#Malaysia has plenty to offer to tourists and locals alike. With its towering buildings and unique culture, this humble country located just north of the equator provides some of the exciting travel experiences in Southeast Asia. If you have an affinity for a colorful urban life with a hint of traditional activities, one of the best places to visit in Malaysia is the capital itself, Kuala Lumpur.
It's an eclectic city adorned with skyscrapers, posh malls, outdoor attractions. The Instagrammable spots in Kuala Lumpur are perfect even for solo travelers. Kuala Lumpur International Airport is big and modern with many facilities to offer. The moment you arrive at KLIA airport you will be admiring the modern architecture of the airport, a ceiling design lined with a wood-look-alike.
Even though it is big you will find it easy to get around as the signage and construction of the airport is very easy to follow and understand. Don't forget to visit the KLIA Jungle Boardwalk in the center of the Satellite Terminal and have fun riding the Aerotrain! Kuala Lumpur, a city when approaching from the North-South highway will amaze you when driving from the North.
KL is a crossroad between East and West. KL is a business city rather than a prime tourist destination and you will quickly run out of things to see. There is a Light Rail Transit and a Monorail if you want to venture out of the central area but the local ride-sharing company (Grab) is cheap and reliable. Avoid the taxi touts parked outside some of the the malls. They overcharge and refuse to use the meter.
That said, we have listed the top things you can do in Kuala Lumpur, when you're in the Garden City of Lights:
The Merdeka Square is a landmark and a monument and it has not changed for decades. You can see a skyline of the City Center with Petronas Twin Tower standing tall, the Merdeka Square, and contrasting Islamic architecture when you pass by the Padang that shout, I am here.
The capital, Kuala Lumpur, is home to a colourful mix of colonial buildings and modern skyscrapers such as the iconic 88-storey Petronas Twin Towers (height 452 m) - which also houses a mega shopping mall at its lower levels. One can enjoy the magnificent skyline of Petronas Twin Towers, a stone's throw away. Only when you get near, you will mumble to yourself: What a majestic design, Cesar Pelli, the late master architect had left his mark on Malaysian soil!
Your trip to Kuala Lumpur is incomplete without visiting the tallest twin tower in the world—the Petronas Towers. Its architectural design is an ode to the Muslim community, which makes up the majority of Malaysia's population. The most exciting part of the tower is the sky bridge located at the 41st and 42nd stories. You can cross this link from the first tower to the second while enjoying a bird's eye view of the city.
If you're scared of heights, you can admire its splendor from the ground. Don't forget to take photos of you with the glitzy building as your background!
The Petronas Twin Towers stand at almost 1,500 feet. These giant monoliths are the most incredible place to see in this beautiful city before you plummet down towards her busy streets. But for the true adrenaline junkie, the greatest challenge will be base jumping from the tallest towers in this sprawling city. It doesn't get much more extreme than this. If you are looking for a life-changing experience there are few that can match this adrenaline-soaked adventure.
The Menara KL Tower is an iconic marker in Kuala Lumpur. It serves as a telecommunication tower and is the highest one in Southeast Asia. The tower's spindle-like apex can be seen all around Kuala Lumpur because of its towering height of 421 meters. It is located atop the Bukit Nana Forest Reserve, where you can explore and be amazed by this city's thriving flora and fauna.
After exploring the ground, you can take the elevator up to the top floor, where you can find a revolving restaurant. Atmosphere 360 offers a dining experience with a 360-degree view of the city. Like the Petronas Towers, the Menara KL's architecture also pays homage to the Islamic heritage in the country. You can climb the Kuala Lumpur tower to see the city's incredible skyline from the greatest heights.
Kuala Lumpur isn't all steel and glass. The KLCC Park ensures that the city can still be adorned with greens despite its concrete jungle stature. If you're looking for some peace in the middle of the urban chaos, you can find sanctuary in this 5-acre park. There are also plenty of activities you can do at KLCC. That's because the park features a jogging track, a wading pool, and a vast collection of trees and plants.
You can also take a seat on one of the park benches and contemplate what to shop for and how to stay within budget when you visit the nearby Suria KLCC Shopping Centre. Great news for those who love to shop. Malaysia is relatively cheaper compared to other countries when it comes to fashion and shopping.
In Kuala Lumpur, it's possible to be embraced by the novelty of the city while still being able to appreciate tradition and culture. You can step back in time when you visit Kampung Buru. It's a neighborhood that tourists can visit and be treated with a cultural and historical tour of Malaysia. You can find the last remaining traditional houses in this area. It's considered to be the last Malay enclave in central KL.
