EXPERIENCE MALAYSIA, TRULY ASIA: KUALA LUMPUR ESCAPADE

EXPERIENCE MALAYSIA, TRULY ASIA: KUALA LUMPUR ESCAPADE

The cosmopolitan Kuala Lumpur holds pride of place as the capital of Malaysia, an exhilarating city full of energy and life! Our inner foodie was satiated with the wide range of international cuisine from world-renowned restaurants to local food stalls. Coupled with maniac bouts of shopping from fashion to even home furnishings (psst, there is a mega H&M Home store right here!), KL is definitely a city we have on our "can't wait to visit again" list!

One of the landmarks is the famous Twin Towers that made me stop, stare, and snap. Photos cannot do justice to the magnificent architecture - like a space odyssey come to life.


Just look at the stunning driveway! Beam me up, Scottie!



And look at the gorgeous light features and walls within the building!



The water feature in the grounds outside is also a great area for loved ones and friends to spend a beautiful evening.




MUD – THE STORY ABOUT KUALA LUMPUR

One of the first things we did was to learn about KL, and what better way to do so then to have historical immersion in this gorgeous building…….




…. where we watched MUD – The Story About Kuala Lumpur. This theatre production was rated highly on TripAdvisor and the longest running in KL, it was truly fun to watch! Condensing over 100 years of KL history into 1.5 hours, the storyline is entertaining, the theatre is gorgeous, and the acting and songs were really good. The audience interaction was also wonderfully incorporated, where I was given the chance to go on stage and be a part of the stage act. Highly recommended, do go and catch it!





CUISINE

We then got immersed into another extremely important part of KL – the cuisine!

Restoran Rebung is owned by celebrity chef Ismail Ahmad and Malaysia's first astronaut Dr Sheik Muszaphar, and there is a huge array of Negeri Sembilan dishes and desserts in the buffet, including live cooking stations in the outdoor terrazas. Highly recommended, I would bring my loved ones here to enjoy the great array of local food and desserts too!



The food here is so delicious that if the signage is true, I cannot imagine how good his kisses are!

This photo is just a little prelude for more to come, while they were setting the tables for our VIP lunch. It was an honour to meet Chef Ismail and Deputy Secretary General of Ministry of Tourism and Culture, Datuk Rashidi Bin Hasbullah.






And, just look at all this mouth-watering food. A one-stop place to experience all the favourite, authentic local delicacies in a lovely setting!



And, there’s a lot more to KL that meets the eye!

Not many people know this given KL's vibrant cosmopolitan profile, did you know that there is an "old Kuala Lumpur" too? As a history and culture buff, it was a wonderful immersive experience to take part in the Heritage Walks, especially since the guides were experienced and shared many insights!

KUALA LUMPUR NIGHT WALK (GUIDED WALK)

The balmy evening breeze kickstarted the walk as after we gathered at a cozy cafe for a coffee and briefing. With that, we were off!

It was really heartwarming to see and experience the local lifestyle. I captured as we walked past the traditional barber shops that lined the street. Don’t worry, this is not a scene from a horror movie – the barber was amazingly nice and his customers were extremely friendly, asking my name and having a chit-chat with me!




We also did a jaunt through the Pasar Malam (malay word for "night market") as we soaked in the atmosphere. A feast for the eyes and tummy, there were many stores selling trinkets, shoes and clothes (including Malay attire) at extremely affordable prices.

For example, this is an edible biscuit, not a trinket!



You'll never have to worry about going hungry, as the hawkers offered free sampling of their food (although pls spare a thought for them and purchase!) The street food was an absolute delight, with hot piping local bites cooked in front of our eyes. We were also really excited to see biscuits in huge biscuit tins that harkened back to our childhood days. 




With every landmark that we passed, the guide would share interesting factoids. We won’t spoil the fun, but here are some teasers of what you'll see and experience!

This cartoon character was a creation of famous Malaysian cartoonist, Mat.



This mosque is along a river precinct set for redevelopment, watch out for another great hangout place!




And we ended off the walk with a hearty meal at Coliseum café!




JALAN JALAN AT KAMPUNG BAHRU (GUIDED WALK)

This walk thoroughly satiated my deep interest in history and culture, and huge kudos to the guides who were so detailed and interesting. This gentleman started off by sharing with us about some history and the walk route, and then off we went!






P.S. Be sure to bring water and a cap as it gets hot!



I really enjoyed the factoids about malay houses (did you know there is a separate entrance for males and females? Find out why when you go on the tour!)






I greatly enjoyed this walk and the sharing by these two guides, highly recommended!



KL BIRD PARK

This was an exciting experience as the birds were given free reign to roam their enclosures. It was really fun to have feather-to-human interaction with these beautiful creatures, and view their scenic abodes!



I always found owls fascinating, and many ancient cultures revere them as well. It was breathtaking to capture them resting (I even saw one turn its head a full 360 degrees and look at me!)



This peacock was also just by itself, and I managed to capture this serene moment just as it turned its head, with its magnificent plumage cascading like the waterfall.




There was also quirky surprises awaiting in KL….. an architecture of a very different sort. An upside-down house!








It definitely makes for some very photo-worthy shots, and I won’t spoil the fun but you will definitely enjoy taking photos inside the house….. where everything is upside down!




No it’s not a trick on your eyes…..this is upside down! Curious to find out more? A trip to KL is a must!


CITRAWARNA

The final highlight of the trip was the annual extravaganza – the Citrawarna 2016 grand event staged at Dataran Merdeka (Merdeka Square). We were privileged to see the stage being set up before the grand show, against the beauty of the historical landmarks around.





The extravaganza lasted the entire night, with amazing costumes, performances and topped with a spectacular fireworks display. Truly a wonderful night!










With so much to see and do, this is a city that you look forward to visiting every time. Reach for the sky and live your (travel) dreams in KL. 



Thank you to the Ministry of Tourism and Culture Malaysia and Tourism Malaysia, in partnership with Gaya Magazine@gayatravel for the amazing time!







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