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Kuantan

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Malaysia : East Coast : Pahang : Kuantan
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Balok Beach just outside Kuantan

Kuantan is the state capital of Pahang, on the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia.

Understand[edit]

With over 600,000 people, Kuantan is the largest city on the East Coast of Peninsular Malaysia. There are a number of places in and around Kuantan that are worth visiting.

Get in[edit]

By plane[edit]

Kuantan's small Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah Airport (IATA: KUA) is about 15 km (9 mi) southwest of the city. The airport currently serves a few daily flights from Kuala Lumpur-KLIA (40 mins) on Malaysia Airlines [1]. It also has service from Penang airport via Fireflyz.

The airport also serves an international flight to Singapore by Firefly four times a week.

By bus[edit]

Kuantan's long distance (intercity) bus station is a new Integrated Bus station called Terminal Sentral Kuantan (TSK) replacing the old bus station (Terminal Makmur) which was no longer operational. Located at Indera Mahkota (11 km from Kuantan), TSK new terminal is one of the main bus hub in the East coast connecting Kuantan to all the major cities in peninsular Malaysia. A Rapidkuantan (route 303) shuttles between the main city hub (Hentian Bandar) and TSK.

The main routes incude:

  • To/from Kuala Lumpur. Kuantan is about 4 hours from Kuala Lumpur by bus. Fares are currently around RM22.00 (e.g. Transnational).
  • Buses also run to other major cities such as Kota Bharu, Johor Bahru, Singapore, Melaka, Penang and other towns surrounding Pahang state (Temerloh, Jerantut, Raub, Maran, Kuala Lipis)
  • City commuting: RapidKuantan bus system operates to and from several spots around Kuantan, including nearby tourist spots Sungai Lembing, Bukit Gambang Resort, Pekan and Teluk Chempedak. Currently, an area behind old Terminal Makmur called Hentian Bandar (or the 'City stop') serves as the main hub/interchange for all Rapidkuantan buses.
  • To/from Cherating:Privately run Sihat Bas or Mira heading for Kemaman and get off along the main road at the Cherating turn-off. The journey may take about an hour. From Kuantan, catch the buses at Hentian Bandar.

By car[edit]

Opened in 2004, the Karak Highway and East Coast Expressway connect Kuantan to Kuala Lumpur, and the distance of approximately 250 kilometers can be covered in 3-3.5 hours. The East Coast Expressway is served by stop-over areas that are equipped with toilets, sundry shops and food stalls. You may exit at either the Gambang or Kuantan exit. Both expressways are toll roads. Travelling the entire journey via the expressways costs RM27.60 for a car.

Federal route 2 also links Kuala Lumpur to Kuantan. As it is an ordinary road, it has no toll. However it is a somewhat slower route than the expressway as there are traffic lights along the way and a lower speed limit.

Get around[edit]

Taxi and buses are available to get around town. The public transport system in Kuantan has recently improved with the introduction of RapidKuantan bus system. Getting around town is possible with several routes and the buses run to and fro between main hub and other spots around town, connecting to Sungai Lembing, Teluk Chempedak and Bukit Gambang Waterpark Resort. The RapidKuantan buses run at the frequency of 30 minutes interval which uses the hub behind Terminal Makmur (currently UTC Building) as a central interchange. The fair is RM2.00 for distance within town, and RM4.00 for destination outside town.

See[edit][add listing]

Teluk Chempedak Beach view from the Kuantan Hyatt Hotel

Beaches[edit]

  • Teluk Cempedak, 5 km northeast of Kuantan, is a lovely beach with facilities for watersports, including boating and kayaking. The Kuantan Hyatt Hotel is located on Teluk Cempedak itself. On the left side of Teluk Cempedak beach, there is a long metal boardwalk (built over rocks and boulders) that connects to Missionary Bay, a second beach. Small monkeys can often be seen around the beach area, although it is recommended that you not get too close to them. They can be aggressive, especially if you are carrying food!
  • Beserah, around 7 km from Kuantan city, is a village that is famous for fresh fish every day! You can buy fresh fish at wholesale prices here. A well-known local product, salted fish, is also available for sale here.
  • Balok, a beach that is famous for wind surfing, is located 13 km north of Kuantan. Swiss Garden Resort & Spa is located on Balok Beach. The resort delicately embraces traditional features with the incorporation of “anyaman” style décor in its fittings creating a unique atmosphere and perfect balance between luxury and homely familiarity.
  • Pantai Batu Hitam (Black Stone Beach) is a special beach where all the stones are black or dark in colour.

