There are so many reasons why people pick up riding big bikes in groups: some enjoy the rush of adrenalin, while others appreciate the friendship that comes with it. For the Kingz Motorcycle Group (MG) members, it could be both of them, and more.
The club was established since 15 December 2015, constituting Harley-Davidson riders from Malaysia and Singapore. Being avid motorcyclists, they strive to challenge the misconception that society might have towards bikers by practicing the principles of ride-and-respect. And together with the Ministry of Tourism and Culture Malaysia (MOTAC) and Gaya Travel Magazine, the club also promotes motorcycle tourism through an annual convoy named Eat. Travel. Ride. (ETR), covering various attractions along each journey.
In 2019, the journey took them on a 210-kilometre plus expedition from Kuala Lumpur to Perak, the Land of Grace. Multiple stops at the state’s iconic landmarks were made, but more importantly, the members also paid a visit to Sekolah Semangat Maju, Ipoh, Perak, a school dedicated for students with learning difficulties. On top of monetary donation, Kingz MG members delighted the students by giving them fun rides on their respective Harley-Davidson motorbikes.
Ipoh Railway Station, Ipoh, Perak
Some call it as the ‘Taj Mahal of Ipoh’, thanks to its gorgeous Neo-Moorish/Indo-Saracenic architecture designed by the architect Arthur Benison Hubback, whose stint in India heavily inspired his works. In fact, many of his other works shared similar influence, including the Kuala Lumpur Railway Station (completed 1910), the Jamek Mosque (completed 1909) and the old KL city hall building (completed 1904). Take a lazy stroll around the building, and you’ll see how easy it is to be lost in time because most of the parts here are still well-intact; perhaps, this was also the reason why it was chosen to be the set for Jodie Foster’s Anna and the King. Today, the station is still in operation, served by the KTM Electric Train Services (ETS).
Ubudiah Royal Mosque, Kuala Kangsar, Perak
Gleaming gloriously under the sun against contrasting blue sky, this royal mosque is dubbed as one of the most beautiful mosques in Malaysia. Designed by Hubback too, the building features striking gilded golden domes, four minarets and 16 turrets. However, not many knew that the original version of the mosque was slightly simpler; the domes were initially made of concrete before they were rebuilt using aluminium in the 1970s. The mosque was commissioned by Sultan Idris Murshidul Adzam Shah, the 28th Sultan of Perak (1887 – 1916), as part of His Royal Highness’s expression of gratitude to The Almighty after recovering from an illness.
Kellie’s Castle, Batu Gajah, Perak
Possibly one of the most famous landmarks of the state, Kellie’s Castle keeps drawing visitors with its impressive yet unfinished architecture. Its mysterious aura invites paranormal seekers; however, come daytime, this spectacular building makes a beautiful subject for architectural photography. The castle was built by William Kellie-Smith, a Scottish civil engineer and rubber plantation owner, for his beloved wife, Agnes, but sadly was never completed due to his untimely death. The wife then decided to sell it before she and her children returned to Scotland.
Taiping Lake Garden, Taiping, Perak
There’s no place that represents Taiping better than its Lake Garden; it is so serene and peaceful that it gives a nod to the town’s name, which means ‘everlasting peace’ in Hokkien. The lake was formerly an abandoned tin mine, but now flourishes as a lush green sanctuary consisting of a sprawling calm lake and ancient rain trees. Today, travellers can see common families having picnic and locals enjoying the area’s pleasant atmosphere while jogging.
Leaning Tower, Teluk Intan, Perak
Today considered as a national heritage, the Leaning Tower of Teluk Intan is no stranger to many. This pagoda-styled structure was completed in 1885 by a contractor named Leong Choon Chong, in which its original purpose was to serve as a water reservoir during dry season and in the event of fire. And since the tower was built on a soft ground, the weight of the water tank eventually leaned it slightly to the southwest direction. From the outside, the tower looks like an eight-storey structure, though in reality, it only comprises three storeys. This iconic structure also features a chiming clock designed by JW Benson-Ludgathy, which still chimes to this day.
Kampung Kacang Puteh, Ipoh, Perak
Many of the community members in Kampung Kacang Puteh today descended from the first-generation migrants from Tamil Nadu. They were brought into what was then Malaya by the British to clear land, but some with entrepreneurship talent and unique skill in making Indian snacks started a small business, particularly selling light bites known as ‘kacang puteh’ or steamed lentils (‘kacang kuda’), as a side income. The business eventually flourished, and more and more families joined into the bandwagon to offer different varieties of snacks, like murukku, fried nuts and potato chips, and therefore expanded the industry into what we see today. It is believed that over 100 types of Indian snacks are now produced and sold at this village.
WHERE TO STAY IN IPOH
M Roof Hotel & Residences
Appealing to leisure and business travellers alike, especially those who are creatively inclined, M Roof Hotel & Residences is a boutique accommodation filled with quirky little touches and supreme comfort for a guaranteed good night’s sleep. The rates start at MYR185 for superior rooms; for bigger space and flexibility, families or groups can enjoy the serviced residences starting from MYR450 for a two-bedroom apartment.
This article is featured in Gaya Travel Magazine Issue 14.4. Read other contents HERE.