Kuala Lumpur & Genting Highlands

After a wonderful experience we were ready for our next adventure in Malaysia.

Day 1 – 1 June 2018

We left our hotel in Singapore by 8:30am and reached the bus stand in 15 min. We had reached the bus stand too early, so we sat in the waiting area. A girl called Jen Chin was doing a tourist survey and asked us a few question about our trip. We told her about the places we went in Singapore and she told us we missed out Garden of Bays. We finally sat in the bus at 10am. After 15-20 min we got down at immigration office with our luggage and completed the Singapore exit process. We then sat on the bus and crossed a small bridge which separated Singapore and Malaysia.

We were immediately taken to Malaysia immigration office at 11am to complete the entry formalities. After the immigration, we were taken to a rest station, where we could buy food and use restroom. We saw a fruit shop and saw many fruits which we never see in India. We were quite curious, so the shopkeeper gave us one of the fruit to try. We had no idea how to eat it either, so she peeled the cover for us and we tasted it. It tasted a bit like dry lichi and even looked similar to lichi. We decided to buy the fruit and realised that we had forgotten to take out our Malaysian Ringits from the main luggage and only had Singapore dollars which they were not ready to take. So we went back and ate whatever we had packed from breakfast in hotel. The seats in the bus had a massage option so we enjoyed the massage chair on the way. I slept most of the journey and got up when we reached the city. We clicked pictures of the beautiful buildings and the bus dropped us on the road at 5:30pm.

Our travel agent picked us up in a mini bus. He decided to take take us directly to see Petronas tower. I had not put eyeliner, kajal and lipstick and was not wearing any earings. I had slept on the way and I did not want to take sleepy pictures. Thankfully I always kept a hoop earings and kajal, eyeliner and one red lipstick in my purse. So I opened the selfie camera of Papa’s phone and somehow stuck the phone between the handle bars of the seat and took out kajal and lipstick which were easy to apply. The most difficult part was putting eyeliner while we were in the car. I already suck at putting eyeliner properly and I had to do it with the jerks and breaks in the car. It was quite an experience. If you zoom in the selfie pictures you can see the crooked lines.

We reached the Petronas Twin Tower by 6:30pm. The Petronas Towers are twin skyscrapers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. According to the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH)’s official definition and ranking, they were the tallest buildings in the world from 1998 to 2004 and remain the tallest twin towers in the world. We clicked lots of pictures there. The view was beautiful. We also went inside and found out that the lower floors had a mall called Suria KLCC and featured mostly foreign luxury goods and high-street labels.

We were then taken to Havelly Restaurant for dinner. It had Rajasthan themed decorations inside and 90s songs performed by 2 singers. The food was also very tasty. After dinner, we finally reached Silka Maytower Hotel & Serviced Apartments. They took 100 Ringit as security deposit and gave our room keys. All of us got different floors. Mummy Papa got a room in 28th floor and we got a room in 29th floor. The lift of the building was too fast and we felt air pressure in our ears similar to airplanes. After reaching 29th floor, Vibhi & I searched for our room. We checked the entire floor twice and couldn’t find our room. Finally we saw a room service person on our floor and asked him to help us find our room. It was inside a small gallery and we hadn’t checked that place before. Finally we kept our luggage and went to 28th floor. This time we knew where to search and easily found Mummy Papa’s room. After everyone settled in their rooms, we decided to go down and look around outside the hotel. We had spotted a street with lots of shops just outside the hotel. We got down at 9:30pm and went to the shop street. After looking at the shops we realised that it was Eid shop since all we could see were Hijabs and Kurtas. We then went to Jakel Mall which was just opposite our hotel and we were again disappointed by the collections. We realised that we would not find anything for us there and went back to our hotel in an hour.

Day 2 – 2 June 2018

We woke up by 7am and got ready. We were given instructions to wear long clothes otherwise we would not be able to go inside the cave temples. It was quite funny that in the same trip, we had been asked to wear short clothes (Pattaya) and long clothes (Batu Caves). We left the hotel by 9am.

