Now we’re are back from our three week Malaysian adventure I wanted to share some of the amazing things this beautiful country has to offer. Over the next few weeks I’ll cover off all the brilliant (and not so brilliant) things we got up to. Which will hopefully help you plan your next trip. Here’s the basics of our 3 days in Kuala Lumpur.
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Kuala Lumpur International Airport
The Airport is pretty manic and both times we landed it took a while to get through immigration and baggage. It’s a good idea to have something to keep the kids entertained whilst you’re waiting. The queues are not great after the 13 hour flight! It’s about an hour’s drive to the city centre. But this can be doubled if you travel at rush hour. So consider your landing time when booking flights.
Top Tip – My husband missed his onward flight to Singapore. Even though he had a 3.5hr stopover as it took so long to get through. So please make sure you give yourself plenty of time if you have another flight to catch
My daughter and I stayed at the Berjaya Times Square Hotel which we picked because it was connected to a Shopping Mall (handy for eating and if we needed anything) and because we had heard the pool was amazing. Read our Berjaya Times Square review and see more photos to get a full idea.
Day One in Kuala Lumpur
We decided to try to start our 3 days in Kuala Lumpur gently. Although I do always try to cram too much in. On our first day we visited the Berjaya Times Square ThemePark in the Shopping centre next door to the hotel. It didn’t open until midday. As we were a bit early we wandered round the shops and made a couple of purchases. It’s all very cheap (not amazing quality). Shopkeepers are happy to barter if you can face it.
My daughter loved the theme park. There were about six rides she could go on for her height. And a few I could go on with her. It’s nicely set out with lots of bright colours and characters. All the kids rides were very tame so would be suitable for little ones. You can ride as many times as you like which may mean the grownups spend a lot of time waiting around. As it was just the two of us, I couldn’t go on any of the adult rides. This made my ticket pretty poor value (£17 for both of us). But I was quite glad as the indoor rollercoaster looked terrifying! It’s a great place to visit if you fancy some indoor fun. But I would say the kids rides are a bit young for anyone over five. And the adult height restrictions mean most rides will be unavailable.
Since we visited there’s now a brilliant looking indoor climbing wall. Giving you even more reason to visit if you’re in Kuala Lumpur with kids.
Top Tip – Check the kids heights before you purchase!
In the afternoon we headed to Petaling Street (China Town) for a wander around the markets and to try out the Street Food. Unfortunately this was a bit of a fail. The Monorail Station is quite a walk away and we got a bit lost in the heat.
By the time we arrived Piper was having a jet laggy, overheated meltdown. So we quickly found a hawker centre to sit down and have a cold drink. No exploring for me but a good lesson in not trying to do too much on day one!
Day Two in Kuala Lumpur
Petrosains Discovery Centre
Day Two was all about KLCC and what a place it is! We arrived at the iconic Petronas towers (again by monorail and a very hot walk!) which in itself is breathtaking for its design and headed to the Petrosains Discovery Centre on level 4 of the shopping centre. It was amazing! By far the best science museum we have ever visited with so much for the kids to see and do. Pretty much all the exhibits are hands-on. They have loads of happy, helpful staff on hand to help the kids interact, conduct science experiments and showcase interesting science shows. We were fascinated by the one on freezing things in liquid nitrogen.
You start with the “Dark Ride”, a journey through a dark , windy tunnel, featuring Malaysia’s rainforests, mountains and underwater sceneries. It was really interesting. You then continue around the rest of the centre on foot. Through specific zones including Space, Speed and an Oil zone. It only cost £8 for both of us. As you could easily spend the whole day there was excellent value. Piper enjoyed it so much she went back with her Dad at the end of our trip.
Top Tip – Factor in plenty of time here, you won’t want to leave
When I finally managed to drag Piper away we had a quick stop for lunch at the back of KLCC mall. Overlooking the fountains of KLCC park. This is a lovely area with lots of bars and restaurants to choose from. We visited Dome which wasn’t great with no kids menu but good to have a sit down.
When we were re-energised we had a wander into KLCC Park itself. It’s lovely (imagine Central Park only smaller) with loads of shaded footpaths and places to sit down. They have a child-only wading pool in the centre which we spent about half an hour cooling off in. Then spent another half hour on the massive playground filled with every piece of equipment available. Of course we had to try out each one! It was lovely to find this huge green space right in the middle of the city. The hustle and bustle of Kuala Lumpur can be a bit overwhelming at times. Especially for kids.
Top Tip – Don’t forget the swimming costumes for the kids
Pavilion Shopping Centre
On our way to find the Monorail Station we discovered the Pavilion Shopping Centre which would become one of our favourite places for food. The shops here are pretty westernised with a Zara, H&M etc but they have some great restaurants, cafes and bars offering a variety of food which was perfect for my picky eater. We tried Malones on this visit – food was good and service was excellent.
Finally, it was back to the hotel. We stopped at the Times Square Mall for a quick foot massage (£6 for half an hour – bargain!). Then crashed out after our busy day.
Top Tip – A foot massage is a great way to soothe tired legs after a busy day of sightseeing
Day Three in Kuala Lumpur
Our final of the 3 days in Kuala Lumpur. By now I was desperate for a bit of Eastern culture so we decided to visit the Batu Caves in Selangor. It’s quite easy to get here by public transport. Although it did take over an hour as we had just missed a train. I was quite apprehensive about the monkeys as I had heard they can be pretty aggressive. Having spent the previous night obsessively googling “batu caves monkeys” I decided to just go for it. I was so glad we did.
This is an ancient Hindu temple and shrine with 272 steps to conquer to reach the top. It’s a really popular destination for both worshippers and tourists. So expect it to be busy and make sure you dress respectfully. After you’ve fought your way past the hawkers at the train station the view of the huge, golden statue of the Hindu God at the entrance is well worth the journey. If you can manage it make sure you climb the steps to the top for the view of the city. The calm and cool of the caves at the top will be most welcome. It was tough, hot and a little freaky avoiding the monkeys but my five year old and I managed it in about 15 mins.
Top tip – don’t take food or drinks (or at least keep them hidden away). The monkeys may try and pinch it. There are A LOT of them!
After the physical workout, we couldn’t face the train back to town so we got a taxi by the side of the road. We were ripped off as the driver refused to put the meter on. I think this is fairly common but we were delivered back cool and rested. After a quick swim and a trip to the mall to get our nails done we repacked our suitcases ready for the next leg of our journey – Singapore.
Have you been to Kuala Lumpur? We would love to know what you’re favourite things to do in Kuala Lumpur with kids are. Just leave a comment below.
If you’re thinking of heading to Kuala Lumpur with kids you might also like my blog on traveling long haul with kids. Or if you plan on seeing more of Malaysia then you might enjoy review of the Westin Langkawi Resort and Spa a luxury hotel on a paradise island. Or my family friendly guide to Penang.
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