One part of our itinerary during our visit in the capital city of Malaysia in Kuala Lumpur is its famous tower named Menara Kuala Lumpur or Kuala Lumpur Tower. Though we never went to its observation deck, we just stroll around the area which is a great place to chill out. Looking at the KL Tower from the ground by imagination from where I coming from, its tower tip is beyond my reach. But this kind of tower enable the human to see things far from its limitation and made our vision see it for real.
Enriching Viewpoint (Post#3) : Replica of The Royal Throne of Perak
“This Royal Throne has been used during the installation of His Royal Highness Sultan Iskandar Shah (the 30th Sultan of Perak) in 1918. Since then it was used during the installation of His Royal Highness Sultan Abdul Aziz Al-Mustasim Billah Shah in 1938, His Royal Highness Sultan Yussuff Izzudin Shah in 1948 and his Royal Highness Sultan Idris Iskandar Al-Mutawakkil Allalahi Shah II in 1963 in Iskandariah Palace, Kuala Kangsar, Perak.” – excerpt found near the Royal Throne of Perak.
As per history, Sultan of Perak is one of the oldest hereditary seats among the Malaysian states. The Sultanate is a combination of dynasty and the land supervised by Sultan (person) which came from Arabic word which has a lot of meanings and one of them were “authority”, “strength” or “power”. Sultanate of Perak was established by one of the two princes left by the Sultan of Malacca which fell to Portugal in 1511 named Sultan Mahmud Syah I. The first Sultan of Perak and the one who establish the Sultanate was Muzaffar Syah while the other prince named Sultan Alauddin Riayat Shah II whom established the Sultanate of Johor. After learning the information, I was fascinated because there a little bit clarity why Malaysia has Johor states though I haven’t been to Perak states during my travel adventure in Malaysia last December 2012 to January 2013. Snapshot captured while strolling around in Muzium Negara (The National Museum) located in the city.
“Istana Negara” means National Palace and when we visited this magnificent structure we learned that there are two existing Istana Negara, the photo above is the new and current Istana Negara located at Jalan Duta in Kuala Lumpur, the other one is now called as Old Istana Negara and named as Royal Museum. This building is the official residence of the head of state of Malaysia. At the time we visited, we can only see the building from the outside of the gate as the inside of the palace is not open for public. Snapshot captured last December 2012.
We had an opportunity to spent some of our holidays in Malaysia, three days of it was spent around Kuala Lumpur – the capital of Malaysia. When someone heard the name of this country, most commonly thing we think is Petronas Tower. The tower is also called as Petronas Twin Tower and served as the landmark of the city. As per Wikipedia, the tower was the tallest twin tower from 1998 to 2004.
We arrived in Kuala Lumpur around 12:30 AM of December 25, 2012, since my airline was budget airline, we landed in budgeted airport (Singapore has one, Malaysia has one too), they call it LCCT (Low Cost Carrier Terminal). Like what I mentioned in my previous post entitled “A Not So Well Planned Adventure in Malaysia“, this travel was not really planned, its like an out of the blue travel engagement. But even that was the case, I still tried my best to get some basic information about public transportation and important tips while going around Malaysia.
I tried to check how we were able to go to hotel without taking a cab, since I learned from my searches in internet to beware in getting cab or taxi in Malaysia, because most of the driver waiting in queue asking for at least twice, trice or more for the taxi fare. Most of the traveler that I read, advised to book a cab instead of taking a taxi that are waiting in line. I made an advance booking for the cab that will take us to hotel from KL Sentral. Before, I thought that KL Sentral was a place they call like city center but in the end, I understand what does it mean. From LCCT, we took the Skybus (AirAsia) going to KL Sentral, which cost us 9 RM per person. The travel time from airport terminal to KL Sentral was at least an hour. There are other bus, going to other places in KL, but I chose to go to KL Sentral since the hotel we booked is in KL and probably just nearby from that station.
We arrived at KL Sentral terminal around 2:15 AM, because of that I called again the taxi booking I made to request for an earlier pick-up but due to some issues that we can’t see the cab and the driver can’t see us, we were able to met around 3:AM which was my original requested pick-up time. From KL Sentral to our hotel, it cost us around 13 RM (this already includes 50% charged after 12AM time). Around 3:30 AM, we were able to checked-in at Valenza Hotel and Cafe. That’s the only time we were able to rest, I was glad that we booked the hotel for that night, I anticipated that it will happened like that, and I preferred to be in the hotel, instead of being outside specially in a stranger places that still unknown to me.
