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downundergal Kuala Lumpur - A travel report by Kerrie
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Kuala Lumpur,  Malaysia - flag Malaysia -  Wilayah Persekutuan
12818 readers

downundergal's travel reports

Shop till you drop in Kuala Lumpur

  22 votes
Page: 1 2 3 4
Kuala Lumpur was never on my travel "wish list" but as we had a chance to stop over enroute to Langkawi Island we took a few days to shop until we dropped. We were not disappointed and came away planning to visit again someday in the future.


Petronas Towers - viewed from our hotel room
Petronas Towers - viewed from our hotel room
KL is a melting pot of east meet's west, with traditional and modern buildings jostling side by side along with some of the friendliest people that I have ever met on my travels. It has been hauled into the 21st century with the ever present and imposing Petronas Towers a constant reminder. It is a consumer's delight with shopping being the one priority. In fact, the amount of shopping plaza's in the city is mindblowing and all at greatly reduced prices compared to outside Asia. We were lucky enough to visit at the end of the month long festival of fasting Ramadan and one of the biggest sales of the year. Genuine Polo etc all reduced by up to 60%, I couldn't help myself. We left home with 15 kilo's of luggage between us and returned with 50!


Favourite spots:
View from the 42nd floor viewing platform
View from the 42nd floor viewing platform
* Petronas Towers - this is a must visit. As these are nearly always in your sight you couldn't come to this city & not go up to the viewing platform. Although these are amoung the tallest buildings in the world the high speed elevator only whisks you up to the 42nd floor. The view is still great but if you were hoping to make it to the top you will be disappointed. But on the bright side entry is free. You collect your ticket from the ticket counter where it is stamped with the time of your ascent. You go off and shop until about 15-20 minutes before & then come back & wait for your turn. It is all very efficient.
* KLCC-This is the most glitzy shopping complex in the city but it could be anywhere in the world. Located at the base of the Petronas Tower's no doubt you will wander through here anyway. * Sangwai Wang Plaza - for us this was the best of all the shopping malls in KL. It was geared towards the locals and offered whole aisles jammed to the rafters of various must haves.


What's really great:
A close up of the Petronas Towers.
A close up of the Petronas Towers.
Continued from above.
Whole rows of the latest mobile phones at about 40% less.
Playstation consoles and games for much less than at home already chipped so they can play any games from anywhere in the world.
It also has the large department store Metrojaya, beautifully made suits, shoes at bargain prices.
Copyright pirating is rife in Asia and every now and then the police make it look as though they are making an effort to stamp it. They concentrate on one area of the city at each time. When we were there they targeting Chinatown so there was not a DVD in sight, ask around and you will be taken to a storage area where they are all kept. You may think that you are about to get mugged or robbed as they are usually up on the 3rd floor where you have to climb up a rickety flight of stairs to get there. You will normally get buy 10 get one free, less than 8-10 ringitt each. If they don't have what you want try another shop. Sungwai Wang is also another good place.





Sights:
Durian stall - these smelly fruit are guaranteed to knock you out
Durian stall - these smelly fruit are guaranteed to knock you out
Chinatown is a great area to go wander around in and soak up the atmoshere and of course do some more shopping.
There are some great pieces from all around Asia including other areas of Malaysia. This is the place to come to buy your expensive (fake) Rolex. The shopkeepers are very obliging and will show the catalogue to prove that it is just like the real thing. Don't be fooled into falling for their first really low price as that is to get your attention. If you take this you will receive a cheaper, nasty version. You are expected to bargain. The good copies are heavy and made of metal & don't require batteries. Buy 2 and you will get a super bargain. My partner got such a good price that later when we were taking a taxi one night & talking to the Chinese driver he had the same watch that he had paid more for two years ago. He was devastated, all he could say was " We Chinese, very, very, good businessmen". We had to tip him...








Accommodations:
Our hotel room
Our hotel room
We stayed at the Novotel Century which has since breen re-branded as the Royale Bintang.
It is in what is known as "the golden triangle" which is the tourist area and the location is brilliant, step out and you are in the middle of all the action with the main shopping areas located closeby.
The room's are adequate but in need of a revamp. We stayed here on the way in and then overnight on the way out.
On our first stay we arrived very late at night and they did not have a reservation. OK, that happen's but they were very helpful and upgraded us to a suite with a fantastic view of the Towers.
On our return visit the room was really shabby complete with leaking taps, but for 1 night it didn't matter.
Buffet breakfast was included in the room rate.
Keep in mind there is an oversupply of middle to top end accommodation so they discount readily, don't be shy to ask.
We paid 150 ringit with breakfast.
Stay away from their bar it is exorbitantly priced.



