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MALAYSIA DAY 4 (Kuala Lumpur)

Swiss Inn -> Batu Caves -> Lot 10 -> Sungei Wang Plaza -> Berjaya Time Square -> KL Sentral -> KLIA (KL International Airport) -> Singapore Changi Airport

Swiss Inn cafe, where breakfast is served
Our room package includes breakfast. And Swiss Inn is actually quite well known for its breakfast (for the budget range) as seen from blog reviews. Breakfast is served as early as 7am. 

Since we will be going to Batu Caves in the morning later on, we woke up early and have an early breakfast @ 7.30am.

They served international buffet that includes a variety of breakfast staple like congee, bee hoon, nasi lemak.

Nasi Lemak
Nasi Lemak is at the self-help section where you get your own servings of ikan bilis, peanuts, zucchini, egg and chili.

There's another section where food is cooked frequently. Thus the food served are all piping hot!

kitchen counter
There's potato wedges, different kinds of eggs - scrambled and sunny side up, baked beans and pastries. 

wedges and eggs ~
The potato wedges are good! Must try, no matter how full you are.
One good thing about Swiss Inn is that the frequency in which they replace the food is very fast.

Be sure to try their danish pastries - croissants and tarts as they are really fabulous! What's more, they did not get their supplies from factories, but rather they baked themselves!

oven! all danish pastries freshly baked daily!
While we were there having our breakfast, we saw them removing baked trays of pastries from the oven and inserting new unbaked ones too. Good! A must try! Baked to perfection!

For the price we paid ( breakfast inclusive in the room charge ) the variety of dishes provided is atisfactory. However, a good enough basic buffet breakfast! There's a salad /beverage counter too, for the healthy you.

We left Swiss Inn for Batu caves at 8.30am. Along the way from Swiss Inn to Pasar Seni LRT ( nearest train station), we saw several vendors selling goods on the floor. It's like a flea market I guess that happens only during weekend mornings! So be sure to catch this local sight if you happen to be around there on a morning!

selling of barangs and people haggling for lower price
Be sure to take caution of your bags since theres many people and vehicles, and the pavement is very near the road!

Pasar Seni LRT ahead
Once again, we bought 4 tokens to KL Sentral, since to go Batu Caves, we have to take the KTM Kommuter which is available at KL Sentral. They cost RM 1 (SGD $0.40) each.

This time round, we are taking to KL Sentral,  hence we are taking the side towards "Kelana Jaya" instead of "Gombak"

platform 2 - to KL Sentral
train is coming!
Upon reaching KL Sentral station, we have to purchase another ticket at the KTM Komuter counter to take to Batu Caves. Currently they have promotion for the tickets to Batu Caves from KL Sentral. Its selling at 50% off!!

KTM Kounter @ KL Sentral
The trains do not come frequently, but around 30 minutes interval. We just missed the train when we purchased the tickets. While we were wandering around the train station, we saw a sign that RM 30 will be imposed on people without the valid train pass destination. We looked at ours and saw that its written "Sentul" instead of " Batu Caves". 

KTM Komuter ticket to Batu Cave

List of stations ( Station 3 - bound for Batu Caves)
Prior to our trip, we saw fellow bloggers who got fined this penalty as they were unaware of this clause and they did not have the correct tickets. RM 30 is not kidding, for the 4 of us, the total penalty if charged would be RM 120 (SGD $47.24) - enough for a hearty meal in Malaysia. We decided to ask the guards/incharge at the train gantry area, and they assured us its okay although the ticket wrote 'sentul' and we are going 'batu caves'. I believed its because of the current promotion to batu caves, therefore they put sentul instead of batu caves as they charge RM 1 for one way. Usual price of the KTM komuter train to Batu caves from KL Sentral is RM 2, and they do not sell 2 way tickets. 

Nevertheless, it is always better safe than sorry! When in doubt, best is to consult the locals/train personnel there! :)

KTM Komuter platform
The train came at around 9.20am. We waited for around 20 minutes before that.

interior of the train
It was VERY new! There isn't a lot of people, maybe around 60% filled. A lot of people alighted at Sentul. Towards the end (nearing Batu Caves), there's lesser people in the train. The whole journey took around 30 minutes. Along the way you get to see villages/rural part of KL which you never thought existed.

