Friday, December 18, 2015

Papan Old Town, Ipoh 18 December 2015

Hotel: Cititel Express

One uncle who lived in Papan his entire life told us that there is an old Papan and a new Papan. When tin mining activities fell, many residents were moved to the new Papan.  However, there have been stories that the entire town vacated at an instant.  Something might have happened that was not reported.  There are still some houses which are occupied but we are not sure if they were only occupied in the day or the occupiers live there as well.

The one I'm showing now is the old Papan.  Story has it that Papan used to be a rich mining town until business start to decline during the Papan riot and Japanese occupation and the township was forced to move out thus the entire town is as good as dead.

The town is located near Pusing (布先) and Batu Gajah (华都牙也), 16km from Ipoh.  Near the entrance, there is a Kuan Yin temple and next to it is a huge cemetery.  In Papan, the dead is more than the living; no wonder some said that this is a Ghost town, and some houses are said to be haunted (included No.2).

We decided to start with Main Street.  I was half expecting the town to look really haunted and "broken down" but it didn't seems that way.  It looks serene and pretty.

We were told that this is the house where a lady in red hung herself.  Her spirit has since been seen wandering around in the night.  We decided to walk in to have a look (it's broad daylight, nothing to be afraid of).


As we walk in, we can see that the entire second floor was gone.  The staircase has also decayed till it is impossible to climb anymore.

This is the path next to the room where the lady hung herself.  We saw one  of our friends wandered deeper to the further end and tried to call out to her but she totally ignored us.  Another friend decided to go after her and tap her shoulder.  It was then that she responded.  She said that she didn't hear us (we were like10 steps behind not to hear).  Anyway, she told us that a lady was beckoning her to go over....thus she went to see. There was absolutely no one standing there.

This is the rope the said lady hung herself.  Surprise that the color is still so vibrant.  One would have thought that after so many years, the rope would have somehow discoloured.

Next to the house was a basketball court.  It is said that an old woman and 2 kids can be seen in the court.  

And next to the basketball court, is a lake.  The lake is extremely still.  Story has it that the old lady (seen at the basketball court) drown herself in the lake.  Not sure how true the stories are as I was not able to find any news articles on this.

As we left Main Street, we took a short drive to Istana Raja Billah.  This was where they filmed Anna and The King (yah, the show with Chow Yun Fatt as the King).  The entrance of the compound has a small staircase where we walked up.

This building didn't look like what I saw in the movie but I guess camera tricks made the compound bigger.

The doors were locked and we were not allowed to go in, so I peeped into a small hole in the window and took a picture.  Doesn't look very dilapidated though.  Seems like someone is still using the building.

This is the Kuan Yin Temple we saw at the entrance of Old Papan.  It was said that this Temple had already been around since Old Papan days.  Many who entered the town would pay respect at this temple before entering it.  Next to the temple is a hill full of tombstones which I didn't take any pictures.

Check out the video I did for this short walk!

More photos available here.

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