Balai Besar

The more I see of Alor Setar, the more I think that it is an architecture enthusiast’s city. There are just many notable Asian and modern architecture in the city. Thai/Chinese at Wat Nikrodharam, Zahir and Albukhary mosques, as well as modern Menara Alor Setar. But there’s another one with its Asian with heavy Thai influences, part of the royal palace, the Balai Besar. Originally built in 1735 as the Royal Audience Hall, it was where weddings, state assemblies and royal gatherings, including the installation…Continue Reading “Beautiful architecture of Balai Besar”

Tanjung Chali

One of the places that I really like in Alor Setar is the scenic natural park along the Sungai Kedah (Kedah River). There are lots of huge trees and benches that offer a cool and breezy shade with a beautiful view of the Dataran Tanjung Chali (Tanjung Chali Square) right across. It’s imposing tower is a landmark. The square is a historical site and was once used as a harbour for many boats traveling between villages along the different rivers like Sungai Kedah, Sungai Anak…Continue Reading “Scenic Tanjung Chali across the river”

What’s great with travel is that you get to explore different cultures and heritage. In Alor Setar, after going the rounds of the temples both buddhist and muslim like Masjids Zahir and Albukhary and other cultural sites, there’s another place that is a must visit: Pekan Rabu Complex. Literally Wednesday Market, Pekan Rabu started as a market near the docks open only on that day which was established by YTM Tunku Yaacob, a member of the royal family in Kedah, for villagers to sell their…Continue Reading “Where to buy cheap goods in Alor Setar”

Masjid Al-bukhari

It was already noon when, together with my guide, a taxi driver, arrived at the mosque grounds. It was just hot and humid and the heat unbearable. But then you see this oasis in the masjid grounds complete with palms, a pool, canal and modern Islamic architecture in the form of this beautiful mosque capped with a traditional dome. There is more to visit in Alor Setar and outside the main capital center is the sprawling Al Bukhary Foundation complex. Within the 18 hectare sprawl…Continue Reading “Impressive architecture of Masjid Al Bukhary”

The first time I saw the Masjid Zahir (Zahir Mosque) in a photo, I was in awe of its beautiful architecture. But seeing the mosque in the flesh, early morning and the sun is just a few degrees up in the horizon, I was bowled over. The Masjid Zahir is the state mosque of Alor Setar, Kedah state’s capital. It was built in 1912 and inaugurated in 1915 and was inspired by the Masjid Azizi in Langkat, Sumatra. It is here where the annual Koran…Continue Reading “Masjid Zahir, architecturally beautiful mosque”