Perlis is Malaysia’s smallest state with an area of 795 sqkm. It is flanked by Thailand in the north and Kedah in the south. Kangar is the capital of Perlis while Arau, 10km away is the Royal town.

Predominantly agricultural, Perlis has a serene unspoilt beauty. It picturesque low-lying padi fields stretch for miles, broken only by occasional limestone outcrops Perlis enjoys a dry season from January to April while the months of September through to December are wet months.

Main towns include Kangar, Arau, Alor Setar, Kuala Perlis and Padang Besar. Kuala Perlis is a major entry point to the famous island resort of Langkawi while Padang Besar is one of the main gateways for visitors from Thailand by road or rail.


1) Kangar

Kangar, 56km north-west of Alor Setar is the state capital set amidst a vast expanse of green padi fields that turn a golden yellow at harvest time. The state government offices are located here. A major landmark of the town is the golden-domed state Mosque on Jalan Besar close to the Kangar Travelogue. A small town, Kangar’s stadium, general hospital, hotels, and schools are all within walking distance.

2) Gua Kelam Kaki Bukit

This is the name of limestone cave found at the foot of a hill about 26km from Kangar. A literal translation means a dark cave on the hillside. However, this cave has a some added attractions. It contains an underground river and a tin mine. A long cave, Gua Kelam traverses about 370m of limestone hills to a valley knows as the Wan Tangga Valley.

3) Tasik Melati

Tasik Melati is a small but picturesque lake about 8km north of Kangar. A shallow marsh lake, it has over 150 sandbars which are like tiny islands scattered all around Sampans can be rowed to these tiny ‘islands’. The lake has been developed as a tourist attraction with elevated walkways and seats for one to just sit back and enjoy the view.

4) Putra Golf Club

Near the Snake Farm, the Putra Golf Club offers golfers the challenge of a notoriously difficult 18 hole course with numerous obstructions, sandbars, water hazards and unexpected traps.

5) Snake Farm

Snakes enjoy a natural habitat in limestone caves and many of these are venomous. The Snake Farm is a research facility set up to develop serums for snakebites. Besides the scientific work here, the farm is also a tourist attraction.

6) Kuala Perlis

The coastal town of Kuala Perlis 14km from Kangar, is a major departure point for the fabled Langkawi island and has a ferry terminal for island-bound passengers. Located at the mouth of Sungai Perlis, this is also the main point for fishermen to unload their catch which is transported by lorries to other parts of the country. The town of Kuala Perlis has just a couple of streets with plenty of restaurants which are popular for seafood and the local specialty of ‘Laksa’ (a white rice noodle in a fish-based gravy)

7) Bukit Kubu Recreational Forest

This is a natural limestone cave in a forested hill known as Wang Pinang, near Kuala Perlis The cave has an interesting geological formation and has been developed into a ‘cave park’ for joggers and cave trekkers there are several hiking trails nearby.

8) Padang Besar

This border town is the merging point for Thais and Malaysians. Many Malaysians travel up to Thailand through this point and likewise their Thai counterparts, on shopping, business, or recreational trips.

The railway station has a long platform, manned by Malaysians on one side and the Thais on the other. Besides the immigration checkpoints and some signs, it is hard to distinguish where the border actually lies. Beyond the rail tracks is Pekan Siam, bargain-hunters’ paradise. The town is filled with textiles, clothing handicraft, foodstuff, fruits, and souvenirs

9) Chupping

This town got its name from a limestone hill known as Bukit Chirping The area is well suited to sugar cane which is extensively grown and processed in refineries. There are also cement plants which supply soire of the country’s requirements.