Gua Musang is a small town deep in the jungles of central Kelantan. While it has little of interest in itself, it's a convenient gateway for Taman Negara and a good place to break the cross-peninsula haul.
Gua Musang is on the Jungle Railway, which run from the junction at Gemas northwards to Kota Bharu and Tumpat. Daytime trains run between Tumpat and Singapore via Gua Musang. Several trains per day run northwards to Tumpat, the first is at 05:00, the last at 16:20. Southbound, during the day only the 10.50 AM train to Singapore heads further south than Kuala Lipis, which itself is served by two daily local trains, at 8.50 AM and 7 PM.
Two nightly sleepers head to Kuala Lumpur at 22:30 and Singapore at 00:25. On Sundays, Tuesdays and Thursdays there is a more comfortable option for Singapore: the Malayan Tiger Train, which runs as far as Johor Bahru (five minutes from Singapore) at 21:10.
Times correct as of Jan. 2012. Note that times are liable to change, consult KTM, the Malaysian rail operator, for current timetables.
Private tour companies operate shuttle services from the Cameron Highlands for RM 40-50. Inquire in Tanah Rata.
Once only accessible by train, Gua Musang is now at the hub of several roads that run north to Kota Bahru, south to Kuala Lipis and Pahang and west across the Cameron Highlands to Simpang Pulai and Perak (near Ipoh).
The old town is small and easily covered on foot. Development is spreading away from the old centre, making the newer parts of town only within walking distance for the committed pedestrian. Bukit Gua Musang can also be reached on foot. There is not much for the tourist in the new town, except a supermarket. Taxis or bike rental may be arranged for accessing more far-flung places.
Bukit Gua Musang
Pulai - Chinese temple in Pulai, which is purportedly 400 years old. Pulai is an early gold mine town, and a historical Chinese village.
- Jungle Railway Station (the station is just over the bridge from the old town's main street). Gua Musang is a railway town: Once, trains were the only means of transport to the town. The journey provides a glimpse of village life in the jungle hinterland.
- Rock climbing, Gua Musang. Gua Musang is surrounded by limestone hills and caves, which can provide entertainment for cavers and rock climbers. The area is bolted with 30 routes from 5b to 7a, though there is no equipment hire in the town so trips will have to be prepared for elsewhere.
Nothing special to buy here; however you can buy some local fruits, like durian, rambutans, mangosteen, mango etc.
- Banks (on the main street over the bridge from the train station). Maybank and CIMB have ATMs.
- KFC. Has free WiFi, also fried chicken.
There is beer. On the right hand side of the main street from the station, in the Chinese-run mini-market. Look out for a glass-doored fridge with a suspiciously blanked out bottom shelf. What lies behind the card but glorious cold (not to mention expensive) Tiger and Calsberg. RM 7.80 for a small can.
Fresh coconut water has also been reported to be procurable.
There's several options. Most have WiFi. Notable options include:
- My Home Hotel, PT 7746, Jalan Persiaran Raya (1.5 km from the railway station. Head down the main street from the station, turn left at the end, pass the mosque on the right and beat left past the Caltex garage on the left. It's 400m from the Clatex, on the right), ☏ . A good budget option. Clean rooms, hot water, towels, air-con, satellite TV and free WiFi throughout. The cheapest rooms are windowless boxes but still have all the above amenities. From RM40.
- Fully Inn, 75, Jalan Pekan Lama (Probably the closest to the railway station. Head down the main street from the station, turn left at the end and it's on the left), ☏ . Very close to the station. It's a big shiny Chinese monster. Free breakfast. Wifi. From RM60.
There are also several hotels with prices around RM50-70 on the strip along the main road south of the main intersection, around the 7-11 and GM Shopping Centre.