We aim to a review about the places we are staying and how our experiences are in the city. For us, this is a way to gather our thoughts about the city and review the period.
To start with we can compare our strategy of travel now compared to late last year:
So far, we are traveling at a bit higher speed compared to last year. Then we decided to do slow travel and more stay in one place and get the feeling of becoming part of the place. I don’t think there is a ”right” or ”perfect” amount of time to stay in one place. It depends, on situations, feelings and life at the moment. Sometimes we need to slow down and some time to have a higher speed depending on how we like the place. For sure it is easier to involve and connect when staying longer in one place. Still, there is a challenge in going out of comfort zone and pressure us in more and new situations and grow as persons and learn more from all the people and cultures we are exposed too.
Last year we stayed in Portugal for 4 months, two months in Porto and two in Lisbon. We also had to shorter trips during that time to Madrid and Morocco.
This time, we feel we want to experience a bit more and also try out a more challenge with working in more countries and travel the same time. In short, our plan is to be more flexible and has less fixed plans from the start. Also, we are aiming to also come to smaller cities that why we travel quite quickly though the major and bigger cities, at least for now:) This time, we wanted to take advantage of being able to travel a bit more first and to stay longer time when we feel like it. Let’s see how it turns out.
Below are some thoughts from our time in Kuala Lumpur, often called KL, Malaysia.
A green city with nice parks and areas to discover
When traveling around, we always see lots of greens areas around KL. There is even a bit preserved jungle or maybe, it’s better to call it a well-preserved park, inside the city. The park serves as a home to python
and other animals. The entrance is free and the park has a really nice treetop walk:)
Another great idea is to see wild animals at the botanic garden.We saw a big lizard, black swan, lots of cute squirrels and birds. At the buddha there were lots of wild monkeys and as a bonus also the buddha caves, Indian sculptures, and nice mountains.
A place that cares for the poor
Some countries ban beggars and ban people from helping them too. In KL we, it’s not the case. We saw and talked with volunteers who helped homeless people and handed out food. It was great to meet such antistatic and caring people.
Great vegetarian food
The food was amazing, we had some of the best Indian food experience so far from a totally vegetarian restaurant. Felt like being in a vegetarian paradise:)
People who reached out
This might not happen all the time but, at least, a few times, we had lovely talks with our neighbors at the next table at the restaurant. We learned to form other Malaysians about the country and more about their relation to be the second and third generation in the country. Many times we thought that people most relates to their original country but so is not the case at all, here you can really experience and grow your culture in Malaysia,
Another nice experience was when we traveled by train from KL to Penang, we sat next to a guy from Malaysia. We ended up talking the whole way and had a great chat about culture, countries and all kind of things for a couple of hours. There was even a nice Swedish guy, who seen us before, who came and joined us for a couple of hours. We love this spontaneous and open-minded people:)
We meet up our friends friend who is from Malaysia and had a great day together with her and her mom. Together we all experience the celebration of Chinese New Year, in China Open House celebration was interviewed by a newspaper and had a great time also seeing Indian culture and celebration at Buddha caves. Since Malaysia is a multicultural country there are many red days for various traditions.
Newspapers to share
We found a great newspaper that was free to read. And like in China they have the same system here, each side of the newspaper is loose and not bonded together so everyone can share a newspaper. That is also common to do. We think that is a great idea, why not share so everyone can read one page at the same time?
This is not the most important but still it makes an impact of course. The prices here is about half of Singapore’s prices.
Hard to get an overview
We had a hard time to navigate in KL. There are many different kinds of transportation called everything from LRT, KTM, moon train and lots of busses. Also, the lines aren’t that effective, many times when we searched for how to get to a place by local transportation we ended up walking instead since it was smoother.
It is harder to get a grasp over KL. For example in Singapore every area, like little India, China town, is very defined and different with special buildings. In KL, it’s harder to know the difference from the areas even though it is possible to find. We felt more from the multiculturalism in Singapore compared to KL. Maybe it will be different in Penang?
KL feels a bit more strict regarding rules maybe since it’s a Muslim country.
Maybe it’s not the case but it is really a feeling of walking around and it’s hard being a couple traveling without holding hands, kissing and just being relaxed. This affected us a lot to be more strict and also our sense of humor, many others probably don’t have these similar feelings at all but for us it is important to feel free and be able to relax and not think about all the rules all the time.
There are many similar rules as in Singapore, for example, forbidden jaywalking, chewing gum, drink and eat but on busses and metro. Oh, and if you smoke in you can go to jail for two years, or pay a high fee, glad we aren’t smokers.
We love nature and smaller cities more and are longing to come to a smaller city. For us, we had this week in KL more as a transport on our way to Penang. If we had come during another time it could be totally different.
Our circumstances and situations can say more than the city itself.
A city is what you make it, what time you visit it, and what you have been through the past. For example, we work at afternoons and evenings and that makes it harder to meet people. If we could have been more social during our time in KL we would probably like the city more. Relationships and people from travels affect us a lot and we hope to be able to connect more in the continue of this trip.
We could be in KL ten different times and have ten different experiences just related to our circumstances. In the end, sights, cafe’s and such is not what makes the place. It’s the memories and the nice stories. Maybe we have more and others in the future from KL:)