We reached Istana Negara or the National Palace of Malaysia by 9:20am. It is the official residence of the monarch of Malaysia. It is located along Jalan Tuanku Abdul Halim in northwestern Kuala Lumpur. We could see the beautiful entry gate and impressive looking palace in the distance. We took photos with the guards on horses outside the Palace gate.

Our next stop was Batu Caves where we reached by 10am. Batu Caves is a limestone hill that has a series of caves and cave temples in Gombak, Malaysia. The cave is one of the most popular Hindu shrines outside India, and is dedicated to Lord Murugan. Outside the caves, there is a 42.7-metre (140 ft) high statue of Lord Murugan. It is the tallest Lord Murugan statue in the world. It took us 10 mins to climb 272 steps to reach the caves. The limestone forming Batu Caves is said to be around 400 million years old. Rising almost 100 m above the ground, the Batu Caves temple complex consists of three main caves and a few smaller ones. The biggest, referred to as Cathedral Cave or Temple Cave, has a very high ceiling and features ornate Hindu shrines. Many of the shrines relate to the story of Lord Murugan’s victory over the demon Soorapadman. Water was seeping from the cave walls, so the floor was wet. We prayed in some of the shrines and went deeper into the caves. We climbed a few more steps and reached the top platform with few more shrines. There were lots of monkeys and pigeons there and some people were feeding them. We went outside the Temple caves and saw another cave nearby. It was dark caves and had tickets to go inside to see the flora & fauna of the caves. We didn’t go inside and instead just took photos near the entrance. When we came back to car, mummy and other aunties gave us prasad from the temple.

We then went to watch shop called Geneve Timepiece near Batu Caves. We looked around the shop but didn’t buy anything. One of the aunty bought a good looking set of jewelry and Mummy also wanted to buy but by the time she decided we had already started and the driver didn’t stop.

Our next destination was Genting Highlands. Our driver gave us option to either go there by skyway or return by skyway. We chose to go there by skyway. So he dropped us at Awana Transport Hub. It had a few shops, so we went to a sweet shop and took lots of samples before going to the Awana Skyway entry gate. The Awana Skyway is a gondola lift system connecting Awana Transport Hub, Chin Swee Temple and SkyAvenue in Genting Highlands. The 2.8-kilometre journey up the mountain peak took about 10 minutes. Chin Swee temple was a free stop but by the time we realised that we could get down at the stop, the gondola doors closed again. The view from Skyway was amazing. We got down at SkyAvenue and went out to explore the place.

Resorts World Genting, originally known as Genting Highlands Resort is an integrated hill resort development comprising hotels, shopping malls, theme parks and casinos, perched on the peak of Mount Ulu Kali at 1,800 meters high. It has six hotels and a resort hotel. We visited Genting Grand Hotel, Maxims Hotel and First World Hotel while exploring. Our driver had told us that we would see casinos here, so we went in search of casinos. After searching for a while and following the signs, we finally reached on of the casino called Circus Palace in Maxims Hotel. When we decided to go inside the guards checked our ID cards to make sure people above age 21 only got in. Since Vibhi was 20 years old, they did not let him in. Casino had the latest electronic table games and slots machines as well as stakes gaming tables around with classic games such as Roulette, Pai Gow, Baccarat, Blackjack and many more. Many people were playing and we stopped by a few Roulette tables and tried to understand how the game worked just by looking at other people play. We were not allowed to take any photos inside. I didn’t know that so I took a video of one of the games and immediately stopped when I found out that it wasn’t allowed. Luckily no one had seen me take a video so I was safe. We found a water & juice counter and drank juice and filled our empty water bottles. We filled a few extra glasses for Vibhi and other kids waiting outside.

We then went outside the buildings and saw clouds floating just a few feet from us. The weather was very cool outside. After some time, we went back inside and sat in a restaurant to eat chicken puff. After eating we continued exploring the mall. We saw a light show and some people wearing huge costumes. The other families stopped some of them to take pictures and by the time we tried to get pictures with them they were getting late so they didn’t stop. Mummy was very upset that we could not take pictures and she scolded me & Vibhi. Some dramatic moments later, we calmed down and went to the ground floor where there were many luxury cars on display. After taking pictures, we went back upstairs and reached the entertainment section. On the way we also clicked pictures with a man dressed up as Iron Man. The entertainment section had some interesting zones where we clicked pictures & videos. We went to the pick up location by 2:30pm.

