RMCO Travelling Guide: Perlis

RMCO Travelling Guide: Perlis

With the government’s announcement that the Recovery Movement Control Order (RMCO) has been extended until 31 December 2020, it would be quite a while before international travel would return. Should you be planning to travel interstate for your next holiday plans, however, here are some lesser-known places in Perlis that we would like to recommend for you to avoid crowds and overbooking.

Destinations

Perlis Grape Garden (Taman Anggur Perlis)

Not many may know that we have a vineyard right in Perlis. It was previously privately owned, but it has since been taken over by the Department of Agriculture and refurbished to revive it. It houses six different varieties of grapes which can be bought home. Since it takes four months for the grapes to be ready for harvesting, three units of planting spaces have been allocated and the grapes are planted in batches so visitors can see the grapes all year round. Visitors can also buy grapevines to try planting at home. Entrance is free, but do give them a call beforehand to see if they are available for tours at your intended visiting time.

  • Entrance fee: RM3 for adults; RM1 for children
  • Opening times: 9 AM–6 PM
  • Contact: 04-977 0433

Perlis Herbal Forest (Rimba Herba Perlis)

The Perlis Herbal Forest is a park of various plants with special medicinal or culinary qualities. Currently, there are over a thousand different species of herbs at the park, some of which are endemic to the park itself (in-situ), while the rest were brought in from elsewhere, including from other countries (ex-situ). It’s an eye-opening experience to learn about the various herbs that we have in Malaysia and their properties. Other activities at the park include a driven tour and a self-drive tour along the nature trail, a herbal oil foot bath, a visit to the orchid garden, herbal oil massages and drinking refreshing herbal drinks.

  • Entrance fee: RM2 for adults; RM1 for children
  • Opening times: 8 AM–5 PM
  • Contact: 04-976 5966 (Perlis State Forestry Department)

Tuanku Lailatul Shahreen Bougainvillaea Garden (Taman Bunga Kertas Tuanku Lailatul) Shahreen

Formerly known as Taman Rekreasi Gua Cenderawasih, this beautiful garden is located behind Hotel Seri Malaysia and is named after Her Royal Highness Tuanku Hajah Lailatul Shahreen Akashah, the consort of the heir apparent of the Raja of Perlis who had served as Agong from 13 December 2001 to 12 December 2006. In spite of being named after the Raja Puan Muda, it is a garden that is open to the public. Apart from observing the many varieties of bougainvillaeas, one can also climb up the steep steps to the top of the hill for a view of the surrounding area from up top.

  • Entrance fee: Free
  • Opening times: Always open
  • Contact: N/A

Padang Besar

As one of the three border checkpoints between Perlis and Thailand, there is a significant Thai presence in this place, from the people to the cars and also the food and other things sold by the Thai Muslim community. You can find all kinds of things being sold at Arked Niaga, especially the Thai guavas which are sold cheaply here.

  • Entrance fee: Free
  • Opening times: 10 AM–6 PM
  • Contact: N/A

Paddy Fields

As the primary economic activity of Perlis, one of the main attractions when visiting Perlis is the paddy fields all around. You get to enjoy a scenic sea of green or gold, depending on the time of your visit. If you want the gold experience, you should plan your visit to Perlis sometime between March and mid-May and between September and mid-November.

  • Entrance fee: Free
  • Opening times: Always open
  • Contact: N/A

Food

Kak Su Laksa Beras Asli & Segar

When you’re in Perlis, you need to try laksa Perlis, which is different from all the other laksa varieties by having more fish and fewer chillies, which makes the gravy thicker and stronger in flavour. It is also eaten together with pulut udang, which is glutinous rice with shrimp, where you dip the rice into the gravy for a unique flavour and texture combination. The best place to try this is at Kak Su Laksa Beras Asli & Segar.

  • Address: No. 97, Jalan Siakap 1, 02000 Kuala Perlis, Perlis
  • Opening times: 10 AM–7:30 PM; closed Tuesdays
  • Contact: 012-550 0365

Restoran Sarang Burung

Restoran Sarang Burung specialises in traditional Malay food, especially kampung dishes, which are displayed in a big number of heated trays and plates for customers to take. They feature at least six different varieties of kerabu, which is a type of Malaysian salad that uses sambal, coconut and lime in place of the usual mayonnaise, thousand island or other dressings.

  • Address: Medan Sri Pulai, Jalan Behor Pulai, 01000 Kangar, Perlis
  • Opening times: Sunday–Friday (8 AM–6 PM); closed on Saturdays
  • Contact: 017-577 0846

Restoran Pokok Sawa

Restoran Pokok Sawa is highly recommended for their grilled catfish, called ikan keli bakar. Ikan keli bakar is quite rare as catfish are usually fried rather than grilled, but this restaurant manages to pull off grilled catfish quite skillfully. The ikan keli goreng, or fried catfish, is also highly praised by customers at this restaurant, alongside the other Malay dishes like sambal belacan, kerabu taugeh, and sayur lemak pucuk paku.

  • Address: Kampung Kersik, Mata Ayer, 02500 Kangar, Perlis
  • Opening times: Saturday–Thursday (11:30 AM–4 PM); closed on Fridays
  • Contact: 019-622 7516

Api-Api Ikan Bakar

Looking for riverside dining with a beautiful sunset view? Api-Api Ikan Bakar is the place to be. The seafood is fresh and affordable, especially with dishes such as ikan jenahak bakar (grilled snapper) and siakap asam pedas (sour and spicy barramundi).

  • Address: Jalan Dato’ Ali, Bukit Tok Po, 02000 Kuala Perlis, Perlis
  • Opening times: 3:30 PM–8:30 PM
  • Contact: 012-480 1173

Travel

Flight

In light of the government’s announcement, Malaysia Airlines has increased its domestic and international flights beginning this month. Since there is no airport in Perlis, there are two ways to travel to Perlis by air. The first option is to fly to the Sultan Abdul Halim Airport which is in Kedah and then take the ETS from Alor Setar in Kedah to Padang Besar in Perlis. The second option is to fly to the Langkawi International Airport and take the ferry to Kuala Perlis. However, Malaysia Airlines has no flights to Kedah. Flights to Langkawi under Malaysia Airlines are now happening twice a week for the months of June and July.

AirAsia has also announced that they welcome the resumption of domestic travel under the RMCO.

Bus

Alternatively, one could take the bus to Perlis, although the journey via bus might take quite a few hours longer; travelling from Johor could take anywhere between 11 hours to 17 hours, depending on traffic and other factors, whereas flying from the Senai International Airport in Johor to either the Sultan Abdul Halim Airport or the Langkawi International Airport takes only an hour, with an additional hour to travel from either airport to Perlis, for a total of about two hours.

Train

One could also take the train to Perlis via ETS, although that is subject to limited availability and long travelling times, potentially much longer than taking the bus due to multiple stops and possible having to change trains depending on where you are coming from.

Accommodation

There are multiple methods of looking for a place to stay in Perlis. You could look up Expedia, Booking.com, Agoda, and even Airbnb. Some hotels might even give you a special promotion if you book directly with them instead of going through online agencies, so be sure to see if they have such offers before confirming your booking. You can also refer to this website for a list of homestays in Perlis for groups of two to ten persons, although you should note that some homestays listed are restricted to Muslims only.

And there you have it, some of the lesser-known places in Perlis that you can visit during the RMCO. Are there other places that you think deserve more attention? Let us know in the comments below! But before you go, we just want to remind you that even though travel restrictions have been lifted, it is good to always take precautions for health and safety, not just for yourself but also those around you. So take care, and travel safely!

Your Gateways to Getaways,
FlyKLIA

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