PLACES OF INTEREST


Once the meetings are over, there is plenty to explore in Kota Bharu. The social events could be held in one of the many unique venues in Kota Bharu that could leave a memorable and lasting impression to the attendees.

Kota Bharu itself offers many museums (Malay-language only) near Independence Square (Padang Merdeka). Several of the museums and the nearby Istana Balai Besar (the downtown Royal Palace) were built in a unique kind of elegant architecture that is well worth seeing. Arguably the most amazing building, however, is the central market (Pasar Besar). It is an octagonal building in the centre of town and houses a very colourful and active market every day. Nearby is a plain square which turns into the local food market in the evenings (Pasar Malam = Night Market).

Some visitors (particularly those interested in the history and cultural heritage of Kelantan) may also find the Muzium Negeri Kelantan (Kelantan State Museum) on Jalan Hospital 15000 of interest.

The following museums in Kota Bharu are all open from 8:30am-4:45pm every day except Fridays (when they are closed):
  • Muzium Kraftangan (Handicrafts Museum [with attached gift shop selling handicrafts])
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  • Muzium Negeri (State Museum)
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  • Memorial Peperangan Dunia Ke II (World War II Memorial [very small but worth a quick visit for history buffs])
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  • Muzium D'Raja (Royal Museum [which contains photos of the current and previous Sultans and such-like])
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  • Muzium Islam (Museum of Islam)
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  • Muzium Adat Istiadat DiRaja Kelantan (Museum of Royal Kelantanese Traditions [which contains interesting artifacts and exhibits for those interested in cultural history])
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Great temples to visit in the nearby towns to Kota Bharu Town: near Tumpat there is Wat Pothivihan (huge reclining Buddha), Wat Mai Suwan Khiri (dragon Boat & standing Buddha), Wat Chonprachumthat at Kg. Dalam, Wat Machimarran Varran (sitting Buddha), and Wat Serova Buddhist Temples (Goddess of Mercy - Kuan Yin). At Bachok, there is a 100-foot-high standing Buddha at Wat Phothikyan (just opened to public in June 2009) and a Kuan Yin temple facing the South China Sea nearby.

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OTHER ACTIVITIES

  • Cultural Show at Culture Centre 3 times a week @Saturday 3.00pm-4.45pm & 8.00pm-11.30pm, @Monday 3.00pm-4.45pm, @Wednesday 3.00pm-4.45pm & 8.80-12.00pm.
  • River cruise along Sungai Galas down to Dabong (2hours).
  • Explore the caves at Gua Ikan,Dabong.
  • Stong Waterfall, reputed to be the highest in Southeast Asia, drops from a height of about 990 metres.
  • Mount Stong State Park. One of the main attractions at the state park is Gunung Stong@Mt.Stong (1,422 meters), a dome-shaped granite complex more than 500 million years old.
  • Nenggiri Rafting Adventure - The selected leg of the journey covers approximately about 50 km, departing from Kuala Betis / Gua Cha and ends up at Kampung Star.
  • Amazing street art near Jalan Dato Pati
  • Hand-Printed batik clothes - Kota Bharu Trade Centre (KBTC), which offers a variety of choices, is located just beside Pasar Siti Khadijah. Other places to buy hand-printed batik include Citra Batik at PCB Beach or at the KB Mall in town (the latter has higher prices but is more convenient).
  • Silverware - at the touristy museum in Kota Bharu town.
  • Crystals and gemstones - you can find them at the local wet market or morning market or specialist shops. Emerald (locals call them zamrud), ruby, sapphire, topaz, tiger's eye, etc. can be found. But let the buyer beware, as there are many fakes being sold.
  • Pengkalan Kubur - A hidden gem in this state. It is only 30 minutes from Kota Bharu and the only Duty-Free Zone in this corner of Peninsular Malaysia. Imported Chocolates are cheaper than the Airports Duty Free. You have to exit through Customs complex. Customs allow reasonable number of Duty-Free items. Across the river is Tak Bai (Thailand), passports required to cross.

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