How did that happen ?- Malaysia Tour
When you plan a trip to long distances, people are eagerly wanting to know about your decision. The reason is wanderlust which doesn’t fall in any time or boundaries. It is a timeless activity with unabashed feeling to live by an idea. But people would still be looking for some answer, and then you have a story to tell- I think we humans mostly perceive that way.
One day, I was browsing through internet exploring international flights with reasonable prices and Malaysia was one of them. It is not always merely about cheap flight and hotels but how significant the place you are visiting is. After extensive research, Malaysia came out to be the perfect destination where several cultures meet. Yes, it is worth a visit for everyone.
The day I arrived and the first impression
At the airport, I was looking for a bus to Kuala Lumpur city. People appeared completely engrossed in their activities but they were helpful. All the people I interacted were polite and communicated well in giving me directions. I still remember a few images when I exited the airport, the city looked well organized, clean and lush green with surreal landscapes. It was evident that I am visiting a good tourist destination and even a safer place.
I found KL city well-connected and cheap in traveling. I had a long itinerary for the day one and managed to cover all desired places on the same day of my arrival.
I made a good deal on data card for 20 Ringgits with 6 GB of data, sufficient for me for five days of stay. Convenient stores in every corner and half a mile wherever I visited. What else you can expect being a solo traveler. Malaysia has a fine taste for food and hospitality and quite diverse in every corner, from fantastic cafes to the finest restaurants, it has a lot to offer. In a nutshell, Malaysia makes a perfect destination for every kind of tourist.
Reviews: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Petronas Twin Towers, Kuala Lumpur
Standing amid Kuala Lumpur downtown is a nation’s pride and a great place to hang out while in the city KL. It has two main entrances, the front one goes to Suria KLCC which takes you to one of the world’s best shopping centers. With all luxury brands to decent shopping, one cannot resist.
One of the entrances is your doorway to Petronas tower visit, where you buy tickets to climb 86 floor with breathtaking views of the KL city and souvenirs for sweet memories. Petronas officials are cooperative and helpful to answer queries.
I did not find the place crowded during weekends. You will be aligned with a group of 15-20 people who would accompany you for the 45 mins of tower visit. The cost of a ticket is 80 Ringgits for an adult and 33 Ringgits for a child. The first stop is the sky bridge where you will spend 20 mins and the other stop takes you to the 86th floor at the observatory deck.
You can carry Cameras and mobile phones, but no tripods and selfie sticks are not allowed. You are required to deposit your stuff at the security check-in counter. Dedicated lockers will be allocated to you with no additional cost. Smoking is prohibited and a punishable offense.
Petronas towers are well-equipped with all safety standards and public convenience facilities are good as well. However, there are no free water arrangements. You need to buy water bottles.
KLCC is a must-visit to see thriving Malaysia. The average commuting time to the Petronas is 30-40 mins from anywhere in the city by Rapid KL (LRT, MRT), Free GO KL buses and Taxis.
KLCC Park, Kuala Lumpur
The backdoor of Petronas Suria KLCC is your way out to the KLCC park. Sit back and relax. You will find localities jogging and having leisurely time. At evenings, please gather to enjoy its popular musical water fountain show.
Overall, the park is well maintained with all tropical plants and trees. You will not find bugs and mosquitoes. Capture some awesome pictures of the KLCC park, Petronas and other high-rise buildings. Smoking is not allowed inside. I enjoyed my recent visit to the KLCC park.
Cold Storage KLCC
Cold storage is one of the prominent supermarket stores in the city of Kuala Lumpur. I visited one of its branch inside Petronas Suria KLCC building, offering a wide variety of products seafood, meats, fresh fruits, dairy products, gift hampers, treats & cookies, beverages, munchies, processed foods, bakery, confectionery, health and wellness products.
Cold storage has dedicated sections for all the aforementioned products. It is a perfect place for gourmet shopping and quite popular among the expats of Kuala Lumpur city. The superstore is massive in size and you would barely run out of options.