The most remarkable thing about Kampung Buru is its wonderful backdrop of the Petronas Twin Towers. The historic neighborhood and the skyscraper are like the marriage of ancient and contemporary in Kuala Lumpur. It also showcases how Malaysians honor their tradition and culture despite the changing times.
Leave your footprint at the oldest Hindu Temple in Kuala Lumpur. Sri Mahamariamman Temple was founded in 1873 as a private family shrine, later on the temple has relocated at present location Jalan Tun H.S.Lee. The Sri Mahamariamman Temple is famous for being one of the most Instagrammable spots in Kuala Lumpur. It's not a park nor a cafe, but a Hindu Temple built in 1873 by K. Thamboosamy Pillai.
It's the oldest and richest temple in Kuala Lumpur. When you're wandering around Chinatown, you won't get lost finding your way to the temple because you'll quickly recognize its beauty even from afar. Its vibrant façade is enough to make your jaws drop on the floor. The Sri Maha Mariamman temple's gopuram is 75 feet high and made up of 5 tiers fully adorned with miniature sculptures of 228 hindu deities.
Just outside of Kuala Lumpur is a 400 million-year-old limestone hill that's popular among tourists and locals. Batu Caves are made of colorful steps leading to a 100-year old temple that's mainly the focus of the annual Thaipusam. The famous golden Murugan statue in front of the steps leading to the cave has plenty of photos on the internet. So if you need a reference, you'll know what to look for when you visit Batu Caves.
The historical site is only about 20 minutes away from Kuala Lumpur by car.
Also known as Chinatown in Kuala Lumpur, Petaling Street is bustling with bargain shoppers and street food hunters. It's a busy street perfect for those looking for trip souvenirs ranging from gems, clothes, and just about all sorts of goodies. A green roof covers the entire street to shade the visitors from sun and rain. Visit Petaling if you want to have a taste of the local lifestyle in Kuala Lumpur.
You may see people in dresses that depict Islamic countries, and with sights of many minarets in the background. But that won't stop visitors from having fun roaming the city. Luxury items and international brands can be easily found in shopping malls like Pavilion, Mid Valley, The Gardens, One Utama, and Sunway Pyramid.
KL can be shopaholics' haven as one can shop until you drop, at Bukit Bintang street or KLCC the largest mall. Besides, street shopping at Jalan Petaling will not bore anyone. At weekends KL livens up quite a bit with a big entertainment area (Tun Razak Entertainment Centre - TREC) and a few other party venues, otherwise its just shopping for branded stuff in the malls or fakes in Petaling St (Chinatown), eating in hawker stalls or coffee shops (Kopitiam) or lazing by the hotel pool.
Food is everywhere from hawker fare to high class Chinese and Western restaurants. There are basically three kinds of food restaurants in Malaysia - Indian, Chinese, and Western - the newest entree to the market, because the owners may have studied and lived abroad for some years then return to start their own.
No one denies that Malaysian food is authentic and sumptuous, like satay, Mee Goreng, Char Kuay Teow, Laksa, and chicken rice, among others. Although many Singaporeans bang their heads on the wall, insisting that chicken rice and laksa originated from Singapore.
Malaysian Chinese vegetarian restaurants are a mixed lot. However they can loosely be grouped as Home-cook style, and Restaurant style. The former may appear ordinary and are everyday vegetarian dishes to accompany the usual white rice. Upmarket Chinese vegetarian dishes can be ostentatious in appearance and tastes divine. Anyone would be attracted based on looks alone.
The famous KL Food Street Jalan Alor is a bit too touristy but you can give it a try for the entertainment value. There are many websites extolling the virtues of various KL restaurant establishments so check them out. Laksa (Penang, Johor, Nonya or Sarawak style), Satay, Char Kway Teow and noodle based dishes are all readily available and uniquely Malaysian.
Packed and sold in supermarkets and night markets, jackfruit is a popular and inexpensive fruit. Apart from the bustling KL city centre, Old Klang Road, Petaling Jaya, Kepong and Klang are the places you'll usually find yummy food and experience the local cultures. If you love to explore what locals love to eat, these are some of the places in KL and Selangor you shouldn't miss.
You can enjoy a day of water slides and a whole lot of splashing at the Sunway Lagoon Theme Park. Or you can surround yourself with fluttering beauty at the Butterfly Park.
Malaysia is a beautiful country filled with many different colors of their culture and tradition. And if you want to explore this Islamic region, Kuala Lumpur is the best place to start.
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