Saturday, January 21, 2012

Day two Kuala Lumpur

It was a late start for us on Saturday after our two very late nights - and no need for breakfast. We thought a Hop on Hop off bus tour of KL sounded an undemanding option for the slow day we felt like we needed. We hopped on the bus at number 6 stop on nearby Bintang Walk at around 11.00am and found ourselves at KL's famous Chinatown in no time at all.

.........and quickly found the laneways in and around Petaling Street, home of KL's rip off trade and thousands of genuinely fake designer bags, watches and sunglasses. The illegal DVD market is based here too. Daren told us last night it is controlled by Chinese Triads in KL.

But in amongst the tat we can see it is a market place for locals with fresh fruit stalls, roadside eateries, restaurants and fresh food and flower stalls.

For lunch we can't resist trying some of Madame Hong's curry puffs, some dried sugared ginger for dessert and freshly cut papaya to finish off with. I even bought some fake Louis Vuitton make up bags in Chinatown - only AUS$3.80 for four of them - can't go wrong.

The hour or so there really seemed to tire us out so we spent the rest of the hop on hop off circuit on the bus (except for the interminable stops to take photos of national monuments and public buildings!!!). This was a great way to see all of the city for a pair of tired tourists but we thought too much of it focused on the huge empty public spaces and buildings that this new Asian city is so proud of having built in the last 20 years - but which don't interest us as much!

We walked back to the hotel after for a well deserved nanna nap before venturing out again to have a look at the KLCC area in the evening. We approached this modern glitzy shopping area by walking through the KL city park, which at this time of the day was filled with couples and families enjoying the approach of sunset and the view of the water feature in the lake.

Once we'd walked though the opulent, marble encrusted Suria KLCC Mall we were in the forecourt of the Petronas Twin Tower along with all the other amateur photographers waiting for their sunset picture opportunity.

These pictures are the best of what we managed to capture. I have found the towers to be irresistible, quite delicately beautiful and gem like, especially in this light. They were built in a rush of optimism in time for the big Asian financial meltdown of 1997-8 (I know there is a theory about the relationship of world's biggest skyscraper building and financial meltdowns; this seems to add proof to the theory!).

and this bank building opposite the towers tries its best to keep up appearances.

And the view walking back from the towers, through the KL City Park was even more stunning!

Hungry by now we found our way back to Jalan Alor and our favourite Cu Cha restaurant, home of the best Char Kway Teow we've ever experienced. We didn't venture to Darren's favourite restaurant tonight. His was the real deal: Chinese language only and no helpful pictures on the menu - too hard for tourists on their own! Saturday night at 8.30pm and the whole street was really buzzing!

We ordered up big tonight - local favourites:, bar-g-que chicken wings, satay, oyster omelette along with our C K T and Tiger beers.

And later found ourselves as close as we were ever likely to get to the preparations for a Chinese New Year lion dance. It was a big excited troop of young men and boys all with elaborate costumes and really playing up for the appreciative crowd.

Providing a colourful and noisy end to a day that started rather more slowly for us.


judy l said...

Hey Jude,

Found any fake Omega Constellation
diamond watches yet?

Judy P said...

Yeah plenty, but you can tell from a mile off they're fake. I took your advice and bought myself a real ck watch in the Japanese dept store isetan. Very streamlined, very modern and with a genuine 3 year guarantee. The real omega watches are beautiful - promoted by Nicole Kidman I note.

Judy P said...
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