Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia: $4 Meals, Tall Buildings & Holy Shrines All In One City!

Wow! Another city that has completely shocked us. Kuala Lumpur (or KL) is a cutting edge, first class city. A city that is definitely not given it’s fair time in the spotlight, so we’re hoping to help change that! 

While the drive from the airport was a long one, it was all highway! Not like the roads in India where a 2 lane highway is actually a 6 lane highway with all the cars that squeeze onto it. This was a real highway with gorgeous roads and rules that people abide by. A shock! As we got into the city and started exploring we felt like we could be in New York or any other major city in the states. We decided to stay right in the city center as we wanted to be as close to everything as we could. We decided on a hotel using Hotels.com through Ebates so we got more nights towards our free one in Hotels.com and earned 3% cash back through Ebates. (Don’t forget to signup through our links so we get credit!) 

The Petronas Towers were initially the main reason of coming here. They were once the tallest buildings in the world and are still the tallest twin buildings! We got a chance to take a tour which allowed us see the sky bridge and go almost all the way to the top. It reaches 451 meters. 1483 feet! It was fascinating to see how high we were on the sky bridge versus the 86th floor. At the sky bridge, level 41, you feel extremely high, one with the birds! Once you get to the top though, wow! Such an incredible sight. It was a fun tour to take, a must do for tourists, but the view from the bottom with both towers gleaming in the sunlight was just as incredible. You can almost save yourself the money! 

Batu Caves is located not far from the city. A quick 20 minute uber drive for about $4-$5USD will drop you right in front, or you can take KL’s awesome public transport system. It takes about double the time but costs half the price. We attempted this visit twice. The first time, just as we were arriving, the sky let loose and acted as though it hadn’t rained here in years. (Even though it rained here the day before!) We decided we’d go nice and early the next day to make the chance of it happening again as low as we could. Luckily, we planned it perfectly and got there to experience it in its entirety without getting washed out. The caves are free, so don’t let anyone fool you into going in different entrances for a charge! As you arrive, the world tallest Murugan statue greets you. It’s one of the most iconic pictures of the Batu Caves. The very steep 272 steps are lined with cliffs covered with hundreds of wild monkeys running up and down and jumping on steps in front of you, hoping for snacks. As you reach the top, you enter the limestone caves that have been there since the dawn of humanity. Such an awe inspiring sight. Worth the climb for sure! Inside had Temples of which you can go into or just admire. It is a very holy sight for Hindu’s and a place many were there to pray. It is the biggest Temple sight outside of India! We stood there just looking up and around in awe. By the time we were done, we were completely drenched in sweat but all of it made for such an awesome day! 

The Food: 

Restoran Selera Ampang: We found this little hole in the wall place while looking for a place to actually have dinner on our first night. Located in a run down looking building called Wisma Center was this little gem and we were immediately in love. It’s clear this is where the locals go. For around $4USD we got two deliciously sweet coffees, two roti’s with egg and gravy and a huge plate of fried noodles with fried chicken. All of it was packed with flavor and we were in street food heaven. The gravys that were served with the roti had an Indian spice to them. The egg was distributed perfectly in the soft roti and the noodles were packed with Asian flavor with a hint of spice. Mmm! Make sure to check out our Instagram for a video of the roti being made!

Lot10: After a quick google search for cheap eats in KL, we found Lot10 which was supposed to be a mall who’s basement acted like a food hall filled with all different Asian stalls. Google did not steer us wrong! Similar to the Asian food court we walked into at the mall in Auckland, you ascend down an escalator into a basement packed with endless choices. How do you choose?! Chinese, Thai, Malay, Indonesian, Japanese, and each one looked better than the one before. Naturally, we had to go two days in a row to try as much as we could. On the first day I saw some people eating glass noodles from the Thai stall, Thai Wok, and my mouth started drooling immediately so I had to get some. A huge plate of tiny, thin noodles packed with crispy sautéed vegetables and perfectly browned chicken, tossed in a brown sauce with just the slightest hint of fish sauce. Dean couldn’t decide between a Macau Pork Bun and honey BBQ pork fried rice… so he got both! The pork bun was a huge bone in pork loin chop on a crusty Portuguese roll. It was fatty, crispy and totally hit the spot. The sauce that came with the BBQ pork was sticky, sweet and fatty and the mound of fried rice was the perfect thing to sop up all the juicy goodness. We finished the meal off with a durian and vanilla swirled ice cream. If you’re unfamiliar with durian, it’s South East Asian fruit with a spiked exterior. The interior has an extremely musty and stinky smell but great flavor. It’s like a good stinky cheese… you can’t bare the smell but once you eat some, you’re hooked! 

