Top 30 Places To Go Visit in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Kuala Lumpur
Kuala Lumpur | Source

Kuala Lumpur (which means "muddy estuary") is simply known as KL to the locals and frequent visitors. It is the capital and fastest growing city in Malaysia. Located in the state of Selangor, it is the main centre for the country's political, business and economic events. The main population is made up of the Malays, Chinese, Indians and Eurasians. Indigenous tribes from the peninsula and other tribes like the Dayaks, Ibans and Kadazans from East Malaysia made up a small percentage of the population.

The religion embraced by the Malays is Islam, but other religions like Buddhism, Taoism, Christianity and Hinduism are widely practised by different ethnic groups. The national language is Bahasa Malaysia, though English is widely used together with different dialects of the Chinese language (Cantonese, Mandarin, Hakka), Tamil and other Indian languages. The uniqueness of Malaysia is that the people of different ethnic backgrounds and religions live together in harmony. The country is rich in many cultures and the people here are warm and friendly.

Being close to the equator, Kuala Lumpur has a tropical rainforest climate which is warm, humid and sunny the whole year round. It is a paradise for tourists who want to experience the tropical sunshine and equatorial climate. For those who want to escape the heat, they can find comfort in the shopping malls which are equipped with air conditioning systems.

There are many interesting places to see in Kuala Lumpur and its surrounding areas. Public transportation here is very convenient - there are plenty of taxis and buses in the city area. The rail system provides a fast and efficient means of transportation for commuters.


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Petronas Twin Towers at night
Petronas Twin Towers at night | Source

These are the best and must-see places in Kuala Lumpur, and also top places of interest in Malaysia.


Petronas Twin Towers

Situated in the heart of the city where large corporate organisations conduct their businesses, the Petronas Twin Towers are known locally as Rocket Twin Towers and Jagung Kembar (meaning Twin Corns). The towers stand at 88 storeys high and have made big impressions on the city's skyline since their existence about two decades ago. The two towers are connected by a double storey Skybridge on the 41st and 42nd floors.


Suria KLCC

The Suria KLCC Shopping Complex lies at the feet of the Petronas Towers. (KLCC stands for Kuala Lumpur City Centre). It is one of the largest shopping malls in Malaysia, with many luxury shops, boutiques and food courts. The attractions in this six-storey complex include the Petronas Philharmonic Hall, Petrosains Science Centre, Petronas Art Gallery and the Aquaria Oceanarium.


Aquaria KLCC

The Aquaria KLCC has an oceanarium with over 5000 exhibits of animals and marine life. A 90-metre long transparent tunnel showcases a range of sea creatures from sharks, stingrays, turtles to fishes from the tropical waters. An educational place for visitors to learn about the ecosystem and water systems in the environment.


Central Market
Central Market | Source

Central Market

The Central Market building was built in 1888 and started off as a wet market. It has been renovated and is now a heritage site and landmark in the heart of Kuala Lumpur. There are many stalls in the Central Market selling a variety of handicrafts, artworks, clothings, shoes, accessories, Malaysian batiks and souvenirs.


Royal Selangor Visitor Centre

Royal Selangor is the world's largest maker of pewter. Visitors can find precious pewter items, gifts, tablewares and souvenirs at Royal Selangor which is renowned for its exquisite craftsmanship and designs in pewter.


Bukit Bintang

Before the KLCC and Petronas Twin Towers were built, Bukit Bintang was the main shopping hub in Kuala Lumpur a couple of decades ago. Now, the Bukit Bintang district has expanded immensely with the development of many shopping malls around it, including Bukit Bintang Plaza, Lot 10, Pavilion, Sungei Wang Plaza and Berjaya Times Square. Each mall has its own group of retail shops attracting both the local shoppers and tourists.


Petaling Street
Petaling Street | Source

Pavilion

The Pavilion is one of the new shopping malls situated in the entertainment and shopping district of Bukit Bintang. This multi-storey complex has over 450 retail outlets offering the latest fashion labels, entertainment, home furnishings, a fitness centre, food courts, cafes, a karaoke centre and cinema.


