Travelogue: Kuala Lumpur

From the Perhentian Islands, I set off towards Kuala Lumpur, the (shopping) capital of Malaysia. Being a backpacker, I don’t have space for shopping, so I contented myself with enjoying some pretty amazing food (not as cheap as Penang, but more variety) and seeing some of the cultural landmarks.

Here’s a cool model of Kuala Lumpur:
Kuala Lumpur - KL city model 1

Places of note:

KL Tower: Yay, another unoriginal tower, surrounded by tourist traps (mini-zoos, motion simulators, art galleries, and trinket shops).
Kuala Lumpur - KL tower

The view from the top is pretty good though!
Kuala Lumpur - KL Tower top portrait 2

Patronas Towers: Much more impressive and original. I wonder what it’s like to walk across the bridge between the two towers? Unfortunately, you not only have to wait in line at 7AM to get tickets, but tickets also cost $50, so I wasn’t able to find out.

Somehow, I wasn’t surprised that the lobby of the Patronas towers connected to a giant shopping complex. After all, Kuala Lumpur is a huge shopping destination.

Kuala Lumpur Convention Center: there’s not much to say about the building itself – I wandered in while lost, discovered a real estate convention going on, walked around introducing myself as a first-time investor from NYC, and learned quite a bit about the workings of high-rise investment.
Kuala Lumpur - KL convention center model

Architecture students who spend days and weeks building models will be pleased to see that there is a use for this skill after graduation:

Lot 10 food court: a fancy underground food court, supposedly very famous. All the food looked amazing, but also double the price compared to Chinatown
Kuala Lumpur - lot 10 food court 1 Kuala Lumpur - lot 10 food court noodles Kuala Lumpur - lot 10 food court 2

National Mosque: very modern and utilitarian. Fun fact: if you’re not Muslim, all photos of yourself in the mosque will automatically be very dark.
Kuala Lumpur - national mosque Kuala Lumpur - national mosque portrait

Batu Caves: Half an hour away from the city, up a huge flight of stairs, you can see the caves

National Museum: Somewhat badly curated. Here’s a preserved wooden coffin (?) and very long rifles (?)
Kuala Lumpur - National Museum wooden coffin Kuala Lumpur - National Museum long rifle

Museum of Islamic Art: Most awesome. Being non-muslim, some of the exhibits were rather dense (e.g. islamic metalworking and pottery), but some of the others were magnificent
– Islamic-Chinese art is absolutely beautiful:

– Gold leaf on a leaf!
Kuala Lumpur - Museum of Islamic Art Gold Leaf

– Qurans and heroic epic with very detailed illustrations:

– It’s cool how there’s a lot of variety in mosque design, all three of the following are mosques, even the Chinese-looking structure!

– Holy shit, katars are real
Kuala Lumpur - Museum of Islamic Art Katars

National Monument: Reminds me of the the Iwo Jima monument
Kuala Lumpur - National Monument

Petaling (Chinatown): amazing food
Kuala Lumpur - Jalan Petaling Chinatown

Some day market:
Kuala Lumpur - market

Islamic market::
Kuala Lumpur - islamic market

Claypot chicken and rice, absolutely amazing
Kuala Lumpur - claypot chicken and rice

Assorted beef noodle soup
Kuala Lumpur - beef noodle soup

More noodle soup!
Kuala Lumpur - noodle soup

Some kind of a coconut-based cake (delicious)
Kuala Lumpur - coconut based cake

Bits and Bobs:
This is efficiency: dressing a dummy in a construction uniform, and rigging the hand so that it waves up and down with a warning flag
Kuala Lumpur - flag waving dummy

Smoking, eating, and littering are illegal, but so are having an ET-style glowing finger, breaking your camera, and dancing on the train tracks
Kuala Lumpur - no alien ET fingers

On Malaysian trains, women also get their own cars. But most unfairly for men, 3/4 of the cars are women-only.
Kuala Lumpur - ladies only train

Monkey (with baby monkey):
Kuala Lumpur - monkey and baby monkey

The Traveler’s Prayer:
Kuala Lumpur - traveler's prayer

After visiting KL, I traveled to Malacca, the other culture center of Malaysia (besides Penang)!


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