Sunday, June 10, 2018

Explore Malaysia like a PRO.

Explore Malaysia like a PRO.

Top attractions of Malaysia.

Since this is my first post, let me share the first out of norm International trip my BFF and I took a few years ago.

Well, It was a regular working day and I was sitting at my cubicle with my usual taught of quitting the job and traveling across the world (which by the way is the dream of most of the IT/Corporate Employees). Who comes to rescue when you have such taught?? Of course your group of friends.

BFF: Wt?? VISA?? why??
Me: I need a break
BFF: I cant..client meeting, deliverable blah blah
Me: Emotional blackmail
BFF: Okay fine. No more drama!!

Away from the hustle-bustle of our daily life, we are here in Langkawi, Malaysia to witness and make spectacular memories for life.

While strolling around the streets of Langkawi we interacted with locals and made a to-do list for our-self. Though we had difficulty communicating(Most of them do not know English) we were able to understand each other through our gestures. People seemed friendly and outgoing, In fact, we were offered snack while they gave us an insight of do`s and do not`s while in Langkawi.

Eagle Square:
Eagle square or as locally known Dataran Lang is located in a Kuah, Langkawi.
As you walk through the spectacular bay, Beauty of 12-meter tall eagle sculpture located on a deck welcomes you. This man-made statue facing a vast, blue sea with a stunning backdrop of mountains looks spectacular. You can enter this place anytime and it is absolutely free. Due to the temperature, Personally, I would love to go either in the morning/evening and take a peaceful walk around the bay enjoying the beautiful landscape and clicking as many photos as I can.

Eagle square Langkawi, Malaysia.

Langkawi Legend Park:
Langkawi legend park is locally called as Taman Legenda Langkawi. It is an informative, folklore themed park located near eagle square Kuah, Langkawi. This beautiful park spreads over an area of 50 hectares of land with a total of 17 sculptures depicting legends and myths about Langkawi from prehistory until modern times. The Gondowana stone wall located at the entrance of the park shows the formation of Langkawi Island from plate tectonic movement(Earths Movement). As you walk through this meaningful entrance you will see the beautiful and romantic pathway divided by a stretch of lush, tall trees.
Park is open to the public from 9 a.m to 6 p.m with an entry fee of 5.RM.

Underwater World Langkawi:
This is one of the popular and fascinating tourist attractions in Malaysia. This aquarium is home to more than 200 different underwater species including seals, sharks, penguin. The underwater world is divided into different sections:
1.The Sub – Antarctic Section
2.The Temperate Section
3.The Tropical Rainforest Section
4.The Freshwater Section
5.The Marine Life Section
6.The Coral Section
In the midst of all these sections, there is a place where you can touch and feel the python. If you are adventurous like my Bff and me, you can request the instructor to place the snake around your neck and take a picture.
Apart from all of this aquarium also offers a wide variety of programs suitable for children, as well as programs for higher education and professional teaching development.

Langkawi cable car and sky bridge:
Sky bridge is a curved suspension bridge high in the sky located 660 meters above sea level. You need to take the cable car from oriental village to reach The Langkawi Sky Bridge. Once on top and walking over the bridge, I was able to see the entire island and I was completely mesmerized by the breathtaking views it offers. Skip sky bridge only if you are traveling with kids who are scared of heights otherwise, it is one of the must visit places.
We spent our evening relaxing at the shores with delicious food and amazing people we met in Langkawi.

Cable Car to reach Sky Bridge.

We reached to Airport after delightful breakfast, for our next journey towards the capital of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur.

Kuala Lumpur(KL) offers abundant tourist attractions like Petronas Twin Towers, Batu Caves, Street Flea Markets, KL bird park, Museum.
The city offers various day or multi-day tour packages you can choose from, We did our research and booked a day tour from a local travel agent which covers pickup and drop from the hotel, admission/entry fee and tour guide to Petronas Twin Towers, Royal Palace, National Monument and National Museum.

Petronas Twin Towers:
Petronas which consists of 88 floors is the worlds tallest twin skyscrapers building. Except for the base of the towers, Both tower 1 and tower 2 is occupied by major companies like Petronas oil company, IBM, Microsoft, Reuters and more.

Petronas Twin Towers during the night, Kuala Lumpur.
My eyes were stuck at twin towers as we drove and as we came closer, I was completely awe-struck by the amazing talents involved in succeeding this Islamic themed architectural beauty. Tower offers an observation deck on the 86th floor to enjoy panoramic views and Double Decker Sky Bridge which connects two towers located at 41st and 42nd floor(two stories tall). Our tour just included the entry to Sky Bridge and we loved it. The view from 41st and 42nd floor was spectacular. If you guys want to experience sky bridge and also the observation deck I would suggest you book tickets in advance so you can skip the long lines for purchasing tickets, saving time and hassle. Before you are done with twin tower tour, you get to look around as much as you like and enjoy high end shopping at KL Suria Mall located at the base of these towers. Besides Twin Towers, you can stroll around spacious and beautifully landscaped KLCC park which features trails, a pool, and a fountain.

The Cocoa Center:
I was told this short break to Cocoa Center is usually included in most of the tours because of the commission involved. However, I liked spending time in this shop as I got to taste and buy Malaysian style white coffee. Although I am a vivid chocolate lover, I did not buy a thing here except for white coffee because of the expensive price tags (yes they sell everything at a higher cost).

