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Kota Bharu

Things to see and do

  • Kota Bharu Cultural Centre
    3.5 stars

    Playing drums, learning traditional self-defence moves and learning the strategic manoeuvres of spinning heavy wooden tops -- visitors are encouraged to give them all a go. The performers at the centre are also quite enthusiastic, which can be contagious. Programmes are run for a gamut of ... read more

  • Muzium Kelantan (Kelantan State Museum)
    4.5 stars

    Today this is the go-to place to learn about the history of Kelantan, from its historic places to the arrival of Islam and the royal lineage of its rulers. Exhibits include displays of various local leisure activities such as mak yong, gasing and wayang kulit. If pressed for time, this museum ... read more

  • Pasar Basar Siti Khadijah
    4 stars

    Depending on which entrance you take, you could slide your way past fish entrails or exotic herbs and spices, but either way it's all worth investigating. There are also several stall-type kitchens upstairs that serve up some serious local eats, like nasi Kkerabu, fresh crab and ... read more

  • Muzium Perang (Bank Kerapu) War Museum
    4 stars

    The building itself started life as the Mercantile Bank of India and later (1941-1945) was used as a lock up and interrogation centre by the Japanese Intelligence Police. Considering Kelantan was the invasion point of the Japanese military forces, the exhibits are authentic and artefacts are in ... read more

  • Muzium Diraja Istana Batu (Royal Museum)
    3.5 stars

    It was passed onto Sultan Ismail Petra as his official residence and then declared a museum in 1991. As simple as this building presents itself it has quite a colourful history and is jam-packed with collectibles and royal possessions, such as gifts, paintings, clothes and even hunting 'trophies' ... read more

  • Muzium Kraftangan (Balai Getam Guri), Handicraft Museum
    3 stars

    There are a few interesting antiquated bits on display that make for nice photo ops and with more space to manoeuvre for the perfect Instagram I-was-here moment. While Muzium Kraftangan doesn't hold a candle to the glory of the other museums in Kota Bharu, but for the price of entry it's worth ... read more

  • Muzium Islam (Islamic Museum)
    3 stars

    In 1917 it became the official office of the Islamic Religious and Malay Culture and Ceremony Department, eventually being turned into the Islamic Museum in 1991. There is quite a collection of religious artefacts as well as an abundance of Islamic information. The well-organised displays and ... read more

  • Muzium Adat Istiadat Diraja Kelantan (Royal Ceremonies Museum)
    2.5 stars

    All the finery involved in royal weddings can get a bit tedious and redundant, especially if you have already had your daily dose of royalty at Istana Batu. But for those interested in the romantic side of culture, it's worth a peek. It also displays textiles and the traditional pre and ... read more

  • Wat Machimmaran
    4 stars

    Nonetheless, this imposing Buddha is a jaw-dropper and stands in stark contrast to the surrounding flat landscape. Even more astonishing is the artwork and imagery inside the temple, with Buddhist depictions of heaven and hell reminiscent of the visionary works of Hieronymus Bosch adorning the ... read more


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