48 hours in Kuala Lumpur
Well, after a couple of seriously long flights and a stopover in Doha we have made it to Kuala Lumpar! As we are not here for too long instead of writing a day by day diary, I will just condense this into what to do in 48 hours in KL…as the city is amazing!
Firstly, when you arrive you have a few options to get into town, including metered taxi, bus, KLAI express train and ‘Airport’ Taxi, which is what we ended up going for as, being 2 of us it was cheaper overall (apart from the bus, but after 17 hours, I wasn’t keen)
The Airport taxi is easy as you just buy a token and take it to the taxi, show the address and boom, off you go! There is also the option Grab but I couldn’t get a good enough WIFI to order – it’s also great though!
We paid 84 Ringgit for the journey which took a little over 45 minutes to get us to our Air B n B – Casa Residency. We booked this one for 3 nights as it’s central, $30NZD a night with a pool and gym. WINNING!
So, back to things to do here. If this is your first time here I have written down a few cool things that we did and are worth checking out!
This to me is a 'must do'! Only 17km’s from the CBD, the Batu Caves are the most important Hindu temple outside of India, dedicated to Lord Murugan, an Indian deity. It has become a pilgrimage site for not only Malaysian Hindus, but Hindus worldwide from countries such as India, Australia and Singapore. It is a truly fascinating place to visit as the bright, vibrant colours from the temples juxtapose the massive limestone caves, making it a really interesting awe-inspiring place.
This was my second time here, once 7 years ago but being with Leo this time round and climbing the 272 (yup, 272) stairs to reach this cave was definitely worth it. There are monkeys everywhere and if you look closely inside the cave there is also squirrels as well as many birds.
Oh, and best of all…it’s free! **TIP** do this trip independently via the train as it only costs a couple of dollars each return whereas you can pay for a tour which can cost up to $30NZD and it’s very easy to navigate yourself!
TRY MAMAK (and then go back for more as it is so good)
Best way to describe this type of food, is delicious and makes your heart feel warm inside! I am being serious…Mamak food is my fav in Malaysia and is commonly prepared in Malaysia, Singapore, and Indonesia. Mamak, a Persian language term meaning "little mother" or "kind and compassionate mother" comprises of restaurants serving tasty, traditional food at super cheap prices, mostly for locals but anyone is so welcome here.
**Try the Roti Canai and the Nasi Goreng – delightful and all for a couple of dollars! In fact, the Roti with 3 sauces is only 33c! It’s effectively Malaysia’s treasure trove of delicious cheap eats**
Visit the street food market Jalan Aloor!
Probably the most touristy of all the night markets, Jalan Aloor serves pretty much the widest spread of street food imaginable and it’s why in 4 hours we have been 3 times. From steamed buns, to steamed frog and duck heads…this market has it all. OK, we haven’t been that brave but the dishes we had were all delicious and the coconut ice-cream and fresh fruit is the best for walking home after your tummies are super full.
Unlike other countries we found that you can happily walk this market and not be harassed by people trying to sell you shit or get you into their restaurant. The Malay people are so warm and welcoming that we both felt very safe here to wander and browse and take pictures along the way.
VISIT THE PETRONAS TOWERS:
OK, so this building is incredibly famous in KL as up until 2004 , it was the tallest in the world and also features in many movies i.e 'Entrapment'. We walked the whole city which is completely unnecessary, but we wanted to get our steps in and on the way were these futuristic looking towers, along with about 5000 other tourists. If possible, try and take a wide lense camera as the towers themselves are huge or a go pro to capture the full frame! if you want to try and capture both towers and yourself into the photo then we would recommend walking through the small gardens or the roundabout before you get to the towers as the further away you the better chance you have! Really, these towers are a landmark of KL so if you have the time then make sure you stop by!
Dragon Back Hike:
I have saved the best for last for sure! If you have a spare free morning, like the outdoors and want to escape the hustle and bustle of the city then this is the activity for you! The Dragon Back ridges (Dragon's Back-bone) are rugged and long protruding quartz ridges that span across and divide the cities reserved jungle zone. We booked this trip with Open Sky tours and the owner Amos was fantastic.
We highly recommend going with a guide as otherwise you simply won’t know where to start! There are no signs, and this is clearly a locals spot to get some exercise in while overlooking the city and jungle. We absolutely loved it. It’s an early start with pick up at 6.25am but once you are in the car, within 30 minutes you are ready to start the track. It’s hard, it’s hot and its very steep but once you are there, it’s simply beautiful! The sunrise streaming through the trees and the views were simply breath-taking! As you hike, you see that the whole ridge is made of quartz which sparkles in the sunlight and is just beautiful. You can hear monkeys in the distance and many birds flying overhead and you scramble like Spiderman up the ridge. I wouldn’t say this was for the faint-hearted but if you can put a brave face on and man up then DO IT!
In just a few hours you are up and down and with Open Sky, Amos then takes you for breakfast which is just fantastic carb fuelled plate of deliciousness and a fresh juice – Exactly what we needed after a very sweaty climb through the jungle. This trip cost 200Ringit each which is $70NZD pp which is expensive, but I would say 100% worth it. This includes, transport, guide, snacks, breakfast and Amos is even your photographer along the way! Highly recommend this as an ‘off the beaten track’’ thing to do here!
And that’s it guys, 48 hours in KL done and dusted. Tomorrow we head to Borneo which I am trying to withhold my emotions as it’s probably in the top 3 places I want to visit on this earth so send good vibes please!
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Hey! I'm Ally. I left the UK in 2011 to move overseas and ended up in New Zealand - my new home. This year we are taking a gap year to loop the world stopping in some AMAZING destinations - and I'm passionate about sharing these adventures with you!