KUALA LUMPUR; the 1st Destination Abroad

Our first going abroad experience was to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. We were lucky enough to get such reasonable price for this trip; IDR 1,510,100 nett/person including 15 kg in-flight baggage, airport taxes and the bus to KL Sentral. Please notice that our trip was started from Ambon, eastern part of Indonesia. Look at the map below and you'll see how far Ambon to KL is!
Red Line = Our trip in December 2012 to January 2013

First we flew to Makassar since there's no direct international flight from Ambon. From Makassar we took an AirAsia plane to KL. The aircraft was really cool with Queen Park Rangers theme. Inside the plane, it felt like we had been in Malaysia already. Most of the passengers seemed to be the returning Malaysians. The announcement on board spoken in three languages: English, Bahasa Indonesia n Bahasa Malay, adding the impressions for us of being in another country already.
Air Asia with QPR theme. This photo is not our original capture.

Peter (Left) and Jay (Right) were our hosts in KL
Arriving at LCCT airport, we did not have any problem with the immigration stuff. It was so simple, not as complicated as we had imagined. Soon we left the airport for KL Sentral by Skybus. And from KL Sentral we took LRT (Light Rail Transit) which was new for us. It was fast, convenient, and.... later we realized that it was not operated by people. It's all automatic!
Me Waiting at an underground LRT Station

Getting off at Sri Rampai LRT Station, we then took a cab to our hosts' apartment. We felt sorry for coming so late at night. But fortunately they were just cool with that. We talked a little before going to sleep.... on a very comfortable queen-size bed. Zzzzzzz

December 17th

In the morning, Peter took us to a buffet nearby named Shani Cafe where we were offered all-you-can eat breakfast for only RM 4 (est. IDR 13,000). In Ambon, chicken rice alone normally costs IDR 20,000. That's one of the reasons why budget travelers like us come to Malaysia, especially KL. It has rich culture of Malay, Chinese, and Indian, while the public transportation and everything here is considered modern. Yet the things are still cheap!

We were so excited in one side yet so sad in the other side coz after exploring the city a while we then realized that our country was left behind too much from its neighbor. In about 20 years ago, KL had almost nothing while Jakarta, our capital city already got Monas and other landmarks. What a rapid development this capital of Malaysia had!

Well, first we went to Chinatown, a suitable place to shop with little money on hand. We bought few KL T-shirts cost RM 5 each to bring back home. Entering the inner area, we found Sri Mahamariamman Temple, KL's most important Hindu temple situated in the middle of shops and inns. The temple was built in 1873 and renovated in 1968. There's no entrance fee but before entering the temple we had to deposit our sandals/shoes for few cents.

We continued walking and got through Kasturi Walk beside the Central Market building. Felt enough shopping at the Chinatown, we didn't buy anything here. The things cost slightly higher here anyway. Keep walking about 100 meters and we found ourselves at Dataran Merdeka. There was road and field construction there, making our journey a little inconvenient. But seeing the fascinating old colonial buildings around, we soon forgot about it.

Chinatown at daytime
Berjaya Time Square, a big mall with cheap clothes offered
tempting tourists to spend money on them
Back to KL Sentral, we purchased a train ticket to Johor Bahru for the next day. Then we walked to the monorail station which stood 100 meters away from the main terminal. Monorail was another new thing for us, as in Jakarta the monorail project was only in plans and plans. Getting off at Imbi, we now arrived at the big shopping mall called 'Berjaya Times Square'. It was the time of MYES (Malaysia's Year End Sale) so many big discount offered were tempting us to buy more clothes. They're so cheap and stylish indeed. We were not sure would get the same things back in Indonesia. That's how Berjaya Times Square became our favorite shopping mall.

December 18th 
The very famous Petronas Twin Towers
On this day we went to see the most well-known attraction in KL; Petronas Twin Towers! We took some photos with its background like what many people did. However we didn't go up the tower. The cost did not fit our budget. We loved KLCC park so much. Located right behind the towers, the park is opened to public and offers some facilities like jogging track, swimming pool, playing area for children, and fresh drinking tap. It's nice indeed to have some green areas in the middle of such a busy tropical town.
Few meters away from the twin towers, we saw some purple buses called GoKL. Since it was FREE, we just hopped in. It was really comfortable inside. There's wi-fi too! I really want to have such a bus back in Indonesia. Is it possible? I wonder... The bus passed through Bukit Bintang, the "Golden Triangle" in KL and we dropped off near Berjaya Time Square. We took a look to some places there like Plaza Low Yat then we walked quite far to another tall tower; Menara KL! Coming there was a mistake. The attraction did not fit for budget travelers at all! Too expensive (RM 50 per person for observation deck only) and too common (just like Monas in Jakarta). I don't recommend this place for other budget travelers unless you come to the place only for taking photos outside the tower.
Kristin was looking at the big statue at Batu Caves
Fortunately the last place we visited in KL was far from disappointing. It was Batu Caves! We were amazed every time we looked at the big statue standing besides the stairs to the cave. We stopped several times at the stairs to take pictures before we completely climbed all the 272 steps. BANG! Suddenly, a loud shocking sound broke out the silence. We thought it was a bomb. But apparently the Indians there used that sound to make the monkeys away. There were few sneaky monkeys here so please be careful with your belongings.
These guys are only few of
so many foreign tourists wandering through KL.
Still about belongings, we did have a problem with ours while in KL. It was not the monkeys' fault though. It's ours. Being tired and sleepy, at the night we left Peter and Jay's apartment, heading to KL Sentral to catch the train to Johor Bahru. When we're almost there, we just realized that one of our bags was gone! We were so panic. The departure to JB was about in 15 minutes and we still had no idea how it could happen. In the very short time, we decided to return the train ticket we had bought before to get 50% refund. Luckily still, our passports were not inside the bag. Then we immediately reported the lost to the station officer, hoping the bag would be back in the next days. And it came true! When we were already back to Jakarta, someone emailed me saying that the person had found our bag. Thanks to Jay to collect the bag so we could have it back when we return to KL someday...

See Also:
KUALA LUMPUR: Genting Highlands
KUALA LUMPUR: One Utama and Old KL Railway Station


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