Many of the products are imported. You will find fruits from Australia, US, and the New Zealand. It offers a great variety of liquor and there are no restrictions to buy even during Ramadan or EID. The place is huge in size and remains busy most of the times till evening. They have sufficient cash counters and friendly staff. It can be pricey but you can still find it reasonable due to the wide variety in products. It is worth a visit during Ramadan to avail good discounted deals.
Saravanaa Bhavan – Suria KLCC , Kuala Lumpur
When it comes to authentic South Indian vegetarian food, even in a foreign land, Saravanaa Bhavan cannot go without mention. The food is good and there is no difference as what you get to taste in India. Located in the Suria KLCC mall food court on the third floor amid Chinese, Malay, and Thai restaurants, the place is ideal for Indians and especially vegetarians traveling to Kuala Lumpur. I even had three-time meals during the day. Prices are reasonable and service is commendable. It costs almost the same as anywhere in India for instance, Dahi vada- 9.50 Ringgits, Onion Uttapam- 9.00 Ringgits, Sambar vada- 9.50 Ringgits. Average cost of food is Rs. 170 or $3 approximately. Its been my favorite during my stay in KL. I recommend going there.
Suria KLCC, Kuala Lumpur
Suria KLCC mall is one of the world’s best shopping centers housed in Petronas Tower, downtown KL. Whether you are on a shopping spree or doing some serious retail therapy, you need a complete day to shop and experience the incredible mall.
It has a dedicated food court on the third floor where you can relish Chinese, Arabic, Indian and Malay food at reasonable prices. Having meals at the KLCC food court is not an expensive affair. It has a local grocery store which is quite popular among the expats of Kuala Lumpur city, popularly known as Cold Storage.
The mall has 4-5 floors with all famous luxury brands stores, equipped with all the amenities. However, you will need to buy a water bottle, as no provisions for water coolers are there at your convenience.
One of its gateway on the ground floor is connected to LRT metro line (Rapid KL) but it closes at 10:00 pm in the night. In case you are late, busy doing shopping, then opt for free GO KL bus to drop you at Bukit Bintang street. The place is recommended for a great shopping experience. Nice place to hangout for couples.
Batu Caves, Kuala Lumpur
One of the iconic places outside KL city, situated in limestone cliffs, the Tamil Hindu temple is approx 30 km away from downtown KL. The best way to reach there is by KTM train which you can board from KL Sentral station. The service of the train is satisfactory, however, it has fixed timings so you may need to amend your itinerary plan for the day. The cost of the ticket is 2.50 Ringgits.
When the train arrives, It has the waiting time for 30-40 mins, but It still remains the cheapest option. It is a minute of walking from Batu caves station to the magnificent caves in district Gombak.
When you enter inside, on your left is a Chinese restaurant and other fast-food eating stalls. The place is touristy so eating and drinking are outrageously expensive and even buying souvenirs.
When you move further ahead, you will see the famous golden statue of Lord Murugan. Be sure to carry enough water, it would take more than 200 steps to reach the beautiful caves and the journey would last for 20 minutes. Beware of monkeys on the way and keep your edible items hidden.
The cave has a main temple inside with idols of Lord Ganesha and Lord Murugan. It is extremely impressive, beautiful, and clean. There are two more temples ahead dedicated to Lord Shiva and a goddess.
The entrance is free of cost. Wear comfortable clothes/shoes and do not forget to carry water bottles. It is advised that you travel in groups to avoid any monkey attacks.
Heli Lounge Bar, Kuala Lumpur
What can be better than having a party with stunning views of the KL city? Located in the downtown Bukit Bintang area and a few kilometers away from KLCC, the Heli bar is residing in Menara KH building.
From KLCC you can take a drop at Menara KH by using taxis and even free GO KL buses. I approached taxi drivers, charging 30 Ringgits for a journey of 2.5 kilometers– Bad deal. I rather preferred free Go KL air-conditioned buses with free WIFI inside. It is 5-7 minutes drive away from KLCC, however, you may witness heavy traffic on your way.
The Heli Lounge bar has a dress code smart casuals. No crocs, slippers, shorts are allowed to wear after 9:00 pm which is the peak time for parties. If you are a visitor you should plan to leave the venue before 9:00 pm. The place is usually crowded in the evenings even before 9:00 pm.
