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One Day in Kuala Lumpur

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While many visitors simply pass through Kuala Lumpur (KL) on a quick stopover between flights, or head straight to its many malls, Malaysia's capital city has a number of interesting sights which make it worth a longer stay. From colonial-era churches to stunning art museums, leave the shopping sprees for another time, and discover what KL is really about!

Good for
  • History Buff
  • Art and Architecture Lover
  • Nature Lover
  • Peace and Quiet Seeker

10 Places

8 City Tips

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Map

10 Places

Petronas Twin Towers

Architectural Buildings

Batu Caves

Sacred & Religious Sites, Caverns & Caves

Islamic Arts Museum Malaysia

Art Museums

Kuala Lumpur Bird Park

Nature & Wildlife Areas, Parks

Menara Kuala Lumpur

Observation Decks & Towers

National Mosque (Masjid Negara)

Sacred & Religious Sites

Sri Maha Mariamman Temple

Sacred & Religious Sites

Sin Sze Si Ya Temple

Sacred & Religious Sites

Perdana Botanical Garden

Gardens, Parks, Bodies of Water

Railway Station and Administration Building

Architectural Buildings

Jeroen M's City Tips

  • Tipping about 10% is common in KL's restaurants (if the service merits it, of course).
  • Kuala Lumpur (KL) is a disconnected city and it's not easy to walk between sights. Public transport is good but taxis are the most efficient way to get around.
  • Taxis are affordable and can be found driving around town at all hours; simply flag one down. Avoid lengthy detours by hailing one already heading in the right direction.
  • Taxis are all fitted with meters, insist they use these. If a driver suggests a fixed price for a city center ride, simply hail another taxi.
  • Malaysia is hot — walk fast and you'll work up a sweat in no time. Dress light and plan activities for early morning or late afternoon to make the most of the cooler hours.
  • In practice, tourists wander around central KL in shorts and revealing shirts. But to earn respect from the locals, wear long trousers or ankle-length skirts.
  • In mosques and other holy places you're expected to dress modestly; at some mosques clothing is provided, for both men and women.
  • Taxi drivers can be tipped by rounding the price up by a few ringgits.
  • Save
    Petronas Twin Towers
    Architectural Buildings
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    Jeroen M Says:

    These dazzling twin skyscrapers are Malaysia's landmark sight, a towering symbol of modernity. Visitors can go up to the skybridge, suspended between the towers about halfway up, and to the very top for great views over KL.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Try to visit at sunset — around 6pm — or after dark, when you can catch the sparkling city lights. Bring binoculars for close-up views of the hotel rooftop bars!
    • Book online or arrive in the morning to queue up for the tickets for the day; you can choose a time slot so you can come back later.
    • Tickets are not cheap, so perhaps just enjoy the free view of the towers from the KLCC park below.
    • The tower illumination is switched off around midnight.
    Plan to stay:/
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 286 things to do in Kuala Lumpur
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Nice View, Awesome Place 21/08/2017
    • great 21/08/2017
    • Petronas Twin Towers
    Address:
    Kuala Lumpur City Centre
    Kuala Lumpur 50088
    Malaysia
    Phone:
    +60 3-2331 8080
    Hours:
    Mon
    09:00 - 17:00
    18:00 - 21:00
    Tue
    02:00 - 05:00
    22:00 - 01:00
    Tue - Wed
    09:00 - 21:00
    Thu
    00:00 - 23:59
    Fri - Sun
    09:00 - 21:00
    Other:
  • Save
    Batu Caves
    Sacred & Religious Sites, Caverns & Caves
    See more photos
    Jeroen M Says:

    Combining a marvelous natural sight — amazing and huge limestone caves — with the local Indian community's most important temple complex, the Batu Caves are undoubtedly a highlight of any KL visit.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • It's a long slog up a staircase to the caves; arrive early to enjoy both cooler temperatures and fewer crowds.
    • Finding the right bus from central KL to the Batu Caves can be tricky. Take a taxi to get there, and then take the bus from just outside the main entrance back into town.
    • The monkeys living around the caves can be aggressive when they think you're hiding food, don't try to feed them or carry food in your hands.
    Plan to stay:/
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #2 of 4 things to do in Batu Caves
    • A good place to visit 21/08/2017
    • Cool cave 20/08/2017
    • Batu Caves
    Other:
  • Save
    Islamic Arts Museum Malaysia
    Art Museums
    See more photos
    Jeroen M Says:

    Models of famous mosques, intricate tiles, calligraphy — the Islamic Arts Museum is one of the best in KL, and its cool halls are a welcome escape on a hot day.

    Good for
    • History Buff
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    • Hidden Gems
    Tips
    • Easy to combine with the National Mosque and several other sights in the immediate area.
    Plan to stay:/
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #2 of 286 things to do in Kuala Lumpur
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • A great collection of artefacts from the Islamic world 20/08/2017
    • Wonderful museum 20/08/2017
    • Islamic Arts Museum Malaysia
    Address:
    Jalan Lembah
    Kuala Lumpur 50480
    Malaysia
    Phone:
    +60 3-2274 2020
    Other:
  • Save
    Kuala Lumpur Bird Park
    Nature & Wildlife Areas, Parks
    See more photos
    Jeroen M Says:

    A lush city-center valley closed off with a huge net is home to hundreds of species of tropical birds flying around freely (with others held in smaller enclosures). KL's bird park makes for a great couple of hours away from the mall.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Near the entrance, the kids can have their photo taken with a parrot — or other types of tame bird — balanced on their shoulder or head.
    Plan to stay:/
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #8 of 286 things to do in Kuala Lumpur
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Interesting experience with freely flying birds 20/08/2017
    • Way Better than Expected 19/08/2017
    • Kuala Lumpur Bird Park
    Address:
    920 Jalan Cenderawasih
    Taman Tasik Perdana
    Kuala Lumpur 50480
    Malaysia
    Phone:
    +60 3-2272 1010
    Other:
  • Save
    Menara Kuala Lumpur
    Observation Decks & Towers
    See more photos
    Jeroen M Says:

    The Menara Tower in central KL allows you to stay indoors or step outside on the open deck for sweeping views across the city, including the nearby Petronas Towers.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Thrill Seeker
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • The cheaper tickets are for the lower enclosed viewing area; full price tickets are also valid for the upper outdoor viewing deck, with good downward views too.
    Plan to stay:/
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #9 of 286 things to do in Kuala Lumpur
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Fabulous views 20/08/2017
    • KL tower 20/08/2017
    • Menara Kuala Lumpur
    Address:
    No. 2 Jalan Punchak
    Off Jalan P Ramlee
    Kuala Lumpur 50250
    Malaysia
    Phone:
    60 3 2020 5444
    Price range:
    US$52 - US$52
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    09:00 - 22:00
    Other:
  • Save
    National Mosque (Masjid Negara)
    Sacred & Religious Sites
    See more photos
    Jeroen M Says:

    This proud and airy 1960s concrete structure with a capacity of 15,000 worshipers is a great place to learn about the place of Islam in Malaysia. Friendly volunteers guide you around the huge complex and, while the prayer room itself can't be entered, you can still peek in from outside.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • History Buff
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Everyone is welcome to visit, but not during prayer time or on religious holidays; check the website for exact opening hours.
    • Both men and women need to be modestly dressed to enter; if you're in shorts you can borrow an elegant robe at the entrance.
    • Admission and tours are free, and donations welcome.
    Plan to stay:/
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #18 of 286 things to do in Kuala Lumpur
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Grand mosque was grand 20/08/2017
    • Elegant and Peaceful 20/08/2017
    • National Mosque (Masjid Negara)
    Address:
    Jalan Perdana
    Kuala Lumpur 50480
    Malaysia
    Phone:
    +60195052052
    Other:
  • Save
    Sri Maha Mariamman Temple
    Sacred & Religious Sites
    See more photos
    Jeroen M Says:

    A lovely and historic Hindu temple in central KL, complete with the colorful tower found in many South Indian temples.

    Good for
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    • History Buff
    Tips
    • Easy to combine with shopping on Petaling Street in nearby Chinatown.
    • Visitors are welcome at practically any time. You'll need to take your shoes off before entering though.
    Plan to stay:/
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #24 of 286 things to do in Kuala Lumpur
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Cow poop and urine everywhere 20/08/2017
    • Grand poopy entrance 20/08/2017
    • Sri Maha Mariamman Temple
    Address:
    163 Jln. Tun H.S. Lee
    Kuala Lumpur
    Malaysia
    Phone:
    +60 3-2078 3467
    Other:
  • Save
    Sin Sze Si Ya Temple
    Sacred & Religious Sites
    See more photos
    Jeroen M Says:

    This fascinating historic Taoist temple lies between KL's modern buildings, near Chinatown. Red and gold are the dominant colors in the small complex, and there are lots of quirky spiraled incense sticks suspended from the ceilings. Hang around for a few minutes to observe locals performing their rituals.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    • Hidden Gems
    Tips
    • Visitors are welcome to wander around peacefully.
    • The temple is free to visit.
    Plan to stay:/
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #69 of 286 things to do in Kuala Lumpur
    • Chinese temple 20/08/2017
    • Small beautiful Tao temple 15/08/2017
    • Sin Sze Si Ya Temple
    Address:
    Jalan Cheng Lock
    Chinatown
    Kuala Lumpur 50000
    Malaysia
    Phone:
    +60 3-2078 9052
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    07:00 - 17:00
    Other:
  • Save
    Perdana Botanical Garden
    Gardens, Parks, Bodies of Water
    See more photos
    Jeroen M Says:

    For fantastic displays of tropical flowers and plants, wander around the huge Botanical Gardens, nor far from KL Sentral. The views of the skyscrapers in the city center are quite impressive too.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Hidden Gems
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • The gardens are quite large — grab a map to plan your route around the various sections.
    Plan to stay:/
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #19 of 286 things to do in Kuala Lumpur
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Interesting but too big an area to visit all on foot 20/08/2017
    • Amazing greenery 20/08/2017
    • Perdana Botanical Garden
    Address:
    Jalan Parlimen
    Tun Abdul Razak Heritage Park
    Kuala Lumpur 50480
    Malaysia
    Phone:
    +60 3-2617 6404
    Other:
  • Save
    Railway Station and Administration Building
    Architectural Buildings
    See more photos
    Jeroen M Says:

    The beautiful former train station has been replaced by the modern KL Sentral complex, but is still a stop for a few trains passing through. Looking like something out of a fairy tale, it's one of the most impressive colonial-style railway stations anywhere; and is built in the Moorish style with elegant turrets, domes and capped pavilions.

    Good for
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    • History Buff
    Tips
    • It's prettiest from outside; note that you'll officially need permission for photography inside the building.
    • The attached Heritage Hotel is worth a quick look for its old-fashioned travelers' bar.
    Plan to stay:/
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #35 of 286 things to do in Kuala Lumpur
    • Not much to see but easy to visit. 16/08/2017
    • Beautiful British colonial structure 14/08/2017
    • Railway Station and Administration Building
    Address:
    Jalan Hishamuddin
    Kuala Lumpur 53800
    Malaysia
    Phone:
    +60 3-2267 1200
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