Royal Palace/Kings Place:
Kings place was built in 1928. since then it is been renovated to become the palace of his majesty which in turn was brought by the federal government to provide royal shelter for The Malaysian King. Entry to the palace is restricted, The main entrance is guarded by 2 guards dressed in British uniform.
Each guard and their horse is provided a tiny room/shelter located at the two edges of the main gate and it is constructed to protect guards from the weather. Even though we were not allowed to access the inside of the palace, The view from the outside with those horses and guards looked very royal and stunning. Photography is not prohibited so you can pose at the gate or right next to these guards and click as many pictures as you would like.

National Monument:
The National Monument is a sculpture that was built in honor of those who died in Malaysia's struggle for freedom. Every year on 31st July the Prime Minister, heads of the military, and the police pay their respects to the fallen heroes by laying garlands at the monument.
The sculpture that stands as a centerpiece of the monument is 15 meters (49.21 feet) tall, made of bronze and this historic sculpture has made its place in the book of records for being the tallest freestanding bronze group sculptures.
It is located at a walking distance from lake gardens KL and it is open to the public from 8am-10.pm.

National Museum:
National Museum is a 3 story building located close to National Monument and Lake Gardens. Museum has four galleries allotted to ethnology and natural history. The displays range from free-standing pictures showing cultural events like weddings, festivals and costumes to traditional weapons, musical instruments, arts and crafts, ceramics, and flora and fauna. This guided trip to the museum was one of the best ways to explore/learn about Malaysian history and the culture they follow.

We were dropped off at the hotel once we finished our day trip. While we were still in the awe of the experiences we had so far, We headed out to experience the vibrant nightlife city offered and I must say it was incredible.

A fellow traveler was impressed about our impromptu journey and wanted to tag along so we met him at the hotels breakfast dinning and came up with a plan for next three days(Day 1: Batu Caves and Street shopping, Day 2: Genting Highlands, Day 3: Sunway Lagoon and more).

Day 1: Batu caves and street shopping.
Batu Caves:
Batu Caves is one of the oldest and most visited tourist places in Malaysia. Limestone forming Batu Caves is said to be 400 million years old, This ancient hill is home for multiple caves(small and big) and Hindu temples. You will be welcomed by 140 feet tall gold statue of a Hindu deity called Murugan before you start your journey towards 272 steps which takes you to the limestone cave.
As we entered the cave it was so cool and peaceful that my mind, body and soul felt light and refreshing. There are multiple temples in the cave and you get to witness how beautiful Hindu traditions are.

Hindu Deity statue at Batu Caves, Kuala Lumpur.


Central Market and China Town/Petaling Street experience:
Took the train to Central Market as we wanted to explore local markets and experience street shopping at China Town/Petaling Street.
Central Market and China Town are located at walking distance from each other. Both these places are must go if you are a shopping spree just like us.

Central Market is located in this building called Pesar Seni which has been around for a very long time. As soon you enter this closed market you will notice the stretch of shops arranged based on different race and cultures and you will realize, Malaysia is home for multinational(Chinese, Indian, Malay) cultures. You can shop/purchase accessories, wood carvings, hand crafts and many more. Not just shopping you can even get a Physic/Tarot readings for yourself and in the midst of everything if you are tied you can get yourself a relaxing fish pedicure and fill in your stomach with food from local stalls located in the market.

Central Market, Kuala Lumpur.

Once we were done with our shopping and fish pedicure, We were on our way to experience China Town. China Town is a very busy place be it a day or night The hustling and bustling never stops. China Town is home for all sorts of counterfeit items. You can buy clothes, jackets, hand bags, watches anything and everything from brands like Nike, Louis Vuitton, Adidas and keep in mind you get products for less if you show case your bargain talent and come to an agreement with shop keepers. As you walk further you will find multiple sidewalk vendors, push carts with delicious and mouth watering street food, we were involved in indulging the rest of the night at the market.

Street food at China Town, Kuala Lumpur.

Day 2:
Genting Highlands:
Genting Highland is a pleasant, Frosty hill station located an hour away from KL. It is famous for indoor and out door themed parks, cable car rides. There are buses from KL to Genting Highland every hour but i would suggest you guys to check the departure and arrival timings before hand or if that is not possible at least buy return tickets as soon as you arrive because there are chances that they cancel the buses due to unknown reasons and there is high demand for bus tickets so chances are you may not get one(We had to wait 2 hours(Till 11 PM)for the next bus to depart). Got off at the bus station and took a local train to our hotel, We spoke about how safe Kuala Lumpur/Malaysia is as we walked towards the hotel.

Day 3:
Sunway Lagoon and More:
Sunway lagoon is a themed park located around 10 miles away from KL city center. Park offers plenty of water activities, Fun Rides, Adventurous activities and more. Sunway lagoon is divided into multiple zones like Scream Park, Amusement Park, Wildlife Park and Water Park.

Fun rides at Sunway Lagoon, Kuala Lumpur.


We also got a chance to cover Merdeka Square, National Mosque, KL Bird Park, Butterfly Park and more.

We were back at Bangalore International Airport next day. Although we were heading back to our monotonous life our soul was cheerful and at ease, because we carried home not just the things we purchased but the beautiful memories that we will treasure for life.

Going on an international trip with my girl best friends was in my bucket list for a while now and i am glad life gave me an opportunity to tick it off.




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