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Sunday, March 31, 2013

Discovering Kuala Lumpur Malaysia - A Filipino Travelers Perspective Part A

KL at night, seen from KL Tower. KL Trip 2013 Filipino Blog [click to enlarge]

Along the way...I've learned a little Malay ..Something to boast? LOL.. Crazy! hahaha.  Bagaimana akan anda pembaca? It means... "How are you readers?" haha.. Ok i hope you’re doing well. Good to know that! hehe. Welcome to Kuala Lumpur! It is one of the busiest and most populous cities in Malaysia. The sun rises at around 8am and sets at 8pm. Temperature? i think it must be something around 32-34 degrees. So hot! Don’t forget your sunscreen... Working time is flexible according to my friend who works there for quite some time. Some businesses start at 7am; some open at 9am, so when your body clock wakes you up at 6am then go back to sleep. It’s too early.... :)

First Impression

The people are approachable; the foods are great and yummy! The roads are wider. The environment is diverse, rare faces, cultures and religion. Less rubbish in the metro, they had MRTs; lots of sanctuaries, tourists are will be guided. There is lots of idyllic scenery, especially for photography.

Cheap Hotels

We booked at Mayview Glory Hotel at No 100 & 101, Jalan Pudu Lama, 50200 Kuala, Lumpur, which is next to Menara Maybank. We stayed for two nights there for RM 36.7 per night/person. In the Philippines, the room might cost like 1500 PhP or more. Eventually, they give us a very huge room good for four people. The location is ultimately at the heart of KL. Department stores and shopping centers are just a walk away. Furthermore, the hotel has a travel agency at the lobby which offers travel package deals inside and outside KL.

View from our room at Jalan Pudu Lama, KL.  [Click to enlarge]

The staffs are warm and friendly; I could still remember the big guy who constantly keeps smiling and laughing as will help us with directions, etc. He also tried to find us some electric outlet adapter and offered to buy one for us. I think; you should bring one with you, especially if you are from the Philippines because electric sockets in Malaysia are of type G (British BS-1363). The travel plug adapter like the one shown below is extremely valuable so you can keep up with your electronic gadgets specially laptops and cellphones. I bought one at the shopping center, cost me RM 6.00. Something to note: do not buy from cell phone stands or small cell phone vendors outside the malls for things like this, they are sometimes OVERPRICE! Buying from big shopping centers electrical/electronics division will save you bucks.

Universal Socket Adapter for travelers.  [Click to enlarge]


Ultimately, I’m a food aficionado and Malayan cuisine is not an excuse for my appetite for good food. The Chinese, Indians, and Malays made up the 3 major ethnic groups, and this has influenced the Malayan cuisine greatly. Apart from that, the geographical location within the country is no excuse for other cultures' culinary style to mix up making it extremely distinctive from neighboring countries.

On our first food adventure, we cranked up with some delicious Roti Canai for breakfast at an Indian Resto right next to our hotel. This flaky crust flat bread fried on a casserole with butter can be found anywhere in Malaysia and is often served with flavorings. Another appetizing meal is the Dosa or Dosai, which is an Indian pancake made from rice flour served as well with condiments.

Mixed Malaysian Cuisine - Baby Kailan, Dosa, Roti Canai, Sizzling Yee Mee.  [Click to enlarge]

If you are indeed an extremist when it comes to inimitable flavoring you can head on to Jalan Alor. It is one of Kuala Lumpur's famous food streets, eventually; most Chinese cuisines are tendered here. Baby Kai-lan is a recipe made from Chinese broccoli or Kai-lan (also written as gai-lan) served Cantonese style in one of Jalan Alor's casual Chinese hawker stalls. Another head-turning Chinese delicacy that can be found anywhere in Malaysia is the Sizzling Yee Mee, usually cooked with Chinese mushrooms and chicken mixed with black sauce, soya, sesame oil, raw egg and pepper. It produces a fiery sound followed by a unique mouthwatering aroma that will surely captivate neighboring diners’ attention.

Jalan Alor, The best street foods are here in Kuala Lumpur.  [Click to enlarge]

Entertainment and Shopping

There is a spot with all the techy and nerds, party animals, shopaholics, gourmet hunters, and casual backpackers gathered for a feast of exemplary food, night life, technology, and shopping - Bukit Bintang. The Malay word "Bukit Bintang'' meaning "Star Hill" is a decent place to consider for some local and foreigners who are looking for sheer fun and excitement day and night in KL.

Bintang Walk, with Chinese Lanterns in preparation for the upcoming Chinese New Year 2013.  [Click to enlarge]

Bukit Bintang houses numerous shopping centers, including the thirteenth of the world’s biggest shopping mall - Berjaya Times Square, Bukit Bintang Plaza, Imbi Plaza, Low Yat Plaza, Pavilion KL, Starhill Gallery, Fahrenheit 88 and others to name a few. Plaza Low Yat and Imbi Plaza offer the latest in electronics and gadgetry, multimedia, and communication devices.

 Nightclubs such as Bistro 160, Piccolo Mondo, and Pulse Ultra Club as well as many others can be found along a stretched on a sidewalk famously known in KL as "Bintang Walk". 

