Ipoh is a top destination for long-stay Asian travellers, offering a high standard of living at a much lower cost, vast greenery, sunny climate and tasty food. Ipoh’s freedom and fascinating culture is a magnet for active retirees.
More Japanese have been making the move to Malaysia, under the Malaysia My Second Home MM2H ten-year visa programme.
Malaysia consistently ranks as the top choice for long stay amongst Japanese aged 40 years and above, according to a report by Long Stay Foundation Tokyo.
Participants in the MM2H long-stay program tend to choose the “slow life” or “country living,” far removed from city life with the average age of men at 57.4 years while women are 49.7 years.
Ipoh is ranked one of the nine places to retire in the world, reported in US News, a leader in ranking surveys.
MetroPerak recently reported that foreign researchers find Ipoh to be the ideal destination for Asian Chinese senior citizens to retire, particularly those from China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan.
It is a popular retirement haven for locals too, who claim its fresh air, clean water and relaxing lifestyle not only improves their quality of life but also promotes longevity.
Ipoh is a popular retirement haven
Ipoh is a popular place for retirement among all nations. In an interview by Para.com.my, Datuk Richard Small, 67, said Ipoh has many things that make the city an ideal place to live, work, and to retire.
Small said the price, quality and variety of food added to his joy of living here. “I can’t think of a better place to spend my retirement years. Ipoh is truly the best place,” he says.
Retired British navy commander Ian Anderson, 75, well-known for his work in conserving Ipoh’s heritage, agreed that the low cost of living is one of the primary reasons he and his wife, a local, decided to live here.
“The property prices in Kuala Lumpur and Penang are ridiculously expensive. The property I bought here is a fraction of what I would have had to pay in those two places.
Besides that, the cost of living is generally lower. It is an affordable place for expatriates. In fact, it is the best place to live on the west coast of the peninsular.
Life is good here. I tell everyone that. When people say Ipoh is quaint and rustic, I say Ipoh is lovely because of that. I love this place,” said Anderson.
Ipoh is calling:
1. Tropical weather and lots of golf
Golfing is a time-honoured tradition in Japan and although there are more golf courses in Japan than the rest of Asia put together, they’re often overcrowded.
You also have to spend a hefty fee for membership and initiation. In Ipoh, you can golf all year round at a fraction of the cost.
2. The multilingual skills of the locals
Thanks to Malaysia’s multiracial community, the locals speak multiple languages, which is not common in other Asian countries.
3. Good water quality
Ipoh is the king of bean sprouts in Malaysia – big, crunchy and juicy, thanks to the abundance of hard water from the limestone hills surrounding the Kinta Valley.
4. Vast and vibrant choice of delicacies
According to a survey by Booking.com in June 2018, Ipoh is listed in the Top 10 destinations for local food.
5. Low cost of living
Ipoh is an ideal choice for both Malaysian retirees and foreigners for its reasonably-priced food and affordable housing.
6. Slower pace of living
One of the alluring charms of Ipoh is the laid-back culture without sacrificing urban development, convenience and comfort.
7. Health facilities
Private and public hospitals in Ipoh are well-equipped with advanced technology and professional doctors, great facilities for seniors.
Many sports and leisure activities such as golfing, tai chi, arts and craft, culinary arts, swimming, dancing, mahjong and shady parks surrounded by raintrees are available.
9. Ease of transport
Public transport such as taxis, trains, buses and flights are readily available.
10. Natural attractions
There are plenty of parks, lakes, limestone hills and forests situated in the vicinity of the Kinta Valley to be explored at little to no cost.