Taiping is a quaint easy going town with a multiracial population of about 200,000 located somewhere between Penang and Ipoh. Taiping means everlasting peace and was named as such following the peace treaty signed between the British and the Sultan of Perak in 1874 (the Pangkor Treaty 1874) to end the constant battles between 2 Chinese secret societies Ghee Hin and Hai San and their Malay backers for control over the tin mines in the area (the Larut Wars). Taiping was the British administrative centre for the State of Perak from 1874 to 1937 and many colonial buildings were built during that period. There are many historic places in Taiping which has many firsts eg first hill resort, first swimming pool, first rest house, first army camp, first court, first british resident's house, first port, first English school, first police force, first government offices, first post and telegraph offices, first lake gardens, first hospital, first club, first railway station and track, first prison, first museum, first turf club, first church, first girls school, first clock tower, first esplanade, first newspapers, first teaching college, first airfield, first golf course, first library, first zoo and first fire brigade. In Taiping, the food is good, the people friendly, the weather pleasant, the surroundings green and the accommodation cheap.
The things to do in Taiping include wandering about the colonial town centre, walking about the lake gardens, jumping into the many streams, trekking the jungle trails, bird watching, visiting the animals at the zoo, visiting the mangrove swamps, watching fireflies, spotting dolphins, visiting waterfalls and climbing to the hill station.
Easiest way to get to Taiping is by bus. You easily buy tickets for buses to Taiping from the bus stations at any virtually any town in Malaysia, from Singapore and from Hatyai in Thailand. Look out for Konsortium Bas Express Semenanjung which is based in Taiping and is one of the bigger bus companies in Malaysia. There are 2 bus stations in Taiping. For the location of the outstation bus station which serves the express buses, please click here. For the location of the local bus station which serves the stage buses, please click here.
Accommodation in Taiping is relatively cheap. There are plenty of inexpensive motels in Taiping. The following are the higher end places with their own websites