Are you ready to pack your bags and venture off the beaten track in Kedah, the northern state of Malaysia? Whether you dream of wandering around the 200-year-old historical sites of Sungai Batu or exploring the serene island like Pulau Songsong in Yan - let your imagination run wild as if you are ready to embark on something adventurous.
Whenever you are ready, you can also delve into our heritage while revelling in our culture. Then you will truly appreciate what makes Kedah, the rice-bowl of Malaysia has got to offer. For a start, do you know Nestle Malaysia has recently launched its first-ever 100 per cent home-grown coffee, Nescafe Classic Kopi Kedah under a sustainable coffee farming? Cool right, but we are not eager to talk more about food and beverages, but here are several places that we think you will love to experience once you are in Kedah.
Nescafe Classic Kopi Kedah. (Source: Facebook Wan Noraziela)
Kampung Adat Melayu Seri Banian. (Source: Facebook Seri Banian)
Where could you find the place like Kampung Adat Melayu Seri Banian as if you are travelling back in time to witness the real Malay cultural village in the past?
Located at Kampung Bendang Bukit, Pendang, the village featuring four Malay built traditional houses across the Malay Archipelago. There are architectural influences from the Aceh, Banjar, Bugis, Java and Minangkabau, and each has its own balairung seri (throne room).
Banian is a word combination of ‘ban’ (means village in Siamese dialect) while ‘nian’ refers to the serene and cold surrounding. The main focus is to preserve the Malay culture and heritage to the world and therefore expect more exciting attractions in the pipeline.
Visitors may order the unique Malay cuisine like Sate Anta Berahi and Sate Meranging in advance and enjoy the meals while watching silat performance and rendition of traditional Malay music every Friday and Saturday. Other activities may include riding a horse.
Address: Kampung Adat Melayu Seri Banian, Kampung Bendang Bukit, Pendang, Kedah, Malaysia.
Facebook: Kampung Adat Melayu Seri Banian / Seri Banian
Opening hours: 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. (daily)
Admission fee: RM3 (adult) / RM1 (child)
Located 22 kilometres from Baling city, this open-space, clean, natural hot spring is the perfect place for families outing in the district of Baling as it is well-provided with public amenities including food stalls, prayer room and grocery shop. The hot spring is divided into nine pools with different temperatures and even has a designated area suitable for kids.
Ulu Legong Hotspring is currently under the administration of Baling District Council. Activities include having a barbecue, outdoor gym workout or just chilling out in the pools. There are even chalets for visitors to enjoy the hot spring either in the morning or at night.
All rooms in the chalets are equipped with televisions, air-conditioners, fridges, towels, toiletries and even private balconies.
Address: Pusat Rekreasi Air Panas Ulu Legong, 09100 Baling, Kedah
Facebook: Ulu Legong Hotspring
Opening hours: 8.00 a.m. – 12 a.m. (daily)
Admission fee: RM8 (adult), RM4 (child)
Gua Air is one of the few stunning caves in Malaysia in the foothill of Mount Pulai in Baling, Kedah. Other caves include Gua Badak, Gua Sireh, Gua Kelambu, Gua Ikan, Gua Matahari, Gua Tembus, Gua Kambing dan Gua Bunga.
It is better to explore Gua Air with the nature guide as you need to walk through the village to reach the entrance. Inside a small cave opening, you will be mesmerized by its structure of stalactites and the stalagmites dubbed as ‘tirai gua air’. And there is also unique formation looks like a wedding stage called 'pelamin cinta air'.
The cave itself is home to species of bat with a small stream running through underneath. Some cave passages will require bending, stooping, crawling and binding but among the highlight is the so-called tiny waterfall found inside it.
A group of visitors showing a unique formation inside the cave which looks like a wedding stage (pelamin cinta air). (Source: Facebook Gua Air Baling Kedah).
A girl is admiring the beauty of Gua Air near the so-called tiny waterfall. (Source: Facebook Gua Air Baling Kedah)
Address: Gua Air Baling, Kampung Sungai Limau, 09100 Pulai, Kedah.
Facebook: Gua Air Baling Kedah
Operating hours: 8.00 a.m. – 5.30 p.m. (Sunday-Saturday)
8.00 a.m. – 11 a.m. & 3.00 p.m. – 5.30 p.m. (Friday)
Package fee: RM15 (adult), RM8 (child)
If you look forward to immersing in the local culture and enjoying local foods in the river, this is the best place to be, surrounded by food orchards and coffee trees.
To dine in the river, advance booking is needed and but it is only acceptable for a minimum of 10 people. The kampung style menu include rice cooked in the bamboo, sup kambing herba madu kelulut, gulai daging batang pisang, daging rebus air asam, kangkung goreng belacan, ikan pekasam sungai, sambal belacan and kopi madu kelulut.
Alternatively, visitors can go camping near the river with two-person tents available for rentals. The river water is crystal clear, and visitors can opt for swimming and kayaking too. There are gazebos, toilet and prayer rooms. Visitors can also request the management to provide meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner or outdoor activities including river trekking and hiking.
The kampung menu style dining in the river. (Source:Facebook Dusun Tok Wak Desa Sentosa)
Address: Dusun Tok Wak Desa Sentosa, Kampung Kuala Kedua, Ulu Legong, 09100, Baling, Kedah, Malaysia.
Facebook: Dusun Tok Wak Desa Sentosa
Phone: +6019-5088258 / +6013-44038
Minimum booking: 10 pax for lunch (daily)
Minimum reservation time: One day
Discover this picture-perfect homestay with the concept of classic Malay house near the rice field in Langkawi. The only reason why visitors should come here is to search for peace and serenity.
Rumah Bendang. (Source: Facebook Travelocalescape)
Not only visitors will experience living in the village, but the beautiful rice fields view from your room as well as the infinity pool will make your day. And for sure it is not the typical way of spending your vacation in Langkawi!
Located at Kampung Lubuk Setui, Rumah Bendang is also one of the best places to catch the sunrise or sunset. It consists of two-unit houses (Rumah Wan & Rumah Opah), which can accommodate up to 15 people, perfect for family or friends gathering.
Phone: +6013-9234837 / +6013-3411809
Address: Rumah Bendang, Jalan Nyior Cabang 07000 Langkawi, Kedah, Malaysia.
Facebook: Rumah Bendang
Phone: +6013-393 5608
Price per night : RM1,500 (for both Rumah Opah & Rumah Wan)
It is not a zipline, flying fox or abseiling activities, but they called it ‘dropzone’. It is worth to give it a try and grab the opportunity to see the 360-degree view of the green rice fields even though Kodiang Hill only stands at 140 metres.
Experience the thrill from the top of the hill as if you descending downhill and flying like a bird. And you will have the opportunity to snap the photos. But to reach the hilltop, you need to do some trekking for about 30 minutes.
Organized by Persatuan Sukan Mendaki Kedah and AWEEN Kembara Team, ‘dropzone’ activity is conducted by the professionally licensed instructor. The fee is only RM60, including all the safety equipment.
It is not a year-round activity because it is only open to the public during green season or the rice fields season (from December to January). So, book your slot now for the beginning of 2021 and enjoy your travel experience in Kedah to the fullest!
Address: Kodiang Hill (also known as Bukit Mok Chun), Kampung Kandis, 06100 Kodiang, Kedah, Malaysia.
Facebook: Persatuan Sukan Mendaki Kedah/Mazuin Noordin
Activity fee: RM60
Operating hours: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. (16, 17, 23, 24 January 2021)