Kuala Lumpur Tower, or Menara Kuala Lumpur to give it its proper name in Bahasa Melayu, is a communications and entertainment tower in Bukit Bintang. It stands at 421 metres high (including the antenna), making it the seventh-tallest freestanding tower in the world. It has quickly become one of the quintessential sights of Malaysia’s capital city and indeed the whole country.
What is there to do at KL Tower?
At the top of the tower, there are: an observation deck at 276m above ground; a viewing platform that is open to the elements; the restaurants Atmosphere 360 (which is a revolving restaurant), and Megaview Banquet Hall; and a function room for meetings and weddings.
Although the restaurants are pricey, the food is pretty good – and, as they say, you pay for location! British expats who are missing home should try the Afternoon Tea service, on weekday afternoons, for a little slice of UK life that includes finger sandwiches and pastries.
The facilities at the base of the tower include a film gallery showing a pretty interesting documentary about the construction of the site, the Moghul Mahal halal Indian restaurant, an arcade with noisy simulators and neon-lit games, and a decent aquarium, featuring clownfish, sharks and anemones.
Outside, there’s a mini-zoo with parrots and monkeys and a cultural village where you can learn about life in one of Malaysia’s traditional ‘kampungs’. There are a number of packages on offer to combine one or more of these experiences with your ticket to the tower – see below.
A cool new eating experience has recently opened up in the KL Tower grounds; diners sit at a table and, together with the waiting staff, get hauled up into the sky by a crane! Read KL’s Dinner in the Sky: What You Should Know, for more information.
Activities and Events
If you’re a sports fan or an adrenaline junkie, KL Tower puts on annual events that should tickle your fancy. In October, the KL Tower Base Jump event sees 100 international lunatics leaping off the top of the tower and paragliding to the city below, and spectators can sit right at the top of the tower to watch.
In May, the annual Towerthon event pits runners against the daunting 2,058-step ascent to the top of the tower, as well as a 1km uphill run to start. Participants get to enjoy watching sunrise over Kuala Lumpur from 283m above ground level – but only if they make it in time!
Where is KL Tower?
View from KL Tower
The tower is located at 2 Jalan Punchak, just off Jalan P.Ramlee, near The Weld shopping mall and opposite the Pacific Regency hotel – for a great place to drink while you look up at the tower, check out Luna Bar on the top floor of the hotel.
Menara Kuala Lumpur is actually sited inside a protected green area called Bukit Nanas Forest Reserve. Here, there’s a new canopy walkway and plenty of green space to get away from the concrete jungle of KL.
During the tower’s construction, the foundations of the building had to be adapted to not disturb the protected wildlife. For example, the building team had to construct a retaining wall around a 100-year-old jelutong tree (Dyera costulata); the cost of avoiding damage to the tree was RM430,000!
Who Built the Tower and When?
The tower was designed by Kumpulan Senireka and is now managed by Telekom Malaysia. Work started in October 1991, with the official ground-breaking ceremony witnessed by the fourth Prime Minister of Malaysia, Dato Seri Dr Mahathir bin Mohamad.
The ‘real’ construction phase, the concrete pouring, began in July 1992, and approximately 50,000 cubic metres of concrete were continuously poured for 31 hours – a record for Malaysia at the time. The ‘topping off’ ceremony occurred in September 1994, with the installation of the communications antenna, and the tower was officially opened to the public on 23 July 1996.
Planning a Trip: Times and Prices
The Observation Deck is open from 9am until 10pm, 365 days a year. The other facilities are open at varying times, due to events and activities, so call ahead on 03 2020 5444 or visit www.menarakl.com.my to check.
Single tickets, for the Observation Deck only, cost RM52 for adults and RM31 for children. There is a discount for MyKAD holders: RM32 for adults and RM21 for children. The Open Deck costs RM75 for MyKAD holders and RM105 for everyone else.
You can buy individual tickets for any of the main attractions, or packages that combine a number of attractions; for example, a ticket for the Aquarium plus the Observation Deck costs RM61.
There are also discounts available at certain times of the year; for example, until the end of September, there is a Merdeka celebratory discount which means you can get a second ticket for 58% off (no points for guessing why it’s 58 %!).
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