Discover Perak – The Northern Hidden Gems


Hi there, in this post, I will introduce you to a state up in the north of Malaysia – Perak.
If we were to translate the name of Perak in English, it will literally mean Silver. There are many tales on how Perak got its name. The most famous one is because of the presence of a white silver looking fish in parts of the local river.  Also, as Perak once is very popular with the mining industry during its glory days, it was told that the name Perak was also associated with the minerals that shining brightly when they are being shed by the sunlight.

Where is Perak?

Where is Perak    Discover Perak

Perak is located in the north part of Malaysia. The capital city of Perak is Ipoh, which is about 3 hours drive from Kuala Lumpur. However, if you travel north by using high-speed rail from KL, you may only need about 1 and a half hours to reach Ipoh. If you are travelling from Penang, it is only 1.5 hours drive away.

Perak is further divided into 9 districts in which every district has a little bit of difference in terms of foods, culture and even dialect. It has so many things to offer and only seasoned travellers are aware of this off the beaten paths. For example, if you want a beach vacation, you can visit Pangkor Island of the Manjung district. Or, if you opt for a lush jungle experience, you can head to Royal Belum rainforest in Hulu Perak. Or, if you feel like immersing yourself in a city where history and tradition clash with the modern civilisation, head up to Ipoh, a city that used to be the epicentre of Malaysian mining days. Or maybe, if you haven’t got the chance to visit the leaning tower in Pisa, you might want to do the inaugural visit first to the Leaning tower in Teluk Intan.

Believe me, there are lots of things to do and discover here in Perak.

Things to do in Perak

1) Island Trip at Pangkor island

Things to do in Perak

Pangkor Island bird-view


Things to do in Perak

Pangkor Laut Resort by the dusk


Things to do in Perak

Your next island vacation

Pangkor Laut Resort

One of the best resort in Pangkor Island is Pangkor Laut Resort, the average price per night is 215USD. You can find more details and reviews here at

2) Royal Belum State Park

Things to do in Perak

The untouched nature


Things to do in Perak

This is the heaven and top spot for people that love fishing

Things to do in Perak

3) Strolling around the streets of Ipoh

Things to do in Perak

Street arts


Things to do in Perak



Things to do in Perak

Street Art

4) Hotspring Vacation at The Banjaran Hotsprings Retreat

Best hot spring in the world

This is hands down, the best place to have a Hotspring vacation.


Things to do in Perak

Embrace the nature. Find yourself lost in the green and lush forest.


Things to do in Perak

The place you can find your lost inner self.

The Banjaran Hotsprings Retreat
The average cost for per night at this Hotspring Resort is only 220USD, you can visit for more details and review.

5) Leaning tower of Teluk Intan

Things to do in Perak

The leaning tower of Malaysia


Things to do in Perak

Leaning tower by the night

6) Indulging local delicacies

There are a lot of foods to be sampled here in Perak, especially in Ipoh. I promise, I will write another article on this matter.

Things to do in Perak

Curry Mee


Things to do in Perak

Jiggly soft boiled eggs on toast with bubbly tea! OMG!


Things to do in Perak

Nasi Ganja – or literal translation as ‘Weed’s Rice’. Rest assured there isn’t any illegal material in it, but the name suggests the reputation it gets for being so addictive

7) Experience the magical beach at Pulau Sembilan, Bagan Datok

Glowing beach

The magical beach at Pulau Sembilan


Things to do in Perak

The place is being guarded so strictly. Nobody is allowed to spend the night here. The authority wants to keep it as pristine and isolated as it is.


Things to do in Perak

You need to apply for a special daily pass to visit this place

Things to do in Perak

Posted in Off the Beaten Path, Travel Malaysia Guide.


  1. Great. Your article says a lot about Malaysia to the extent that I can feel Malaysia already and before visiting. That’s good because it makes me want to go see for myself after all. Good images of the individual tourist sites and clear explanation makes it good to read. Plain and and simple website theme also compliment the page. Great site overall

  2. Great site with great images of the country’s northern state. I have never been to Malaysia, but this site is very appealing and gives a taste of what we can expect. It seems like the beauty of nature has been well preserved. I can tell by the images you have posted that this country has a beauty of its own. What is the language spoken in Malaysia?

    • Thank you for your comments.

      The official language is Malay, however, English is spoken and used widely as the second language. And as there are Chinese and Indian as well, so some Malaysians can speak mandarin and Tamil which are their mother toung

  3. Thank you for the interesting information. I have always wanted to visit Malaysia and am especially curious about the food. Is it different to Thai, Vietnamese or Indonesian food? If so, how does it differ?

    • Hi, Eril, I can say that there are similarities as the whole southeast Asian region may share same culture and customs, but obviously, there are a lot of differences as well. Yo know, Vietnamese cuisine somewhat has French influence in it and Thai food is obviously quite unique but as Malaysia is the border with Thailand, so we have some Thai influence too. I think we share the most with Indonesian as we rooted from the same culture, however, I will say that Malaysian dishes have been influenced highly by Indian and Chinese taste and culture as well as Malaysia is a multi-racial country. So yeah, I think, the best way is for you to come over and pay your next foods trip here. : )

  4. Hi neighbor.

    I am from Indonesia and looking forward to visiting Malaysia. There are tons of foods that I want to try there. Traveling channels don’t help either. They made me want to go to Malaysia immediately.