So we finally reached Batu Caves at 10am!
a pond near Batu Cave
Batu Cave!
This is the only attraction at that train station. With KTM Komuter - Batu Caves station, getting to this place is made so much more convenient than previously! If I am not wrong, this was opened only recently - within 2013.
Batu Caves is a an iconic and popular tourist attraction in Selangor. 
Site of a Hindu temple and shrine, Batu Caves attracts thousands of worshippers and tourists, especially during the annual Hindu festival, Thaipusam.   
A limestone outcrop located just north of Kuala Lumpur, Batu Caves has three main caves featuring temples and Hindu shrines.   
Its main attraction is the large statue of the Hindu God at the entrance, besides a steep 272 climb up its steps to finally view the stunning skyline of the city centre.   
Monkeys frolic around the caves, and it is a popular spot for rock climbing enthusiasts. Paintings and scenes of Hindu Gods can also be seen in the Ramayana Cave. 

mischievous monkeys can be spotted moving around 
We took around 5minutes to climb the 272 steps to the cave!
Warning!! It's not an easy feat for people who are not very active in doing exercises.

Along the way we saw a group of indians carrying a baby up to the top of the cave. Applause to them!

This trip up to the cave is believed to bring blessing to the new born baby, as Batu cave is considered to be a very sacred place for the indians and they often make trips to Batu Cave to pray to the god and deity for good blessings.

a group of indians carrying a baby up to the caves while climbing the 272 steps
A few things to note while you are climbing the steep stairs:

1. Yes, they are steep, so for those with Acrophobia, be sure to not look back when you climb the steps. Just look ahead. Grab the handrail beside.
2. Be wary of the monkeys. Monkeys are not pets. Clasp your bag tightly to you (handbags) and never dangle plastic bag with food. They are very hungry.
3. Be wary of the movements of the monkey ahead of you. They will make sudden movements at time.

View down, from the top (cave)
Hindu Temple in the cave
To enter the temple, you will need to remove your shoes and wash your feet before entering. As Batu cave is a very sacred place for the hindus, be sure to be appropriately dressed. By appropriately dressed, they mean long pants, sleeved shirts.

Yes, it is really a cave, and we are in the cave 
inside the cave
The only way to go up to the cave is to climb the 272 stairs and to go back to main ground, means you have to climb the stairs down. 

That day, it rained and the steps are a little slippery. 

We left at around 10.45am, in time to catch the train at 10.55am. We have to purchase the tickets from the counter and it costs RM2 (SGD $0.80)/pax. Actually theres no working gantry and no one is on guard. Therefore, although we purchased the tickets, we do not need to show to anyone and we can just enter and board the train.

Train to KL Sentral
As for the train frequency, in order not to incur too much waiting time, you may roughly estimate the train departure timings when you arrived at Batu Caves. 

This time round, the train from Batu Caves back to KL Sentral was in a more inferior condition. However overall, we are still very satisfied with our KTM train experience. I mean whats more to grumble when the train fares are already so cheap!!

We head back to Pasar Seni to do check out for our room at Swiss Inn. We made a mistake here, and should have check out our room in the morning before leaving for Batu Caves. However we didn't as such we wasted time here. 

Swiss Inn room card
Last few glance of Swiss Inn reception area

We deposited our luggage with the counter (it is FOC) with the intention of returning back to collect it before we head to KLIA Airport. As we have intention of visiting bukit bintang shopping district, and we thought dragging our baggage around may further accentuate our identity a tourists.

We left for Bukit Bintang at 12.45pm. Bukit Bintang is on the Monorail line which is another line from the usual LRT we take. Neverthless, we have to change at KL Sentral.

Image courtesy of MYRapid Malaysia KL
Our plan for that afternoon was to go to Lot 10 for lunch and shop at Sungei Wang Plaza which is just at the vicinity. Then afterwards we will walk over to Berjaya Times Square. They are separated by 1 train station, however trust me they are very near from each other, just like in Singapore - orchard and somerset.

courtesy of google map
Location A: Lot 10
Location B: Sungei Wang Plaza
Location C: Berjaya Times Square

To get to Lot 10 and Sungei Wang Plaza, you have to alight at Bukit Bintang station, while to get to Berjaya Times Square, you have to alight at Imbi Station.

