Kuala Lumpur is the capital of Malaysia, and a major airline hub for southeast Asia. Most of the airlines either stop over in Singapore or Kuala Lumpur for access to the rest of southeast Asia on long haul flights. I always try to use an indirect flight route as an opportunity to visit a new spot if we would need to take a layover anyways, and stay for a couple of days to explore. In this case, we picked Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, since we went to Singapore in 2016 (Singapore travel guide here!) We booked a round trip flight from Sydney, then booked other flight reservations to our next destinations from there, which actually ended up saving us money, since round trip is cheapest on long haul flights, and Sydney to KL is 8 hours
Since we only had 2 days, we decided to make the absolute most of our time, so we checked into Sheraton Imperial KL and got out to explore. The hotel was really nice, BTW. I would definitely recommend it! The first few things I noticed about Kuala Lumpur in November was it was HUMID AF, the culture is obsessed with shopping (it seemed like a main attraction of the city with malls literally everywhere you look), and it was bright and colorful. It was also a city mixed with really old grungy buildings right next to the most modern skyscrapers. A very new world-meets-old world concept, which was quirky and cool. There was also a jungle feel, right in the heart of the city, which definitely reminded me of Singapore a bit. The heat though... OMG. Get ready to sweat if you visit in November.
There are tons of cool markets (day + night, food + artisan) to visit, and haggling is common. You can walk a lot of the city, or take the train & trams as public transport is really good. You'll also want to download the app Grab, which is the Uber of SE Asia - seriously, Uber acquired them but kept their branding since it was so popular there!
The food stalls were really good! I was a bit nervous about eating street food in Southeast Asia, but my pharmacist recommended Travelan and I would highly recommend it. I used it to prevent food poisoning throughout the trip since I have a pretty sensitive stomach, and it totally helped! You can buy it here for about $25. We loved the night market for food!
The people of KL were so friendly and welcoming, and English is commonly spoken, so you'll easily be able to communicate. The multicultural city has districts with all types of Asian cultures - we liked exploring Chinese temples and walking through Little India one day! We really enjoyed exploring for a quick 2 days, and I'm eager to share my itinerary with you!
If you'd like to do less research, you can download my guide on a google map (integrated into your saved places on the Google Maps app!) to view on the go for just $5. Save yourself time & research since I already did it for you! ;)
MY KUALA LUMPUR TRAVEL GUIDE
Petronas Towers - identical twin skyscrapers standing at 451.9 m high. You can go visit the skybridge at 170m high, then ascend to the 86th floor for an amazing view of the city. Book tix in advance!
Petaling Street Market - street market with things from clothes to gifts to food in the heart of Chinatown. Make sure you haggle with them. It's expected.
KLCC park - an urban park right in the middle of the city center among gorgeous skyscrapers, like the Petronas Towers, and upscale shopping malls.
National Mosque of Malaysia - a massive and famous mosque surrounded by greenery, pools, and fountains
Perdana Botanic Gardens - gorgeous botanic gardens with lakes, cafes, zoos, and tons of walking paths
Batu Caves - I'm sure you've seen this magical staircase on Instagram by now. They're a limestone hill with a series of caves.
Lot 10 Hutong Food Court - during the day
Merchant's Lane - cute cafe and coffee shop with an ambiance that's rustic and chic
Sitka Restaurant - modern asian dinner spot with local produce and drinks, if you're looking for a sit down restaurant and a break from the food stalls
8 Ounce Coffee Co. - at KLCC park for a quick pick me up
Heli Lounge Bar - an awesome bar up on a heli pad, with amazing unblocked 360 degree views of the city. Go early to get a spot and hang through sunset!
Pahit/Barlia Bar - netsled in a housing area in Padu, it's the perfect cocktail bar to get your night started
Blue Elephant - Cinema themed speakeasy. Look for a door that says “SCSG Corporate Service with a blue light, then head up the red carpeted staircase.