Petaling Street

Many tourists make their way to Petaling Street to experience the traditional and local foods that are available here. Even the locals are attracted to Petaling Street which seems to draw crowds of people especially in the evenings. Lots of bargains on fake goods, fashion items, accessories, souvenirs and gadgets.

A word of caution:

Hold on tight to your personal belongings and watch out for pickpockets!!



Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman

Similar to Petaling Street, Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman and Chow Kit areas offer bargain shopping and food. Some of the streets are transformed into night markets on weekends.


Chan See Shu Yuen Temple

There is a temple at the end of Petaling Street called Chan See Shu Yuen Temple which was built in the early 1900s. The exterior of the temple is decorated with ceramic sculptures while carvings and paintings can be seen in the interior.


Sri Maha Mariamman Temple
Sri Maha Mariamman Temple | Source
National Monument
National Monument | Source

Sri Maha Mariamman Temple

Not far from Petaling Street is an Indian Temple called Sri Maha Mariamman which was built in 1873. Like most Indian temples, the Sri Maha Mariamman is decorated with carvings of Hindu dieties, embellishments, motifs and precious stones. There are many small stalls outside the temple selling sweet smelling garlands and flowers.


National Monument

This bronze monument was built to commemorate those who died for Malaysia during its struggle for freedom, and during World War II and the Malayan Emergency. The monument was sculpted by Felix de Weldon in 1966. A memorial of Malaysia's second Prime Minister, The Tun Razak Memorial, is next to the National Monument.


Muzium Negara

This was the site of the old Selangor Museum which was established in 1898. The Muzium Negara was built after Malaysia gained independence and it was officially opened on 31 August 1963. Exhibits of Malaysia and its historical background are on display at Muzium Negara. A number of attractions can be found in the museum grounds, including Istana Satu which was the palace of one of the sultans of Malaysia, the bust of Sir Francis Light and a pioneer cable car.


Blue Mosque
Blue Mosque | Source
Inside the National Mosque
Inside the National Mosque | Source
Sultan Abdul Samad Building
Sultan Abdul Samad Building | Source

Blue Mosque

The Blue Mosque in Shah Alam is one of the most spectacular structures in Malaysia. Its real name is Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah Mosque but is often referred to as the Blue Mosque because of its blue dome. The main prayer hall and dome is decorated with Islamic calligraphy and ethnic designs.


National Mosque

The National Mosque is one of the largest mosques in the region, with a capacity of 15,000 people. It was built in 1965 and underwent major renovations in 1987 to include claddings on the concrete roof. The mosque is well decorated with Islamic calligraphy, traditional artwork and ornaments.


Jamek Mosque

This is the oldest mosque in the city. It was built in 1909 and situated at the confluence of the Klang and Gombak rivers where Kuala Lumpur derived its name.


P. Ramlee Memorial

P. Ramlee was a famous Malaysian singer, actor and composer. This former residence of P.Ramlee is now a national heritage and memorial dedicated to him and his late wife, Saloma who was a former singer and actress.


KL Tower

The KL Tower stands at 94 metres and is a prominent feature in Kuala Lumpur. It offers a panaromic view of the city and its surroundings. The architectural designs of the building include Arabic and Islamic scripts.


Sultan Abdul Samad Building

This building with Moorish designs is located along Jalan Tunku Abdul Rahman. Constructed in 1897, it was used by the British administration in Malaya to house government departments. Today, it is used by the Supreme Court and High Court.


Little India Brickfields

Brickfields was a brick-making centre in the late nineteenth century. This area is now a busy place rich in Indian culture. There are many buildings for spiritual worship and prayers, like temples, mosques and even churches. The smell of curries makes it a must to stop for lunch in this place.