So when we alight at KL Sentral we have to walk over to the monorail LRT at KL Sentral. Its out of the interchange. You may want to can ask the friendly shop owners there at KL Sentral interchange on how to go to the monorail LRT station to bukit bintang. there are signs to direct people to the monorail station, but I would say if you are not a usual in KL, the signs are not very obvious.

To get to the monorail station, we have to walk from the interchange to the bus interchange area, followed by a sheltered path way and cross a few roads until we get to another building. If you are staying at Hotel Sentral area, you might be able to spot the LRT since its just around there! 

Monorail tickets from KL Sentral to Bukit Bintang, which cost RM 2.10 (SGD $0.83)/pax.
Fare chart
Be warned!! Many Many people queuing to purchase the train tokens! And they are not just tourists but locals too. I guess travelling by cars is more common in Malaysia and it isn't very worth for the Malaysians to get a "ezlink card".

sea of people!!
The monorail (LRT) is extremely crowded! A couple of years back when we first took the LRT, it was still very vacant. Now, it is comparable to Singapore MRT during peak periods. Aunty skills that you have mastered in Singapore will be put into good use over at KL. As the crowd is really too immense, people do not bother to queue and people do not bother to even let the passengers in the train to alight first before boarding. You have to really squeeze your way through. It's not the time for you to be courteous, as it seems that being courteous and letting people will not work in KL.

The train cabins designs are a little different from the trains we took on the Kelana Jaya Line. The designs here are totally not for accomodating sea of people. The eats are designed such that its centred in the middle of the cabins. There's not much effective standing space and seats are limited too. 

Also, the train door does not close with a warning. They will just close as and when. So be careful!! One word to summarise our experience with the Monorail LRT is STRESSFUL!

The train ride is pretty short and we reach bukit bintang soon. The LRT station is connected to Lot 10 and Sungei Wang Plaza. 

We went to Lot 10 first and we were shocked by how much it has changed. It has become so much more like Singapore's shopping mall where it sell branded stuff. There goes all the bargained goods :( It was undergoing major revamp too, so most of the stores are actually still renovating. We couldn't really find a suitable chinese eating place and as such we decided to try out its food court situated at LG.

Courtesy of Lot 10 Hutong Facebook
The foodcourt also known as 十号胡同, they got famous food critic who is based in Hong Kong - 蔡澜 as their spokeperson. When we reached, it was around 1.30pm. The food court was very crowded and it was hard getting seats. 

We ordered a variety of food: Claypot Chicken with chinese sausage (around RM 11 - SGD $4.33), Wanton Mee (around RM 10 - SGD $4) and Black KL Hokkien mee (Around RM 10-SGD $4). We walked around the stores and realised the food prices are priced quite high. They are around Singapore's food price of SGD $4-5. However considering the cost of living in Malaysia, it shouldn't be priced this high. In general, the food are satisfactory but it's not something that will leave people craving for it again.

Do note that all the prices marked on the board, does not include govt taxes. So the final price where you have to pay upon ordering is a little higher. 

Wanton Mee
It cost around RM 8-9 (SGD $4). We queued quite long for this but I guess its worth it. The noodles and char siew are nice.

Hokkien Mee
It tasted quite nice but its a little too overpriced given the pricing in Malaysia. Had to queue very long for it. We ordered the Hokkien Mee and Wontan mee at the same time from different stores, but the Hokkien Mee is only served at a much later time.

After lunch, we hop over to Sungei Wang Plaza for some shopping. Do you know that Sungei Wang Plaza is under Capitamall Malaysia Trust? There's generally more affordable clothings there. However we noticed for women clothes, generally they sell more of the long sleeved blouse. So if you are keen in it, you can get them at an affordable price.

Overall, if you are not looking for branded stuffs, Sungei Wang Plaza is a more suitable place than Lot 10 to shop.

We passed by Koong Woh Tong (恭和堂) in Sungei Wang Plaza and decided to sit in for some cooling herbal jelly. They are also sold in Singapore however the pricing in SG is more expensive.
Courtesy of
We ordered 2 bowls of Herbal Jelly (龟苓膏). It cost RM 11 (SGD $4.33) for large and RM 8 (SGD $3.15) for small. Large can be shared by 2 people. 

