Most of the time we lived in Kuala Lumpur, we were just normal people. We went to the grocery store, to the park, to all the malls. We threw conformity to the wind and walked almost everywhere, but besides getting some strange stares from Malaysians in their cars, we all ended up at the same places. The local coffeeshops, the Chinese place, the Indian place.
A few times though, we tried really hard to be tourists and check off the must-see attractions in KL. We arrived at the perfect time for lots of festive fun, because mid-January was the kick off of many Chinese New Year celebrations. We enjoyed a full month of brilliant reds and dancing dragons. During this time, we decided to make our way downtown to check out Petaling Street, a famous street in Chinatown.
It is your standard shopping district, with plenty of knock-offs and cheap finds. But it is fun to wander and explore. There are several interesting buildings in the area as well, including a beautiful Chinese temple. When we arrived downtown that morning, we were surprised to see that Petaling Street was rather empty. We quickly realized that, just as the market doesn’t keep standard business practices (hello fake bags/shoes/watches), it also scorns regular business hours.
Not put off, we went exploring around the area first, content to wait and circle back in once it was bustling and humming with full activity. After getting a little lost looking for an ATM that would accept our card, we turned around and saw a bright red temple right across the street! We decided to duck in for a look around.
After watching from what we hoped was a respectful distance at the Chinese temple– (it’s always hard to tell isn’t it? it would be so odd to have people come in and watch us in church, especially if they were taking photos the whole time)– we walked back to Petaling Street for one last look around. We didn’t end up purchasing a single trinket, but we were glad to have crossed it off the list!
Headed to Petaling Street in Kuala Lumpur? There are so many great things to see, and so many amazing places to eat!! Here are two of our favorites in the downtown area:
Lokl Coffee Co. for a cute, trendy shop with indoor and outdoor seating. Amazing juice blends, as well as iced coffee or chocolate.
Betel Leaf Restaurant for the best Malaysian Indian food ever. A little more upscale setting than average, but still comfortable and affordable.