shop for souvenirs and handicrafts, as most items are made locally. When you are tired or hungry, there are plenty of cafes and restaurants inside the market. Honestly, Central Market feels like a city within a city!

Afternoon Of Day 2: Merdeka Square, KL Forest Eco Park, KL Tower

After Central Market, you will head to the nearby Dataran Merdeka, or Independence Square in English. As the first place where the Malaysian flag was flown, Merdeka Square is one of the most historically important places in Malaysia.

Though you won’t be able to learn about much of the history with a casual stroll on the perfectly manicured lawn, the historic buildings offer a glimpse into the past. Malaysia was a British colony before it gained its independence.

At 95 meters high, the flagpole at Merdeka Square is one of the highest in the world!

Merdeka Square

After Merdeka Square, the next stop on our Kuala Lumpur 2 days itinerary is KL Forest Eco Park.

A centrally-located park filled with nature trails, endangered monkeys (rarely), and a beautiful canopy walk, KL Forest Eco Park is like an oasis in a desert. It is surprising to see so much green space concentrated in one area in KL!

The stunning 200-meter canopy walk is the most outstanding feature of the park. Not only is it only one of the most beautiful places in Kuala Lumpur, but you will also feel like you are nested in the jungle!

The truth is that some parts of the park are not pristine. Concrete steps might be missing and some parts of the park might even look abandoned. However, that is exactly why I enjoyed it so much. Seeing nature reclaim its territory, hopping over tree branches, that is what makes a nature trail fun. If you wanted to walk on concrete, maybe a shopping mall is a better option for you.

Bring insect repellent as mosquitoes are rampant in the KL Forest Eco Park. I mean rampant!

The best thing about the KL Eco Forest Park is that it connects to the next attraction on our KL itinerary – the famous KL Tower (Menara Kuala Lumpur).

At 421-meters high, the Kuala Lumpur Tower is one of the tallest telecommunication towers in the world. Though the views of the tower from below is spectacular, the views from above are even better.

KL Tower features an interior observation deck at 276, which is known to offer a better view of the city than the Petronas Tower’s observatory deck. The tower also has an exciting open-air sky deck at 300 meters above the ground. Want more excitement? Take a photo at the sky box, where the only thing separating you from the ground is a thin piece of see-through glass.

If you had to pick an observatory for panoramic views of KL, I would recommend KL Tower even though it is not as high as the Petronas Twin Towers. 

Click here for ticket details!

Night Of Day 2: Jalan Alor Night Food Court

No visit to Kuala Lumpur is complete without a trip to the famous food night markets. There are several amazing food night markets in Kuala Lumpur, but the one you mustn’t miss is Jalan Alor Night Food Street.

Hundreds of hawkers stalls and seafood restaurants inundate both sides of this food street, turning it into a paradise for food-lovers (aka everyone).The foods there are absolutely delicious and ridiculously cheap, perfect for anyone traveling Malaysia on a budget.

If you did not have dinner yet, Jalan Alor is the perfect place to sample various types of food. Try a little bit from each stall and soon you will have a full and happy belly (and a happy wallet).

The most famous restaurant on Jalan Alor Street Food is Sai Woo. Though I did not try the food there myself, I have heard great things from other travelers!

Jalan Alor is the last place to visit on our 2 day Kuala Lumpur itinerary. We know that everyone has a different pace of travel. For those that tend to travel faster, here are some additional places to visit in Kuala Lumpur in 2 days!

Additional Places To Visit In Kuala Lumpur In 2 Days

1. Perdana Botanical Gardens

Do you prefer more green spaces when you travel and cannot make a trip to the Cameron Highlands? Take a trip to the Perdana Botanical Gardens. 

This gigantic green space is the perfect place for a relaxing stroll after a long day. There are also some very exotic plants there such as the poisonous sausages! They are some of the strangest plants I have ever seen in my life!

2. Kuala Lumpur Butterfly Park

Adjacent to the Perdana Botanical Gardens is another hidden gems of Kuala Lumpur, the Kuala Lumpur Butterfly Park. Featuring over 5,000 butterflies, this butterfly park is perfect for people traveling with kids in Kuala Lumpur.

However, the entrance price is quite steep at 35 RM, but I can guarantee you that it will be a good experience!

