Day in Kuala Lumpur
The best flights from Europe came into Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. So I decided to spend the day in Kuala Lumpur and do a quick tour!
Majestic Hotel Kuala Lumpur
I had booked the Majestic Hotel on points and it was well worth it! Included in the booking was a fantastic Buffet breakfast with everything imaginable! There are Asian options and Western options at every breakfast. So you can have whatever you fancy starting your day! As soon as I am seated, the host came over and asked me if I wanted a newspaper because I was eating alone!
After breakfast, I ventured outside to experience the heat and a day in Kuala Lumpur. Grabbing one of the complimentary bottles of water from my room, I set out to explore around the hotel. The hotel sat next to the old railroad stations completed in 1910. There is much British Colonial history in the neighbourhood and there have been many name change since those times. A few of these buildings experienced damage during World War 2 and fighting with the Japanese.
Kuala Lumpur Bird Park
I passed the National Mosque of Malaysia. It could host up to 15,000 people at a time. Then I walk up a hill as I am heading towards a bird aviary. The heat was oppressive, so staying in the shade seemed like a good idea! It is amazing the difference the shade makes in helping to be cooler. This area is part of the Lake Gardens created by the British, and there are lots of green spaces.
The Kuala Lumpur Bird Park is the world’s largest free-flight walk-in aviary. Paying 50 Ringet ($16.50 CDN), a bright orange bracelet is put on my wrist and a guard directs me towards the entrance. Passing through the gates and plastic hanging chains, I am in the aviary.
Now this place had many birds! From the peacocks that wandered around to smaller birds in selected side cages. The aviary had a jungle setting, so at least I am not in the blazing sun the whole time. It had several small pavilion areas where you could rest and drink water! I spent two hours wandering around and getting my fill of local birds. Kids were getting pictures taken with a parrot for 15 Ringet ($5.00 CDN).
After the Bird Park, I took a different walking trail back towards the hotel. This trail went past the National Planetarium, the National Police Museum, and a Ceramics Museum. I was glad that my Google map pointed me in the right direction and soon I saw a road I recognized. No safety concerns wandering around and overall the city seemed clean. I entered the Majestic Hotel through the original old entrance and an attendant dressed in a pith helmet and safari suit welcomed me. It was a relief to be back in the air conditioning.
A Refreshing Swim
To get refreshed, I went to the pool on the fourth floor and a short swim. The buildings shaded half of the pool and there was towels and water available as you entered. I grabbed a chair and umbrella for my things and jumped into the pool. The water temperature was perfect for cooling down and made for a great midday activity.
Even though this hotel was not in the downtown core, it was near the train station and had three convenient shuttle buses. One of the shuttle buses headed toward the Petronas Towers, and that is where I wanted to go. I hopped in and was the only passenger for the 20-minute ride. Traffic was heavy, with motorcycles zipping in and out, switching lanes at ease. The driver asking me about Canada and snow as he complained about the heat!
The shuttle dropped me off at the Starhill Gallery and I confirmed the return meeting point. Now, you need to know that this district is full of large, high-end shopping malls! I saw every brand name going, and these places were huge. People go to the mall to get out of the heat! I found the air-conditioned skywalk that headed over towards the towers and made my way in that direction. (Side note: I found it funny that in Canada we have tunnels and skywalks to escape the winter and here they have the same thing to escape the heat!)
The skywalk comes out in front of the Towers and at once you are confronted with how big they are! People are busy taking pictures and getting selfies. Once again I am asked if I want to buy an iPhone 6. Under the Towers, is a large mall, so I stopped to buy a Mango Lassi drink. There are no sitting places inside the mall, to discourage people from lingering too long! Unfortunately, the Tower is closed on Monday and the Skybridge was closed for annual maintenance. The Towers had been the tallest in the world from 1998-2004 and stay the tallest twin towers. Several movies have featured them in action scenes.
Two bottles of water help me stay hydrated as I explore the surrounding areas and pass through more malls. By now hunger is setting in, so I find a Hakka Restaurant for supper. I had a rice and shrimp dish, along with wonton shrimp. After supper, I headed back towards the shuttle bus collection point. There was a guy waiting there in the Majestic Uniform (Pith Helmet and Safari Suit) and he told me the shuttle left there in 10 minutes. He insisted that I wait inside the Ritz Carlton as it was much too hot out. He directed me to a couch and told me he would come and get me when it was time to go.
Back to Hotel
Two traffic jams on the way back to the hotel and surprisingly no accidents. It had been a long day in Kuala Lumpur. At the hotel, I have to make sure my travel arrangements are in place for the next day. I thought I better take advantage of the tub with the television in front of, to soak my weary feet. Tomorrow I am off to Bangkok and I am sure it will be hot there as well!
Day in Kuala Lumpur Tip
When arriving at the train station, buy your taxi ticket at the desk before heading outside. There are several options available and you will have no problem with the cheap taxis. A day in Kuala Lumpur will involve several taxi rides.