” They are back ! »: Ipoh businesses come alive with visitors after the ban on interstate travel is lifted | Malaysia


Staff at the Ho Yan Hor Museum in Ipoh welcome visitors from neighboring states after the ban on interstate travel is lifted. – Photo by Farhan Najib

IPOH, October 17 – Businesses around Ipoh tourist spots are seeing signs of recovery after the interstate travel ban was lifted for those who have been fully vaccinated.

Even though the weekend crowd was no longer like it was before the pandemic, business owners surveyed by Malaysian courier said there had been a marked increase in the number of customers in recent days.

They began to notice the arrival of tourists from Friday.

While most visitors came from Kuala Lumpur and Penang, there were also tourists from Kedah, Johor, Kelantan and Terengganu who descended on Ipoh early as their weekend falls on Friday and Saturday.

Ding Feng owner Tau Fu Fa, who only wanted to be named Loo, said there was a marked increase in the number of customers over the weekend.

“We hope to see more in the next few days because Tuesday is also a public holiday. We hope tourists will take this opportunity to spend more time in Ipoh, ”said the 60-year-old.

Loo, who has shut down his business for about eight months due to the lockdown, is hoping the business will pick up soon and things will get back to normal.

The store, located along the famous tourist spot of Concubine Lane, has been in operation for eight years.

The shop is renowned for its softness tau fu fa and fresh soy milk and also a signature flavored seabird’s nest with gingko nuts.

Other stores – dessert houses, souvenir shops, fashion stores and cafes – along Concubine Lane have also reopened after closing for months due to the pandemic.

Kong Heng Square, adjacent to Concubine Lane, is another popular spot for visitors who enjoy taking photos of its crumbling walls, old orange bricks, trees, and other historic buildings.

Another famous tourist spot of Jalan Bijih Timah is the Ho Yan Hor Museum which has also started to receive visitors.

Museum director Ng Chern Yuan said these visitors came mainly from neighboring states such as Kuala Lumpur and Penang.

“There is a significant drop in the number of visitors after the Covid-19. Before the pandemic, the daily average was around 100 visitors on weekdays and 200 to 300 visitors on weekends.

“Now it’s only 10 visitors a day, so that’s a drop of about 90 percent,” she said.

Ng said the museum only resumed operations on October 1 after having closed since May 12 due to the lockdown.

“Previously, we could accommodate around 40 visitors at a time, but now, due to government instructions, we are only allowed to have a 30% capacity, which is around 12 visitors at a time,” a- she explained.

Meanwhile, another tourist hotspot, Taman Jubilee, located in the city center, has also seen an increase in tourist arrivals.

This is the best place to find local and traditional pastries, cookies, candies, snacks, locally grown fruit and also the famous “taugeh chicken” or bean sprout chicken restaurants.

Chloe, an employee of the Kedai Biskut Minisu store, says visitors to her store have increased dramatically.  - Photo by Farhan Najib
Chloe, an employee of the Kedai Biskut Minisu store, said visitors to her store have increased significantly. – Photo by Farhan Najib

Kedai Biskut Minisu store, known for its salty peanut candy, saw its customer base increase by around 70% on Saturday.

A store employee, who only wanted to be called Chloe, said business was going well.

“We believe the sudden surge in sales is due to tourists from neighboring states.

“There is a big difference in business today, although it was a bit slow at the start of the week,” she said.

Likewise, the Yee Thye Cake House and Confectionery located at the Jalan Theater here also said that tourists have increased to the area.

“It’s definitely a good sign, especially for companies like ours, more tourists means more sales,” said Ng Yee Yan, an employee of the store.

Meanwhile, Kelvin Raj, owner of Wawasan Cendol Abang Kacak, said the store saw an increase of around 30% in customer numbers after the ban on interstate travel was lifted.

“Business is going well at the moment as on-site meals are allowed and people are also allowed to travel. We hope to see more customers soon, ”he said.

Kelvin Raj, owner of Wawasan Cendol Abang Kacak, prepares cendol for customers.  - Photo by Farhan Najib
Kelvin Raj, owner of Wawasan Cendol Abang Kacak, prepares cendol for customers. – Photo by Farhan Najib

The cendol store, which is popular among locals and tourists alike, also allows customers to order the famous nasi kandar, also known as nasi ganja, because they are right next to Kedai Kopi Yong Suan where the famous Nasi Kandar Ayam Merah the stall is located.

Nasi kandar Stand manager Mohamed Nihmaphullah Syed Mustaffa said he saw a sharp increase in business after interstate travel was authorized.

“Before that, sales were around 40 percent, but since the borders opened, sales have grown to around 70 percent.

“If this continues, we believe our business can go back to what it was before the pandemic,” he said.

He also added that they will cook more for all dishes as they expect more customers in the coming days.

Mohamed Nihmaphullah also said they have allowed fully vaccinated customers to have dinner as Covid-19 cases start to decline in the state.

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