How I spent twenty four hours in Kuala Lumpur
Last week, I told my mum how exhausted I felt living a routinized life with unpredictable off days. Two days later, she bought us a return ticket to Kuala Lumpur with the excuse that it's been a long time since she went there to shop. I visit this busy Malaysian city quite frequently growing up since I have relatives who migrated there (so it's absolutely nothing new to me) but I have never done it within such a short period of time and the last time I went here was three years ago - so I guess it's worth writing about.
We took the Starmart Express since there weren't any budget flights available to depart at 8pm and I was dreading the long drive up to KL but surprisingly, it didn't turn out to be such a bad idea actually! I was pretty impressed to be honest - their inclined seats were pretty spacious with massage functions, there were two power plugs free for use for every row and the ride only took five hours instead of the usual seven! My mum had booked Ancasa Hotel & Spa for our one day trip but we reached in the middle of the night and didn't wanna check in early because we had to pay for an extra night (RM299) at the hotel, so she called her sister (my aunt) and we crashed at her cute little home across town.
Look closely, you'll see little children playing on their tricycles. You don't see that in Singapore anymore.
I love how in this part of town, you can actually look at the sky without having high rise buildings blocking your view.
We visited SOGO first - a frequently visited shopping mall filled with local and international brands.
Reminds me alot of Metro or any other mall in Singapore, actually.
You'll get to see a lot of fabric shops and tailors along the streets of KL and they're extremely cheap!
Basically Bubble Tea or better known as "Sweet Talk" in Singapore.
I learnt somewhere that if you wanna know how good the bubble tea shop is - try their Chocolate first.
RM7.90 for a huge cup of Chocolate Ice Blended. Pretty thick with loads of bubble pearls.
Street food is the shizzz here but when it comes to these, I say trust your instincts and common sense. If the stall's right beside a drain with a seller that wipes his or her sweat and the same bare hands to pack your food into plastic bags that were taken off the floor, obviously don't consume or even purchase anything from there.
I call this the Malaysian Old Chang Kee - my favourite street food of all time because these stuff only costs RM1 per stick - which is approximately 35cents in SGD. Such a joy for someone who loves stick food as much as me. The Old Chang Kee stalls in Singapore charge us up to $1.50 nowadays.
This was basically my meal throughout the entire stay!
Moving on to transportation in KL. If you're the clueless type, there are tons of cabs available on the streets that can send you to your destination. However, if you're a foreigner, the chances of you being haggled at is quite high. Local drivers usually look out for foreigners or tourists on purpose and charge them alot higher than the supposed price. If you insist on cabbing, be sure to check that they charge you according to the meter installed in the cab instead of any other means. The next best thing would be to travel via train or monorail. It's pretty idiot proof I should say, get a map of the city and everything's self explanatory.
Traveling by monorail and train's also one of the cheapest mode of transportation here. You'll have to purchase tickets from the counter and the price depends on your destination. These coin-like chips are your ticket in and out of the gantry. Tap these when boarding and insert it into the coin slot when alighting. Simple as that!
This is the RapidKL train. The monorails are only two cabins long.
Finally reached Ancasa Hotel & Spa. My mum booked a deluxe room on the tenth floor at a discounted rate of only SGD80 through Agoda.com. That's an extremely good price for hotel this complete - walking distance to tourist spots like Petaling Street, bath tub, free wifi, swimming pool and breakfast included. If I'm not mistaken, the original price was close to RM250 per night for a deluxe room. What an awesome deal for us! With that kind of price in overpriced Singapore....... you'd probably only get a hotel room with no windows.
My aunt and cousin tagged along. Seeing how my mum and I had so little time in KL and had to board the coach back to Singapore at 11pm that night without even being able to stay the night - we decided to gave the one night's stay to my aunt for saving us and letting us crash at her place the night before.
There are definitely nicer views of the city but these aren't that bad at all.
Petaling Street - the famous spot for both locals and tourists to splurge on fake branded goods that looks exactly the same at only a quarter of the original price. The place only starts full operation after 5pm or 6pm and some local shopkeepers (usually the Chinese) have this belief that they cannot reject the first customer of the day - all for good feng shui. Make friends with the shopkeepers, some can really offer you good prices. Buying in bulk can also help you haggle the price down even more! So if for example, you and your friends are planning to buy branded shirts - find a shop that has all your preferences and haggle the price down to around RM15 per shirt - that's only SGD6.50!
Our coach back to Singapore was at midnight so we had some time to waste - Starbucks it is, as usual.
We got to seat on a double decked coach on our way back to Singapore and even got the front seat. I had my legs up on the dashboard the whole way back and the journey only took us four hours from Kuala Lumpur to Johor. Seeing how we only had approximately twenty four hours including traveling to and from Singapore - this has been a pretty fruitful trip, I should say!