3. Fireflies in Kuala Selangor

One of the best things to do in Malaysia is to enjoy the unique nature. In the Sabah region of Malaysia, exotic animals such as orangutans and proboscis monkeys run wild.

Though these animals aren’t in KL, there are colonies of fireflies nearby.

Located about an hour away from Kuala Lumpur is a small and cute little seaside town called Kuala Selangor. Numerous colonies of fireflies live freely in the mangroves that navigates through town.

Though I personally recommend staying a few days in Kuala Selangor (and Sekinchan) to see a different side of Malaysia, it is still possible to see the fireflies from Kuala Lumpur with a private tour.

Find out which tour fits you best here!

Where To Stay To Maximize Your 48 Hours In Kuala Lumpur

Though transportation is cheap and convenient in Kuala Lumpur, staying in a few areas in KL will help you maximize your 48 hours in Kuala Lumpur.

Here are some of the best neighborhoods to stay in Kuala Lumpur: Chinatown, KLCC (Kuala Lumpur City Center), and Bukit Bintang. Our recommendations will only feature hostels and hotels in those areas.

Best Hostel In Kuala Lumpur – Mingle Petaling Street

If you are looking for a social, beautiful, and affordable hostel in Kuala Lumpur, look no further. Mingle Petaling Street is a hostel unlike no other in KL.

The hostel is located inside an old historic house, where the history speaks for itself in the faded paint and cracks on the wall. But unlike staying at an old house where you expect the facilities to be dated, the facilities are amazing for the low price you are paying. 

Mingle also offers free dinner everyday for your stay, but you would have to sign up ahead of time because the slots do fill up quickly!

Click here for more details!

Best Cheap Hotel In Kuala Lumpur – Ibis Kuala Lumpur City Centre

Cheap hotels in Kuala Lumpur are abundant, but finding the perfect one can be a daunting task. Ibis is an internationally recognized hotel chain that provides quality rooms and services at an affordable rate.

The Ibis Kuala Lumpur City Centre is no exception. Offering a huge infinity pool with breath-taking views of the Petronas Tower, guests can sightsee without leaving the hotel! The hotel also offers a delicious breakfast buffet, which is the perfect way to start your day in Kuala Lumpur.

Though there are cheaper hotels in KL, the Ibis is not going to bankrupt you and it is worth the extra bit!

Click here for more info!

Best Luxury Hotel In Kuala Lumpur – RuMa Hotel and Residences

Anyone looking for a luxury hotel in Kuala Lumpur will find the RuMa Hotel and Residences a delight. 

Unlike other hotels where they just provide a clean room to stay, RuMA Hotel takes it up a notch by providing guests with an extraordinary experience. The interior decor is stylish and speaks nothing but luxury. The swimming pool and rooms are immaculate, and the staff treats you like kings and queens.

This is one of the highest-rated hotels in Kuala Lumpur and it is easy to see why!

Find out more here!

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This concludes our Malaysia blog post on the Kuala Lumpur 2-day itinerary! I hope it has given you a rough idea of what to do in Kuala Lumpur in 2 days! 

Any question? Leave them in the comments!

Disclaimer: Some of the links above are affiliate links. That means if you book or make a purchase through the links, we will earn a small commission at no extra cost to you! The money will help run this site! Thank you 🙂

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13 BEST Things To Do In Sabah, Malaysia

13 BEST Things To Do In Sabah, Malaysia

Not sure what to do in Sabah, Malaysia?

Borneo, especially the Malaysian State Sabah, has become a very popular spot for travelers in South East Asia over the past few years. It was once an island that was deemed too dangerous, or too remote, but now those perceptions are changing after more are discovering the wonders of Sabah.

If you’re planning a holiday in Sabah, you are going to want to make sure you set aside a couple of weeks and take it at your own pace, as there are plenty of amazing places to visit in Sabah.

Below, we have compiled a list of the 13 best things to do in Sabah based on your own experience!

Enjoy!

What To Do in Sabah: 13 BEST Things To Do In Sabah, Malaysia

1. Stay At A Homestay Under Mount Kinabalu

I always love to stay at a homestay, which is why I will always recommend staying in one.

But when I say homestay, I don’t mean a guest house or B&B style homestay, I mean staying with a family and helping them to cook, farm or clean.

This is the most authentic way to experience what life is like for the locals and understand more about their rich culture and lifestyle.

