Kuala Lumpur (KL)was the final leg of my mini tour around South East Asia. I had 6 days to spend there and I was ready to roll. I remember the heat, the noise, the hustle and bustle. I arrive at the Hilton Garden Inn Hotel in down town KL and had a quick view of all my planned excursions. There are so many advantages to solo travel but I particularly like the fact that it gets you alert and organized while giving you the sense of complete and utter freedom to explore at whim.
Kuala Lumpur is Malaysia’s capital city, where you will find the most popular tourist attractions. From its famous skyscrapers, magnificent nature parks and architectural structure; it is positively overwhelming for sure. Kuala Lumpur is widely renowned for its numerous attractions like Petronas Twin Towers and the street flea markets. Check out below other famous sights that I visited and would recommend you to visit too.
Kuala Lumpur Bird Park
If you have an appreciation for nature like myself you may be keen to visit KL Bird park. You can find over three thousand species of birds including those local to Malaysia and from around the world. From the great hornbill to the Emu, it was an incredibly unique experience seeing exotic birds that I usually only get to see on the discovery channel. The park has four zones, the free-flight zone is in Zone 1&2, Hornbill Park is in Zone 3, and the last area is where you find the birds of prey. The park is a replica of the bird’s natural habitats including waterfalls, rivers and flower gardens. You get to learn about and discover different species of birds and how they behave in their natural habitat. It was exciting to take pictures with noisy parrots and casually sip ice tea while peacocks walked past displaying their bright tail feathers. The cost of this experience was 50 MYR.
Kuala Lumpur Butterfly Garden
The theme for this trip was nature and then some. For the price of 30MYR, I visited the KL Butterfly garden. It’s the most extensive butterfly garden in the world, you can find more than five thousand butterflies in a vast space that spans to over eighty thousand square feet. It is like a paradise where butterflies fly freely from one flowering vine to another. You will find lots of exotic plants, ferns and beautiful flowers around. Other activities include visits to the insect museum where you find a vast collection of butterflies and other insects from all around the world. You can also enjoy attractions like the Japanese Koi Fish and Turtles in freshwater. I loved learning about all the colourful butterflies and insects.
Kuala Lumpur Forest Eco Park
Despite that the fact that it was a hot and sticky day, I wanted to take in the peaceful and soothing effects of the nature in the Eco forest, away from the noise and crowd of the big city. This experience had no cost apart from the Grab taxi I took to get there. KL Eco park is the oldest forest reserve in the country, formerly named Bukit Nanas Forest Reserve. The park has facilities that visitors can enjoy, like a playground, gazebo, and a campsite. You can discover many varieties of trees, bamboo, and herbs as you walk through the forest following the walking trails. I particularly enjoyed the Canopy Walk. It’s a two hundred meters height aerial bridge made of wood and steel. It offers a mind-blowing view of KL city skyline, and the Menara KL Tower.
I was excited to visit such an iconic temple; Batu Cave is one of the most visited tourist attraction in Kuala Lumpur. It is a Limestone hill consisting of 3 big caves and several small ones. The biggest cave is the Cathedral Cave, where you find Hindu shrines. The other two caves are the Museum Cave and Art Gallery Cave, where you find numerous paintings and statues. A great gathering happens here every year during the Thaipusam festival. This Hindu festival attracts millions of pilgrims every year. As you climb the stairs to the caves you start to notice the mischievous monkeys who take a keen interest in shiny objects and gadgets you may be carrying, so be sure to protect your personal belongings. Since it’s such a popular tourist attraction, the best time to visit is very early in the morning as the location gets very congested during the day; though it is definitely worth visiting, there was no cost for visiting this site apart from the taxi ride.
Suria KCLL Shopping Center
While I was taking a break from visiting nature parks and religious sites, my favourite place to explore was the Suria KCLL Shopping Center which is connected to the Petronas Twin towers. It is a majestic six-story structure with its outside image as appealing as its interior. This shopping center houses over 340 specialty stores. Shoppers have great shopping options as Suria KCLL offers famous exclusive brands like Givenchy, Boggi Milano, Coach, and more. Exploring the mall is thirsty work and my favourite thing to do was to grab a drink and a bite to eat. I thoroughly enjoyed relaxing in one of their many trendy cafes and eateries. Some of my favourites’ included ‘Salon Du Chocolat’, “Illy Cafe” and “Dome KCLL”. If you love a cheeky ‘Nando’s’ I was able to locate one in Suria KCLL, this was truly one of the highlights of my trip! The backyard of Suria KCLL had a beautiful fountain structure where you could watch the musical water fountain show. This is one of my favourite shopping malls apart from Shoppes by the Bay in Singapore.