On the way back we stopped at Chin Swee Temple. It  is a Taoist temple in Genting Highlands which has a hall and a pagoda in the campus. The view of the valley from the temple was picturesque. The temple looked unique and beautiful.

We reached Kuala Lumpur by 4pm and we didn’t want to back to our hotel, so we asked the driver to take us to a good place for shopping. He took us to Chinatown which is centered on Petaling Street and is known for its fashion shops and a large covered market with produce, clothes and accessories. We bought a few T-shirts and dresses apart from a switch converter and goggles cover. We explored the market for almost 2.5 hours.

The driver then took us to Tasty Chapatti for dinner. The restaurant was crowded and the food was not that tasty which was ironic. After dinner, we went back to our hotel.

Day 3 – 3 June 2018

We went for a walk at 8am outside the hotel in search of souvenirs for gift. All the shops were closed so we came back to hotel and had breakfast by 9am. During breakfast we found out that others had cancelled the plans of going for swimming. So we went back to our room, got ready and packed our luggage for checkout by 10:30am. Later we found out that everyone else had gone to the swimming pool except us. We checked out of the hotel by 12pm and got our 100 Ringit security deposit back. The driver was waiting for us and we left the hotel with our luggage.

Our first stop was National Monument. The National Monument is a sculpture that commemorates those who died in Malaysia’s struggle for freedom, principally against the Japanese occupation during World War II and the Malayan Emergency, which lasted from 1948 until 1960. It was good place to find out about Malaysian history and take pictures. Th driver then took us to National Park but it was too sunny so no one wanted to go to the park.

He then took us to Beryl’s Chocolate Kingdom for shopping. We looked around but we did not buy any chocolates from there.

Finally we reached Petronas Twin Tower by 1:50pm. We left our bags in the cab and came out. Mummy later decided to go back and get the bag but couldn’t find where he had parked the cab. Some cultural program was about to start in the lower floor and we thought we would get to see it. But the driver had bought us 2pm tickets for going up in the Petronas Tower. So we ran to the entry gate and passed the security check. They took a group photo with green screen and gave us our pass. We got our green ribbon pass and waited for a while. After getting instructions, we went to 41st floor which had SkyBridge connecting the 2 towers. The view from there was amazing and we clicked lots of pictures. After 10-15 min we were called back from the bridge. The black group had arrived by the time we left from there. We then went to 83rd floor from the lift then changed to a smaller lift and went to 86th floor. It was the topmost floor which was used by people. The 87th and 88th floor were kept for machines. We could see the other tower from the window. It also had a sample of the design on top of the tower and the city plan. We took loads of photos throughout. It was an incredible experience. After 10-15 min they called us to go back. We stopped at 83rd floor where we took the pictures that was clicked on green screen and now had Petronas Towers & KL Tower photoshopped into it. After the awesome tour we went to the mall area and passed our time looking at expensive stores.

Finally we left from there and searched for our cab. We could not find him and some of us panicked because all of our luggage was in the cab. Mummy had forgotten to take her bag which had our passports. After some panic, we finally found the cab. We were very hungry so we asked the driver to take us to some place to eat. He took us around Beryl’s Chocolate Kingdom shop several times in an attempt to find a restaurant. We finally gave up and asked him to take us to a restaurant on the way to the airport. We had lunch in a small restaurant with weird menu. Each table had a few bananas kept on it and they stood there and counted every time we ate a banana. After this funny lunch experience, we reached airport. While standing in the check in counter, we saw lots of people taking TVs and other huge electronic goods from Malaysia to India. After the check in, all 3 families had different flights and we finally said our goodbyes and left for our gates. After a wonderful trip, we boarded our planes to return back to India.

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