Not only that, but you will taste the best food in Sabah at a homestay, trust me! Nothing beats a home-cooked meal.

The best place to stay in a homestay in Sabah is in the rural town of Kundasang, which is one of the many rural areas that nestle under Mount Kinabalu. Most of these villages offer homestays with much of the same offer, but if you’re considering this unique experience, check out Kinabalu Valley Homestay!

2. Hike Mount Kinabalu, Malaysia’s Tallest Mountain

For adventurers, hiking Mount Kinabalu is ultimately the best hiking in Sabah. Mount Kinabalu is not only the highest mountain in Sabah, but the whole of South East Asia. At 4200 meters above sea level, this hike is not to be underestimated.

Even if you’re not a fan of hiking, visiting the Kinabalu National Park is one of the unmissable places to visit in Sabah.

From the park, you can feast your eyes on the immensity of Mount Kinabalu from ground level. If you are planning on hiking this mountain, it is worth seeing what you’re getting yourself in for! If you’re not interested in hiking, from the ground there are many small nature trails and family-friendly walks you can do. 

3. Bask In The Poring Hot Springs, Best Place To Visit In Sabah After Hiking

Poring Sabah PoringHotSprings-08

No vacation is complete without soaking in some soothing natural hot springs.

After a long and arduous hike up Mount Kinabalu, this is going to be the best place to visit in Sabah in your whole Sabah trip, possibly.

The Poring Hot Spring baths are a welcoming 45-60 degrees and only 40km out of the Kinabalu national park, making it the perfect pit stop to soothe those aching limbs. And for 15 Malaysian Ringgit, it’s hardly breaking the bank either. 

4. Learn About The Sandakan Death March

This is possibly the most somber thing to do in Sabah, but also the most important. When traveling anywhere, I always like to understand the history and culture of the place.

Notably for Sabah, the Sandakan Death March is one of the most poignant moments in the history of Sabah, and a must for anyone interested in dark tourism.

A brief history: during the second world war, the Japanese occupied the island of Borneo where they kept Australian and British prisoners of war.

During this time, they marched almost 2,500 prisoners from Sandakan to Kuching, through dense jungle and with limited rations and aid. No one made it to Kuching, and only six escaped. The rest sadly perished on the journey.

To learn more about the march, memorials are held in various places in the region.

Kundasang War Memorial and Sandakan Memorial Park are two important places to visit in Sabah if you want to learn more about this story and pay your respects to those who tragically lost their lives. Personally, I found the Sandakan Memorial Park one of the most interesting places in Sabah.

See The Incredible Wildlife In Sabah

1. Visit The Gomantong Caves To See Bats

Gomantong Cave Sandakan

Just down the road from the hot springs is the Gomantong Caves, which is the largest cave in Sabah. This is possibly one of the lesser-known attractions in Sabah, Malaysia.

The cave in itself is impressive and full of bats (be careful, one pooped on me), but the reason most travelers venture here is not for the cave itself…

To enter the cave, you must first walk down a wooden boardwalk through the dense jungle. On this walk, if you’re really lucky, you can spot an orangutan or two in the wild. I was lucky to see a mother and baby when I went, but as always with nature, you can never guarantee what you will see.

Oh and, don’t touch the railings in the cave…trust me.

2. Jungle Trekking And River Cruise In The Kinabatangan River

No holiday in Sabah would be complete without taking a jungle trek and river cruise expedition on the Kinabatangan river. To get there, you’ll drive through miles after miles of palm oil plantations, which sadly sheds light on the sad truth of this island’s current deforestation crisis.

After about 3 hours of driving through plantations, you’ll reach the jungle corridor – the place where the plantations stop, and the jungle begins. The corridor is defined by the river, where you can see how conservationists have created ropes for animals to flee the plantations and make their way safely to the jungle on the other side.

The river cruise is the best place to see wildlife in Sabah as it patrols the corridor where most animals have found safety. However, as always with wildlife, you’ll never know what you will see.

If you’re lucky, you may see an orangutan or two who like to nestle high up in the tree canopy. Closer to the water, you may come across a herd of pygmy elephants – a cute breed of elephant native to Borneo that you can’t see anywhere else.

Conservationists have worked hard to maintain the mangroves by the river, which is the best place to see pig-tailed macaques, gibbons and if you’re really, really, lucky…a Proboscis Monkey. Other animals that have been found in the area are the slow loris (though they are very rare to find) and hose’s langur, as well as hundreds of species of birds.

