From all my recent travels abroad, direct flights from Manila to elsewhere is very expensive. As a backpacker, my aim is to save money as much as possible. Yes, traveling is not cheap but traveling also helped me to set my priorities. Traveling is not all about staying in luxurious hotels or renting a jaguar on your tour. Traveling is about meeting and blending with people, experience cultures without boundaries and gaining new perspectives in life.
As I planned my travel in India, all the flights I searched from Manila to New Delhi or Jaipur will have a layover in Malaysia or Singapore. I chose my layover at Malaysia then since it is cheaper. After several months of booking online, I got a cheap flight from Manila to Kota Kinabalu.
How did I get there? From Manila I booked my flight to Kota Kinabalu via Cebu Pacific Air. It is roughly a 2-hour flight from Manila.
So what have I done in Kota Kinabalu? Nothing. HAHAHA. I stayed at the airport to wait for my flight to Kuala Lumpur. Yes, it was exhausting but it saved me some bucks. The domestic airport of Kota Kinabalu is basically a ghost town when I arrived. Stores and restaurants are closed. I only saw about 5 people sleeping on their own places. I even doubt if it is an airport. After waiting for more than 6 hours at the airport, I boarded to Kuala Lumpur.
How did I get there? From Kota Kinabalu to Kuala Lumpur, I booked my flight via Air Asia.
After almost 2 hours, I arrived in KLIA2. I was amazed how it look differ from the airport in Kota Kinabalu. It is very modern and massive! I rented a taxi from airport to my hostel. There are prepaid taxi that you can hire or rent your own car to drive. Another 2 hour drive to Pudu Central.
Where did I stay? I booked Hotel Pudu 88 at Booking.com. My hostel is near Pudu Central train station, convenience stores, fast food and local restaurants. The hostel staffs are very accommodating. Aside from the stairs and a bit untidy shared bathroom, this hostel is a value for money.
On my first day in Kuala Lumpur, I almost decided to just stay at my hostel and rest. After all the flights, I was exhausted. Nevertheless, I want to make every second count. I rested for less than an hour and hit the road again.
How did I get around the city? After spending too much on the taxi I paid from airport to my hostel, I decided to walk and ride local transportation. Pudu Central and Plaza Raynak are near my hostel. I rode the trains to see the city. I was ashamed to ride these trains as I remembered the MRT and LRT in Manila.
RapidKL trains are fast and seem reliable! The train couches are big and cold. I rode the train on peak hour but you can still sit or stand comfortably.
Where I have been? After transferring to different train routes, I had a glimpse of Kuala Lumpur.
St. Anthony Church
Across my hostel is St. Anthony Church. It was a joy to thank God on my arrival and start my travel. It is a small church near beside a Catholic school and buildings under construction. The church was closed when I arrived so I just said a little prayer outside.
On the next day before my flight to India, I returned to St. Anthony Church. Happily, I found the back door and it was open!
The seventh tallest telecommunication tower in the world after Tokyo Tower. It is built to enhance the quality of telecommunication services and broadcasting in Malaysia.
This is seen mostly in all parts of Kuala Lumpur including the part near my hostel and St. Anthony Church.
One of the oldest mosques in Kuala Lumpur. It is located at Klang and Gombak River. Same as the KL Tower, I haven’t got the chance to get closer in these places.
Jamek Mosque is overlooking Masjid Jamek train station.
Petronas Twin Tower and KLCC Park
Once known as the tallest building in the world and still the tallest twin tower, Petronas Tower is one of the best architecture in Asia. It stands 1,230 feet with 93 floors. It is still the most iconic structure found in Kuala Lumpur.
It felt like the towers will fall down on my face once I laid my eyes on them! It was one of a megastructure! There are many tourists at the park who never stop taking photos. There is no entrance fee outside the towers, so most all of the locals were relaxing there too.
I spent entire more than 3 hours just to see Petronas lit up. But it was already 8 PM and the sky was still bright. Still, Petronas Twin Towers are magical skyscraper that glows brightly.
After spending some time in KLCC, I returned to my hostel.
On the next day, I had to catch my flight going to New Delhi, India. This time, I ride the train going to KL Sentral station and switch to a bus going to KLIA2. It was way cheaper than hiring a taxi!
To follow my adventures in India, click here.
LAST DAY IN MALAYSIA
After a week exploring India, I have to go back to Malaysia. As I wrote, I used Malaysia as a transit from Philippines to India. This time, I have more idea on how will I see Kuala Lumpur.
How did I get there? I booked Air Asia X from my flights to New Delhi to Kuala Lumpur. This time, I paid for Star Shuttle bus to take me to my hostel. Believe me, it was very cheap!
Where did I stay? Since my experience from my last hostel in KL is just ordinary, I decided to book another hostel at Booking.com. I found KL Dorms. From the directions given by the hostel, it seems it is also nearby Pudu Central. After 2 hours, I arrived at Pudu Central. All I thought was I can find my hostel easier but it took me almost 30 minutes! It was farther than my 1st hostel in KL. I almost cancelled that hostel reservation after walking in circles. Finally, I found KL Dorms and checked in at around 2 PM.
Don’t be surprise if you will see Westerners or white people at the Reception area. They are not guests; they are the receptionists of this hostel. It took me 20 minutes to figure it out! HAHA. Just timely since I also rested after all the walking and searching for my hostel.
Compared to my 1st hostel in KL, this hostel is better. My room is on the 2nd floor only. Their shower is the best! Though I just had a hard time at first how to use the cold and hot water! HAHAHA! The restaurant outside cooks dishes deliciously for a very reasonable price. I don’t had any complains aside from the directions on how to get to their hostel.
How did I get around the city? Walking is the best and cheapest option! 😀
Where I have been? Since I have limited time in Kuala Lumpur and I haven’t bought any pasalubong for my family and friends. I went to Jalan Petaling. It is a flea market at Chinatown. It is 30 minutes walk from my hostel. Almost the same area where I got lost. HAHA.
There are many items to choose like t-shirts, bags, caps, shoes, clothes! Nakaka-temp mag-shopping! Food stalls are available too! Good thing I went there at nighttime to see everything. After buying everything I needed, I returned to my hostel.
Layover in different cities maybe quick but it shows a glimpse of culture. Kahit na nadaanan ko lang ‘tong mga lugar na to, tumambay naman sila sa puso ko. Naks!
Here was my expenses in Malaysia,
Until we meet again, Malaysia! Sana next time hindi na quickie! 😛