You will not easily find a place to sit on the rooftop, as people arrive early or lounge has pre-booked reservations. But, you can still carry your drink and go upstairs to have breathtaking views and amazing shots of the Kuala Lumpur city. Be there at dusk. The city glitters at that time.
The cheapest drink you can order is for 22.5 Ringgits minimum. If you want to save on visiting Petronas and KL Menara observatory decks, then this is a suitable option for you to have some stunning views of the city- free of cost. By ordering a drink you can witness a vibrantly looking Kuala Lumpur from the top. It is my advice to budget and solo travelers, but if you are determined to have a memorable party with your girlfriends, it is a place to be, so do your reservations.
This is a helipad. Helicopter landings are not performed during the night so they convert into a lounge bar. This place has a rating for five-star. I give it a thumbs up.
Sri Mahamariamman Temple, Kuala Lumpur
Great temple, quiet ambient and clean. You need to deposit your shoes outside the temple and pay 50 cents. As you step inside you get to see the beautiful golden idol of Lord Murugan. It has a big prayer hall which is spotlessly clean so you can consider sitting there for long hours.
Around the prayer hall, there are depictions of Hindu gods sculpted by artisans from southern India. Mariamman has another temple in Singapore which is widely worshiped by South Indians living abroad. It is close to the Central Market. The place is less touristy so decide going there.
Alor Street Food Night Market, Kuala Lumpur
Alor is a paradise for seafood lovers. The food joints serve the most exclusive gastronomic delights. The place is really diverse when it comes to relishing a variety of multi-national cuisines- Malay, Thai, Chinese, Vietnamese, Indian and much more. The restaurants are massive in size and have good sitting arrangements, offering food at competitive prices. The sales guy standing with menus are not pushy to customers, however, they will certainly offer you deals on food and drinks. The area is happening, safe for visitors and food lovers. One must visit, spend good quality time during evenings for food and drinks. Beer is served. Opened till 10:00 pm.
Some of the pics from Alor Street Food Market.
Lot 10 Hutong Food Court, Kuala Lumpur
Located in bustling Bukit Bintang famous street and near Jalan Alor Street food night market, this mall would need a complete day to explore. I got the chance to dine in a Japanese restaurant Isetan where I was astonished to see the diversity in the Japanese food. Perhaps, it is for Japanese expats living in Malaysia. Apart from the food court, it has a supermarket for regular shopping. There are several ambient restaurants with great sitting arrangements. The mall is known for its quality and sophistication. I had a great time there. You should consider visiting Lot 10. It closes at 10:00 pm.
Central Market, Kuala Lumpur
Central Market is located in the heart of the city. If you are staying at Bukit Bintang, you can reach there in a few minutes. It is located in the vicinity of Dataran Merdeka and National textile museum. You would easily be able to locate the Central Market from Dataran square.
Whether you are on a shopping spree or intend to do some serious shopping, it is a perfect spot for tourist, localities and art lovers.
The place is quiet ambient and the moment you step in, you would observe the amalgamation of Malay, Chinese and Indian culture- All in one place. Central is centrally air-conditioned so do not worry about sweating.
Some of the things Central Market has to offer:
1. Handicrafts or items related to local art and culture, many souvenirs shops on the ground floor.
2. Apparels stores especially traditional clothing Indian, Malay, Chinese on the first floor.
3. Local cheap shopping and food joints are set up outside- the backyard of the market.
For Tourists: The prices can be exorbitantly high and you may want to use your bargaining skills there. The quality of Souvenirs especially Petronas miniatures, fridge magnets, and other accessories are good for bulk buying. Explore the second floor for apparels stores, paradise for women and also for men. Try fish massage therapy for 15 minutes on the ground floor costing only 10 Ringgits or Rs. 170. If you are craving for some real Seafood then explore stalls at the backyard of the market.
For Art lovers and Localities: From paintings to home decor stuff, you can find some amazing collection of bulky showpieces and artistic paintings.
