Exploring KL & Malaysia

Having lived in Kuala Lumpur for around 12 years I always found time to explore new places. Sometimes I would venture out to places like Melaka or Port Dickson, and other times to Penang or Cameron Highlands. But most of the time I would explore KL and look for interesting places where I could take my family for a nice day out or fun places to eat or shop. These are some of the places that I most enjoyed.

Jalan Alor

This food street is one of the most famous in KL and located just behind Jalan Bukit Bintang. At night you can find all kinds of food including seafood, chicken wings, satay, mee goreng, barbeque meat, steamed corn, fresh fruit juice and all varieties of Chinese and Thai food and more. In the mornings and during the day vendors sell fruits, vegetables, different varieties of durian and nasi padang amongst other things. When I first moved to Kuala Lumpur I lived very close to Jalan Alor so would walk past it every day and frequently ate here. Jalan Alor is also a must to bring visitors when they come to Malaysia. The street is bustling and alive at night and great fun to sit and enjoy a delicious meal with friends.

Rawang & Fraser Hill

If you are interested to in a getaway from Kuala Lumpur for the day or perhaps the weekend, then Fraser Hill is a nice place to visit. The drive from KL takes around 2 hours and the roads are very nice with some great views along the way. We drove through Rawang which is really beautiful with lakes and waterfalls  and lovely views.

Lake in Rawang

Small river in Rawang

Once you arrive at the Gap Road you'll need to check the timetable of the road opening as it is a one way road system and quite long. Once the road is open to cars driving up to Fraser Hill all the cars may then drive up while cars wanting to drive down must wait their turn. It is worth arriving at the gap road early as queues do tend to build up. The gap road is actually a beautiful drive uphill on a narrow winding road through the jungle.

After exiting the gap road at the top you will begin to see why Fraser Hill is so nice. The weather is a lot cooler than down in KL and the houses have an "English cottage" look to them. There are many things that people do such as hiking, playing golf, bird watching, horse riding or simply relaxing and exploring the small shops.

The Clock Tower at Fraser Hill

Sign Post at Fraser Hill

Fraser Hill Golf Club

We sometimes like to stay at Ye Olde Smokehouse which has a hotel with some very nice old styled rooms and serves some great food like Roast Chicken and Beef Wellington. It's a little expensive but well worth the visit. There is a nice garden and good views from the Smokehouse.

Ye Olde Smokehouse

Sunway Lagoon Wildlife Park

Sunway Lagoon is a pretty nice place to visit especially with the kids. Whether you are visiting the Water Park, Amusement Park, Extreme Park, Scream Park or Wildlife Park, you are certain to have a fantastic time. And having one of the biggest shopping malls in Malaysia right next door makes it even better.

Normally we will visit the Wildlife Park and then stroll over to the Shopping Mall for lunch and some shopping.

The Wildlife Park has around 150 species of animals from around the world with many interactive animal-themed attractions. We’ve been here a couple of times and always thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, in fact we very much prefer this small wildlife park to the main KL Zoo.

These are some of the photos I took during our visits.

Red Iguana

I've never actually taken my kids to the Water or Amusement Parks at Sunway Lagoon as they were too young, but here are a couple of views of the water park.

Sin Sze Si Ya Temple

The Sin Sze Si Ya Temple (also known as Sze Yah Temple) in Kuala Lumpur dates back to 1864 and is one of the oldest Chinese temples in Kuala Lumpur. It can be found down a small backstreet adjacent to Central Market.

The temple has a very long and interesting history. Today it is known for it's charity work. Since 1907, the temple has been giving out two thirds of its income as charity to educational purposes and to hospitals.

What I like about this temple is that it is somewhat hidden away. You can drive right past it without even realizing that it is there. But in fact it is just a minute's walk away from Central Market and the Chinatown district in Kuala Lumpur. And I like the fact that sunlight can shine down from the roof into the temple.

Taman Rimba Ampang

One of my favourite places to explore some wildlife and to get away from the city is Taman Rimba Ampang, also known as Ampang Forest Reserve and Ampang Recreational Forest. To get there you just drive out of the city on Jalan Ampang until you pass through a small village and reach the end of the road where you can find the start of the forest. There is a carpark and the cost of entering is just one ringgit.

Taman Rimba Ampang is actually 25,000 hectares of Lowland Forest Reserve, popular for birdwatchers and picnickers and for those who just love to walk along it's 1 km road through the forest to get away from the city. One can also find hiking trails, swimming areas and even a children's playground.

In the forest, expect to see exotic birds, monkeys and a huge variety of insects.

A wild monkey approaches some local boys who are playing

The boys get a thrill from jumping off the bridge into the river below

A beautifully coloured grasshopper

Ladybird beetles

Closeup of a Red Dragonfly

Tortoise Shell Beetle

At Taman Rimba Ampang, one can really get close to nature. There is a huge variety of insects, especially dragonflies and leaf beetles. If you visit in the mornings, the dragonflies at less active and easier to photograph as they need to warm up their bodies in the sun.

Pink Dancer

An unusual indigo coloured dragonfly

A Pair of Crickets

A black ant at Taman Rimba Ampang

A dragonfly warms itself in the early morning sun

Little India and China Town

With it's rich colonial past, Malaysia has lots of beautiful old shop houses and buildings that can be found all around the city. In the China Town and Little India areas some of the beautiful buildings are brightly painted in vivid colours.

Many interesting shops and restaurants, hotels and backpackers accommodation can be found in the area with some excellent Indian restaurants.

More old and colourful buildings...

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