Family Adventures in KL – Day 1
Touring the City of Kuala Lumpur
By Danny Tariman
My family is so excited to explore this Asian neighbor-country – Malaysia – particularly the City of Kuala Lumpur. After all, it was long interval since our last family foreign travel.
Kuala Lumpur is the capital city of Malaysia, and is about 4 hours travel by plane. Leaving Manila almost 11 o’clock in the evening, we arrived KL at about 2:30am. Manila and KL are in the same time zones. Since it was wee hours of the night, I do not have much time to look around and appreciate its airport. My immediate concern then was to find a car to take us to our accommodation.
Finding our way to the airport’s arrival/exit gate was a bit of a challenge. But we found our way after speaking to a man – who looks like an airline pilot – for directions. We finally got a Grab car which took us to the city. It was a long drive passing through expressways.
At last, we arrived the condo unit where we will stay. Our daughter who moved to the unit earlier in the day, was waiting for us. It was a happy reunion of sorts, after about 2 months of being away.
Our daughter bought this Hop-On-Hop-Off city tour ticket for the three of us, weeks before our arrival. Yes, it was only the 3 of us since she is working in KL. She would later join us after her office.
And so, the first order of the day was to get to the bus terminal of the Hop-On-Hop-Off. I had noticed that the buses are double-decker with half of the upper deck in the open air. It felt it was good to be in the open-air section so it will be easy for me to take photos. I eventually went to the air-conditioned section because it is quite hot outside.
It was a beautiful ride touring the city in a double-deck bus. I was able to see the unobstructed view of the city sights and sceneries as we crisscross the different parts of the city. What I have noted during the city tour is that the streets are less crowded as the place we live in.
We first alighted from the bus at a place called “Little India”. As the name suggests, the streets are lined with Indian stores selling various items from food, to clothes, to jewelry, to flowers, and many more.
People tending the stores are Malaysians of Indian decent, and really, it feels like an Indian town.
We explored the place, took some photos as other tourists do, and yes – had a taste of Indian-Malaysian food too.
After roaming around the place, we hopped-on to the next bus again and rode to our next destination.
Malaysia National Museum
Our next stop was the National Museum better known as “Muzium Negara”. We toured around the ethnic origins of Malaysia. We went inside the Istana Satu which is the royal residence of a past Sultan. It had intricate wood carvings which is evident of Malaysian craftmanship.
The interiors of the house are reminiscent of a royal occupant: the bed, the furniture, furnishings. An elaborate golden cloth hangs as a ceiling.
Outside of the Istana Satu are burial poles made of big tree trunks, with artistic wood carvings from top to bottom. Many artifacts of the past are displayed just outside: locomotives, military canons, and others.
Within the museum compound, there was this handicapped man who was making wire handicrafts – various items such as miniature bikes, saxophones, pianos, drum sets, etc. His hands were so dexterous, he can make any item with just one single twisted wire!
This palace – Istana Negara — is really grand! From all angles, it looks very royal. The wide entrance gate is all we can reach, and all tourists for that matter. The entire palace compound is restricted. We can view from afar the palace which is quite a distance from the gate.
The entrance is well guarded by palace guards on horse, which are in itself, a good subject for photograph. It was a brief stopover at this tourist stop – just about 25 minutes – and we have to quickly hop-on to the bus.
The Botanical Garden – Taman Botani Pergana – is a big track of land planted with thousands of species of vegetation. At this point, I was very tired. We just checked its amphitheater, and a few other attractions. Over-all, it is a good place to visit that has various collections of plants – tree collection, bamboo collection, orchid garden, edible garden, among others.
One can actually rent a battery-operated cart, just like the golf carts, to tour you around the entire park.
This is huge mosque which is open to tourists at certain times during the day. Make sure to plan your visit as it is closed to non-Muslim during prayer time, which is from 1-3pm. We arrived in this place past 1 o’clock in the afternoon, hence we were not able to go inside.
There was no restaurant in the surrounding area. But we had a good experience of eating street food. It was nice and clean, and it serves freshly cooked sandwiches.
We had an afternoon of rest after this, as we prepared to an evening tour of the city with our daughter.
KL Tower is one of the tallest structures is Malaysia, which stands over 400 meters. We just reached the 300 meters – the Sky Deck. This viewing deck is an equivalent of about 75 story building! This is very tall, and considering that it stands on a very thin pillar structure, it is quite scary.
The view on top is breathtaking: it gives us a 360-degree view of the City of Kuala Lumpur! From the viewing deck, you can see from a distance another iconic building in Kuala Lumpur – the Petronas Towers.
There is this viewing deck with glass floor! It sends chills to my spine as it appears that I am standing on air!
We stayed a bit here until the city lights went on – that was about past 6:30pm – and it was really awesome to see the city at night from this height. Really one of the most awesome experiences in the City of KL!
This iconic building – the tallest in Malaysia – with the Skybridge connecting the 2 towers in the middle portion of the tower. The podium floors of the 88-story tower contain a big shopping mall called the KLCC. It is an upscale shopping mall offering many of the popular foreign-brand boutiques.
My family had a good photo-op outside of the building where a good-hearted vendor who was offering fish-eye lenses for mobile phone cameras, took a good family photo for us, using the items he sells. After some friendly conversations, he said his mother is a Filipino, and he know a little bit of Tagalog. Haha! What a blessing for us!
After our picture taking, we went inside the shopping mall. Oh! It was cool relief after walking in a tropical weather early in the evening. We had an enjoyable and satisfying dinner in one of the good restaurants inside the mall. It was really good. We capped the evening in this restaurant.
An awesome day-1 in KL with full adventure! Thank You LORD!
– – – – – – – – – –