Herbal Jelly
There's a GIANT hypermart at Sungei Wang Plaza too. Part of the unique selling point of Sungei Wang Plaza, is that at level 6 it has a Hong Kong Station where its designed as though it's in Hong Kong! It sells young and trendy fashion and there's also food stores selling local dry products.

We bought some Malaysia goodies.

Sesame Candies @ RM3.90 (SGD $1.54)
It doesn't seem as fresh as it looks. Upon opening and trying, the candy does not smell as fragrant and fresh anymore. This is below our expectation :(

Honeycomb cookie #1 RM 8.90 (SGD $3.50)
Honeycomb Cookie #2 RM 6.90 (SGD $2.72)
My family being a fan of Honeycomb cookies, we bought two different packets in one go. Both are not bad! 

We left Sungei Wang Plaza for Berjaya Times Square at around 4pm. Berjaya Times square building is visible from where we are. Otherwise, there's police guards on patrol and you can always ask them for direction.

Along our way there, outside Sungei Wang Plaza, we were approached by promoters of AirAsia who offer us Airasia exclusive BIG membership. 

Airasia membership
It is a loyalty programme in which for every air asia flight tickets you purchased, you can accumulate points and these points can be exchanged for free flights. Its somewhat similar to that of KrisFlyer membership. Since it is free, and we just have to register our particulars with them. We proceeded to do so. Yay to BIG membership!

Big Christmas tree @ Berjaya Times Square
Perhaps its the weekend, shopping malls are all flooded with people, including Berjaya Times Square. Berjaya Times Square is a 48 storey, 203m tall twin tower building that consist of an indoor theme park. It is Malaysia's largest indoor theme park. 

The whole shopping centre is really large and you can get lost inside, trust me. We could not find the indoor theme park and thought that it was already closed. But a quick check on the internet proved otherwise. Guess we have to look for it harder the next time we visit KL.

It was around 4+ pm and everywhere including eateries is all fully occupied with people. Once again, if you are on the look out for branded goods or maybe electronics, Berjaya Times Square might be a good place for you to shop! 

We wandered around and get a bit tired of the crowd and we decided to settle at Krispy Kreme Doughnuts cafe! It was on our agenda too. It is located at the level, near the christmas tree. It was really crowded and we were lucky to get seats as a group of Malay friends just got up from their seats.
Krispy Kreme has justed reached Singapore shores not long ago in the 4th quarter of 2013. However the doughnuts prices has been sky high, even higher than whats sold in other countries. We read from blogs that Krispy Kreme prices in Malaysia is reasonable - lower than Singapore. thus we decided to check it out! We first had our teeth sunk into Krispy Kreme doughnuts during out Korea Trip in August and we love the texture of the doughnut! Leaves us craving for more.

While we were queuing to purchase the doughnuts, we saw many Singaporeans buying dozens of original glazed doughnuts. Here in Berjaya Times Square, Krispy Kreme original glazed doughtnut goes at RM 12 (SGD $4.73) and RM 19.90 (SGD $7.84) respectively for half dozen(6) and 1 dozen (12). Prices are before government tax. While in Singapore, Krispy Kreme 1 dozen original glazed doughnuts can cost SGD $23.40 already!!

Krispy Kreme doughnuts assortment flavours: half dozens cost RM 15 (SGD $5.91) and 1 dozen cost RM 23.90 (SGD $9.41). CHEAP.

We purchased 2 hot combo set which consist of any 2 doughnuts and 1 coffee/tea per set. Before tax, the price per set is RM9.90 (SGD $3.90)!! Isn't it cheaper than in Singapore when getting a doughnut already cost SGD $2+!

2 Hot combo set
The doughnuts that we ordered are: Original Glazed, Newyork Cheesecake, gingerbread man, chocolate sprinkle.

Despite knowing that Original Glazed is the cheaper option out of all the other doughnuts, we still chose that since its the bestseller at Krispy Kreme. However we find it a little too sweet for liking. Ideal for those with sweet tooth!

We love how Krispy Kreme provide brown sugar selection at the self help counter. Brown sugar is definitely a healthier choice and ought to be chosen over white sugar.
Interior of Krispy Kreme Cafe
There's free wifi in the cafe too!

