Introducing the city

£1.00 | RM5.47


Gasoline £0.38 | RM2.06

One-way ticket £0.55 | RM3.00

Beer £2.74 | RM15.00

Main Course £2.37 | RM13.00

About Kuala Lumpur

From the soaring Petronas Towers and the lush Perdana Gardens, to the colouful stalls of Chinatown and Malay street food on Jalan Alor, Kuala Lumpur has so much to offer.

It's hard to see why Kuala Lumpur (or KL as it's often known) translates in Malay as 'muddy confluence'. True, it sits at the point where the Klang and Gombak rivers meet, but this glittering city of skyscrapers, tropical parks and colourful markets is also undeniably beautiful. The bustling capital of Malaysia, this city is one of the biggest in Asia, home to around one and a half million people as well as malls, museums and the iconic Petronas twin towers.

The administrative capital of the country, the centre has its fair share of high-rise tower blocks and meandering monorail lines; there's also an abundance of lush green urban parks, including tropical oases like Perdana Botanical Garden. It's foodies who are in for a real treat though - KL is known for its excellent, authentic eateries, especially along bustling Jalan Alor Food Street. After, walk off your lunch with a wander around the award-winning Islamic Arts Museum or people-watch in historic Merdeka Square.

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When Should You Visit?

June - the driest month with the least humidity.

Kuala Lumpur has a tropical rainforest climate with hot, humid conditions all year round. Rainfall is frequent and heavy, even outside of the monsoon seasons which run from March to April and from October to November. Temperatures are fairly constant all year round and rarely move outside of 28 to 32 degrees Celsius. The most rain falls in November. Even when it rains, conditions are still warm to hot, so visiting all year round is possible.

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Travioor top tips

Walking Tour
Rail Pass

Insider Info

  • If you visit the KL City Gallery, make sure you sign up for a free history walking tour of Merdeka Square.

  • The MyRapid Card offers discounted rail and monorail travel both of which are quick and convenient ways to explore the city.

  • Jalan Alor Food Street is something of an institution; stop here for mouth-watering, purse-friendly street food.

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Food and drink

Main Course £2.37 | RM13.00

3-Course Meal £12.79 | RM70.00

Cappuccino £1.99 | RM10.87

Beer £2.74 | RM15.00

The Scene

Kuala Lumpur isn't just a good place for food, it's a city that eats, drinks and breathes it. The street food scene is huge, with the late-night joints along Jalan Alor Food Street offering some of the best options. These no-frills, authentic spots serve popular local favourites, including noodles tossed with grilled meat or fish, fried oysters with sweet chili sauce and noddle soup with poached eggs (pan mee).

Drinking wise, your best bet is (aptly named) Bar Street, which offers everything from lurid rainbow-coloured cocktails to upscale French wines. Sweet treats are also a big thing - splash your cash on afternoon tea at a high-end KL hotel; gently fragranced tea blends, home made marble cake and delicately spiced pastries make this a wonderfully classic experience.

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Kuala Lumpur’s Story

It's unclear why a settlement was first established in the region, although many attribute it to a group of Chinese tin miners who were working nearby along the Selangor River. Originally a small hamlet of houses, it was formally recognized as a town by the mid-19th century. Following a period of various issues - including flooding, fires, disease and political unrest between the Chinese and Malay inhabitants - the city finally became the capital of the Federated Malay States in 1896.

Throughout this period the town had become a strategic location within the British Colonial Empire and Malaysia as a whole was governed by Britain. During the first half of the 20th century KL enjoyed a period of prosperity with the population growing and the region making large profits from rubber production. In 1957 Malaysia finally achieved independence from Britain; today it remains the seat of the constitutional king and the Malaysian royal family.


Selamat pagi (Good morning) | Hello
Terima kasih | Thank you


The official language spoken in Kuala Lumpur is Malaysian (Malay) although many people also speak very good English. You should have no problem at tourist attractions, hotels and when using public transport. However it's always good to try the local lingo, so the following might be useful:

  • Good afternoon: Selamat tengah hari (the phrase to greet someone varies and depends on the time of the day.)
  • Bye: Selamat tinggal
  • Please: Sila
  • Excuse me: Maaf
  • Do you speak English: Bolehkah anda cakap Bahasa Inggeris?

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Need to know

+60 Dialling Code
999 Emergency Services

Get The Low-Down

  • Malaysia is a predominatly Muslim country; dress modestly and avoid public displays of affection. 
  • The city can get especially busy during Chinese New Year (Jan/Feb) and Ramadan.
  • Taxi drivers don't always use the meter - insist if possible. 
  • Rabies and dengue fever occurs - invest in vaccinations and mosquito spray before you travel. 



Find out about the visa requirements for Malaysia here.

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Travioor Recommends


Head up the Petronas Towers, KL’s iconic twin skyscrapers that offer panoramic city views.


Wander around Perdana Botanical Garden, an inner-city oasis full of lush greenery, tropical plants and tranquil ponds.


Shop for souvenirs or sample some seriously good street food in the colourful Chinatown and Jalan Alor areas.


Take in the palatial grandeur of Merdeka Square, home to the Sultan Abdul Samad buildings and plenty of heritage wonders.


The fantastic Islamic Arts Museum has one of the world’s most impressive collections of Muslim art in the world – the gift shop sells beautiful products.

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