The conservative city of Kota Bharu is the capital of the state of Kelantan. Kota Bharu is situated in the northeastern part of Peninsular Malaysia, and lies near the mouth of the Kelantan River also close to the Thailand border. Kota Bharu is very rich in culture with beautiful and vibrant markets and mosques. It is also home to various museums, the old royal palace and former royal buildings in the center of town. The majority of Kota Bharu population is ethnically Kelantan Malay which has distinct language and culture compared to other parts of Malaysia. There is also a big Chinese population in Kota Bharu. Besides that, the minority Indian, Siamese and Orang Asli also resides in the city. Kota Bharu culture is highly influenced by Thai culture because of its geographical proximity to Thailand. The Chinese are much more assimilated to local culture than those in other parts of Malaysia.
The most popular way to get to Kota Bharu is by air as there are numerous daily flights from Kuala Lumpur. Three airlines operate on this route that includes Malaysia Airlines, AirAsia and Firefly. Some of the airlines also fly from other cities within Malaysia to Kota Bharu, If you are from Penang or Johor Bahru you can reach Kelantan by Firefly. From airport you can take either a cheap bus or taxi for 19 minutes’ drive where the distance is 9.7 km to Kota Bharu.
If you drive from Kuala Lumpur you can use the route via Gua Musang where it is shorter than the coastal route. For more safe or if you travel with a kids you can use East Coast Expressway and head straight to Kuala Terengganu and then follow the road signs to Kota Bharu. Road users can enter Kelantan from the southern of Narathiwat at Rantau Panjang and across the Kolok River on the newly completed bridge at Bukit Bunga, Jeli.
The cheapest way to reach Kota Bharu is by coach. There are quite some bus operators that have daily busses driving between Kota Bharu and many other locations within Peninsular Malaysia. Duration required for bus from KL to Kota Bahru takes about 7 hours depending on traffic condition. The departure point for coaches going to Kota Bahru in Kuala Lumpur is at Terminal Bersepadu Selatan (TBS).
You can make your way for some cultural experience like Jahar Palace (Istana Palace), which has a long history since 1855. It has luxurious woodcarvings that showcase the excellent craftsmanship of the Kelantan’s. Apart from that, photographs, artifacts and traditional handicraft reflect on the Kelantan rich and sophisticated heritage. There are also a Malay Weapon Gallery which house has many unique weapons such as keris and pisau.
State Museum is one of the main destinations that you may visit during your stay in Kota Bharu.
You can see a splendid collection of exhibits on Kelantan’s arts, crafts and musical traditions. The artefacts are from local archaeological sites.
Craft Museum and Handicraft Center is a good place to begin your tour of Kota Bharu. The center is set within a beautiful courtyard, the complex houses, a craft museum, souvenir shops, tourism offices and a restaurant. You can find here the fine craft museum, houses much Kelantanese craftsmanship including traditional embroidery, batik, silverware and matting.
Siti Khadijah Market is a local wet market famous among locals and tourists. Here you can get a lot of fresh goodies like seafood, vegetables and wide variety of fruits and also you can find ready-to eat food like 'ayam percik', nasi ulam and a variety of noodle soups, all unique in flavours and taste of Kelantan, serves freshly for you.
You may visit Cahaya Bulan Beach to witness the beautiful scenery of the beach. Cahaya Bulan Beach is amongst the must visit beach in Kota Baharu. Here is the place for you to relax and chill or have a picnic with a beautiful, clean and fresh evening breeze. It has a beautiful long and wide sandy beach, a popular spot for family outings and picnics. It also have a variety of water sports and horse riding.
Hotel Perdana Kota Bharu is a 5- star luxury hotel located in the heart of Kota Bharu City Centre. This hotel located nearby tourist attractions such as Siti Khadijah Market within 0.9 km and Craft Museum and Handicraft Center within 1.2 km and near to Sultan Ismail Petra Airport within 7.5 km. This hotel is the splendid choice for you who are seeking a luxurious treat for your holiday.
The Grand Renai Hotel is a 5-star luxury hotel is a perfect choice when you are visiting Kota Bharu. This hotel located in a well position area where nearby tourist destinations such as Siti Khadijah Market within 2.16 km and Craft Museum and Handicraft Center within 2.4 km. For travelers who wish to travel in luxury with comfortable stay, The Grand Renai is the perfect place to stay that provides decent facilities as well as great services to the guests.