Others[edit]

  • Taman Teruntum: There is a free Mini Zoo located at Taman Teruntum next to the Kuantan golf course. There is also the Nite Zoo
  • Pulau Ular- There is a legend associated with this island. It is about how snakes helped the villagers to keep pirates away (Pulau Ular means Snake Island in Malay). Nevertheless, they were conquered by the pirates eventually. These events are believed locally to have happened during the 11th century. There is a village called Sungai Ular (Snake River) on the mainland, between Cherating and Balok.
  • Sungai Lembing town is where one of the world's largest underground tin mines (now closed) is situated. Approximately 40 km northwest of Kuantan, you can get there by bus, taxi or by car. There is a good museum which has lots of information pertaining to tin mining. The building in which the museum is located used to be the residence of the manager of the tin mining company. There is an interesting "hanging bridge" (jambatan bergantung) located north of the Tin Museum. You can reach this bridge - which is a little difficult to find - by going north on the narrow, winding road at the base of the entrance to the Tin Museum. Another "hanging bridge" is located on the way into Sungai Lembing. Visitors can park your car by the roadside and allow your kids a chance to walk on this bridge! Locals and tourists alike trek up Bukit Panorama (Panorama Hill) for a glimpse of sunrise and a magnificent view of the natural surroundings in the early morning hours.
  • Panching Caves (also known as Charah Caves) are located in a limestone mountain on the Kuantan-Sungai Lembing road at the small village of Panching. There is a large statue of a Sleeping Buddha here. Entrance fee (Adults RM2.00. Children RM1.00). Parking fee of RM2.00 for cars.
  • Pahang Buddhist Association Temple is located just outside Kuantan town on the Kuantan-Sungai Lembing road. It has a large statue of the Buddha and a park with a pond, fish and tortoises at the rear.
  • Berkelah Falls (also known by locals as the Ninth Mile Waterfall) is located near the Kuantan airbase of the Royal Malaysian Air Force or TUDM (Tentera Udara DiRaja Malaysia) and nine miles away from Kuantan on the Kuantan-Gambang road. To get to the waterfall, turn right at the traffic lights at the Kuantan-Gambang road just after the airbase (if you are coming from Kuantan). The waterfall is located in the Hutan Lipur Sungai Pandan (Pandan River Forest Reserve). Entrance fee RM1.00 for adults.
  • The State Mosque is located in the heart of Kuantan.
  • The Kuantan River Esplanade - this small esplanade is located just behind the offices of the Kuantan Town Council building next to the Kuantan River. Note: ongoing renovation means no access to the Esplanade as of Summer 2013 and likely to be the case for many more months.

Do[edit][add listing]

  • Taman Gelora, Located about 3 km from Kuantan along the way to Teluk Cempedak, is a beautiful park called Gelora Park. Various sport activities can be carried out here including jogging, aerobic dance, tennis, beach volleyball,etc. You can admire lotus flowers here too.
  • Teluk Chempedak beach night stroll
  • Cherating - Sunrise on the beach
  • Cherating - Turtle sanctuary. This is seasonal. Head towards Club Mediteranee and it's just at that resort's entrance.
  • Kuantan River Cruise. There are several a day.
  • Fireflies tour. Done at night with a battery powered boat down the river. You'd need to organise this through one of the local travel agents.
  • Learn to Kitesurf at Balok Beach. Possible all year round but best from Dec - Mar [2]
  • WATER PARK The biggest water park at East Cost located at Bukit Gambang Water Park. [3]
  • Watercraft Gallery, Pekan (40 minutes south of Kuantan), [4]. About a 30-40 minute drive south of Kuantan in the town of Pekan. This traditional boat museum (across the street from the state museum) has an outdoor walk through exhibit of refreshingly well curated and maintained, restored traditional boats, hand-painted and well described. A very authentic traditional museum experience.  edit

Buy[edit][add listing]

Old Chinese shophouses located along Jalan Mahkota in the city centre.
  • Salted fish or keropok (dried fish crackers) at Jalan Besar.

Shopping Centres:

  • East Coast Mall- The largest shopping mall on the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia, with Carrefour and Parkson as its anchor tenants.
  • Berjaya Megamall- Lots of shops and stalls (KFC,Parkson,McDonalds,Kenny Rogers,Famous Amos,Bonia etc.)
  • Kuantan Parade- Located behind Teruntum Complex (the tallest building in Kuantan)
  • Mahkota Square

Local Salted Fish supplier: Hasil Laut Kiah Kee

Address: Batu 8, Jalan Gambang, 25150, Kuantan, Pahang Tel:609-5382455 Coordinates: 3°46'1"N 103°13'23"E

Some recommended buys are salted fish, dried or roasted cuttlefish, satay fish,dried shrimps, dried mussels, dried scallops, fish /prawn / cuttlefish crackers etc.Most tourists will drop by this shop to purchase some local produce as gift for relatives or friends.

