Day 2 in Ipoh, the sun was out! Not that it means a lot in Ipoh, since I was always equipped with an umbrella by my hotel, which told me that it can always rain in Ipoh.
Day 2 I focused on the cave temples I had heard about. The tourist office had told me all the bus connections but I still opted for the more comfortable way of transportation and reserved a taxi for a half day.
A friend recommended that I visit Perak Tong temple first because it was the most picturesque. However, it faces west and the light would have been better in the afternoon. Perak Tong temple is huge, with many caves to visit and it was free of charge. So, a good opportunity for a donation! In the back of the temple is a stairways leading up to the top of the hill in bright sunshine. Another reason why this temple might be better visited in the afternoon. The view was not so great because it overlooks the industrial side of Ipoh.
After Perak Tong temple we drove back to Ipoh to visit Sam Poh Tong temple, which had a beautiful fish pond and Zen garden at the entrance side. Luckily it was very quiet and no other tourists were around when I visited, so I could explore the inside of the cave and the turtle pond on the other side of the cave.
From Sam Poh Tong, I wanted to quickly walk over to Kek Lok Tong temple, which seems just next door on the map, and there are actually several more cave temples right nearby, but my taxi driver said the map was wrong. We did have to drive back and around the mountain to reach Kel Lok Tong, which was another awesome cave temple. Very clean and with lots of statues and gods to explore. Several parts were "no shoes" areas, all set beautifully within stalactites and stalagmites. The back of the cave opens to a beautiful garden and pond.
My planned three hours were actually not enough time, so I had to pay extra for another hour. However, I did rush through all the caves and specially up the hill in the first cave. So, I would theoretically have spent more time than half a day and being flexible with the sunlight in the morning and afternoon if I had my own transportation.
Each one of the cave temples has it's own charm and atmosphere. After visiting all three, I could not say which one I liked best. They are all different from each other, so I would always recommend visiting all three - and with enough time available.