Pavillion KL, Bukit Bintang [Click to enlarge]

Bukit Bintang [Click to enlarge]

Jalan Alor is another known avenue in Bukit Bentang where never-ending lines of hawker stalls are eminent for their street and gourmet foods. The scene is livelier during the evenings. On another side, Changkat Bukit Bintang includes fine dining, more pubs and restos famous for international cuisines, such as Arabic, American, Japanese, Korean, and European dishes. Ain Arabia a small square rich with Arabic foundation as well as a lot of dedicated Middle Eastern shopping centers and food stalls.

Somewhere along the streets of Bukit Bintang, Kuala Lumpur. [Click to enlarge]

Zodiac Signs Lantern sculptures at the KL Pavilion facade.  [Click to enlarge]

My friend scoured most retail tech shops at Plaza Low Yat and discovers a huge saving in terms of gadget cost and prices for tablet and smartphones. I additionally found out something around 2000 PhP off compared to e-gadgets sold in the Philippines, especially for smartphones. My conclusion would be to take advantage of the price, besides try to compare other local prices before setting the deal.

Hop-On-Hop-Off City Tour

The 3 Week Diet
With less time and draining bank accounts, we found something that could actually save us from the expenses and time. This is the most popular Hop-On-Hop-Off City Bus, the absolute way to experience Kuala Lumpur in 24-48 hrs. So what is this exactly? According to their website, it is a tourism friendly customized public transport system that provides an efficient linkage between major attractions between the city, enhance tourism services and further upgrade Kuala Lumpur city status as a tourist-friendly city.

Hop-on-hop-off City Bus and Tickets.  [Click to enlarge]
Price: RM 38.00 Validity: 24 Hours
Price: RM 65.00 Validity: 48 Hours

KL Hop-On-Hop-Off City Tour Route Map. [Click to enlarge]

The tour covers most attractions and sites in KL and provides a free globetrotter guide book so you won’t miss all the beautiful and exciting experiences each stop has to offer. Furthermore, you can ask the lady conductor to provide you with the Wi-Fi password. So while on the go, you are still connected to the world while book marking your post via twitter, Facebook, foursquare, instagram and etc. Also, if you want to hop-off on a particular stop/attraction, no worries, eventually, every hour another City Tour Bus will arrive as if there were like eight buses wandering around the city.

Tourist on board, Hop-In-Hop-Off City Tour. [click to enlarge]

Sites and Attractions

People always wanted to see something new so here you go, the top 10 spots we have been to in Kuala Lumpur. hehe :)

1.  Batu Caves
Worlds tallest statue of a Hindu deity, Murugan, 140 ft high., Batu Caves, KL. [click to enlarge]

Situated 13 kilometers from Kuala Lumpur. The easiest way to get there is by KTM commuter train from KL Sentral station to Sentul Station. You can also take  the Intrakota bus No. 11D from Pasar Sine (Central Market) or the Cityliner bus No. 69 at Jalan Pudu, cost would  be RM 2-3, if you want to hire a cab expect to pay something like RM 30-50 and eventually you can haggle with them. The cheapest and most convenient way for me is to take the KTM commuter train and cost only RM 2.00.

On the other side, Malaysians love watching or lets just say they watch Filipino soap operas - you may discover some poster ads of some Filipino actors and actresses with there popular drama series on public utility vehicles, ei train and bus. :)

2. Central Market Kuala Lumpur (Pasar Seni Kuala Lumpur)

Pasar Seni a heritage cultural-cum-shopping center in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.  [Click to enlarge]

This very old central market in KL or "Pasar Sine" in Malay was once used as a wet market in the 1900s. Situated a walk-away from Jalan Petaling, this one-stop shopping hub sells Malaysian handicrafts, souvenirs as well as local choice foods. Public buses are located mainly here. Speaking of souvenirs, you can bargain with the vendors and sometimes pay as much as half the original price if you know how to haggle. I paid for a pack of souvenir items for as much as RM 100 paid only RM 60.
Kasturi Walk besides Sentral Market, Kuala Lumpur. [click to enlarge]

Kasturi Walk is the new extension to Pasar Seni line with kiosk and street merchant stalls.

 3. China Town and Jalan Petaling

Green Dragon (semi-transparent rooftop) is now covering China town.  [Click to enlarge]

Jalan Petaling is famous for its old China Town where you can find numerous hawker foods and buzzing street activities. Chinese dominates the trade in this area. However, you can find some Indian and Malay as well as other cultures selling stuff here.

Click to continue reading.. Discovering Kuala Lumpur Malaysia -  A Filipino Travelers Perspective Part B


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Fitness Goal 2013

MyFitnessPal - Free Calorie Counter

Places I've Been

Dakak Davao Cebu Bohol Cagayan De Oro Pagadian Zamboanga Del Sur Zamboanga Del Norte Misamis Occidental Tangub City Surigao Butuan Davao Del Norte Davao Del Sur Iloilo Bacolod Dapitan Dipolog Manila Subic Samal Compostela Valley Gingoog City Bukidnon Marawi Xiamen

Running Records

Milo Marathon CdeO 2012- 21k@2:18mins
Timex Run 2012 Cebu -10k@57mins
Tangub City Unity Run 2012 -10k@54mins
LSU Run for the Priest 2012 -5k@28mins
Ozamiz City PDA Run -5k@27mins
MU Fun Run 2012-3k@18mins