1. Panching Caves in Sungai Lembing
Also known as Gua Charas, this 400-million-year-old limestone karst and holy site can be found in Sungai Lembing, a 30-minute car ride from Kuantan. Said to have been where a Thai Buddhist monk meditated half a century ago, the Sleeping Buddha Cave – adorned with small figurines and altars dedicated to Buddha and Guanyin – is named after a giant statue that resides deep in its recesses.
2. Sungai Pandan Waterfall
Located 30km west of Kuantan city centre, this majestic waterfall is hailed as one of Malaysia’s most beautiful waterfalls. It’s easy to see why – the towering natural wonder boasts multiple tiers, offering wonderful photographic opportunities from all angles.
3. Taman Esplanade
Spend the evening people-watching on this 1km-long trail that runs alongside Kuantan River, which runs through Sungei Lembing into the South China Sea. The river plays an important role in sustaining Kuantan’s ancient mangrove forest, which you can also see as part of a river mouth and mangrove boat tour.
4. Teluk Chempedak
Relax by the beach and admire the turquoise waters of the South China Sea at Kuantan’s beach, just 6km from the city center. Stop for photos by the giant stones scattered across the sand, and you’ll even catch a glimpse of some local monkeys hanging around!
5. Masjid Sultan Ahmad Shah
Completed in 1993, this statuesque place of worship with its azure dome and four stately minarets makes up one of the city’s most well-known landmarks. It’s also the largest mosque in the city, and is said to be able to house 8,000 people.