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fieryfox Pasir Salak - A travel report by Farizan
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Pasir Salak,  Malaysia - flag Malaysia -  Perak
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fieryfox's travel reports

Pasir Salak History Complex

  15 votes
Page: 1 2

Time seems to stand still in this little village beside a slow river. Pasir Salak is well-known for its ancient Malay architecture and craft. This report however is about the history complex.

Terowong Sejarah Pasir Salak
Terowong Sejarah Pasir Salak

This History complex is located in the State of Perak, about 80km from Ipoh i.e. the capital of Perak. Unlike the National Museum in Kuala Lumpur which houses a variety of antiquities from all over Malaysia dating back to early civilisation to the recent past, the Pasir Salak History Complex is based on a form of recorded history. The museum has 42 high quality dioramas which depicts/captures historical events from the early 14th Century to the 19th Century.

How to get there
If you are traveling from Kuala Lumpur (Point of Entry) it is best to begin from the City Centre. You have the option of renting a car to drive up there, fly (just 1/2 hour) or take a bus. There are many buses going to Ipoh from the Puduraya Bus station departing every 30 minutes. Flight to Ipoh costs about RM400.00 but unfortunately is not as frequent as buses. The recommended transport is by car. Drive up by yourself or with a Malaysian and I assure you that the journey on the North-South express way will be a pleasant and rewarding one. You will definitely see a lot of greenery and will get an idea of the Malaysian Rainforests. The drive is only 1 hour and 40 minutes from KL.

I recommend that you watch out for a signage pointing to Gunung (Mount) Tempurung just before you reach Ipoh. There is a beautiful limestone cave just by the side of the highway and has been declared as a Natural Monument. Don't forget to take some pictures of this beauty.

Operating hours and Admission details
Monday to Sunday 9.30 a.m –5.00 p.m
Friday 9.30 a.m – 12.15 p.m and reopens at 2.45 p.m – 5.00 p.m
Admission is Free

Contact for Further information
Tel/ Fax: 05-7765500
E – mail:

Favourite spots:
"Jam Suria"

The memorial dedicated to the historical incident involving J.W.W. Birch and the late Maharaja Lela, Dato’ Sagor and Si Puntum.

There are also two Kutai House’ (Perak traditional house) inside the complex. These houses display various, local historical and Malay culture artifacts.

There is also the Sun Clock just opposite the entrance of the complex, which I found really interesting to look at.

What's really great:
Rumah Kutai (Malay Traditional House)
Rumah Kutai (Malay Traditional House)

Background about the History Tunnel
This history complex was established to remind the younger generation of the struggles of their ancestors in their fight for the nation's freedom and independence. Pasir Salak though somewhat out of the mainstream of activity today was chosen as a location due its historical importance. The height of the Malay National Movement against the British took place in Pasir Salak in 1875 marked the beginning of the struggle for the parliamentary democracy in Malaysia.

The explanations to the dioramas noted the sacrifices and contributions made by many nationalists in defending the national pride and the country. While following the 42 dioramas chronologically I felt that I was taking a walk back in time. You really do not need any background reading about Malaysian history to understand it. Each diorama is an episode and is accompanied with detailed explanations.

Diorama depicting the early 1400s Sultanate of Malacca
Diorama depicting the early 1400s Sultanate of Malacca

Diorama Chronologically
The first episode depicts a scene of early settlements in Kuala Selinsing Perak, which began in the year 200 B.C. It is then followed by the emergence of 3 warriors, Nila Pahlawan, Sang Nila and Krishna Pandita in Bukit Siguntang who later became the king in Temasek (now Singapore), the founded of the Perak and Malacca Sultanate. The story goes on to explain how Malaysia was conquered by the Portuguese in 1411, Dutch in 1641 and later by the British in 1814, the Japanese during the World War II and again by the British after the war. There is much emphasis about the fight for independence until it is attained in 1957.

Diorama depicting the signing of the Pangkor Agreement
Diorama depicting the signing of the Pangkor Agreement

Pasir Salak Riverine Resort
The Resort has 50 suite chalets each consisting of two rooms, with a balcony that affords a panoramic view of the Perak River as well as glorious sunrises and sunsets. Beautifully decorated with the comfort of guests in mind, every chalet is air-conditioned and comes with a mini fridge, IDD telephone, colour TV and coffee / tea making facility.

Pasir Salak Historical Complex, Kampung Gajah
36800 Perak, Malaysia

+605 631 1188

+605 631 3850


J.W.W Birch Monument
J.W.W Birch Monument

No Clubs or bars observed.
Visitors should note that Pasir Salak is mostly occupied by Malays who live according to the traditional ways. If you have plans to visit any Malay homes (friends or someone you have just met) it may be a good idea to get acquainted with some of the Malay customs and etiquette practices first.

At first impression, one would get the idea that the town is rather quiet and slow but people are friendly and helpful.

For entertainment and night life, Ipoh is the nearest venue.

"Dapur Keris" (Keris Oven) is used by blacksmiths to create the Malay Keris (see below)

Selera Rahsiah Restaurant
The restaurant serves tempting traditional local Perak food and western cuisine. Light snacks and refreshments are available for swimmers at Dapur Rahsiah and the Benteng Restaurant is ideal for a private dinner or BBQ.

Other recommendations:
The Malay Keris
The Malay Keris

Historical Attractions in the complex
1- The residence of Dato’ Maharaja Lela
2- Peraks' Warriors Monument
3- The grave of Si Puntum
4- Fort of Dato’ Maharaja Lela Tugu Lela
5- The Mosque of Pasir Salak
6- The Dragon's Boat
7- Traditional house of Anjang Pelita
8- J.W.W Birch's Monument

Some of the items observed in Rumah Kutai I and II
in the History Complex

1- History of the Pasir Salak Tragedy
2- Weapons (the Malay Keris, Golok, Swords, Guns, etc)
3- Transportation.
4- Old Home Furniture.
5- Copper antiquities.
6- Clothing and Traditional costumes.
7- Tools for farming.
8- Embroideries.
9- Musical Instruments.
10- Manuscript.
11- Model of Buildings.

Published on Sunday September 19th, 2004

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Thu, Jun 23 2005 - 05:04 AM rating by bear495

Great job on this one.


Tue, Nov 09 2004 - 12:36 AM rating by ravinderkumarsi

very nice and informative report .
keep it up

Sat, Sep 25 2004 - 02:40 PM rating by kcheepv

Excellent Report!! Great information. Thanks

Sun, Sep 19 2004 - 07:49 AM rating by britman

Beautifully written and interesting insight into Malaysia's history illustrated with good pictures.

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