Perak is one of the states of Malaysia and boasts of being the second largest state by size in Peninsular Malaysia. Perak borders Thai Yala Province and Kedah to the north, Pahang and Kelantan to the east, Penang to its northwest and Straits of Malacca to its west and Selangor to its north. Ipoh is the administrative capital of Perak and has a historical reputation for its top-notch tin-mining activities. This was until there was a drop in the price of tin which severely affected the econonmy of the state. However, Kuala Kangsar is still home to the royal capital and this is the location of the Palace of Sultan of Perak.
Perak translates to Darul Ridzuan in Arabic, which means, ‘Abode of Grace’. Officially the official name of the state is the Perak Darul Ridzun. In Malay, the name Perak means silver and it is largely believed that it was given the name due to silvery color associated with tin. Perak was a great target in the 1890s by the British Empire for having the richest tin deposits in the world. The capital city of Perak, Ipoh houses about half a million people according to the recent census in Malaysia.
Perak is a jewel for tourist attractions in Malaysia and there are many places of moderate interest in the state. But Pangkor Island is nevertheless the major tourist destination here and it is located about 85 km away from the capital. Ipoh is in itself well reputed and famous for its great foods, limestone caves and mountains and abundant tin mines. Another city in Perak is Teluk Intan, which is famous for its unique steamed and highly delicious Chinese rice rolls and the pagoa- styled leaning tower. Derelict palace is also housed here and this is where the famous Raja Dihilir of Perak used to live.
The second largest city found in Perak is Taiping and this is generally a very quiet pensioner’s paradise characterized by century old trees that gracefully line its roads. There are a couple of attractions here such as the large park near the well known Taiping Lake as well as nearby Taiping zoo. This is a very important city to the country of Malaysia in general as it is where the 1st hospital, hill resort, golf club, aerodrome and the first jail in Malysia were established.
Other major cities and towns in Malaysia include Pasir Salak, Lumut, Langkap and Bidor. According to the laws of Perak’s constitution, Perak is ideally a constitutional monarchy and has a hereditary constitutional ruler. Sultan Azlan Muhibbuddin Shah is the current sultan. Perak used to be the most populous state in Malaysia by the declining tin mining industry dealt a great blow to the state. As the economy weakens, massive manpower is being drained to other higher growth states like Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Penang. A majority of the people in Perak are Muslims even though other religions do exist like Buddhism, Hinduism, Chinese Ethnic Religion and others.