Our first stop on holiday was Kuala Lumper, the capital city of Malaysia. After 24 hours of travelling we were pretty tired and just wanted to crawl into bed. We stayed at the Shangri La and our exhaustion was briefly distracted by the views of the Petronus towers from our room. After almost a 12 hour recovery considering of sleep and lots of breakfast we decided the best way to see everything with Little Z would be to do the hop on hop off bus tour.
We’ve always enjoyed these in a lot of cities and find its the best way to zip around the city and pick what you want to see a bit more close up.
Kuala Lumpur, or “KL” as its known by the residents there, is a very busy, ultra modern and cosmpolitan, with residents and tourists flocking there from all over the world. It has a fairly large financial hub at its centre and then cultural and various ethnic hotspots surrounding it. It gives you a chance to go from wandering around modern shopping centres and then step into places such as China town and Little India. Both are very vibrant communities and you are hit by the smells of foods and sounds of local music as soon as you enter. Both small areas but both worth a visit.
I was a bit surprised at first at how many Australian holiday makers were about but then it’s only about a 7 hour flight so perfectly understandable.
We met one particular sweaty (and friendly) Aussie on a hop on off bus that happened to be carrying little hitchhiker a in the fork of cockroaches. I was blissfully unaware until the OHs OCD radar went on red alert and he banned us all from sitting down. He pretty much leaped onto a seat and protectively scooped up Little Z. Little Z enjoyed shouting whenever he saw “a BABY ONE!!”. The friendly sweaty Aussie didn’t bat an eye lid and happily crushed them with a periodic swift stamp of his shoe as he explained to us the difference between Malaysian humid heat and the dry heat of Sydney. I don’t think I’ve ever seen the OH leap off a bus complete with toddler and pushchair.
Besides the impressive Petronus towers we visited the parliament, the craft centres, the national mosque and the museums. The latter two are very large with lots to see including artefacts from different countries, some as far back as 8AD.
There was the option to do a two hour “street food” tour. It sounded amazing and so so tempting. The tour guide would lead you through all the best local areas and you got to sample authentic Malaysian “hawker” cuisine at countless stops. Unfortunately with a little toddler in tow we didn’t think a 2 hour stretch working our through food would be the best idea. Maybe one day, if we happen to visit again.
We settled for visiting the Palace and the craft centre instead. Whilst the palace is quite a grand building we were disappointed to learn that you can’t go inside. People were a bit surprised that we would even think about asking the question and even more surprised to learn that our very own Queen of England lets us visit both Buckingham Palace and Windsor castle.
It was the first time we saw some electric storms and they are loud! The sky goes dark within a few minutes and the hot rain comes down hard. We were lucky to never get caught in the peak of one. Strangely the heat of the rain makes it a comforting storm rather than a meek drizzly depressing one like the ones we’re used to and they disappear after about 10 minutes as if nothing happened to the sun.
Apparently Singapore is only an hours flight from KL but after 3 days of touring at a face pace and then moving into Langkawi it started to feel a bit much to attempt to crow bar in another trip. So we’ll just have to arrange to go back one day. Maybe.