If you’ve traveled in Southeast Asia there’s a good chance you at least passed through Kuala Lumpur, as it’s a logistical hub (read: home-base for Air Asia). I’ve been told its one of those places that deserves only a day or so, which I think might not be a fair shake, but that’s about all the time we had to offer KL. The city is modern and clean, which is was a nice change from the motorbike-jammed craziness of Ho Chi Minh City. After an hour or so bus ride from the airport, the monorail nicely connects to most of the city, offering a nice way to get a look at the city out the window – kind of like the monorail ride at Disney Land.
The most iconic site in KL, of course, is the Petronas Towers which are pretty damn sweet. We didn’t get a chance to go up in the towers, but we lucked out with a nice view of them from our hotel room. I’ve heard good things about a bar in one of the towers, but tragically was unable to get liquored up at high altitude like I did at “Alto” in Vietnam. After a tiring sightseeing tour that consisted of gazing out of our nicer-than-usual hotel window, we ended up kicking back at the pool for a lengthy chunk of the day. And no, I don’t tan well, if you were wondering. There was, however, a nice view of the iconic TV Tower from the pool of our hotel. Add one more tourist attraction to the list, thank you. Sometimes you have to sit back and let the sights come to you, right?
We did manage to get away from the pool for an evening and got some decent Mexican food at a place called Loco on Changkat Bukit Bintang, which is a cool, albeit touristy little street with restaurants and bars. The nightlife in Kuala Lumpur is significantly more tame than other parts of Southeast Asia, but this area is a good bet if you’re looking to get out and amongst it for a night on the town*.
*There may or may not have been karaoke involved.
Suffice to say that I can’t claim any sort of deep connection to Kuala Lumpur. But that’s okay. I’ll keep Malaysia on my list of places to go; I’ve heard and read about so many incredible places there, so I ought to give it a real visit someday. We all have those places: “Well, I passed through the airport, but I haven’t really been there.” Let’s call it a 48 hour layover.
Malaysia… I’ll be back (Terminator 2 voice).
If you can’t wait for Vince to return and make the most of KL and the Malay countryside then get there ahead of him on one of Tucan Travel’s tours of South East Asia. They have several itineraries that will help you explore Malaysia to the maximum, discovering highlights such as Penang, Melaka, the tea estates of the Cameron Highlands, plus of course Kuala Lumpur as you travel.