Eat[edit][add listing]

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  • There are many restaurants and eateries that have mushroomed around Berjaya Megamall on Jalan Tun Ismail which serve local food at reasonable prices.
  • Keropok Lekor is also famous in Kuantan, especially the ones sold by Mok Nah in Tanjung Lumpur and Pak Soh 2 in Sungai Karang on the way to Balok. The variant sold here is slighty different from the ones you find in Kuala Terengganu in that it is soft but crispy.
  • Sata, fish paste and coconut wrapped in coconut leaves and barbequed; good with fresh fruit juice.
  • Otak-otak, fish paste wrapped in coconut leaves and barbequed; good with beer.
  • Satay, chunks of chicken or beef on a skewer, cooked over a charcoal fire. Eaten with a peanut-based dip. The tastiest satay in Kuantan can be found at Zul's Satay (Satay Zul), located in a corner shop at the junction to Beserah from the Kuantan town-Teluk Cempedak road. Heading towards Teluk Cempedak from Kuantan, it is on your left at the traffic lights with a Zam Zam restaurant opposite it (also on your left).
  • Nasi dagang
  • Nasi lemak
  • Malaysian Chinese cuisine, e.g. Hainanese chicken rice, wan tan mee (noodles with wan tan soup), yong tau foo (tofu, eggplant, bitter gourd etc with fish stuffing), char koay teow, (noodles fried with cockles and bean sprouts), dim sum, curry laksa (noodles in curry sauce), assam laksa (noodles in curry sauce flavoured with tamarind) etc. On Jalan Penjara in Kuantan town is a corner restaurant, Hock Heng Baru which serves delicious and reasonably-priced Hainan cuisine. While you are at Hock Heng Baru, do try their killer sour plum lime drink where they go the extra mile to blend even the sour plum flesh together with the limes to give the drink an extra sour taste.
  • Malaysian Indian cuisine, e.g. roti canai, nasi kandar, tandoori chicken, food served in "banana leaf" restaurants etc.
  • Local fruits, e.g. rambutan (a hairy-looking fruit - "rambut" means hair in Malay), mangosteen ("manggis" in Malay), duku, langsat, pomelo, jambu, guava, starfruit, jackfruit ("nangka" in Malay) and durian. Durian is an acquired taste as it is strong-smelling. It is greatly loved by Malaysians!
  • Kemaman Kopitiam, corner shop opposite Berjaya Megamall, serves delicious coffee.
  • Curry Laksa at Hoi Yin Restaurant in Teluk Cempedak. Located in the row of shops on the left as you approach the beach. Opens morning till early afternoon.
  • For Seafood Hunters, a uniquely seafood restaurant by the white sandy beach is available along Jalan Beserah - Pak Su Seafood Restaurant. Served various type of fresh seafood though it might be a bit expensive if you are a foreigner, up to 150MYR . Visited by lot of foreign tourists. The famous Stuffed Crab is a must try dishes.
  • You can also enjoy a variety of delicious seafood dishes at affordable price in Tanjung Lumpur village which is connected via Tangjung Lumpur bridge and is about 2km from the city centre. A range of restaurants is located along Jalan Tangjung Lumpur such as NARA seafood, Ismail Ikan Bakar etc. The recently opened seafood restaurant, SANTAI offers more choices for seafood hunters.
  • Cakes and dessert at Kula Cakes. Famous for their mango cheesecake and other desserts such as creme brûlée, red velvet cake and moist chocolate cake, this is one of the best place for desserts and cakes. Located A69 Jalan Besar, 25000 Kuantan. Call for reservation +6012-9577057
  • Lunch at AKOB PATIN HOUSE, famous with local food, GULAI TEMPOYAK PATIN and about 30 other more local menus, Located in town centre, Tapak PCCL, off Jalan Besar, on the river side of Sungai Kuantan. also serve you a few veriety of river fish like Kerai, Tengalan and Patin. Call for reservation +6012-6644054
  • CROCODILE ROCK pizza & grill, Lorong Dato Mahmud 1 (off Jalan Telok Chempedak), 09-567 5707. Arguably the best western restaurant in Kuantan, set in an old colonial-style bungalow in a wonderful garden setting. Open 5pm - 12 Midnight Tuesday-Sunday (Monday closed) with live music & jamming on Thursday nights. Reservations advisable for larger groups.  edit
  • Little Croc Deli Cafe, No. 47 Jalan Telok Sisek (after Caltex petrol station), 09-516 5707. Open from 8.30am to 5.30pm daily (except Monday). Enjoy an excellent western breakfast or local favourite of "nasi lemak" at very reasonable prices. The lunch menu includes pizza, spaghetti, salads, sandwiches & more.  edit
  • Old Forest Cafe, A393, Taman Seri Kuantan 3, Jalan Beserah, 25300 Kuantan Pahang, 60129886181. Open from 7:30 am until 9:00 Pm (Monday – Sunday). The Old Forest Cafe has been operating in Kuantan, Pahang since 2008. Recommended food :
    • "Dong Gui" Chicken rice/noodle
    • Famous curry Noodle
    • Pandan Curry Chicken Rice
    • Ipoh Rojak
    • Healthy Breakfast set
    and many other Local food as well.
     edit
  • Food Court 888. A Singapore-style food court located a block away from Satay Zul along Jalan Teluk Sisek. Great atmosphere, tons of food and cold beer.  edit
  • Black Pearl, Jalan Teluk Sisek. Evenings. Really great western food, beers on tap. nice pub atmosphere with patio seating. Invisible from the road but located in the plaza beside Hotel Seri Malaysia on Jalan Teluk Sisek.  edit
  • Coffee Gallery. serve 100% premium selected Arabica beans from one of the Coffee Regions to bring the greatness of espresso-based coffee in a cup to you. Being the first independent coffee-joint in Kuantan, Coffee Gallery exposes the coffee culture to the town.  edit


