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  1. great guide!! what fun to learn abt KL, and think seriously about going there. how is the handicap accessibility?

  2. Craig and Linda says:

    Accessibility isn’t something I know a lot about nor is it something we’ve been taking good notes on. I would say KL is much better than most of South East Asia, but still a lot of KL isn’t too good.

    The monorail and express stations are good, as are the modern shopping centres like Star Hill and Pavilion. Away from the Golden Triangle though, the footpaths are often broken and have few shallow access-points to cross the road which might be problematic for someone in a wheelchair. There’s certainly no disabled access to the Batu Caves: you’re climbing those stairs on your own.

    These are just some quick thoughts, Jessie. If anyone’s better qualified to comment, please do.

  3. Great post, Craig and Linda! A couple more attractions to keep in mind:

    The Lake Gardens houses a bird park (which I thought was really cool), an orchid garden, and nearby are the Islamic Arts Museum (wonderful) and Carcosa, the one-time Governor’s mansion that now serves a proper British high tea to tourists – pricey, slightly surreal, but kind of a cool time capsule type experience.

    Also, the Kraf Kompleks (man, I love Bahasa adaptations of English words) is a great alternative to the Central Market for serious shoppers. It’s very calm and quiet (and yes, air-con’d), and a little pricier. You don’t get the excitement of that Asian market chaos, but it sells very high quality Malaysian crafts. Top-quality batik, etc.

    I’ve also toured a couple of the pewter factories – Royal Selangor and one other. Not a must-do, but interesting if you’re into that sort of thing.

    Thanks again for the post! Brought back memories… 🙂

    1. Craig and Linda says:

      Great suggestions Eva! More reasons to visit KL.

  4. Hi Craig & Linda, that was a well written article to sum KL up.

  5. Nice post and reminded me of my 6-hour trip to the city centre – just to visit the stunning towers, Petronas! It was funny because I was the last person to be brought by the elevator up to the bridge…Highly recommended to visit this building and dont forget to grab a souvenir!

    1. Craig and Linda says:

      Six hours?! Wow. I thought we were short only have five days there. We’ve done lots of those city fly-throughs though. I know where you’re coming from.

  6. It’s about six hour bus ride from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur as well, which thankfully is much much more enjoyable now thanks to the recently upgraded fleet of buses. Comfy couches and personal TV for the win!

    Anyway. Five days in Malaysia or simply in Kuala Lumpur alone Craig? Did you have a chance to visit the rest of Malaysia?

    Heard lots of good things about Ipoh (good food), and I have personal experiences visiting Redang Island, which was very good. Nothing much to do there, but a great place to just relax and while away your time 🙂

    1. Craig and Linda says:

      Just in KL. With only five days, we didn’t feel we could see anything in the city and also visit other towns or regions. I like to take it slow when we can. Fortunately, as we were almost completely out of cash at that time, we had work lined up in Australia and had to keep moving to get there in time.

      We’re hoping to get back into Asia and spend a few years travelling around at some point in the future. I’m not exactly sure when.

  7. Great guide, very thorough! I would second the recommendation to visit Batu Caves; they’re monkey-rific and it’s also fun to check out the Hindu ceremonies going on at the various shines within the caves.

    On the transportation front: a warning to be very cautious of KL cabbies! They are notoriously nasty (we witnessed this firsthand, unfortunately) and consistently overcharge tourists. Avoid taxis if at all possible, but if you must take one try to get some help from a hotel concierge to make sure you actually get to your desired destination!

  8. It really depends on which part of Asia you are in to be honest. Even in South East Asia alone you have so many different taxi experiences.

    Singapore taxis? You guessed it, clean, safe and proper. But if you hail one at night sometimes the driver will be a speedster. Only in places without traffic cams of course… Same thing with South Korea, Taipei and Japan as well.

    In Malaysia and HK I have no problem with taxis, but I suspect part of that may be because I do look local. Craig has got a point there, negotiate the fare before hand and don’t put anything in the baggage.

    In Jakarta I never hail taxis, unless from airports, hotels or shopping center lobbies. I always use the concierge services to call-in taxi-cabs. You’ll pay an extra dollar or two but it’s worth it. I don’t have any personal negative experiences mind you, but I’ve heard enough to willingly pay that extra fee… =/

  9. Craig and Linda says:

    Haven’t you found that problem with taxis all through Asia? Always negotiate the rate before you get in… and think twice before putting anything in the boot. Maybe Nik will pitch back in: you’ve travelled more in Asia than any of our other recent commenters.

  10. Great KL overview.

    I first traveled there in 1992, and was there most recently last year. It is amazing how much the city has changed in that time.

  11. We were at the Batu Caves in 2004 during Thaipusam. It was incredible. We followed the procession from Chinatown and then hopped on a bus to the caves early in the morning. I mean really early like 2 am. Spent all night there and then went back the next afternoon. I highly recommend it. Spikes through cheeks, hooks in back. Insane. I really ended up loving KL.

  12. Malaysia is my fav asian country . great food great people great festivals ,,, it gets a couple of chapters in my book – Naked In Budapest: travels witha passionate nomad!!… the last cahpter tells about me being shipwrecked . well canoe wrecked actually .. rescued by Coral Sky Divers!!
    check out the Perhentians and Kota Bharu .. fab food market every night

  13. ya really, i love malaysia too, i was went to kl last year from singapore, just booking express bus e-ticket through easibook.com and a few hours express bus journey then at center of kl already. stay there for a week, and almost every place been walk around. plan to going again soon….

  14. I have the privilege of knowing a number of people sociably and professionally who live in South East Asia. Kuala Lumpur is a favorite visa and weekend destination. This town is supposedly bright and is a delight for those who enjoy extensive shopping experience.

  15. Travelleray says:


    Tks for the details…will include this in my solo trip to Malaysia and KL this December. Also, looking at venturing out with co-travelers, connected with some interesting people on http://www.mingletrips.com/ definitely a website worth checking out!


  16. Frangipani and Hakka Republic are best bars in Kualalumpur. They are known for their elegance. Frangipani is cool for french style cooking as well.

  17. What a great guide! My family and I will be heading to Kuala Lumpur for while I am there on work assignment for a month, and I can’t wait to explore the city. Also, I’ve just learnt that the area where I’ll be is called the “Golden Triangle”, and we will stay at Fraser Place serviced apartments. I am really looking forward to the food and the attractions.

  18. We went to Kuala Lumpur to go on a visa run and generally not big city people we were surprised at how much we enjoy it. Our favorite was watching the monkeys at the Batu Caves and walking in the FRIM, just outside of town. Although we enjoyed the variety of foods offered in KL, the Indian food was by far the best. We began each day with a masala dosa – just couldn’t get enough! This is a very good guide to the city, and when we go back we’ll be sure to take your advice. Thank you for the paragraph on the passports. I had no idea. 🙂

    1. Hi ladies, yes – it’s a fun city to be in, and the green spaces and nearby caves make it all the better!

      The passport issue is one that comes up quite a bit in some countries: the law is often there, but how heavily its policed is something else.