After the river cruise, make sure you take a jungle trek at night time when the wildlife really starts to wake up. At night, you are more likely to see slow loris, frogs, snakes, spiders and other insects. Make sure you put on your leach socks though, as leeches are prone to fall from the branches!

3. Labuk Bay Proboscis Monkey Sanctuary

When you think of endangered monkeys in Borneo, you are probably thinking about the orangutans. And you would be right, they are endangered. But not as endangered, as the Proboscis Monkey… Today, there are thought to be less than 7,000 in the wild. If you want to see these incredible animals, the best place to see Proboscis Monkeys is at the Labuk Bay Proboscis Monkey Sanctuary. The Proboscis Monkey is native to Borneo and they predominantly live in mangroves. Due to the deforestation problem in Sabah, much of their habitat has been destroyed and today their numbers grow fewer and fewer. For wildlife lovers, make sure you don’t miss the chance to see these awesome creatures while you still can.

4. Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre

If you’re traveling to Borneo, then you’re probably wanting to see some orangutans. The orangutans are the biggest Sabah attraction and unfortunately their numbers are declining, so if you want to see them in their home…you better go now!

Witnessing Orangutans in the wild is not impossible, but it’s very rare. If you want to ensure you do get to see them, happy and free, then you should make a stop by the Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre.

The center is located in the Kabili-Sepilok Forest Reserve, which has no walls or cages, so orangutans are free to roam as they please…although, the daily offering of food is not something these inquisitive animals can turn down.

As well as seeing the orangutans roaming wild and free, you can also see the extraordinary work the center is doing to protect those orphaned or injured orangutans rescued from plantations or illegally kept as pets.

Every orangutan saved is trained to live in the wild, so they can be one-day released back into their natural habitat. Seeing the orangutans, in my opinion, is the best thing to do in Sabah, so make sure you don’t miss the Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre.

5. Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre

Across the road from the Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre is the Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre.

These adorable animals are the world’s smallest bear species and native to South East Asia. Unfortunately, like the orangutan, their species is threatened by deforestation and illegal poaching and their numbers are dropping.

At the BSBCC you can observe these bears in their natural habitat as they bask in the sun or chew on a few branches, while maintaining a safe distance from them.

For wildlife and nature lovers, this is a must-see attraction in Sabah.

6. Explore Turtle Conservation Projects At Turtle Island

For nature lovers, you cannot miss a visit to Turtle Island, otherwise known as Selingan island. This entire island is a conservation project set up to protect these important and endangered animals.

During the day, there are beautiful white sand beaches you can chill out on and snorkel from the shore. But the real magic happens at night.

Amazingly, turtles always return to the beach they hatched from to lay their eggs during the night. Fortunately for Selingan, these sea creatures have been visiting the island for decades, which means that turtles visit this island’s shore pretty much every night of the year to lay their eggs. This is great news for travelers who have a tight schedule, as any day is the best time to visit Sabah if you want to see turtles lay their eggs. 

As well as witnessing the mother turtle lay her eggs (from a safe and unobtrusive distance) you can also witness the newly hatched turtles be released back into the wild.

This conservation project has been operating for decades and they have a real knowledge of these animals and how to protect them.

Visit The Stunning Beaches In Sabah

If you want a bit of relaxation by the sea, the best beaches in Sabah are in the “Palau Islands”, off the Northern Eastern town of Semporna. Not to be confused with The Palau islands in Micronesia, Palau in Malay simply translates to “islands” and so many of the islands in Sabah start with the name Palau.

These exotic islands are known for having retained their unspoiled beaches and untouched sea life, making them the perfect spot for beach lovers and divers.

1. Palau Bum Bum Island

Perhaps the easiest island to get to is Bum Bum Island, the biggest island in the Palau collection. Although not a popular destination for tourists, yet, it is a hidden gem waiting to be explored. Palau Bum Bum has a quiet and peaceful atmosphere, as well as beautiful green hikes and views that will take your breath away. So, if you don’t go for those reasons, at least go for its comical name!

To get to Palau Bum Bum island is very simple. You can take a boat from Semporna. The distance across is only 1km, so boats are not hard to come by.

Where To Stay On Palau Bum Bum Island

If you’re on a super tight budget, there are some awesome on-water budget hotels and hostels on the island. We would recommend ND Divers, who not only offer a reliable, comfortable and clean place to stay, but also sort you out with a diving tour too.

