Regardless of whether you are born and bred in Kuala Lumpur or have moved here from another city or country, the one thing that we can all agree on is that Kuala Lumpur is usually extremely congested. Even on weekends, the roads, the malls, the parks, and the trains are crowded with people at all times. Sometimes it gets frustrating to move from point A to point B, and making an impromptu journey to the city centre is almost always a bad idea. We have to plan our timing well and only leave the house during off-peak hours.
But, there are a few days in the year where Kuala Lumpur is joyfully emptier, allowing us to move around freely without the hassle of crowds and traffic, and this upcoming long weekend happens to be just that. Thanks to the Hari Raya holidays, most Malaysians will be leaving the city to travel back to their hometown to celebrate the auspicious day with their loved ones. For those who don’t celebrate, most of them take the opportunity to leave the city for a vacation. This means that those of us who choose to remain in the city will get to enjoy an emptier and quietier Kuala Lumpur!
Here are our suggestions on places that you can visit this weekend:
1. Kuala Lumpur Bird Park
Billed as the world’s largest covered bird park, Kuala Lumpur Bird Park is truly a fascinating place to visit. With over 3, 000 birds of approximately 200 species of local and foreign birds dancing amidst the flourishing environment of the park, it is undoubtedly a pleasant view that should be experienced by everyone.
Sprawling over 20.9 acres of verdant valley terrain, the park is divided into four zones – Zone 1 and 2 consist of the free-flight zone, Zone 3 is the Hornbill Park and Zone 4 sees the birds placed in separate cages and mini aviaries. Some of the must-visit attractions in the park are World of Parrots, Flamingo Pond, Oriental Aviary, Hornbill Park, Brahminy Land, and Birdlife stations. The park makes a perfect gateway in Kuala Lumpur itself as you get to educate your kids and yourself about the world of birds. For more information, visit their website here.
2. Batu Caves
Touted to be one of the most iconic places in Kuala Lumpur, Batu Caves consist of eminent limestone caves that hold three large and several other small temples in them. With some of the caves dating back to over 400 million years, Batu Caves house several Hindu shrines and depictions of Hindu mythology. Minimally decorated with paintings and statues relating to the mythology, these caves hold a special place for the Hindu community.
Although this famous place receives its highest number of fans comprising of devotees and tourists during Thaipusam, it also attracts a decent amount of crowd off festive season. Since Kuala Lumpur is going to be rather empty this weekend, it’s probably a good idea to visit now as you can climb its 272 steps in peace and enjoy the beauty of the limestone caves.
3. Jalan Alor
From air-conditioned restaurants to food hawkers and street side carts, Jalan Alor is probably the best place to get hold of authentic hawker food in Kuala Lumpur. When you pass by the street, the whiff of aromas will instantly draw you to sample some of the best offerings in the Malaysian cuisine. Examples of the must-try local delicacies include barbecued meat, satay, spiced-up seafood, and delicious finger food.
Besides the food, the lively environment is also something worth mentioning. Decorated with vibrant Chinese lanterns, florescent lights and lush trees, it’s definitely an ambiance that can be enjoyed by both locals and tourists.
4. Drive around or take the public transportation to the city centre
Ever dreamed of driving to the heart of Kuala Lumpur and possibly take a few clicks of the city’s skyline? Well, this weekend might be your chance to do so. With clearer traffic, it’s a good time for anyone to explore the city and see what exactly Kuala Lumpur has to offer to its patrons. For most of us, taking a ride to the city centre is something we dread since bracing through a standstill traffic is not anyone’s idea of a city tour. But this weekend, you can bring your vehicle out and discover the heart of Kuala Lumpur at your own pace. If you don’t own a car or just prefer to take the public transportation, then hop on a bus, KTM, or LRT to see the city centre from a different view.
5. Perdana Botanical Gardens
Formerly known as Lake Gardens, this park is part of the Tun Razak Heritage Park. Built in 1888 by the Selangor state treasurer of the time, A.R. Venning, it was originally created as part of a recreational park but later it was expanded to include an extensive collection of gardens and parks that showcase many flora and fauna, re-imagined itself as a botanical garden. Surrounded by lush greenery, some of the gardens and collections worth visiting include Sunken Garden, Hibiscus Garden, Orchid Garden, Plumeria Tree Collection, Heliconie Garden, and Rare Fruit Trees Collection. There’s also a Deer Park, Conservatory, and two waterfalls that visitors can go to. So, bring your family, friends, or just yourself, for a peaceful walk in a tropical rainforest ambiance.
6. Picnic at Templer Park
Feeling the need to escape the concrete jungle and be closer to nature? If your answer is yes, then make your way to Templer Park in Rawang. Consisting of rushing waterfalls, jungle streams and trails, there are also other amenities available for the public, including picnic grounds, fishing spots, and stalls. On a regular weekend, this place is usually swamped with patrons, but chances are it will be relatively less populated during the Hari Raya break. So, pack your mat, basket of food, swimwear and head over to Templer Park for a day of calmness and tranquillity. Another waterfall to check out in the area is the Kanching Waterfalls that has seven levels of falls!
With this list, we hope everyone will make full use of an emptier Kuala Lumpur and spend your break in a slightly different manner. For all our Muslim readers, Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri and for the rest, happy holidays!
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