Davao ✈ Manila ✈ Kuala Lumpur, a pleasant flight summing up to five long hours from my home in Davao City, Philippines to Malaysia’s capital city of Kuala Lumpur. This is the start of THREE ASEAN COUNTRIES | TEN DAYS journey.
When I booked my tickets to Malaysia sometime July this year, the universe seemed to conspire as I got all my accommodations in Malaysia for free– in both Kuala Lumpur and Malacca. When my two friends who are based in Kuala Lumpur learned I was traveling to Malaysia, they gladly invited me to stay in their beautiful home instead of staying at a hotel. And in Malacca, a UNESCO World Heritage City outside of KL, my accommodation was sponsored by the charming Quayside Hotel.
It was past midnight when I arrived at Kuala Lumpur Low Cost Carrier Terminal. My friend Joey and Krissy, the couple behind Bound For Two, were already at the airport waiting for me. Just like the KL weather, the two gave me the warmest welcome I could ever ask for.
From the airport, we rode a bus going to their place at downtown KL. The ride took almost an hour and so I took the chance of taking glimpse of places we passed by. I had already the list of places I wanted to see in KL and so with those landmarks that made the city famous. So, I glued my sight outside hoping to glimpse at those places. Luckily, on that very morning, I had a quick peep of those famous Petronas Twin Towers and the KL Tower from afar.
Joey and Krissy’s place is in Pantaii Hill, a resort-style condominium with lush landscaping and facilities including swimming pool, tennis court, playground and parking. As soon as I got there, I immediately “feel at home” – it’s like staying in a hotel with comfort of home. It was past 3 AM so we decided to rest and continue our chit chat on the coming days. Besides, the itinerary for tomorrow’s trip was a bit lengthy we needed enough rest and sleep.
The smell of the breakfast meal woke me up. Joey prepared for us a sumptuous continental breakfast that reminded me of my own home. I love toasted bread, butter and jam plus the tasty hotdogs for breakfast. Joey and Krissy just knew how to delight their guests.
Before I left the Philippines, I had already listed few of the places I want to visit in Kuala Lumpur. But since Joey and Krissy are KL- based, I let them choose the best itinerary for my whole stay in Kuala Lumpur. And our first destination is the Genting Highlands, a hill resort in Malaysia also called as Resorts World Genting developed by Genting Group.
From Pantaii Hill, we headed straight to Kuala Lumpur Sentral more popularly known as KL Sentral, an intermodal transportation hub that houses the main railway station of Kuala Lumpur. Buses going to Genting Highlands are located here.
The day before I arrived in KL, Joey already purchased our tickets for our Genting Highland Tour at an amazing amount of RM 60 (Php 808.34). It included our round trip bus ticket, cable car ride and buffet lunch at Coffee Terrace.
The bus trip plus the cable car ride going to Genting Highlands took almost an hour – a bit lengthy but never a dull trip as I got to see the rich and green mountain side of this famous hillside of Malaysia. But I was at full awe when we reached the Genting Skyway for the monocable gondola lift that would take us to the Resorts World Genting. The monocable ride was pretty exciting as I got to see everything that surrounds this green hillside of the country plus the feel of the cold mountain breeze and the spectacular view of the thick fogs that devoured the verdant mountainsides.
From the lower station, we reached the upper station located at Highlands Hotel. As we got out, we started feeling the cold breeze of the whole place. As we hurried down, I can’t help but admired the brilliant minds behind the creation of this amazing place that had once coined as the ‘Fun City Above the Cloud’ – just truly admirable.
From the lobby of the Highlands Hotel, I hurried outside to take the glimpse of whole Genting Highlands. To my great surprise, the whole place was covered by the thick fogs and the weather was way cold than I expected. At 1,740 meters above sea level, the weather and temperature of this hill resort is like this all year round. Despite that, I braved the coldness to enjoy the spectacular scene of the place.
And then the most exciting part of our tour came – buffet lunch at Coffee Terrace. Coffee Terrace is one of the most spacious dining outlets at the resort serving sumptuous cuisines from around the globe –Nyonya, Chinese, Malaysian, Indian, Japanese, Italian, Western to Mediterranean dishes.
I always believe that a good travel always comes with good food, thus, I lavished myself tasting every delectable cuisine served at Coffee Terrace. From dumplings to maki, laksa to Char kway teow, satay to fritters – and many more.
After our tour at the Genting Highlands, we decided to go back to downtown KL and continue our itinerary for the day. From Genting Highlands, we went back to KL Sentral. From there we took the MRT going to St. John Cathedral, the biggest Catholic Church in Kuala Lumpur to attend the anticipated mass.
On the way, we passed by a beautiful mosque called Masjid Jamek (Friday Mosque) and decided to drop by to take some photos. I have always been a great admirer of beautiful mosque and this one possesses an old charm I can’t resist to visit. Sadly, the prayer was on-going and visitors and not allowed to enter. Hence we headed straight to St. John Cathedral.
St. John Cathedral was big but not as big and grand like those in the Philippines. It was amusing to see different people of different race come together to pray as Catholics – Malays, Chinese, Indians, African and even Caucasians. What’s more, all songs used during the mass are all in traditional Catholic Latin Chant. I was so mesmerized.
When the mass was ended, we wasted no time and hurried down our next stop. But as we left, the sight of glistening tower erecting from the back of the church was something I can’t resist from admiring. And so I stopped and grab my camera trying to capture the beauty of this structure that dominated this part of KL – the Kuala Lumpur Tower.
Standing at 421m, the Kuala Lumpur Tower is the fifth tallest telecommunication tower in the world and the tallest in Southeast Asia. The building is considered as one of the landmarks of Kuala Lumpur. It has the highest viewpoint of the whole city and is open to the public. And I am thankful that I got to see its magnificent beauty at night.
And so from St. John Cathedral, we found our way heading to Kuala Lumpur City Center (KLCC), a multipurpose development area in downtown Kuala Lumpur where posh shopping malls, luxurious hotels and towering office buildings are situated. As we neared KLCC, the sight of the two beautiful towers dominated the skyline. It was the structure that I have long wanted to see long before this trip was even planned. I thought I’ll be used to the same feeling of excitement seeing places that I only dream of seeing, but to my surprise, I was wrong. The moment I gazed up to see these two stunning structures from afar, I started to shiver and felt an immense happiness deep within. At last here I am about to see the most famous landmark of Malaysia – the Petronas Twin Towers.
So, there I was following Joey and Krissy as they led me my way to come closer and see in full grandeur the World’s Tallest Twin Towers. Excitement is an understatement!
NEXT POST: Bedazzled by Twin Towers