And so it came to pass that last Saturday, we went off to Ipoh for our daytrip. To fortify ourselves for the journey, we had a breakfast of dimsum. Turned out that this was the smallest dimsum meal I've ever had.
We left Penang shortly around 10am and reached Ipoh just before 12. The sun was up and contrary to our fears, it didn't rain. We missed the elusive Gunung Lang on our first search for it, so we headed off to Perak Tong first to see the caves.
Arch from Within
The caves were dark and cool, like all caves are wont to be. There are numerous Buddhist statues all around, including one mega gigantic smiling Buddha. Very impressive. It must have been some feat assembling the statues AND carving the steps AND smoothing the surfaces out AND drawing the writings on the wall. Previously unknown to me, there is this long-assed stairway in the caves which leads up to the hill above. Bear Hill, I think it's called. So of course, we decided to hike up to the top of the hill ( I mean, all the way to Ipoh and NOT hike up to the top of Perak Tong? Be serious ). Lovely place. Has a view of industrial Ipoh and a couple of shady gazebos. Because it was smack in the middle of high noon, there were very few people around. God, it was high. I guess climbing up four floors five days a week helps with the stamina.
Gazebos on the Hill
After the slow but sure journey down, we had coconut juice in one of the shops by the temple. Then it was off to Gunung Lang, which is *south* of Ipoh's North exit. Remember that. Perak Tong - North of the Ipoh North exit. Gunung Lang - South of the Ipoh North exit. Gunung Lang is just after the petrol station, and the road to the recreational park is opposite Wing Onn Garden. Again, since this was afternoon, we were BAKING.
To get to the recreational park proper, you need to pay RM3 per person for the boat ticket. A nice Indian guy aka the boat guy gave us a brief history of the place. We then paid for the tickets and then he took us to the park.
Park from Jetty
It was HOT in the park. You would think that a park would have a lot of trees but nooo, not this one. I mean, they had plants all around, but my idea of a park is a whole lot of trees, which translates to shady walkways and a lack of dehydration. No such luck though. They have two towers you can climb up to and see the area. They have little kampung chalets - a couple we saw were locked, and the one which was unlocked was incomplete and rather empty.
Park from Tower
Park from Tower 2
After about forty minutes, the boat guy came back with more unsuspecting people who were apparently unaware of the heat and we hopped on the boat back to the main jetty. I figure that more people will be coming in the evening, which is when we plan to come back someday. They have really nice streetlights here, akin to the old London types.
And then it was off to Jaya Jusco for lunch in Dave's Deli there and some walking around. After cooling down considerably, we finally decided to go home.
Aye, it was fun. It was hot. Something I'll want to do again though. These roadtrips might be a mite tiring, but they're really fun. People should consider going to Gunung Lang. But in the evening, please. Otherwise you'll end up red like me. I expect that it'll be fantastic for a picnic or an evening stroll.