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Kuala Lumpur: Why A Long Weekend is Long Enough

Kuala Lumpur is a fascinating mix of old and new, where crumbling buildings sit alongside skyscrapers and where you are just as likely to see a local wearing a Niqab as a you are a mini dress.

It acts as a travel hub for the Far East and Oceania and many people will pass through it on their way to a far flung destination.

This frenetic and fast paced city is fun to explore but stay too long and you might find that you grow a little tired of what it has to offer.

Founded in the mid-nineteenth century, it is unsurprising that Kuala Lumpur, or KL as it is more commonly known, has little to offer in the way of history. It makes up for this by being overwhelmingly modern which is initially interesting when compared to the rest of South East Asia which is largely underdeveloped but can become tiring quickly. If you arrive in KL fresh from a stay in Thailand or Cambodia, you'll definitely appreciate all of the modern conveniences at your disposal and the wide availability of Western food will also be well received.

But it can also feel a little empty.

The malls are expensive, the food is nothing you won't have eaten a thousand times before and you will likely feel like you haven't really seen Malaysia.

The trick is to enjoy the wonders of such an impressive and fast growing city for a long weekend before heading out of town to Malacca, The Cameron Highlands or even beautiful Island Penang which is only a few hours drive away. By doing this you will get the best of both worlds whilst gaining a real insight into Malaysia as a country, not just it's famous capital.

If you only have a short time in KL and want to make the most of it, be sure to take a train out to the Batu Caves which are a phenomenal sight and don't forget to swing by China Town to see a different way of life, where time hasn't moved quite as fast and where you can get a delicious meal from a street hawker for a little over a pound.

You should also ensure that a trip to the National Museum is on your agenda. Here you will learn all about the complex history of Malacca, a region deemed essential for it's strategic geographical location between East and West which became important for the trade movement between countries.

No visit would be complete without an awe inspiring visit to the gorgeous Petronas Towers which are still as breathtaking today as they were when they were first opened in 1996. If you arrive early enough you make be one of the lucky few tourists able to buy a ticket to go inside to the walkway that links the two towers and where the views over the city are stunning.

Thanks to cheap and readily available public transport, all of these things can be done in just a few days.

I've no doubt that you will love Kuala Lumpur, as everyone who passes through does, but don't make the mistake of staying too long and missing out on the rest of beautiful Malaysia.


Profile photo of Claire Michael

Claire is one half of Couple Castaway – a 20 something couple who gave up their comfortable lives in the UK to travel the world on a budget of £1,000 per month whilst learning to make money as digital nomads. Follow their adventure and learn how they travel CHEAPLY and how you can too! Keep an eye out for their monthly budget report for a real insight into what life on the road really costs.

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