Istana Budaya

Istana Budaya is the national theatre that has the most sophisticated decorations. The interior was made from marble and wood which was handcrafted. The building holds annual events, concerts and performances from both local and international performing groups.


Places to see in Kuala Lumpur

A tapir at Zoo Negara
A tapir at Zoo Negara | Source
Rhinocerous hornbill at the bird park
Rhinocerous hornbill at the bird park | Source

Zoo Negara

The Zoo Negara was opened in 1963 by Malaysia's first prime minister, Tunku Abdul Rahman. Many species of mammals, reptiles, amphibians, fish and birds are displayed at the zoo. There is also a night zoo that operates after sunset.


KL Bird Park

The KL Bird Park is located in the Perdana Botanical Gardens. There are displays of more than 3,000 birds in the bird park, with exotic species of ducks, eagles and hornbills.


Perdana Botanical Gardens

This is the oldest and most popular park in Kuala Lumpur. The old name for Perdana Botanical Gardens was Lake Gardens. The area was used by the British to build their homes during the colonial times. The park is now landscaped and has trails for people who frequent the place for jogging and exercise activities.



National Science Centre

Located in Bukit Kiara, the National Science Centre was opened in 1996 to provide hands-on learning for students. It has an underwater walk-through aquarium and several galleries containing different exhibits on scientific themes.


Batu Caves
Batu Caves | Source

Batu Caves

The Batu Caves is located outside Kuala Lumpur city. This 400 million-year-old limestone hill is a popular attraction in the state of Selangor. At the Batu Caves, there is a series of Hindu cave temples and caves. At the main entrance to the caves is a large statue of the Hindu God. There is a steep climb of 272 steps before one can get to the caves and be greeted by a troop of wild monkeys in the area!

Sepang International Circuit

Another pride of Malaysia is the Sepang International Circuit which began hosting the Formula One in 1999. This Formula One Circuit is not far from the KL International Airport (also known as KLIA).


Sunway Lagoon Theme Park
Sunway Lagoon Theme Park | Source
Sunway Pyramid Shopping Mall
Sunway Pyramid Shopping Mall | Source

Sunway Lagoon

Just 15 minutes from Kuala Lumpur is the Sunway Lagoon, an amusement park which was opened in 1993 in Petaling Jaya. There are more than 80 rides and attractions from several different theme parks in the area. Other activities include surfing, bungee jumping, wall climbing and mountain biking.


Sunway Pyramid

For visitors who couldn't get enough of shopping in Malaysia, they should head over to the nearby Sunway Pyramid shopping mall which can be easily identified by its Egyptian pyramid shape. The monumental Sphinx welcomes shoppers at the entrance of the mall. To name a few of what's available, there are shops and restaurants at the mall, a bowling alley, an ice-skating rink and a digital centre for electronic savvy shoppers.


This is what the view looks like in a cable car to Genting Highlands
This is what the view looks like in a cable car to Genting Highlands | Source

Genting Highlands

Even though Genting lies in the neighbouring state of Pahang, most visitors in Kuala Lumpur will spend a day or two at this cool highland attraction which sits at an altitude of 2000 metres above sea level. Genting Highlands is about an hour's drive from the city. For a more breathtaking ride over the rainforests and into the clouds, visitors can take the Genting and Awana Skyways cable cars at the foot of the highlands. The main attractions include the casinos, fun rides, theme parks, arcades, restaurants, shopping complexes, cinemas and other entertainment activities.


Tea plantations on Cameron Highlands
Tea plantations on Cameron Highlands | Source

Cameron Highlands

Another place of interest in the state of Pahang is the Cameron Highlands which is about 3.5 hours' drive from Kuala Lumpur. This is Malaysia's largest highland resort which offers relaxing activities at 1500 metres above sea level. Holiday makers can visit the little villages, a strawberry farm, a butterfly farm, honey bee farm and tea plantations in this highland region.


Cameron Highlands

© 2012 lady rain

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Comments 19 comments

travel_man1971 profile image

travel_man1971 4 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

I've never been to Malaysia, although our ship (tanker or cargo) usually anchor near its waterways for our bunkering operation in Singapore.

