200 kilometre from Kuala Lumpur, a typical road trip to Ipoh will take about 2 and a half hours if you are using the PLUS highway.
Minus the hotel, the total cost for petrol and toll is about RM100, since we drive a Perodua Axia, we did fill-up our tank at the starting point ( Rawang RnR) and top-up our Touch N Go RM50. Toll rate; RM23.20 (Rawang – Ipoh ). We refuel again before heading back to KL and using 'jalan kampung' with no toll at all.
Here how's the trip goes :
Start our journey from Rawang, make a stop at RTC Perak to buy some fruits and continue to Ipoh. We arrive slightly around 1 p.m and head straight to have our lunch at Kedai Kopi Yong Suan that are famously known for their Nasi Kandar Ayam Merah or 'Nasi Ganja'.
After that, we settle down at Kinta Riverfront Hotel & Suites. Although we come earlier, our room is ready, and as we are currently on RMCO, all guest body temperature need to be checked before entering the hotel.
We too a quick recharge before going out again to Greentown Dimsum Café the ONLY HALAL certified dim sum outlet in Ipoh.
Next, we head over to Concubine Lane but we arrive slightly late, around 6.30 p.m and all the shop already closes by that time. So, we decided to go to BookXcess @ Kong Heng instead and take a few photos and buy some books.
An interesting fact about BookXcess @Kong Heng is it's a former bank-turned-bookstore, decorated with witty neon light signages and home to the Yasmin Ahmad 'newseum'.
BookXcess Kong Heng offers customers unique shopping experience by building its bookstore within the bank's vaults and safety deposits!
After an hour at the bookstore, we make our way to Chokodok Reggae House Cafe & Backpackers at Jalan Sultan Iskandar (few meters away from Chekodok Reggae) to take a quick bite and enjoy the live music performance.
Before ending our day, we stroll around Gerbang Malam - a night market that sells many goodies at a reasonable price. Watch, shoes, bag or even souvenirs can be found here. They are open from 6:00 pm to midnight every day except for really heavy rainy days.
We purposely didn't take the hotel breakfast, but they do have it for RM25 or RM35 per pax (sorry I didn't remember the exact price but it's either one) but we choose to drive to Taman Canning and head to Restoran New Hollywood.
Our favourite is the Cheong Fun, set of bread with eggs and of course, the Hainanese or white coffee.
After a quick breakfast session (and its rains), we drive to Concubine Lane again and this time all shops are open and there's is a lot of things to eat and shop. One of them is the colourful cheese toast. Since I already tried most of them previously, so we skipped all the street food and straight away head to Platf9rm Coffee & Brew Cafe.
This can be said as 'Harry-Potter themed cafe' and it is definitely a showstopper with the windowfront resembling Diagon Alley’s windowfront. With two bulging and curved windows accompanying the front door, this is the first Instagram spot in this cafe.
One of the most standout beverage would be butter brew float, or commonly know a butterbeer, a beverage enjoyed by wizards and witches. It is pretty tasty as it is made with butterscotch and whipped cream!
Enough of the wizardry drinks and coffee, we continue our journey to Gunung Lang Recreational Park, located only five kilometres from Ipoh town is one of the many limestone mountains in the state of Perak.
The main attractions of Taman Rekreasi Gunung Lang are the man-made cascading waterfall atop a limestone hill, a 2km boardwalk over the swamp and lookout towers. There are also facilities like a children’s playground, campsite, mini zoo, a prayer room and washrooms. In order to reach there, one must pay RM3 (adult) / RM1.50 (Senior Citizen) for a boat ride from the jetty (obviously- we skipped this ride since there are so many people queuing up).
After that, we visited Darul Rizuan Museum. There is a bit history of Ipoh and the Tin mining, and the second floor is about the traditional and old building in Ipoh that been replicate using models.
Not to forget, there is a Traditional Game exhibition happening at the museum. There are several traditional games available to play and yes, it is hard to see people playing it now.
We had our lunch at Restaurant Nasi Vanggey in Green Town Business Centre, it is a chained restaurant but famously known for their Nasi Kandar and red chicken curry.
p/s : they even have few outlets in Klang Valley too!
We want to try the 'OG' of white coffee at Sin Yoon Loong Coffee Shop - the first coffee shop in the old town that has popularized Ipoh white coffee but we didn't manage to find it. So we settle for a cup of coffee at Vintage Cafe & Guest House in Jalan Market and get our caffeine fix with a portion of pasta and waffle.
End of day 2.
It's Sunday and we purposely choose to be in Ipoh on Sunday because of the 'Loken' or the weekly market or they call it Memory Lane. The luck is not on our side because it rains heavily in the morning.
We decided to go for our breakfast at The Oldtown White Coffee outlet that located on Jalan Tun Sambanthan in Ipoh old town and near to Padang Ipoh. This Old Town Kopitiam is beautifully located inside a renovated pre-war shophouse. Its exterior has been repainted while the internal is tastefully decorated with charming fixtures that really bring back the memory of the good old times.
If you walk toward the end or if you are driving by, you can see a big 'Old Uncle with Coffee Cup' mural.
We waited for the rain to clear up before making our way back to Memory Lane or Loken. Sadly, the streets are not so busy with sellers maybe because of the rain before but still, there are several of them selling old and vintage items.
Since the location is nearby to the hotel, we pack our things up after that and check-out.
The initial plan was to go to Kellie's Castle, but there is a lot of people and we decided to skip head back to KL using the inner road.
Along the way, we see a signboard saying HOGA, Gaharu Tea Valley Gopeng in Jalan Sungai Itek, Gopeng.
There, you can have a nature walk (cost RM5 per person) between the nicely planted Gaharu trees while you breathe in all the healthy negative ions. Besides, you may try and buy all Gaharu related product and even try their Gaharu Ice cream or Ramen.
After merely about 1-hour there, we continue our drive and end our trip at a local restaurant in Rawang.