    I love to visit that magical beach. What’s the glowing thing on the beach?

    How much should I prepare? I don’t want to spend a lot of money. 😀
    A budget traveler here.

    Are the places child-friendly? I have a two years old daughter that loves to run around.

    • Hi Arief, I believe the glows are from the algae or some sea creatures that reacts that way during night.
      Malaysia is relatively cheap, of course some places may be a little bit expensive. I will try to write about budget accommodation choices later.
      Of course mate, you can have your beach vacation and let your child experience the nature. It is children-friendly too.


  5. Have earlier been in Malaysia for about 3 months. Really liked it there, but did not hear about Ipoh or Perak. But I am definitely planning to visit Malaysia again, and this looks and sounds like an area worth visiting, so it will be on my list to check out. Beautiful pictures and look like some amazing places to stay. But do you have any suggestions for more accomodation for a smaller budget as well?

    • Hi mike,
      That is why I said that this is the hidden gems. Most people normally know about Kuala Lumpur and other typical tourist destinations. There are lot more to see and discover. I will try to write an article on budget accommodation in future post. Stay tune. : )

  6. I travel a lot myself but I rarely get out of the U.S, I would love to take a tour of Asia, It would be a wonderful trip to be able to see parts of it by train. Would there be any way to hire a guide for some of the places that I want to see? The photos make me want to already be there. beautiful place.

    • Hi there Carmen, I’m glad that this article has sparked gour interest in visiting Malaysia.

      Of course, there are local travel agencies that will help you out with guide to attraction places. Hope that you will visit Malaysia soon, thank yo

  7. This website is truly making me want to go to Perak, Malaysia. All the pictures that I have saw are truly beautiful and the nature in that location is truly hard to compete especially, the water that shines that it brings awe. I am also guessing that the people of named the Northern District Perak because the shine of the waters are just as strong as the silver’s shine. The pictures are worth a million words in this case. Keep it up!


  8. So many Images and they are all really worth a thousand words as the saying goes. I am a Canadian Backpacker living in Perth, Australia at the moment and going to Indonesia and Malaysia are generally the next step for us Perth Backpackers when we work our way up north.

    Asian cultures are so vibrant and lively they make a perfect contrast to calm and suburbian atmosphere that reigns in Western Australia.

    I’ll probably drop by on my way to India.

    How can the tide can so fluorescent at night

    • Hi Alex, as mentioned earlier, it is because of the plankton inside the water.
      This kind of phenomenon only occurred at 7 places in the world.


  9. So many Images and they are all really worth a thousand words as the saying goes. I am a Canadian Backpacker living in Perth, Australia at the moment and going to Indonesia and Malaysia are generally the next step for us Perth Backpackers when we work our way up north.

    Asian cultures are so vibrant and lively they make a perfect contrast to calm and suburbian atmosphere that reigns in Western Australia.

    I’ll probably drop by on my way to India.

    By the way, how can the tide can so fluorescent at night?

    • Hi there, if I’m not mistaken, those blue luminescence are from microorganism that live in the water and glow during night/darkness like fireflies I supposed, what a wonderful creature right?


  10. I am travel crazy and in my young days worked on cargo boats to see the world for free and get paid for it.

    It was magical seeing all those wonderful countries and meeting people from different nationalities.

    I have been to Singapore and Malaysia but we only docked for about a week before we set sail.
    Perak sounds like a beautiful place with an amazing culture. It looks like an unspoilt holiday destination.

    I must admit I love visiting the Far East and time to take another trip your post has just given me itchy feet to travel again

    • Hi Richard, like I said, Perak is the hidden gems in Malaysia. It has so many things to offer from Island vacation to a fishing trip, and obviously the food scene is actually already give you enough reason to book your flight ticket to Perak.

      Hope you will visit soon Richard

  11. Hi bro,

    Good to see that you blogged this state from country so well! Personally feel that The Banjaran Hotsprings Retreat is really a hidden gem that has a very low exposure right now. But i believe it will become more and more famous moving forwards. I still yet to have a chance to visit this place before, but definitely will put this into my “to-go” list for this year!

    • Hi Nico, are Malaysin as well? I’ve tried my nest to feature some places that less visited.

      Hope that everyone will got the real look of Malaysia rather than just the actual tourist scene. Thank

  12. I have never visited Malaysia before but your website will be the blueprint if i decide to go there someday. In fact, travelling is my big passion and i would like to visit all countries!
    I love the pictures, you took some amazing photographs!

    I also love the INFO you gave about accomodation, food and everything else.

    Great website!

  13. Malaysia looks picturesque and beautiful. Absolutely beautiful photography on your site. My question is, do you have to get any inoculations or shots before traveling in Malaysia? I know certain parts of the world require that. I would also like to know the political climate in Malaysia and which areas are preserved for the locals only.


    • Hi Bradley, thank you for your comment, generally, you should be alright without taking any vaccination prior to your visit here. Unless you are planning to visit national park or Borneo, it may be good to get vaccination for mosquito-based illness. Political climate us very much stable although the current government is not quite popular

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