My first trip to Kuala Lumpur was a whirlwind from start to finish. Getting called for the trip off standby, I was unprepared for my first visit to Malaysia, but excited to hit the ground running and begin exploring.
Surprisingly, after a 12 hour night flight and an 8 hour time zone change my need for food was greater than sleep. Wasting no time we set off in search of some local delights.
Conveniently Jalan Alor food market was a stones throw from our hotel. A short ten minute walk and we’d left behind the bright lights of huge branded signs and glitzy shopping malls and descended upon a hot and chaotic side street crammed full of food vendors.
Durian fruits (and their smell) line the entrance to the Jalan Alor market. Don’t let that infamous fruit put you off because you’re about to enter Kuala Lumpur’s best street food market. Grab and go dumplings, chicken on a stick and any kind of exotic fruit imaginable. Pull up a plastic chair and settle in the pit at one of the street side restaurants.
We dined on aubergine and okra curry, water spinach sautéed with garlic, pak choi and stir fried noodles. It was so good we went back for the exact same meal the next day. Washed down with a few beers and it was bedtime.
The following day we set off on a 30 minute taxi journey to check out the stunning Batu Caves.
Hundreds of steps later we were in these glorious caves. Home to an abundance of cheeky monkeys, so bring snacks if you want to make a few friends.
Next up was lunch and a stroll through Little India.
This canteen style restaurant prepared us a delicious vegetarian platter with dhal, okra, aubergine, cauliflower, roti and rice. Costing no more than £3 and our bellies were full and we were ready to continue exploring.
A short cab ride away from Little India is the stunning Thean Hou Temple.
Wandering around this stunning landmark was mesmerising, and definitely worth the wait on the cab back to our hotel. Top tip – make friends with the security guard, he’ll happily organise you a taxi using his local Grab Taxi app.
Wasting no time it was straight out for cocktails at sunset at the Heli Bar. Get there at dusk in time to grab a table and a few drinks so you can enjoy sunset whilst looking at the magnificent Petronas Towers. Their strawberry daiquiris are incredible.
Dinner that evening with the crew was in China Town on the Captain’s recommendation at Old China Cafe. Delicious sharing dishes washed down with a few Tiger beers was the perfect final supper in Kuala Lumpur.
Followed by drinks in PS150, China Town’s most fabulous and unassuming speak easy bar.
What a wonderful introduction to what has quickly become one of my favourite Asian cities. I can’t wait to revisit and explore more.