Thursday, October 25, 2018

Malaysia: Revisiting Kuala Lumpur


Being our favorite gateway to­­ the world, Kuala Lumpur has become our most visited city outside the Philippines. Let's just say that me and my buddy did a lot of three-day layover stints in KL that we thought we knew its every corner and street. But no, each visit is as unique as exploring a new place and Malaysia’s national capital city gets more interesting every time we go back. Suffice to say, it's one of our favorite cities because of the food and numerous little adventures we always have here.

We got an invite from the leading low-cost carrier in the Philippines to explore Kuala Lumpur, yet again. Cebu Pacific Air offers daily flights from Manila to Kuala Lumpur, with lowest base fares starting at P2,088. Thirteen souls were brought together for a three-day adventure and what happened was an epic trip that would definitely be forever etched on my travel memory bank.



Malaysia always feels like that hometown we never had. We've been to Melaka, Penang, Kuala Lumpur, Kota KinabaluLangkawi and Johor Bahru during the past five years that we're traveling together. We love the diversity of culture which brings a lot of flavor to each place and food.


Cebu Pacific Manila To Kuala Lumpur
Manila to Kuala Lumpur via Cebu Pacific
Cebu Pacific Manila To Kuala Lumpur
Beef Kare-Kare
One of the pre-booked meals available onboard via Cebu Pacific Air
Feeling that we already know KL like the back of our hands, me and my buddy didn't expect much on our nth time here. We had one full day in this city before exploring its nearby towns and we were just amazed on the spots we explored this time (check here for discounted tours, activities and transportation in Kuala Lumpur).


Batu Caves
Gombak, 68100 Batu Caves,
Selangor
Operating hours: Mondays to Sundays | 7:00am to 9:00pm
No entrance fee

Batu Caves Kuala Lumpur Rainbow
Batu Caves version 2.0
First on the list was Batu Caves. Having been there three times already, the thought of going back scares me. With the 270+ steps going to the cave and the roaming monkeys around, I knew that this wasn't going to be my favorite spot. But when our bus halted on the parking spot, I noticed the rainbow-colored steps, everything felt totally refreshing.

Batu Caves Kuala Lumpur Rainbow
Lord Murugan Statue is the tallest statue of a Hindu deity in Malaysia.
It was a Saturday and the early morning sun started to light up the busy place. I saw some locals as well as tourists who flocked the main grounds as I tried to connect its new look to the old one I imagined. I took a few snaps and started climbing up the stairwell.

Batu Caves Kuala Lumpur Rainbow
Me no like monkeys but those in Batu Caves are somewhat harmless
No entrance fee was collected at the entryway but sarong cover-ups were provided for those with exposed legs for a minimal fee (RM2 for the fee plus RM3 for deposit).

My elementary self kept on reciting the rainbow's ROYGBIV colors as I scanned the steps. It was amusing to see the colorful structure in contrast with the limestone cave mountain.

Batu Caves Kuala Lumpur Rainbow
Rainbow-colored steps
Monkeys were everywhere and although I shrieked a few times when they got near me, they weren't as scary as those in some of the temples in Bali.

We reached the top after a few minutes and explored what's inside. The Hindu shrines were painted in congruence to the rainbow theme outside. After spending some time inside, we decided to climb back down again. 

Batu Caves Kuala Lumpur Rainbow
Batu Caves
I only could imagine how everything would look like on my fifth visit. I wish though that there will be a separate area for souvenir shops and coffee shops to truly feel the sanctity of Batu Caves.


Royal Selangor Visitor Centre
4 Jalan Usahawan 6, Setapak Jaya
53300 Kuala Lumpur
Opening hours: Mondays to Sundays | 9:00am to 5:00 pm
No entrance fee

Royal Selangor Kuala Lumpur
Royal Selangor Visitor Centre
One of the things I never knew existed in KL before was Royal Selangor. Celebrating the tin rush in colonial Malaya, a trip to Royal Selangor Visitor Centre will surely transport you back in time.

No entrance fee was collected and we were assigned an English-speaking guide as we approached the reception area.

Royal Selangor Kuala Lumpur
Impeccable craftsmanship
The tour started on the history and nature of pewter and the secrets behind pewtersmithing. Outstanding workmanship on the numerous artifacts were exhibited on a gallery which made us understand more about this malleable metal alloy.

Royal Selangor Kuala Lumpur
The art of pewtersmithing
We were then brought to a workshop where we saw how every item was made purely by hand by some women. 

Royal Selangor Kuala Lumpur
Petronas Twin Towers keychain
Our last stop was a gallery wherein they showcase a number of items for sale, including Marvel heroes stuff. The craftsmanship for each item was impeccable that the tag price could attest to it. We each got Petronas Twin Towers keychain from our hosts and we were all so happy to take home a piece of a living Malaysian heritage.


Jadi Batek Gallery
30 Jalan Inai, Imbi
55100 Kuala Lumpur
Opening hours: Mondays to Sundays | 9:00 am to 5:30 pm
No entrance fee

Batik Gallery Kuala Lumpur
Free-form wax design using canting
One of my lessons in my Southeast Asian Art class is batik that's why I got thrilled when we got to experience it first-hand during our Indonesia trip two years ago. For this particular trip, I was happy to once again be witness to this legit wax-dyeing cloth technique.

A guide ushered us into the work area and started to explain the whole process of this Javanese art. We got into a workshop where a man was tracing his canting (sprouted copper tool) on a clean white cloth. There were no sketches of design or whatsoever and he grooved the tool effortlessly, forming a floral wax design.

Batik Gallery Kuala Lumpur
Painting after wax tracing
On the next area, a woman was starting to paint along a waxed design. And just like the first guy, she was doing it beautifully. The next process would be removing the wax with boiling water but this wasn't shown on the workshop.