On the second day we had a better idea of what we wanted since we knew what we were getting into. Dean had noticed an authentic Chinese place the day prior, Hock Chew, and went straight there. He got dried Mee Suah that came with peanut soup. A wheat noodle dish tossed in black bean sauce and topped with scallions and fried shallots. It was served with what we can only describe as pork cubes! Seasoned ground pork, wrapped in pork skin and deep fried in pork fat. Pork on top of pork, on top of pork… need we say more? He also saw a place making fresh soy milk. It tasted like store bought soy milk but with a much more intense flavor! Maybe a weird thing to pair with Chinese food, but hey… it was good! I was in the mood for Indian and saw a place that called my name. I got Chicken Bryani, a saffron scented rice served with tandoori chicken. I also got paratha, a naan style bread but much softer and flakier, melted in my mouth! They served it with a daal gravy, packed with tons of different spices. Yum! Since we loved our ice cream snack the day before so much, we decided to get another one for a sweet treat after lunch. This time, matcha and houjicha, roasted green tea. Both being made with green tea, you’d expect them to taste the same, but they each had their own flavor and characteristics. The matcha was that typical grassy, herbal green tea flavor while the houjicha had an underlying nuttiness that totally elevated it. 

On our way out for the night we walked by a food truck selling all different kinds of fried snacks and roasting corn and the words that immediately popped into both our heads were “why not?!”… and so we did. We’re not kidding when we say BEST CORN OF OUR LIVES! Who would think that corn on the cob could blow you away, but trust us. We’re still dreaming about it. It was roasted right in front of our eyes and lathered in some sort of herby and spiced butter. The charcoal roasting adds a certain sweetness and that combined with the melty butter goodness made it the best. Stop whatever you’re doing and go to Kuala Lumpur in front of the Suria KLCC, (Kuala Lumpur City Center) right next to the Petronas Towers and get yourself one. Also bring one back for us. You can thank us later. I also got some chicken nuggets on a stick, cause why not, and a delicious watermelon juice. One of the highlights of our stay here by far. It’s funny how such little things can make you so happy! 

Canopy Bar and Lounge: Our last night we were in the mood for some fun drinks in a great atmosphere and found this place on TripAdvisor. A great, new rooftop spot in KLCC. It has great views of the city and Petronas Towers and the staff was over the top friendly. Big shout out to Kevin, Tim and Shihab! The drinks were expertly crafted and at a great price. It’s clear they care about what they’re doing here. Kevin came over before he made our drinks to ask if we like them on the more sweet or sour side, he wanted to make sure he was crafting them perfectly for us! Total win! 

We’re leaving Kuala Lumpur and all of Malaysia wishing we spent more time here to see more of the country. But that’s what this is all about! Now we know we need to come back. Next up is Singapore! 

**We are using Ebates and Hotels.com to book everything we do! We get cash back from Ebates and earn free nights on Hotels.com so you get rewarded for doing what you would normally do anyway! On Hotels.com, they provide excellent service and will match hotel prices if you find something cheaper elsewhere. If you stay 10 nights, you get 1 free and if you become a gold member (30 stays in 1 year) you get early access to deals and special rates. Also 24/7 service. On Ebates, while the percentage cash back varies depending on the store, you legitimately get cash back on almost every store you would shop online for anyway and get a check every quarter with your savings. They also have special coupon codes to get discounts on the site that you can’t get otherwise. We’ve gotten over $500 cash back! That’s nothing to sneeze at! We get credit if you use our links (hyperlinked in the names) and would love if you could help us out! But really, you’re helping yourself too!!** 

8 Comments Add yours

  1. RahulYuvi says:

    I stayed at Kuala Lumpur with for 3 days and frankly speaking, we didn’t like Kuala Lumpur that much..May be because our expectations were high as we explored singapore prior to ckecking in Kuala Lumpur..I mean its good in parts but overall it didn’t came across as a high end city ,the capital city of Malaysia !

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow! I appreciate that you guys are prioritizing finding good food on your journeys! Everything looked delectable! Do you every try to recreate the food when you come back home?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Julie and Dean says:

      Absolutely! Dean is a chef so finding good food and trying to recreate at hope is top priority!


  3. Pekebun says:

    Oh! You both are so funny. I’m from Singapore, now living in FL, & I used to frequent KL with many friends there. I love KL food too but your descriptions just made me grin. Happy travelling!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. jeanne couchey says:

    so very beautiful

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Lan says:

    Great that you both like KL very much.. and had awesome food as well, cheap and delicious, loving this post especially for that amazing photos of batu caves.. and oh that food images makes me wanting to open the fridge already!! Helpppp needed here haha

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Cathy Bashaw says:

    Love love your stories n your travels. So happy to be following you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Julie and Dean says:

      Thanks for following! Glad you enjoy it!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s