A mosaic of cultures, great food, amazing shopping experiences and world-class entertainment awaits in the Garden City of Lights
Kuala Lumpur (or KL) had its humble beginnings as a tin-mining town back in the 1850s before it became the federal capital of Malaysia. Today, it’s the country's fastest growing city and a tourist hotspot – especially for travelling shopaholics. If that's you, you'll want to check out KL's mega-malls for bargain and top-end buys: try Pavilion, Mid-Valley Megamall, The Gardens Mid-Valley, Publika, The Curve, Ikano Power Centre and KLCC.
If you’re more of a culture vulture, you have the option of taking the Malaysia Heritage Walk for an introduction to Pasar Seni and Chinatown, or catching a performance by the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra at the Petronas Twin Towers. Learn more about the history and heritage of Malaysia by visiting the National Museum, National History Museum, Dataran Merdeka or the Islamic Arts Museum Malaysia.
First-time visitors should sample all the local delicacies Kuala Lumpur has to offer. Don’t miss the Lot 10 Hutong food court in Bukit Bintang and Jalan Alor, a popular local food street.
Things to do: Kuala Lumpur
A taste of Italy
Whimsical Gelateria & Caffe opens in new windowby Cielo Dolci offers some of the most exquisite frozen desserts in town. The gelato flavours are stored in authentic pozzetti tubs to preserve their texture and taste. But what’s really unique are the surprising flavours available on rotation – you might find tau fu fa (soy pudding), nasi lemak, beef bacon or popcorn.
Changkat Bukit Bintang is a great place to grab dinner or a cold one after a long day of sight-seeing. There are plenty of restaurants and bars lining both sides of the street. A popular location for tourists and locals alike, the area comes alive as night falls.
Reach dizzying heights
Visit the Petronas Twin Towers opens in new window and either walk across the Skybridge linking the two towers at Levels 41 and 42, or head on up to the Observation Deck on Level 86 to take in the breathtaking view of the city.
Splashing good time
Sunway Lagoon opens in new window, an amusement and water park, which includes a man-made surf beach, recently added a new attraction called the Vuvuzela to its list. It’s the world’s largest water ride, which is a must-try for adventure seekers!
Your cave or mine?
A 272-step climb will lead you to a Hindu temple and shrine, which form part of the Batu Caves opens in new windowtemple complex. The main attractions here include a large statue of a Hindu god at the entrance, frolicking monkeys and the view of the city skyline from the top of the steps.
Travel time 40-60 minutes
Taxi Approx MYR RM100
Bus The Express Coach departs every 30 minutes. MYR RM10 (adult); MYR RM6 (child). Journey takes about 1 hour.
Train KLIA Express departs every 15 minutes during peak hours and 20 minutes during off-peak hours. MYR RM35 (adult); MYR RM15 (child). The journey to the city centre takes 28 minutes.Back to top
When to go
Malaysia experiences tropical weather all year round, so there isn’t really a bad time to visit. However, do take note of the wetter monsoon seasons which occur in late May to September and November to March. If you're planning to include a trip to the islands on the east coast, it’s best to avoid the period between November and February, as beach resorts will be closed then.
The city comes alive during key festivals such as Christmas and New Year, Chinese New Year, Merdeka or Independence Day (August 31) and Hari Raya Puasa.Back to top
There’s a free shuttle service – GOKL Free City Bus Service, which ferries people around KLCC, Bukit Bintang and Chinatown. The Green Line travels between KLCC and Bukit Bintang, whereas the Purple Line takes travellers from Bukit Bintang to Chinatown and back. There’s also the KL Hop On Hop Off, which for a fee, allows you to utilise the bus service for either 24 hours or 48 hours as you enjoy (at a leisurely pace) the 40 attractions the bus takes you through. Tourists can hop on and off at any of the 22 designated stops.Back to top
These are the restaurants this top chef loves in Kuala Lumpur
From fine-dining restaurants to local food stalls, Sricharan Venkatesh, Chef de Cuisine at Nadodi tells us where his favourite F&B haunts are in Kuala Lumpur.
This street food haven is less than an hour from KL
Klang is not the only foodie road trip worth taking when you’re visiting KL. Seremban offers a more diverse range of hawker food at affordable prices.
The quirky side of Kuala Lumpur most tourists don't see
From home-grown farms to private dining experiences and local hang-outs, these are the best places to visit to see the more offbeat side of the Malaysian capital.
The nature retreats near Kuala Lumpur you have to see to believe
Firefly colonies, rice paddy fields for as far as your eye can see, and the oldest quartz formation in the world ... all this and more are just an easy drive away from Kuala Lumpur.
5 reasons to visit Kuala Lumpur
The Malaysian capital has it all – unique architecture, timeless mountain ranges and tasty food, all of which add up to a rich culture and history.
I went on an 'achievement holiday' in Kuala Lumpur. Here's how it went!
Returning from holiday having acquired a new skill or accomplishing something is the latest trend in travel. For a jewellery fan, learning to be a pewtersmith in Malaysia was the perfect way to 'upskill on downtime'.
Legit cafes in Kuala Lumpur for coffee junkies
Marcus Foo, co-founder and managing director of Papa Palheta Malaysia, shares his five favourite cafes for seriously good coffee in KL.
Why you should see Kuala Lumpur on a bicycle
Malaysia's capital Kuala Lumpur boasts amazing skyscrapers, a myriad of natural attractions, colonial architecture and friendly locals. What better way to see it than on a bicycle.