Home to over 1,200 different animals, including tigers, elephants, orangutans, and hornbills, Taiping Zoo spreads over 36 acres (15 hectares of well-kept grounds in Perak’s second city, Taiping. After dark, it hosts a night safari, the first of its kind in Malaysia, where guests observe animals’ nocturnal behavior on foot or from a tram.
Many animals, including the elephants, are housed in open-concept enclosures, making Taiping Zoo feel more welfare-focused than so many Southeast Asian zoos. Education and conservation (including breeding programs) have been at the heart of the zoo’s mission since it opened in 1961. The night safari offers the rare chance to observe animals from sun bears to tigers to bug-eyed slow lorises going about their business after dark; daytime visits let travelers watch animals being fed.
Things to know before you go
- Tickets for the night safari and the zoo are sold separately and affordably priced.
- The zoo has food options and bathrooms on site.
- Children aged 3–12 enjoy discounted entry, while under-3s go free.
- Taiping Zoo has wheelchair/stroller ramps and accessible bathrooms, but the mini-train and safari train are not adapted for wheelchairs.
How to get there
Taiping Zoo sits close to the Taiping Lake Gardens, about 2 miles (3 kilometers) east of Taiping railway station. Trains from Ipoh, about 40 miles (65 kilometers) southeast of Taiping, take about 45 minutes; a tour is the only realistic way to see Taiping from Kuala Lumpur in one day.
When to get there
By day, the zoo opens until early evening, with animal feeding sessions in the morning; it reopens mid-evening for the night safari, with extended hours on Saturdays and the night before Malaysian public holidays. Visit midweek for a less crowded experience.
Things to Do in Taiping
Established in 1874 as a tin mining settlement, the little city of Taiping offers lakeside gardens, colonial architecture, and cool hillside resorts. Many buildings were the first of their kind in Malaysia, including the prison, the clock tower, and even the public swimming pool. Off-the-path attractions run from mushroom farms to mangrove tours, from coffee mills to charcoal furnaces: Book a Taiping city tour to pack more into your day.