Staying on-water tends to keep bugs away, so if you get the opportunity to stay in an on-water accommodation, do it!

2. Palau Mabul Island

For serious divers, Palau Mabul island offers some of the best diving in Sabah. If you’re not big on diving, there are snorkeling and sea kayaking tours available too. Palau Mabul island is small and quaint. A few days here is all you need to relax and let go of your worries.

Where To Stay On Palau Mabul Island

If you have ever dreamed of the water-beach hut resorts you see in the Maldives, but can’t quite afford it, then Palau Mabul is the place for you!

The Sipadan Water Village is possibly the best place to stay in Sabah, offering a luxury on-water resort that offers private cottages at a fraction of the price of the Maldives, and the beauty is, you can organize your diving tours through the resort.

You can get there either by boat from Semporna or you can fly from Kota Kinabalu.

3. Palau Sipadan Island

If you want to know which is the best island for diving in Sabah, then Sipadan is the answer! The diving from Sipadan will be the best diving Borneo has to offer you but getting there is not easy…though completely worth it!

As far as I know, the only way to get there is by boat from Mabul island, which in itself needs a boat or a plane to get to. If you have a bit of time in Sabah, make sure you include Sipadan in your Sabah trip.

What To Pack For Sabah, Malaysia

If you are planning to do all, or some, of the attractions in Sabah that I’ve mentioned above, you will want to be prepared. You will be going from the mountains, to the jungle, to the beaches, and each of these activities needs specialist equipment that you shouldn’t forget to pack!

Outside of the regular packing items you need for every trip, you should pack:

1. High-Zoom Camera – Photographing wildlife is no easy task, especially if they are quick and far away. Unless you have an interchangeable lens camera and a telescopic lens, chances are you might not be able to capture anything. That is why I recommend the Sony CyberShot-RX10 IV. With its 24-600mm zoom, you won’t miss a shot anymore!

2.  Sunscreen Do you expect to go to South East Asia and not pack any sunscreen? 

3. Insect Repellent with Picaridin – Filled with tropical jungles, Sabah is inundated with insects and mosquitos. If there is one thing you pack for Sabah, it is insect repellent

4. Filtration Water Bottle – One of my favorite traveler items. It will save you money from buying water, and will also save you in dire circumstances, especially when hiking Mount Kinabalu.

5. Solomon Hiking Boots (Him/Her) – If you are planning on hiking Mount Kinabalu, you will need some good quality hiking boots. The terrain of the hike is very rocky and can be slippery if it rains. There are some steep inclines and muddy patches, so you will put a lot of pressure on your ankles. I hiked Mount Kinabalu with my Solomon hiking boots and they did not let me down. They are lightweight, durable and have lasted me years.

6. Rain Jacket (Him/Her) – Rain is common in Sabah, especially near the rainforest. Always pack a lightweight rain jacket with you!

7. Travel Medicine Kit – With the sanitation and hygiene of some South East Asia, it might be wise to pack an all-purpose medicine kit. Nothing is worst than getting sick abroad!

8. Warm Clothing – There are a few activities where warm clothing is necessary. Mount Kinabalu reaches 4,160 meters above sea-level and can be quite cold at the summit. I would also recommend wearing a long-sleeve t-shirt when doing a jungle trek, so help stop leeches from getting in!

9. Hiking Leech Socks – If you are planning on doing the jungle trek, then you should probably take your own leech socks. If you go with a guide, they usually provide rain boots and leech socks, however, the ones provided to me were worn and muddy, and didn’t stop leeches from entering. I would seriously consider investing in your own if you want to do this activity, and they are not that expensive.

10. Mosquito Head Net When I did the jungle trek, another traveler in the group wore one of these and she was the only one to not get a leech on her! I wish I had one of these when I went to Sabah. The pull-cord fastening provides an impenetrable fortress for leeches and will protect you from getting bugs in the eyes too! 

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So that’s it! The top 13 things to do in Sabah. Which one was your favorite? Mine was definitely the Mount Kinabalu hike.

Any questions? Leave a comment!

Disclaimer: Some of the links above are affiliate links. That means if you book or make a purchase through the links, we will earn a small commission at no extra cost to you! The money will help run this site! Thank you 🙂

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