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Highlights of KL

Ben van Wijnen

The Petronas Towers.
(Petronas is the oil company of Malaysia)

It's not anymore the highest building in the world (452m). If you have booked a hotel in the "Golden Triangle" you can walk to the twin towers easily. There's no need to take a taxi.
From any point in the city you can see the twin towers.
Sometimes the upper part of the Petronas Towers are hidden in the clouds.
On top there are masts with flashing lights to warn the pilots.
You can't visit the Petronas for free, they will charge you RM10.-
You can go up to the top, what they call "the observation deck"'. The observation Deck is located at Level 86. A ticket to the Observation Deck will cost you RM 40.-
Go early, because you can visit these towers only a few times a day.

Beneath  the towers is the Suria-shopping complex. It has six levels. There is also an oil-museum, conference hall, concert hall, cinema, a mosque  and a hotel.
The Petronas Towers have 88 floors and the connecting bridge is at the 42nd floor.
Pay attention: it's not anymore the highest  building in the world. That's the Bamboo Shoot in Taiping (Taiwan).
The highest tower in the world is the CN-tower in Toronto. So there's a difference between a building (with working people) and a tower.
Actually the KL-tower (telecommunication tower) in Kuala Lumpur, which is 421 meter,  is even higher, because it's built on a hill
The top of the Petronas Towers is on this picture under construction. 
In the background you see the KL-tower: the telecommunication tower (421m)  and built on a hill.

The Petronas Towers have 32,000 windows. Totally there are 77,00 square meters. And they have to be cleaned!
From the top some "gondola's" are going down to clean the windows. From these gondola's the window cleaners are doing their job.
All together those two towers have 11 gondola's.
Every day the windows cleaners are doing eight floors.
It takes five months to clean the entire building, so it's done twice a year.

At the top there's a red light to warn all the planes not to come close.

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Batu Caves

The Batu Caves are just on a short distance from Kuala Lumpur (taxi!!). Batu Caves, is a limestone hill, which has a series of caves and cave temples, in the Gombak district, 13 kilometres.
The limestone forming Batu Caves is said to be around 400 million years old. Some of the cave entrances were used as shelters by the indigenous Temuan people, a tribe of Orang Asli. 
To reach the Cave you must climb 272 steps. At the beginning here are monkeys begging for food and of course, you can buy it down there.
In this Hindu temple they celebrate the Thaipusam Festival.
The Thaipusam festival of faith and endurance is celebrated in Malaysia, Singapore, Mauritius, and South Africa. One of the biggest and most famous celebrations is at Batu Caves.
The procession starts on the evening before the Thaipusam festival at the Sri Mariamman Temple in the town centre of Kuala Lumpur.
By doing penance they want to extort some favours from the Gods. The festival is held in the tenth month of the Hindu calendar (mostly the end of January). 
 

Thaipusam is an Hindu festival. It's a celebration for the son of Shiva (Subramaniam) and the becoming "one" of  Pusan and the Brihaspati stars. Lord Subramaniam is the universal granter of wishes. 
All those who wish to ask for a future favour, fulfil a vow in return for a granted favour, or to repent for past sins will participate in this festival.  It's not difficult for Hindus (or anyone) to fall into one of these categories.

Batu Caves is actually a cave that consists of three caves, formed by the massive limestone natural formations. 
The most impressive and largest of the three caves is the Temple Cave, which has 272 steps to climb to the top.

Right in the middle of the cave is a whole. There you can see the cloud or the sun.

At the base of the hill are two more cave temples, Art Gallery Cave and Museum Cave, both of which are full of Hindu statues and paintings.

The Ramayana Cave is situated to the extreme left as one faces the sheer wall of the hill.
On the way to the Ramayana Cave, there is a 15 meter tall statue of Hanuman and a temple dedicated to Hanuman.

Supreme Court 

Also called the Sultan Abdul Samad Building, a Moorish-looking buiding,  painted in salmon colours and which, apart from being the most photographed site, has had a lot of attention from the  international press lately.
Its functioning clock tower (40m) has witnessed many historical milestones and is a faithful host of important national events, like the annual National Day Parade.
The building houses the offices of the Ministry of Information, Communications and Culture of Malaysia. It formerly housed the superior courts of the country: the Federal Court of Malaysia, the Court of Appeals and the High Court of Malaya. 

The square is called the Merdeka Square. A 95-metre flagpole at the Mederdeka Square is one of the tallest in the world. That spot is marked with a flat, round black marble plaque. It is located at the southern end of the square.
And, of course at the Square, is the Royal Selangor Club! The Royal Selangor Club was in the British colonial period Malaya's most exclusive whites-only club.

 

China Town

China town is at Petaling Street. That's the best place for testing your bargaining skills. Here, stalls and wares are spread along the street ( especially in the evening) with colourful goods.
Without visiting Petaling street, your stay in KL isn't complete, simply because the oriental atmosphere is unique and full of life.
The stall owner is usually so convinced that the price he's giving you is the best ( while it isn't ) ...so be careful, an advice that I will give you....whatever price he gives you, give him half, and he'll accept after some minutes of bargaining!!

Petaling Street is particularly famous for its all-day parade of stalls, that sell imitation goods of all sorts,  like: wallets, handbags, t-shirts, watches, shoes and many other things.
You can buy imitation goods of Rolex, Seiko, Cartier, Christian Dior, Adidas, Nike,  Calvin Klein, Armani, Gucci, Prada, D&G, Louis Vuitton.

The police is taking action against the illegal cd's and dvd's. I think the copying is done in Malaysia.
The selling of these illegal cd's and dvd's is also in Petaling Street. I don't know, how it works, but................ the salesmen get a phone call, that the police is coming in a quarter of an hour.
In a few minutes they break up and the van is loaded  and of they go. Then the police arrives and find no cd or dvd on the market. I think their informant must in or near the police station.

 

Petaling Street.

KL-Tower

The KL-tower is 421 meter long. Go up with the elevator and you can enjoy a wonderful panoramic view, overlooking the city of Kuala Lumpur.
Actually this tower is more beautiful than the Petronas Towers.
At the top you'll get a head-set, where they explain everything you see in KL and that's a lot!
 
The railway station of Kuala Lumpur

It is located at Jalan Sultan Hishamuddin. The building is located in the heart of Kuala Lumpur. It is a very beautiful building. It has a Moorish-style which was designed by architect A.B Hubbock. The building is about 80 years old in 1999 because it was built at 1910. 
In 1986, it went under extensive renovations but now everything is finished. Now it has air-conditioned waiting hall, snack kiosks , tourism information booth and many more. In the past, it used be very quiet but since the Commuter service started, it is very busy. Very sadly, all the Intercity train services doesn't stop here anymore because there is a new railway station opened called KL Sentral. Only Commuter train stops here. It is located less than 1KM away from the old railway station. 

A hotel, the Station Hotel (now the Heritage Station Hotel), occupies part of the station.

Masjid Jamek (left)

Located in Jalan Tun Perak.
This mosque is built on the birth-place of Kuala Lumpur where the two rivers Klang and Gombak meet.  
This is the very spot where the first settlers of Kuala Lumpur built their shacks. 
The mosque was built in 1907 and officially opened by the Sultan of Selangor on 23rd of December in 1909. The Masjid Jamek Kuala Lumpur is the oldest mosque in KL.
It was designed by Arthur Benison Hubbock, an architectural assistant in the Public Works and Survey Department, who was intrigued and inspired by the Mogul architecture of India.


 

 

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  Ben van Wijnen

 

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