Clearly, 4 doughnuts, one for each of us is not enough. Few minutes later, we couldn't resist the urge, and bought another hot comb.

another combo!
This time round we chose colourful sprinkles and oreo cheesecake. They are equally great!!

They seem to be a little short-handed as many utensils, plates, mugs were left placed on the table and there isn't anyone out here to collect the used apparatus, neither is there any self-disposal area. They were so short on mugs until for our second order, they had to use disposable cup to contain the hot tea, instead of he usual porcelain mug when you eat in.

We left at around 5.30pm. Once again, the monorail back to KL Sentral is insane. There's just too much human traffic. 2 of us went back to Swiss Inn (Pasar Seni LRT) to collect our baggage while the other 2 of us loitered around KL Sentral since our train to KLIA departs from KL Sentral. This is one big mistake that we made, since travelling to and fro wasted a lot of unnecessary time - afterall their transport system is not as efficient as in Singapore.

For our transport back to KLIA (KL international airport), we have actually purchased train tickets online. We chose KLIA Ekspress since they are having season promotion for December. Yes, I must admit, without promotion the tickets are actually a little costly.

Courtesy o2013 Express Rail Link Sdn Bhd
Purchasing KLIA Ekspress ticket is quite direct. If you are travelling in a group ( 3 or more adults) then just select group saver under 'type', otherwise if you are travelling as family (with 2 children below 12 years old), then select Family package under 'type'

option page
Usual price of an adult ticket is RM 35 (SGD $13.78) and that of child is RM 15 (SGD $5.91). Thus for us, we purchased group saver for 4 adults, we saved a total of RM10*4pax = RM 40 (SGD $15.75)!

You do not need to confirm the timing, but rather the departure date, thats all! Thus its better for you to buy online first to enjoy the discount!

After that you will receive a pdf file with QR codes. On the day of departure, you just need to print the e-tickets with QR code and scan it at the gantry!

Gantry to KL Ekspress!
sim card provider
Rapid KL train visible
check in counter
If you are catching a flight like Malaysian Airline, there is even a check in counter for you to deposit your baggage for check in and you can do early check in at the counters at KL sentral. This service is only exclusive for some carriers, usually the more premium ones - thus definitely not budget carriers.

There are many signs guiding you to KLIA Ekspress, so don't worry!

The frequency of the train is around 30-40 minutes. We boarded ours at around 6.55pm.

The whole journey lasted around 28-30 minutes as what it proclaimed. The condition of the carriage is very good! Worth the bucks for the speed and comfort!

We reached KLIA at around 7.30pm while our flight is 9.25pm.

KLIA Ekspress train station at KLIA
KLIA (Kuala Lumpur International Airport)
We had our e-boarding pass with us already since we have already did online check in. We still have some time to spare and we had our dinner at KFC. The KFC is located in a ulu corner of the airport departure hall.

The chicken pieces are sold at very affordable price of below RM10 for 3 piece chicken! Satisfying last meal in Malaysia before we head home.

Our flight experienced slight delay. By 9.25pm, we are still at the boarding area awaiting for the previous passengers in the flight to alight. We only started boarding at around 9.35pm. We touched down at Singapore grounds at 10.45pm.

And... it's back to Singapore!
Overall, our experience in Penang has been a great one while our one day trip to KL has been a little disappointing. Many things have changed over the years. Penang has been a little boring other than its delicious and affordable food whcih will be the main reason that pulls us back. However, one thing for sure, we won't be back to KL in the recent years ahead. The culture there has left a negative indelible imprint in our minds...


Dale Sean said...

It semms that your trip is great.I also have been to this palce before.The travel company tailored an itinerary that covered many highlights of Singapore and Malaysia. Including: Singapore Botanic Gardens, S. Flyer, Gardens by the Bay, Chinatown Heritage Center, temples, the colonial district, and a river cruise. Highlights of Malaysia: Malacca, Kuala Lampur, Langkawi & Panang Islands, and Cameron Highlands. The guides in Singapore and Langkawi were very accommodating and provided excellent services.The tour company made the best use of our limited time. Many of the hotels in the tour package were unique and luxurious. The airport transfers and transportation services were prompt, courteous, comfortable, and ON TIME. As experienced travelers, we find this travel company offered a good value and can recommend them.
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