Sleep[edit][add listing]

  • Kuantan Backpackers,[5] 1st Floor, No.39, Jalan Tun Ismail 5, 25000 Kuantan, Pahang, Malaysia. Tel: 09-513 3830 Email: booking@kuantanbackpackers.com Hostel located just 5 minutes walk from the Rapid Kuantan bus terminal (local bus). Dorm beds from RM 28.00 to RM 35.00, breakfast included, FREE wifi, FREE Kuantan map. Reception hours from 11am-6pm.
  • Lila Wadi Restaurant, A 236 Jalan Besar 25000 Kuala Kuantan, Pahang, Malaysia, 012-664 4054, [6]. Affordable food & BBQ, refreshing drinks, in the friendly and cosy surrounding. Famous with Mango Cheese Cake. Tue - Thu: 1:00 pm - 12:00 am Fri - Sun: 4:00 pm - 12:00 am RM10-RM30.  edit
  • Frankie Sandwich Cafe, 17a,lorong sri kuantan 80,, Kuantan, Malaysia (Star City). Best sandwishes in Kuantan Town made by the super friendly boss, Mr. Frankie. Also serve gourment coffee. Bussiness hour: Mon - Tue: 9:00 am - 10:00 pm Wed: 8:00 am - 7:00 pm Thu: 10:00 am - 4:00 pm Fri: 7:00 am - 8:00 pm, 12:00 am - 1:00 am Sat - Sun: 8:00 am - 10:00 pm. RM5-RM20.  edit
  • Lila Wadi Restaurant, A 236 Jalan Besar 25000 Kuala Kuantan, Pahang, Malaysia, 012-664 4054, [7]. Affordable food & BBQ, refreshing drinks, in the friendly and cosy surrounding. Famous with Mango Cheese Cake. Tue - Thu: 1:00 pm - 12:00 am Fri - Sun: 4:00 pm - 12:00 am RM10-RM30.  edit

Homestay[edit]