We all then went to the gallery where we saw a number of batik cloths and garments exhibited. The price was understandably steep for the quality of workmanship.


Kuala Lumpur Tower
2 Jalan Puncak,
50250 Kuala Lumpur
Opening hours: Mondays to Fridays | 9:00am to 10:00pm
Entrance fee for observatory: Foreigner Adult RM49 | Foreigner Child (4 to 12 years old) RM29

KL Tower Kuala Lumpur
Kuala Lumpur Tower
7th tallest freestanding tower in the world
Kuala Lumpur Tower or KL Tower is one of the famed icons of the city. Completed in 1995, the communications tower is currently the 7th tallest freestanding tower in the world which houses an observatory and a revolving restaurant, to name a few.

KL Tower Kuala Lumpur Observation Deck
Kuala Lumpur Skyline View @ 276m
I've been here twice during my previous trips and it's my first time to actually check out the view from the top. I've had the chance to go up the observation deck of Petronas Twin Towers a year ago and it felt great to see this side of Kuala Lumpur's other crown.

Kuala Lumpur Skyline View @ 276m is the observation deck of KL Tower. We took a lift that brought us to our destination in just 54 seconds after securing our entrance tickets.

Kuala Lumpur View
View of Kuala Lumpur from KL Tower
The observatory wasn't as busy as I expected it to be. I've had the chance to dine at Sydney Tower's revolving restaurant a few months back and I didn't have a pleasant experience that time (read:dizzy dining). So I made sure that this time, I would just stay still and enjoy the moment.

KL Tower Kuala Lumpur Observation Deck
Hello from the other side
The Kuala Lumpur Skyline View @ 276m provides a 360-degree panorama of the city. Binocular viewfinders are placed on strategic spots, letting you enjoy the scenery from above. It's free, by the way.

KL Tower Kuala Lumpur Observation Deck
Keeping it steady
Coffee vendo machines, souvenir shops and rest areas also encircled the deck. It may all sound chaotic, but no. I found solace on lounging on one of the benches and enjoyed the spectacular view from there.


3D Art Illusion Museum
Lot 4.01-4.03, Second Floor, Central Market Annex,
Jalan Hang Kasturi 50050 Kuala Lumpur
Opening Hours: Monday to Fridays | 10:00am to 8:00pm
Entrance fee: Adults - RM33 | Students - RM15

3D Art Illusion Museum Kuala Lumpur
3D Art Illusion Museum Kuala Lumpur
I dunno why but I’ve never been to any illusion art museums since it boomed in Manila. I often see it on my social media walls but I never really had the opportunity to visit one. Gladly, our KL itinerary included an illusion art museum.

The group went to Central Market along Jalan Petaling and made our way to second level where our destination was.


3D Art Illusion Museum Kuala Lumpur
Realistic hand-painted murals
3D Art Illusion Museum opened its doors to the public in 2015. The 6,400-sq.ft. space houses 36 hand-painted 3D murals that would definitely stimulate your imagination.


3D Art Illusion Museum Kuala Lumpur
Show your crazy side
The group went ahead to find their own spots and started to do some quirky positions to achieve the three-dimensional effect of their photos. It was a fun way to spend a rainy or steamy hot afternoon in the city.


Wow KL!
139 Pusat Pelancongan Malysia,
Ampang, City Centre 50450 Kuala Lumpur
Opening Hours: Mondays to Sundays | 10:00am to 2:00am
Dinner Buffet: starts at 7:00pm | RM130 nett per person
Cultural show: 8:30pm to 9:30pm

Formerly known as Saloma Bistro and Theater, Wow KL! embraces Malaysian culture through food and performing arts.

We got there around eight in the evening just in time for the cultural show. As we feasted on Malay, Indian, Chinese, and Western dishes, we were entertained with traditional performances from a group of dancers. We got to learn the rich cultural heritage of Malaysia through their multi-cultural dance performances.

Wow KL Cultural Show
Malaysian dinner plus cultural performances at Wow KL!
My favorite buffet station was the Indian cuisine wherein I got loads and loads of roti and curry. It was actually the best way to learn about the diverse culture of Malaysia through food and performance.


Changkat Bukit Bintang Nightlife

As if we weren't tired from a full day of non-stop activities, the group headed to Changkat, a famous night spot in Bukit Bintang area.

Changkat Bukit Bintang Kuala Lumpur
Changkat in Bukit Bintang is the "it" place for party people!
Located adjacent to Jalan Alor, Changkat is famous for its upscale restaurants and bars that it is considered as the "it" party place for clubbing, both for locals and tourists.

And because it's a weekend, the whole street was closed to traffic and Oktoberfest happenings were spotted.

Changkat Bukit Bintang Kuala Lumpur
Team CebPac at Changkat
We scanned the bars and settled at Havana Club to have a round of drinks which ended on an all-nighter bar-hopping stint.

As much as we wanted to stay up all night, we had to go back to the hotel at three in the morning after a fun night, our call time the next day was nine in the morning.

KL Tower Kuala Lumpur Observation Deck
#CEBfliesKualaLumpur
One of the things I learned about this particular trip is that Malaysians regard entertainment and recreation as an important aspect of their everyday lives. It is totally evident on the varied leisure activities that suit every age group.

This trip also proved that no matter how many times you've been into a particular destination, every journey is unique especially if the people you travel with are as fun and crazy as you are, you'd never feel tired and always look forward to every opportunity to explore new places with them. 

Check here for discounted hotels in Kuala Lumpur


This trip is made possible by 
Cebu Pacific Air 
in partnership with 
Tourism Malaysia.


 






2 comments:

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