Right in the center of Kuala Lumpur, you will find the premier shopping gem – Pavilion Kuala Lumpur. It is a shopping haven that offers more than 550 outlets providing the best shopping experience, dining, and all other urban leisure. You have the option to shop indoor or outdoor. You will find Malaysian brands like Jimmy Choo here as well as popular European brands like Yves Saint Laurent, Versace, Dolce & Gabbana etc… Pavilion KL is also on my list of favourite shopping malls. It was extremely busy with customers from all over the world and has lots of exciting things to do. If shopping is your thing, Kuala Lumpur is the place to be.
Selfie Museum Kuala Lumpur
I bet you take a Selfie photo whenever you got a chance. Well good news, if you are in Kuala Lumpur, then you can have all the Selfie’s you want at the Selfie Museum. This seven thousand square feet area features nine rooms decorated with delicious dessert images. You can take endless Selfies plus freebies on special occasions. You get to taste your favorite desserts for free like Baskin Robbins Ice Cream, Malaysian Tarts, Marshmallows, Sirap Cup Cakes, and of course, their secret dessert. The creation of the Selfie museum is inspired by the concept of creating long, happy memories among family and friends through taking selfies. The selfie museum is located in the Fahrenheit shopping centre opposite Pavilion KL. This was definitely a fun and light hearted experience for me, the cost was only 20 MYR.
You could also visit
- Kuala Lumpur Tower: KL Tower is the seventh tallest tower in the whole world. The upper area of the tower has a restaurant giving diners a great view of the city. You can reach the top area by stairs or elevator and view the visit from a glass dome
- Famous Restaurants and Bars: a great way to end your busy day is by treating yourself to fine dining in one of Kuala Lumpur’s best trendy restaurants like the Antipodean Café, Enfin by James Won, Nobu Kuala Lumpur, and many more.
Enjoy the night away with the countless bar in the city. There are so many clubs, rooftop bars, and speakeasy bars to choose from. Some of the best rooftop bars include sky bar, Luna Bar Rooftop, and Marini’s on 57.
- KL mini Zoo: see a variety of exotic animals, take pictures and relax
My Opinion of Kuala Lumpur
I love Malaysia as it’s the perfect mix of big city and beautiful nature. There are so many activities to get involved in, so it caters to a wide array of people. Although I had an experience with a hostile cab driver, the people are friendly for the most part. Its not as clean as Singapore however it is certainly cheaper and you get more of your money’s worth. I would certainly recommend a visit to Kuala Lumpur.
Cost of my trip
- Flight: one way 292 CYN (32.81GBP) Singapore to Kuala Lumpur booked on Trip.com
- Hotel: 6 nights 975CYN (109.54 GBP) Hilton Garden Inn Kuala Lumpur booked on Trip.com
- Transport: 628 MYR taxi and public transport (114.83GBP)
- Food: 323 MYR (59 GBP)
Planning and being organized is key to having the time of your life while solo traveling. There is definitely room for spontaneity as this is inevitable, however a good plan is a much-needed foundation. Your trip will be a lot easier if you master your own schedule and if you’re organized enough to have with you all the essentials relevant for the trip (relevant attire, mobile apps, medication). Ironically planning gives you a lot of flexibility, last minute changes are ok and it’s a lot easier to stick to or manage your budget better. What’s more you get to prove to yourself that you can handle unexpected situations ultimately getting a better understanding of yourself and building confidence.
My trip to Kuala Lumpur reinforced the idea of planning, not just solo travel but your life in general. Having time specific plans for your life plays a huge contribution to achieving your goals. Many people don’t do this; I guess it’s because the future can be unpredictable, it’s too time consuming or they actually don’t know what they want out of life. Though, planning your life is vital, some people make 2, 5- and 10-year plans; heck some people plan up to 50 years in the future. The truth is things may not happen exactly as you plan but they’re more likely to if you take consistent and relevant action. Planning helps to maintain a strong sense of purpose in life; however, the plan must have room for flexibility and spontaneity. I’m now committed to planning up to 10 years in the future and I look forward to being pleasantly surprised when my expectations or met or even exceeded.