We stayed in the hotel until morning, had breakfast and went out for our Day 1 tour in KL. Since its December 25 (Christmas Day), we don’t have specific plan yet, first our plan was to visit Malaysia’s tourist centre but we learned from the cab driver that we picked-up who is fortunately a tourist ambassador that it was closed during holiday. Because of that, we decided to go to shopping malls. And the driver led us to Suria KLCC mall which just at the ground of Petronas Twin Tower.
We found inside the Suria KLCC a lot of signature stores that can probably seen in famous cities like New York, Paris and Tokyo. We walked around the malls, at least went-up to 3rd floors. By the way I see what kind of stores that I found in the mall, I have expectations that other floors have the same features. I am not shopaholic and I am not so much in love in clothing branded products.
After walking around inside the mall, we went outside to find out more. Until my sister and I decided to take pictures with Petronas Twin Towers in broad daylight of the afternoon. Outside Petronas Towers, we saw a lot of tourist like us, and observed that taking pictures of the towers will never end.
Petronas Twin Tower
Arts Display at the Entrance of Petronas Twin Tower
Billboard near at Petronas Twin Tower
Then, we went to one of the shopping district of KL which is Bukit Bintang, where shopping areas can be found such as Starhill Gallery and Pavilion Kuala Lumpur. We took LRT train in KLCC station, where we bought our Rapid cards that can be both used in LRT and Monoreil (Monorail) lines. From KLCC station, we went out in Dang Wang station, walk for few minutes to move to Bukit Nanas station, then went out again in Bukit Bintang station. We were kind of surprised in traffic rules in KL, when we are trying to cross the road going to Pavilion, people are just crossing the road even it’s not yet time for crossing, its kind of scary but most people does it, we actually did the same thing, there were lots of people at that time probably due to holiday as well in Malaysia. We spent time inside the Pavilion mall. After walking around for hours and we felt that it’s a tiring day, we decided to go straight to the hotel.
Pavilion Kuala Lumpur
In conclusion, Day 1 seems like Shopping Place Tour, aside from Petronas Twin Towers, most of the place we visited are malls and market place.
Day 2 (December 26, 2012)
Similar from Day 1, we had our breakfast at hotel, then left the hotel before lunch time. This time we pushed to come to the Malaysia Tourism Center (MATIC) located in Jalam Ampang. We started from Petronas Twin Tower, we walked around to find the tourist center. We walked like 15 to 20 minutes until we find what we were looking for. At the center, we got a lot of brochures that will helped us to plan our tour in Malaysia for the next coming days. We got the information of the KL City Tour through hop-on hop-off bus, but instead of taking the said tour, we followed the trail mentioned in the brochures. Then from MATIC, we went to see the Kuala Lumpur Tower, as you can see, we just walked around, we never took a cab nor a bus and other transportation, we pretty much still excited what we can see while walking around KL.
MATIC (Malaysia Torurism Center)
Kuala Lumpur Tower
Cultural Village at KL Tower
Aquarium at KL Tower
KL Tower ground
KL Tower Animal Zone
At the entrance gate of KL Tower, there is a free shuttle going up to the Tower itself, just wait to the shuttle service that will pick-up and drop-off tourist from gate to the tower. We spent time taking pictures at the lobby of the tower, we never went up to the viewing deck as our decision because we were still thinking where to spend out time for New Year’s Eve.
KL City Walk
After KL Tower, we walked around P. Ramlee street until we found the KL City Walk. Here we found a walk way with a lot of tiny shopping store and restaurants. When we passed it in the afternoon, some stores are still closed which means that the place seems alive during night-time. After we were done a little shopping from open store in KL City Walk, we decided to continue walking and just followed the pathway until it led us in KLCC (Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre), one of the building with unique design around KLCC Park. Then we found ourselves queuing at the entrance of Aquaria KLCC, it’s like an ocean park where you will see lots of underwater creatures.
