Taiping, Perak

Bandar Taiping
Taiping Town

Kota Road at night


Nickname(s): The Rain Town, The Heritage Town
Coordinates: 4°51′N 100°44′E / 4.850°N 100.733°E / 4.850; 100.733Coordinates: 4°51′N 100°44′E / 4.850°N 100.733°E / 4.850; 100.733
Country Malaysia
State Perak
Languages Bahasa Malaysia, English, Hokkien
Established 1874
  Type Municipality
  District Officer Harun Bin Rawi
  Mayor Tuan Omor Bin Saad
  Member of Parliament YB Nga Kor Ming (DAP)
  Total 186.46 km2 (71.99 sq mi)
Population (2011)
  Total 217,647
  Density 1,025/km2 (2,654/sq mi)
Time zone MST (UTC+8)
Postal code 34xxx
Area code(s) 05
Website www.mptaiping.gov.my

Taiping (Chinese pronunciation: /tʰaɪ̯⁵¹piŋ/; Malay pronunciation: /taipeŋ/)(Chinese: 太平, Tàipíng; Jawi: تايڤيڠ) is a town located in Larut, Matang and Selama District, Perak, Malaysia. With a population of 217,647 (in 2011),[1] it is the second largest town in Perak after Ipoh, the state capital. Taiping took over Kuala Kangsar's role as the state capital from 1876 to 1937, but was then replaced by Ipoh.[2] Its growth slowed down after that, but in recent years the town has been developing rapidly again. Perak State Museum is located in the town.

Taiping also receives some limelight for being the wettest town in Peninsular Malaysia.[3] The average annual rainfall is about 4,000mm in Taiping while the peninsula's average is 2,000mm – 2,500mm. Its unusual rainfall has also led to a fertile collection of flora and century-old rain trees in the Taiping Lake Gardens.


Further information: Larut War

The area developed quickly in the 19th century when tin was discovered. The mines attracted large numbers of settlers, particularly Chinese. Feuds began between the different groups of Chinese immigrants and became so bitter that in the early 1870s, the British intervened and assumed control of the town.[4] Taiping was the capital for the districts of Larut, Matang and Selama in Perak. Before 1937, Taiping was the capital of the state of Perak and the centre of a long and drawn out war resulting in a change of rulership for the state. Taiping used to be known as Klian Pauh – Klian meaning mine while Pauh is a type of small mango.

Taiping town.
The colonial-era Larut, Matang and Selama Land and District Office.
St. George's Institution, a colonial boys' school established in 1915.

Long Jaafar has been historically credited with the discovery of tin in Larut in 1848. According to legend, Long Jaafar had an elephant named Larut and he used to take this elephant with him when journeying between Bukit Gantang and Lubok Merbau. One day the elephant went missing and when the elephant was eventually found three days later Long Jaafar noticed tin ore embedded in the mud that was on the elephant's legs. It is said that this was how Larut got its name.

Eventually in 1850, Larut district was bestowed upon Long Jaafar by Raja Muda Ngah Ali and the Chiefs of Perak: the Temenggong, Panglima Bukit Gantang, Panglima Kinta, Syahbandar and Seri Adika Raja. Some time later, the Sultan of Perak, Sultan Abdullah, died in 1857 and a series of succession disputes ensued. Unhappy with the abuse and favouritism of various royalties, rival Malay camps took sides with one or the other of the two great Chinese secret societies present in there at the time.

Long Jaafar established and developed his administrative centre at Bukit Gantang and made Kuala Sungai Limau at Trong the principal harbour of the Larut Settlement. In 1857 Long Jaafar was succeeded by his son Ngah Ibrahim. Sultan Jaffar Muazzam Shah presented an acknowledgement letter to Ngah Ibrahim on 24 May 1858. This letter was signed by Sultan Jaffar, Raja Muda Ngah Ali and the Raja Bendahara of Perak. In the time of Ngah Ibrahim the Chinese increased in number and by early 1860 two large groups were formed by the Chinese, the "Five Associations" whose members worked in the mines of Klian Pauh and the "Four Associations" whose members worked in the mines of Klian Baharu.

Mining rights were given to the Hakka "Five Associations" or Go-Kuan (五館 or 五群) and the Cantonese "Four Associations" or Si-Kuan (四館). Chung Keng Quee (鄭景貴) was leader of the Hakka Go-Kuan and the Hai San (海山) society that they belonged to, and began to operate his tin mines in Larut in 1860. Larut was destined to be plagued by four major wars between members of both the Cantonese Go-Kuan Ghee Hin Society (義興私會黨) and the Hakka Hai San society. Many Hakka had fled China when the Taiping Rebellion broke out there and found work in the mines of Chung Keng Quee establishing his position over the mining area in Larut as leader of the Hai San from 1860 to 1884.