Timings:10:00 am- 9:30 pm
Please note: During Ramadan, the shops would close a bit earlier around 8:30 pm. Best time to visit late afternoon until 9:30 pm. Happy shopping! 🙂
Awana Bus Terminal
Awana Bus terminal is fully equipped with all the amenities. It is the first stop before you proceed further up to Genting Highlands. It has shopping malls, restaurants, and convenience stores where you can meet all your daily needs. The place is super clean and a perfect spot to spend good time with family and friends. I recommend spending some time there.
Its been a great experience having a ride on Genting Skyway. The glass gondola is indeed a scary experience as cliffs are quite high and appear to be dangerous. But I must say, that the Awana skyway is well-organized, systematic, and efficient. The staff is friendly and follow proper safety standards. I remember going alone from Awana to Genting in a glass gondola, It was frightening but yet full of adventure and excitement.
Genting is a hill station amidst the massive rainforest. I started my journey from Bukit Bintang and reached there in 50 mins. You can have tourist cabs, buses going to Genting from anywhere in KL city. It’s a pretty long highway to Genting but roads are impeccable. There is no wonder if we can reach there in 50 mins.
Your bus will arrive at Awana station where you can board cable cars to Genting resorts. Ask your travel agent or ticket vendors to include your Skyway rides to the bus ticket. I booked a bus from UTC Sentral in Bukit Bintang and they added Awana skyway fares to my return journey back to KL. It priced 28 Ringgits and believe me I had a good time. The buses were good, clean, and comfortable. Try “Go Genting” buses.
Good transport makes the journey memorable. As you step inside Awana station, you can see many restaurants, apparels, and convenience stores. You need to board Skyway cable cars from Awana station to the first stop Chin Swee caves temple. From Chin Swee, you move up ahead to Genting resorts with stunning views along the way.
As you reach there, you step inside a huge vibrantly looking Vegas-style mall. It has an indoor theme park, games park, hotels, and a Sky Casino. All hotels have retail outlets selling souvenirs and handicrafts. If you want to do some serious shopping then you have reached the right destination. Apart from that, it has restaurants and convenience stores to serve you better.
Chin Swee Caves Temple
As you move up ahead in the mountains of Genting, away from the hustle and bustle of the Kuala Lumpur city, you experience a cool breeze. The first stop at Genting Highlands is Awana station from where you board a cable car to Genting resorts. As they move further up, the first stop is Chin Swee temple in the misty mountains of Genting. Take a drop at the station use escalators to reach there.
Chin Swee is a Chinese temple where you can relax, meditate, and take some incredible photos of Chinese architecture surrounded by spectacular Genting mountains. You enter the temple through a passage built on a rocky mountain and along the way, you can witness impressive Chinese scripts engraved on rocky walls. It has a huge hall standing in the middle known as Tan Sri Lim Goh Tong Hall, mainly used by devotees and students for prayers and meditation.
Opposite to the hall, there is a giant Buddha idol which looks mesmerizing. You can find free incense sticks to light as an offering to the Lord and for truely authentic divine experience . Do not forget to capture photos. Next, to Buddha idol, there is another passage which goes up and along your way you can see sculptures of 10 Hell chambers depicting their stories.
Behind the Tan Sri Lim Goh Tong, using stairs going down, you can find small eating joints offering Chinese and Malay food. There are options available for vegetarians. Right next to restaurants you can see another Buddha temple. It is a popular tourist attraction and safe for families to visit. Chin Swee caves temple attracts tourists from all over south-east Asian countries. So have fun!
Sultan Abdul Samad Building, Kuala Lumpur
The building looks aesthetically beautiful. It has been my favorite spot during my trip to Kuala Lumpur. I loved the architecture which is intense and could not resist taking selfies. Once the building housed British officers, it is well maintained with lush green gardens. It is a quiet and peaceful place and has a museum. You can explore it alleys they look good, safe and tidy.
There is nothing to explore inside, it is closed for visitors as currently Ministry of Information, Communication, and Culture of Malaysia occupying the place. You can use its back alleys to go to the other side of it, facing Merdeka square. Every corner has an artistic touch.
The place is safe to explore and it says a lot about Malay culture. On one side of Sultan’s building is River of life and on the other Dataran Merdeka, therefore, you get to see many iconic landmarks. It’s worth visiting.
