Tapah is the administrative town of
the Batang Padang district, Perak.
There is an entrance to the
North-South Expressway at Tapah.
This town is also widely considered as
the main entry point into the old
Cameron Highlands route, which is a
winding and narrow road uphill.
Lata Kinjang waterfall is
about 18 km from Tapah on the road to
It is an impressive series of cascades
down a 100 m drop. The falls can be
seen from the North-South Expressway.
During the reign of Sultan Mukaddam
Shah Ibni Almarhum Sultan Mansor Shah, a man of high social prominence
originating from the Siak distriott established the beginnings of a
kampung along the banks of a river tributary at the bay surrounding the
mouth of the Batang Padang River.
This "Dato" was bestowed with the honorific title of "Tok
Tua Sakti" ( a much respected title of the olden days in recognition
of special abilities or accomplishment ) for his advisorial role in the
safe and successful arrival of the Princess Limau Purut from Acheh in
Indonesia. In those days of yore, cock-fighting was a common and highly popular form
of entertainment, involving wagers and bets between and amongst the
audience, whose members hailed from commoners right up to the princess of
Legend has it that in one such cock-fight, the good Dato lost a big wager,
resulting in the necessity for him to surrender his kampung to the winner.
On that night, the Dato had a dream in which it was revealed to him that
the next morning, a Tapah fish by the size of a human being would be
stranded on the sands of the river confluence at Kuala Tapah, and within
the belly of this fish would be found several pieces of gold which
would be of great use in ridding the Dato of his debt. In order to retrieve
the gold, the Dato was to use a knife of split bamboo, while a needle and
thread made from the stiff midrib of lalang grass and fibre from the
palm respectively were to be used to stitch back the opened belly of the
It is said that the dream turned out to be an accurate premonition and
that the fish did bear the gold that saved the Dato's property.
Consequently, the Tapah fish was consecrated and a taboo against hatching
or eating it was declared by the Dato, for himself, his family and all his
descendants to come.
The name of Tapah town derives from this remarkable legend and the fateful
happenings at Kuala Tapah, making the good Dato and his family the
ancestral forerunners of Tapah.