Our first trip into Malaysia we were pleasantly surprised by the energy and diversity of a multicultural city. We arrived from Cebu direct flight to Kuala Lumpur approximately three and one half hours on Tiger Airlines with a cost for two of 14000 pesos US $320.00 round trip. The international airport is approximately one hour by taxi to the city. We booked online using Booking.Com at the V Garden Hotel on the outskirts of KL with close proximity to the MRT mass rapid transit and within easy walking distance to local Chinese restaurants. The hotel rooms are small but the staff is friendly and helpful and the rooms extremely clean. For the budget price of $35.00 per night V Garden is an OK headquarters.
After an excellent Chinese fish dinner we examined our rough draft itinerary and decided on the first day to explore the Central Market and China town where we had a great dinner at Central Market, did some shopping… OMG they have everything the human brain can conceive of including supermarkets that have an unlimited variety of exotic fruits and vegetables and enough sushi to sink a battleship.
The following day we took the MRT system direct to Batu Caves where we experienced the 272 step climb, waved to the monkeys who are real bandits looking for any kind of handout anyone will give. Be very careful as these monkeys are not shy and can deliver a nasty bite. The cave itself is almost surreal as it is so dramatic to see these cathedral looking ceilings made from millions of years of crystal formations. Rising almost 100 m above the ground, the Batu Caves temple complex consists of three main caves and a few smaller ones. The biggest, referred to as Cathedral Cave or Temple Cave, has a very high ceiling and features ornate Hindu shrines. In the back of the cavern there is a Hindu temple where you can witness their priests performing their religious services. There are many photo opportunities. This should be very high on any tourist list as things to do.
Our third day we went to the Petronas Twin Towers, not to be missed by anyone visiting the city. The architecture is amazing almost impossible to get a picture postcard photo unless you are really good a taking photos and can lay on your back with the latest high tech telephoto lens… or you could turn the camera vertical but that’s to easy. The first three floors are high end shopping with many of the Malaysians walking with their shopping bags full to the top. Their economy is booming and you will be surprised at their infrastructure… plus all of the new condos springing up everywhere.
From Petronas Twin Towers you walk five minutes underground walkway and arrive at one of the best Aquariums in the world. They have large manta rays, with sharks circling overhead and tunnels of fish as if caught in a fishbowl whirlwind…plus every other type of creepy crawly creature you can imagine. This venue is family oriented, but don’t bring more than four cameras or you will miss something…like a fish devouring another or the birth of NEMU. Is best to choose a weekday since their are less people and you can capture that award winning dangerous shark teeth photo…fooling your friends or not! Definitely worth a visit highly recommended.
Our fourth day we took the MRT and headed to Bird Park. We got off near the train station and walked among historical government buildings, a historic Mosque, and tree shaded sidewalks. We ate at The Hornbill Restaurant and Cafe in Bird Park which was a pleasant surprise. From there we walked through the park..one of the largest aviaries in the world where we witnessed everything from exotic birds along nature trails to highly entertaining bird shows plus a museum. We then headed to Butterworth by bus going to Penang Island and Langkawi Island and our return trip to KL we stayed at Ancasa Hotel and Spa centrally located adjacent to bus station, China Town and close to MRT station. For the next three days we feasted like starving tigers at a number of excellent restaurants and local food stalls. The food was so good my partner Perla gained eight pounds and me about five pounds.
So there you have it! If you want to experience a multicultural city full of diversity and energy, excellent transport on the MRT, many tourist destinations, and enough good food restaurants and stalls to fit every budget… then what are waiting for ? I know an invitation! Zentraveler hereby gives anyone who wants to learn about another culture and experience some of the best food on this earth. There’s your invitation!Get packing grasshopper.
QUOTE: “I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list.” -Susan Sontag
THINGS YOU MAY NOT KNOW: Kuala Lumpur has a vibrant mix of Malay, Chinese, and Indian ethnicities; a dynamic interplay of religions, including Islam, Buddhism, and Hinduism; and a universal appreciation for the good life. Even though this city of 1.8 million is the largest in Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur—referred to as KL by locals, or KL-ites—still retains a certain small-town sensibility within its ethnic neighborhoods. Its Chinatown, Malay kampongs, and Little India neighborhoods are packed with restaurants and stalls serving specialties unique to each culture, as well as dishes that combine the influences of all three into a uniquely Malaysian fusion. In other words, Kuala Lumpur is an easy place to love.
THINGS YOU MAY WANT TO SAVE:Local culture…Extinction is forever
ZENTRAVELER SAYS: Don’t be a couch potato…travel to the ends of the earth and then some.
From here to Infinity and Beyond is a relatively short ride! The next leg takes eons and eons as you fly through the Barycentric Dynamical Time Zone! …and on and on and on. Follow the Zentraveler Blog often for Travel, Health and Zen-like stories and such. Where else can you get a three in one blog for the price of free.