It is advised that you carry plenty of water to drink to explore all the nearby places such as River of life, Masjid Jamek, and Merdeka Square and much more. Have fun and take incredible pictures. Visit during evenings to avoid intense sun.
Dataran Merdeka square, Kuala Lumpur
Merdeka Square is in the heart of the Kuala Lumpur city symbolizing the independence of the country with a long-standing flag. The park area is huge and it is behind the beautiful Sultan Abdul Samad Building. If you are staying at Bukit Bintang area it is then easier for you to walk up to the place or board LRT line to Masjid Jamek from anywhere.
The ground is lush green and well maintained, remains under supervision all the times. A lot of local events are also held around the area especially during Ramzan or other festivals. I visited during the Ramazan of May 2019 where they offer prayers and break evening fast. The place is happening and ideal for sightseeing and photography. You should visit after 4 pm when it is a bit colder.
Formerly, Selangor Club, this has a club where you can dine or have evening snacks and drinks in artistically looking building from the British era.
St. Mary’s Anglican Cathedral is nearby. Next to Dataran Merdeka, you have Kuala Lumpur city gallery which tells the story of Kuala Lumpur through miniature and a city model show. While you are there, you would also want to explore Sultan Abdul Samad building, National textile museum, and the Central Market for more elevated experience. The place is touristy and transport availability is good in this area. You will find convenience stores and cafes.
River of Life, Kuala Lumpur
Strategically significant place or river which is known as Klang is on your way to Dataran Merdeka Square. Its well-being has been the prime importance of the Malaysian government. The Malaysian administration has developed nearby areas into flourishing business centers and beautified the whole waterfront to its best. The government is running many campaigns to keep it clean. The place is peaceful and you can feel the serenity in the middle of the bustling city.
Walkaround the river or sit anywhere as it is super clean and maintained. People usually sit in the gardens of Sultan Abdul Samad building for a nice view, selfies and afternoon nap. The place is safe to explore. You should spend some time there during your travel.
There is a bridge over the river which takes you down to the Jamek Mosque. You can easily walk up to Central Market and the KL Gallery from the waterfront.
In the evenings, the river and the whole waterfront is lit up which makes it incredibly beautiful. You will find many professional photographers and passionate ones capturing some good moments.
It is safe to visit in the night, but usually, you should return after 8:30 pm as the crowd will start to disappear.
Overall: It appears to be huge complex and slightly over-hyped, perhaps the government is running many campaigns to maintain it and to keep tourists engaged. Have fun!
Petaling Street Market, Kuala Lumpur
Petaling Street Market is located on your way to Jamek Mosque or Dataran Merdeka Square. You can walk up to the place if you are staying at Bukit Bintang. Petaling is an old market completely Chinese influenced. Generally, the market is more vibrant in the night. Seeing the whole area around the market you would feel the taste of bustling old Kuala Lumpur city.
As you get inside, you will see massively spread vendors offering Souvenirs, gifts, watches, clothes, bags, various accessories, and street food. The best time to visit is in the evenings as food stalls will also fully emerge. You will need to ponder before you want to buy anything and need to apply a bit of creativity in selecting items you desire to buy. Petaling street is intense.
It is an ideal place for local shopping and especially for tourists staying in the city for some time to meet their immediate needs. You may not want to spend hours in the market as most vendors and stalls are offering similar kind of products with the same quality. You will see the cut-throat competition among them but at the same time they are nice to customers and not pushy which I liked most about the place.
The place is overfilled with stalls and you will literally pass through narrow walkways. The average price of products ranging from 10-50 ringgits. Therefore, you should visit the place as there are chances of striking a good deal.
Difference between Petaling Street and Central Market. Both iconic markets are closer to each other.
Central Market: handicrafts, clothes, gifts, souvenirs.
Timings: 10:00 am- 9:00 pm Best time to visit: Evenings
Landmark: Dataran Merdeka 5-7 mins away
Petaling Street: Local shopping
Average Price of products: 10-50 Ringgits
Time to spend: 30 mins to 1-hour max Happy shopping!