The capital of Perak was moved from Bandar Baru (New Town) to Taiping after Datok Maharaja Lela assassinated the first British Resident of Perak Mr. James Wheeler Woodford Birch at Pasir Salak in 1875. In 1937, the capital of Perak was moved from Taiping to Ipoh.

The town's mining industry continued to thrive; the country's first railway was built to transport tin from Taiping to Port Weld (now known as Kuala Sepetang) at the coast for export. The first train in Malaysia took its schedule on 1 June 1885.[5]

By 1900, an English language school,[6] a newspaper,[7] and the Perak Museum (the oldest in Malaysia) had been established.[8]

Although Taiping's economy declined with the dwindling tin deposits, the metal still remains an important industry in the area as do rubber and rice.

Geography and climate

Aerial view of Taiping City

Taiping is situated on a plain to the west of the Bintang Mountains. Penang lies to the north-west and Ipoh to the south-east.


Taiping also receives some limelight for being the wettest town in Peninsular Malaysia. The average annual rainfall is about 3,000mm in Taiping while the peninsula's average is 2,000mm – 2,500mm. Its unusual rainfall has also led to a fertile collection of flora and century-old rain trees in the Taiping Lake Gardens.

Climate data for Taiping, Malaysia (1982 - 2012)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 32.1
Average low °C (°F) 21.4
Average precipitation mm (inches) 203
Source: climate-data.org[9]

Town layout

The following towns, suburbs, and neighbourhoods comprise the area formally (and collectively) known as Taiping:

Current and predicted Taiping town population.


Primary and secondary education in Taiping are provided by national-type schools and Chinese-medium schools.

Primary schools

School name Other name (nickname) Year established Location
SK Kampung Jambu SKKJ; سکوله کبڠساءن کامڤوڠ جمبو 2000 Jalan Rambutan, Kampung Jambu
SK Assam Kumbang سکوله کبڠساءن اسسم کومبڠ 1937
SK Taman Panglima SKTP; سکوله کبڠساءن تامن ڤڠليما 2002 Taman Panglima, Assam Kumbang
SRK All Saints' Sekolah Inggeris Coronation 1936 Kamunting
SRJK (C) Aulong 后廊小学 Aulong New Village (Near Market)
SRJK (C) Hua Lian 1 华联第一小学 Thomson Road
SRJK (C) Hua Lian 2 华联第二小学 Thomson Road
SRJK (C) Hua Lian 3 华联第三小学 Taiping Heights
SRJK (C) Phui Choi 培才小学 1927 Jalan Kamunting Lama
SRJK (C) Pokok Assam 保阁亚三小学 1953 Pokok Assam
SRJK (C) Sin Min 新民小学 Simpang New Village
SRJK (C) Khea Wah 启华小学 Matang
SRJK (C) Poey Eng 培英小学 Kuala Sepetang
SRK All Saint, Kamunting
SRK Kelian Pauh 1899 Kelian Pauh
SRK Convent Aulong SRK Convent 1954 Aulong New Village
SRK Convent Kota Infant Jesus Convent 1955 Convent Lane
SRK King Edward VII (1) KE 1905 Jalan Stesen
SRK King Edward VII (2) 1958 Near Jalan Lumba Kuda
SRK Methodist Pokok Assam 1962 Pokok Assam road, Taman Raja Idris
SRK Seri Aman, Pokok Assam
SRK St George 1 (SRK St George 2 was merged with SRK St George 1 in 2006) 1954 Jalan Muzium Hulu
SRK St George 2 1967 Jalan Muzium Hulu
SRK Treacher Methodist Lady Treacher Girls' School[10] 1899 Jalan Muzium Hulu, later moved to Jalan Lumba Kuda
SK LONG JAAFAR, KAMUNTING سکوله کبڠساءن لوڠ جعفر 1949
SK Kampung Selamat سکوله کبڠساءن کامڤوڠ سلامت 1955 Jalan Kerian
SK Klian Pauh سکوله کبڠساءن كلين ڤاوه 2002 Jalan Lumba Kuda
SK Changkat Jering سکوله کبڠساءن چڠكت جريڠ 1880 Changkat Jering
SK Changkat Larut سکوله کبڠساءن چڠكت لاروت 1880 Air Kuning
SK Matang سکوله کبڠساءن ماتڠ 1880
SK Taiping سکوله کبڠساءن تايـڤـيـڠ 1880 Jalan Taming Sari
SK Sultan Abdullah Kg Cheh, Bukit Gantang
SK Pondok Tanjung 1916
SK Ulu Sepetang 1953 Kampung Baru Ulu Sepetang. T-junction to Pondok Tanjong, Kubu Gajah & Selama
SK Pengkalan Aur SKPA 1995 Jalan Taman Kaya
SK Changkat Ibol