Thanks for a first-rate info regarding Kuala Lumpur. :)


lady rain profile image

lady rain 4 years ago from Australia Author

travel man, I hope you'll be able to visit Kuala Lumpur some day. Thank you for your lovely comment.


lelaiskandar profile image

lelaiskandar 4 years ago from Malaysia

Wow! Awesome recommendations there. Didn't know that some people call the KLCC Towers as the twin corns.


lady rain profile image

lady rain 4 years ago from Australia Author

lelaiskandar, the local people are right - the towers do look like huge corns! Thank you for stopping by to leave comment :)


holidaytodubai profile image

holidaytodubai 3 years ago from Dubai

No doubt KL is the amazing multi cultural destination. I have been there many times in the past and now it is like a home for me. I think you missed the Formula 1 Track which is also known as Sepang International Circuit.

In Sepang International Circuit, Go Kart is open for public and the track is designed by renowned F1 Track designer, Hermann Tilk. You can experience the thrill by driving on this track.

Btw, it is not FREE!


lady rain profile image

lady rain 3 years ago from Australia Author

holidaytodubai - no, I didn't miss the Sepang International Circuit, it's halfway down the page after the paragraph on Batu Caves.


nikhilchandra profile image

nikhilchandra 3 years ago from New Delhi

Now this will indeed come handy to anyone making their travel plan. Nicely done.


lady rain profile image

lady rain 3 years ago from Australia Author

nikhilchandra, thank you for your kind comment :)


Glass-Jewelry profile image

Glass-Jewelry 3 years ago from Presezzo, Italy

This is a very charming place, very different from what we are used to live us Westerners.

It is interesting to note that although Eastern cities such as Kuala Lumpur have been developed trying to imitate the Western model, however, they have maintained their typical essence of the manners and customs of the worlds of the Far East.

Beautiful article!


lady rain profile image

lady rain 3 years ago from Australia Author

Glass-Jewelry, multiculturalism plays an important part in Malaysia. The people from different ethnic backgrounds learn to respect each other and at the same time, they practice their own cultures while they open up to western influences. Thank you for stopping by and leaving comment here. Much appreciated!


Anna Evanswood profile image

Anna Evanswood 3 years ago from Malaysia

I live in Kl and you have mentioned some great places to visit:) thank you.


lady rain profile image

lady rain 3 years ago from Australia Author

Anna, it's nice to know you live in KL. I love the food there, too! Thank you for commenting :)


Iammattdoran profile image

Iammattdoran 3 years ago from Manchester, UK

I could have done with reading this hub before I went to KL last summer. I had a great time but didn't do many of the things on your list. My highlight was Petronas Towers but was a bit disappointed with the Batu Caves


lady rain profile image

lady rain 3 years ago from Australia Author

Iammattdoran, it's great to hear you have been to KL before. I hope you'll get the chance to visit the place again and do more of the other activities. Thank you for sharing your experience here.


jun 3 years ago

i want to visit KL with my brother this holiday season after maybe christmas day here in d philipines.. we're still waiting for our tourist passport for releasing. i want to visit beautiful places of KL. i hav relatives in sadakan, sabah,malaysia but my question is if im in kualalumpur can i visit also sandakan using my tourist passport? pls reply.. thank u


lady rain profile image

lady rain 3 years ago from Australia Author

jun, Sabah is part of Malaysia so you should have no problem going there if your tourist visa allows you to visit Malaysia. If in doubt, you can also check with the passport office or your travel agent before you book your ticket.


Thish profile image

Thish 22 months ago

what is the best place to buy nori/seaweed?


lady rain profile image

lady rain 22 months ago from Australia Author

Thish, you should be able to find nori seaweed in all major supermarkets in Malaysia.


Juan Carlos 13 months ago

Thank you for your lovely comments the best night life is along Bukit Bintang

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