  • Hillside Homestay Kuantan, 011-28092340, [8]. A conveniently located Homestay within the city. All popular tourist spots are easily accessible. Shopping complexes can be reached within minutes of driving. Teluk Cempedak Beach is less than 15 minutes away. From its vintage point on the hillside, it offers a view of the whole Kuantan city. (3.821270 N,103.316797 E) edit
  • Kaseh Isaura Homestay,[9] Best for family. 3 Rooms with air conditioner. Equipped with refrigerator, LCD TV, Media Player, Washing Machine, Hot Shower, kitchen, etc. Only 10 minutes drive to Kuantan Town. Next to Universiti Kolej Shahputra Kuantan, Kolej Komuniti Kuantan, Univeriti Islam Antarabangsa and Kuantan Sentral. Suitable for 4 - 8 pax. Room from RM60 (US $17) per night. WhatsApp/SMS: +6013-9280959. GPS Point : N03 49.539 E103 16.124. Online booking available.
  • BAITI HOMESTAY,[10] Save with only RM 100 (US $ 35) pernight for a whole house. Location of Baiti Homestay Guest House is located at Batu 11 Jalan Gambang Kuantan. nearly Kuantan Airport. The concept of our guest house is family or group living accommodation separate from the owner, where you live in a whole house for the comfort and privacy of the family. This promotion for accommodation are very cheap at Kuantan, Pahang, Malaysia. We have 2 units for occupancy. Suitable for family or group.
  • SL Villa,[11] Add: 1, Lorong Air Putih 91, 25300 Kuantan, Pahang, Malaysia. Telephone  : Tel: +609-5661199 GPS Point : 3.83516N, 103.34229E , air-con, TV and attached bathroom with hot/cold shower, free wifi. Room from RM 50. Suitable for family
  • Homey Stay, [12] Located right in the center of downtown area: 5-10 minutes by walk/drive to most of the interesting places | Rental type: Room/House | Simply clean & comfortable | Simply friendly & approachable | Affordable price

Budget[edit]

  • Kuantan Backpackers,[13] 1st Floor, No.39, Jalan Tun Ismail 5, 25000 Kuantan, Pahang, Malaysia. Tel: 609-513 3830 Email: booking@kuantanbackpackers.com Hostel located just 5 minutes walk from the Rapid Kuantan bus terminal (local bus). Dorm beds from RM 28.00 and up, breakfast included, FREE wifi.
  • Kosma Hotel, 59 Jalan Haji Abdul Aziz, right in the middle of town. Rooms have air-con, TV, prayer rug and attached bathroom with hot/cold shower, free Wifi available. Double room RM 50, triple RM 60 and family room (two double beds) RM 80.
  • Greenleaf Hotel, [14] No. 60-62, Jalan Bukit Ubi, 25300 Kuantan, Pahang, Malaysia TEL : 609-515 9966 FAX : 609-513 3072 Newly renovated Hotel with all new beds and facilities. In middle of town. Rooms are RM94 and up, and have new air-con and attached bathrooms.

Mid-range[edit]

  • Vistana Hotel, [15]. Business hotel.
  • Grand Continental, Jalan Gambut.
  • De Rhu Beach Resort, 152, Sungai Karang, 26100 Beserah, Phone +609-557 9000, [16]. The beds can hold 2 adults + 2 children. The rooms are big. Breakfast is included. Rooms cost from RM130 upwards.
  • Mega View Hotel Kuantan, [17]. In central Kuantan, next to the bank of the Kuantan River.
  • Duta Sand Beach Resort, [18]. White sandy beaches and just right beside fish village. Located at Jalan Berserah, on the way from Kuantan City to Balok Beach. Reasonable price by walk in MYR 188 and below (wooden chalet)
  • Riverside Boutique Guesthouse,[19] A small hotel providing comfort in a friendly guesthouse in the centre of town. Room rates from RM138 net. No. 47 Jalan Telok Sisek (after Caltex Petrol Station) Tel/fax:+609-516 5707
  • M.S. Garden Hotel [20] A large 4 star, class hotel in the centre of town opposite the Berjaya Mega Mall with big rooms including breakfast. Multi-lingual with English spoken, all facilities including WiFi, swimming pool, restaurants, exercise centre etc. Tel. 60-095118888 Fax. 60-095177558 Email. dos@msgarden.com.my

Splurge[edit]

  • Hyatt Regency Kuantan Resort, Telok Chempedak Beach, 25050, +60 (9) 518 1234 (), [21]. Designed in the style of a traditional kampong (Malaysian village), the resort has 330 rooms and suites featuring: garden or sea views, patio or balcony, high-speed internet access. Facilities: Bayou Spa, pools with poolside bars, tennis courts.  edit
  • Swiss-Garden Resort & Spa Kuantan, 2656-2657, Mukim Sungai Karang,Balok Beach, 26100 Beserah (13 km from Kuantan, very near Kuantan Port), 609-544 7333 (, fax: 609-544 9555), [22]. checkin: 1500hrs; checkout: 1200hrs. On Balok Beach, this is an international class beach resort offering an idyllic retreat for the urbanite traveler. Deluxe Garden View RM 245++ to Executive Suite RM 695++.  edit

Get out[edit]

  • Pekan, the royal town of the state of Pahang. The Pahang State Museum is located here. You can also catch a glimpse of the palace of the Sultan of Pahang in Pekan.



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