Nightlife:
Sunsets in KL are quick but spectacular. This one was from our hotel room.
Sunsets in KL are quick but spectacular. This one was from our hotel room.
We did not find any nightclub's as such but one fantastic Cuban bar called Hemingway's. It was so authentic I thought I had been transported back to Havana. Heavy beautifully carved timber all along one wall and cuban music playing in then background. Built on 2 levels it also offers a cosy lounge and a complete list of tapas. The night we were there it was ladies night (Wed & Thurs) so all my drink's were free between 8 - 12pm. They also offered other promotions including Mojito nights and so on. The staff were really friendly and really proud of the bar as it was obviously a first for KL.



Restaurants:
The massage section at the back of the restaurant
The massage section at the back of the restaurant
There are street stalls and hole in the wall restaurants all over the city but if you are looking for a nice restaurant they tend to be tucked away a little. Changkat Bukit Bintang (off Jalan Bukit Bintang) is one long restaurant strip with all types of cuisine geared toward the expatriates and tourists more than the locals. But if you are looking for a change from rice this is the place to come.
One of our favourite restaurants was Food and Feet aka Pizzeria Bella Italia along with Best Friend Massage. You ate in the restaurant & at the back was a glass wall looking into the massage parlour! Yes, so you ate your pizza while watching everyone have their feet de-stressed. After a hard day's shopping how could you not take up the offer and have one yourself! Bliss at 25 ringgit for a half hour.
Another favourite was Bangkok Jam, 2 levels with outdoor seating serving fantastic typical Thai food such as red curries etc.




Other recommendations:
Typical night time street scene
Typical night time street scene
Be aware that the airport is a long way out of the city.
There are two options to get there, taxi or train.
The train is the cheapest if you are alone. If there are two of you a taxi is cheaper. There are counters where you are meant to buy your ticket as the taxi's are heavily monitored here & can only operate from a certain place. If you book a taxi at the airport he must come back empty and vice versa. However, they do break the rules so especially if you can hitch up with another couple of travellers and you go outside of the terminal and cross the road you will get a taxi for about 30% cheaper as these guys prefer not to go back empty. Coming from the city it is harder, you will probably find you will have to pay the set price as they don't seem to like to take the risk of getting caught going to the airport.
When getting around in the city by taxi which is the easiest ask what the fare should be at the hotel & set your fare before going anywhere.

Published on Tuesday May 4th, 2004


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Sat, Feb 16 2008 - 01:49 PM rating by mistybleu

I'm planing a trip to South East Asia and found your report very valuable.

Fri, Dec 09 2005 - 11:38 AM rating by delfster

hi there kerrie,
i just read your report, and it's great :) thanks for sharing some insight of the city. next time i'll go there i might roam to some of the places you went to. cheers, delvi.

Sun, Nov 06 2005 - 08:47 AM rating by isaacmolina

Very maravolloso report !!!

Mon, Apr 11 2005 - 04:29 AM rating by magic_eye

Hi Kerrie.....Thanks for your lovely report....Brought alive memories of our trip a couple of years back to KL. Its a real shot in the arm/leg for shopaholics!!!!
Deepak

Thu, Nov 18 2004 - 06:36 PM rating by picasso

Very interesting and detailed report,for the travelers who
Would like to shop .Good images of Personas.

Thank you for your effort.

Boris

Sat, Nov 06 2004 - 09:50 AM rating by ravinderkumarsi

hii kerrie ,
excellent report and nicely written
keep in up
ravi

Wed, May 05 2004 - 03:19 AM rating by britman

Wonderful report - KL is certainly the bargain shopping basement of SE Asia. One of the best Globo reports that I have read!

Wed, May 05 2004 - 02:30 AM rating by andreas

What a fantastic report! I do also love the pictures inside. In 2001 I have been to Melakka, but missed out KL. I will definatelly have a look at the sights you described.

Two thumbs up for your report!

Tue, May 04 2004 - 10:11 PM rating by whereisliz

Great report, great pictures, helpful details. Thanks for sharing!

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