Secondary schools

School name Other name (nickname) Former/Full name Year established Location
SMK Kampung Jambu SMKKJ 2001 Jalan Convent
Hua Lian High School 霹靂太平華聯獨中 霹靂太平華聯中學 1913 Jalan Tokong
SMJK Hua Lian 太平华联国中 Jalan Lumba Kuda
SMK St George SGI, Georgian St. George's Institution 1915 Jalan Stesen
SMK Treacher Methodist Girls School TMGS 1889 Jalan Muzium Hulu
SMK Convent Taiping Jalan Regat Convent
SMK Sri Kota Kampung Boyan
SMK Darul Ridwan Panther Jalan Izuddin Shah
SMK Taman Tasik SMKTT Taiping Lake Garden
SMK Dr. Burhanuddin SMKDB 1967 Kampung Boyan
SMK King Edward VII KE Tigers, Edwardian SMJK (Inggeris) King Edward VII 1883 Jalan Muzium Hulu
SMK Klian Pauh Jalan Lumba Kuda
SMK Simpang 1983 Jalan Matang
SMK Kamunting ESSEMKAY 1984 Kamunting
SMK Tengku Menteri SMKTM Changkat Jering
SMK Taman Panglima STeP; SMKTP Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Taman Panglima 2003 Assam Kumbang
MRSM Taiping MARESMART 1983 Taiping Lake Garden
(Sekolah Menengah Sains Raja Tun Azlan Shah) SERATAS Jalan Taman Tasik Taiping
SMV Taiping Kamunting
SMK Dato' Kamarudddin (SEDAKA) Eagles, SEDAKA Sekolah Menengah Rendah Batu Kurau 1965 Batu Kurau
SMK Dato' Wan Ahmad Rasdi Rasdian SMK Batu Lapan 2 January 1991 Kg Chengal Jantan
SMK Pengkalan Aur SMKPA 2001 Jalan Air Kuning
SMK Bukit Jana Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Bukit Jana 1 April 1996


The iconic raintrees (Albizia saman) along the road around Taiping Lake Gardens that have been there since the British colonial times over a hundred years ago. The trees have been the subject of local conservationists efforts to protect them against removal by the municipal council for a new development.

Notable People



The Taiping railway station was the first operational train station in Malaysia. Originally, the station served the local tin mines, transporting ore to Port Weld (now Kuala Sepetang) and mine workers to workers settlements. In the 1930s, railway connections to other towns like Ipoh, Kuala Lumpur, and Singapore started. The Taiping-Port Weld line was dismantled by KTMB in the 1980s.[11][12]

The station was previously served only by KTM Intercity trains, with a one way trip to KL Sentral taking about six hours. Since 1 July 2015 however, the station has also been served by KTM ETS's ETS Ekspres service, reducing the travel time on the same route to about three hours. In addition, Taiping also serves as a stop on the ETS Transit service between Ipoh and Padang Besar.


  1. Senarai Mukim dan Statistik Penduduk
  2. Malaysian States http://www.worldstatesmen.org/Malay_states.htm
  3. Newspapers recorded Taiping as the wettest place in Malaya in March 1937, with a rainfall of 21.55 inches, and Maxwell's Hill next to it with 16.01 inches. Comparatively, Kuala Lumpur's rainfall was just 6.39 inches (The Straits Times, 24 April 1937, Page 12).; In 1959, The Straits Times (The Straits Times, 2 April 1959, Page 7) reported, 'Water was rationed 39 days last year in Taiping, the wettest town in Malaya. 'Taiping's Larut Hills record the highest annual average total of 5800 mm rain (Cranbrook, Gathorne Gathorne-Hardy, ed. Malaysia:key Environments. Oxford: Published in Collaboration with the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources by Pergamon, 1988. Print. Page 7).
  4. See pages 86–88, Chapter 8 Malaysian Confrontations, Send A Gunboat: The Victorian Navy and Supremacy at Sea, 1854–1904, by Antony Preston & John Major, Conway, an imprint of Anova Books Ltd, London, UK, 2007 Revised Edition, ISBN 978-0-85177-923-2
  5. The Straits Times, 31 August 1931, Page 6
  6. Straits Times Weekly Issue, 12 November 1890, Page 3
  7. The Singapore Free Press and Mercantile Advertiser (1884–1942), 28 April 1894, Page 11
  8. The Straits Times, 6 March 1889, Page 2
  9. "Climate: Taiping, Malaysia", climate-data.org 2016. Web: .
  10. named after Lady Treacher, wife of William Hood Treacher
  11. "Landasan Keretapi Yang Pertama di Tanah Melayu". Retrieved 1 December 2009.
  12. Malayan Railways 100 years 1885 – 1995


Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Taiping.

Media related to Taiping, Perak at Wikimedia Commons

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