Kuala Kangsar, the Royal Town, has many iconic touristic landmarks preserved over the years. The town is the pride of all Perakeans, as they can relate to it.
Built in 1917, the Ubudiah Mosque is perched on top of Bukit Chandan. Symbolising the significance of the state’s Islamic heritage, it possesses a Saracenic (Moorish) architectural style.
The mosque was designed by A.B. Hubback and erected under the watchful eyes of Caulfield, the state chief engineer then. Equally mesmerising is Istana Kayangan (Memorial Palace) built in 1926.
Take a stroll around the Kuala Kangsar District Office and you will spot the country’s first and oldest rubber tree. The seed was brought by Henry Nicholas Ridley in 1877, all the way from Kew Gardens, London.
Stop by Kampung Pandan Bukit Chandan, the site of a traditional handicraft village. Craftsman cum blacksmith, Abdul Mazin Abdul Jamil, who manages the Bengkel Pandai Besi (iron workshop) is well known for his keris and sword creations. He picked up the skill at the tender age of 12.
Azizah Adam’s expertise is in seni tekat (traditional embroidery). She has been producing exclusive souvenirs such as fan, tepak sirih (betel leaf container) and wedding gifts for over four decades.
A visit to the Sultan Azlan Shah Gallery is a must to view the private collections of the late Sultan. His legacy is enshrined in the gallery for all to see. Among them are some of the traditional regalia of the Perak Sultanate.
Witness firsthand the making of Labu Sayong pottery at Kampung Kepala Bendang Sayong. The pottery here has delicate carvings and the quality is simply exquisite.
Shop at Lembah, on the shoreline of Sayong River on Sunday. The 200-odd stalls have plenty to offer. On sale are local delicacies, fruits, jungle products, clothes, pottery and others.
There are plenty more to see and do in Kuala Kangsar town itself. There are numerous shops, stalls and bazaars selling handicrafts, paintings and artworks. The famous Yat Lai Restaurant is noted for its delicious pau (meat and vegetable stuffed rice buns) which is synonymous with the Royal Town. A must-visit structure in town is the open-air food court where one can enjoy the much-sought-after laksa and cendol that are unique to Kuala Kangsar.
Your tour is incomplete without a visit to Hutan Lipur Ulu Kenas, Mariwasa Kraftangan (manufacturer of handicrafts), Meriam Mosque (Kota Lama Kanan) and the Victoria Bridge astride Perak River in Karai. These places are within striking distance of Kuala Kangsar.