Pathway leading to KLCC Building
Some photos from Aquaria KLCC
We enjoyed the Aquaria KLCC because we discovered other underwater species that we haven’t found in other ocean park that we had visited. After Aquaria KLCC, we went out in KLCC Park until we reached again the Suria KLCC mall. But since we were already tired for the day, my sister and I decided to wrap up the adventure because we need to prepare for the next day adventure.
Petronas Twin Tower from KLCC
Suria KLCC Surroundings
Day 3 (December 27, 2012)
During our travel around Kuala Lumpur or should I say during our travel in Malaysia, we used to start the journey from KL Sentral. This is the central station in Kuala Lumpur of most public transportation which includes trains, monorail, inter city buses and taxis. KL Sentral recently excluded the bus terminal traveling outside KL by separating its terminal from the said station.
Anyway, let’s get back to the third day of adventure in KL. From our hotel, we rode a bus to KL Sentral. From KL Sentral, since my sister and I were both adventurous, we decided to walk to Jalan Damansara (National Museum) which actually near in KL Sentral but due to a lots of constructions going on around the place, we had some difficulty to find the best path that will lead us to the museum, but in the end, we overcome it and were able to arrived to the building. In National Museum, we discovered the history of Malaysia by seeing different historical artifacts and exhibits displayed inside the museum. And like my own country, there are some aspects of similarity of history specially the prehistoric part before the colonization period.
National Museum (Jalan Damansara)
Photos (Inside of Museum)
After visiting Jalan Damansara, we went to the new Istana Negara (National Palace) in Jalan Duta. At first we thought that Istana Negara is just one palace. When we took the cab going to that place, we realized that there were two structures called Istana Negara. Old one were located in Jalan Istana and new one in Jalan Duta, and the cab driver asked us where to go, we just mentioned the new one. Istana Negara is the official residence of Malaysian King and because of that we ended at the gate of the palace, we only had a glimpse of surrounding of the palace, but still the external structure of the palace still amazing.
Photos of New Istana Negara from one of the gate of the palace
We took the same cab we used to Istana Negara to go back to the city center where other tourist spot in KL located. First, we dropped off at Jalan Raja where Sultan Abdul Samad Building can be found. We passed by the Dataran Merdeka or Merdeka Square since there were some renovations or constructions going on around the place. Then we visited Kuala Lumpur City Gallery beside Merdaka Square. Here we found the huge ILoveKL sign.
From City Gallery, we went to Masjid Negara or National Mosque. Here we experienced to wear the Muslim women veil and prayer outfit clothing before we were able to enter the building. Inside the mosque, we were able to see the main hall prayer. One of the Muslim approached us while looking inside the hall and she gave some orientation about Islam in brief and concise way. I really appreciated the information she gave us and it will be an awareness on my part. After Masjid Negara, we visited one more place called KL Railway Station just walking distance from National Mosque. This station combines unique structure of dome and arches.
Photos (Inside and Outside National Mosque)
Photos (KL Railway Station)
Well that’s our Kuala Lumpur adventure which took us three days. It took days since most of our activities are walking around KL. It’s really experiencing the place. See you again in my next post detailing other adventure in Malaysia.
I selected the title above for this post because this was the tour that I engaged without so much preparation. I booked the flight just two days before the schedule which was made last December 22, 2012 Saturday and the flight schedule in Cebu Pacific was December 24, 2012 Monday (yes, it’s Christmas Eve for Catholics) and the great thing about it was, the flight fare was lesser because of the festive day. And that’s the main reason as well why I decided to travel at that time.
Why I selected Malaysia? My reason was, this is one of the South-East Asian countries that I never been really visited as a tourist. Yes, I first visited Malaysia last 2008, when I joined a mountaineering group and decided to climb Mount Kinabalu. I traveled Kota Kinabalu in Sabah, Malaysia. But after that, I never been to Malaysian Peninsula where the capital city which is Kuala Lumpur located.
I traveled with my younger sister. We left Manila without so much plan what to see and where to go in Malaysia, but I read some tips from locals and foreigners that already traveled in this country. At least I made a hotel booking, taxi booking and some information of public transportation.
This post will be somewhat summary of all the places that we visited in Malaysia. The tour in general took ten(10) days including the flight time which just need less than half a day to complete, we traveled 8 days to be exact and went around Malaysia.