The Malay language doesnt have a script. It uses English alphabets. And it borrows a lot of words from English and Urdu/Arabic. Kerusi means seat, Bagasi means baggage, Negara means national, Kedai means shop. It would be fair to say that I could pick up more of the language in two days than I have Kannada in my one and a half years of stay in Bangalore. Look at it in any way you want! The City of lights (Lumpu is lamp) is like this huge park; built to a definite plan and maintained to perfection. I dont know about Malaysia and its economy, about its villages or any other city but the capital is definitely meant to be a showcase to the world. And KL fits the bill perfectly. Skyscrapers, gardens, monuments made in Moorish style, the Monorail, beautifully laid out roads, smiling locals who speak good English; I couldn't ask for anything more.
The best thing about KL is that there are very few 'tourist spots' so as to say. Sure, the Petronas Towers and the newer Minara KL are huge attractions but the city as a whole is so beautiful to look at, that you feel like clicking photographs every minute.
At about 150 meters from the ground, the 360 degree view of the city from the observation deck at the Minara KL is breathtaking. Especially if the time of the day is dusk. We stayed there for over two hours clicking pictures and just getting amazed as the city turned on its lights and the Twin Towers changed colors from the metallic gray of the day to the shining silver of the night. The Legend Hotel (the one we were staying at) was fabulous. The view from the room, the Malaysian style prawns and Hainanese Chicken served in the restaurant and the smiling staff combined to make it a truly memorable experience.
Then there was the visit to the chocolate factory where we bought a few kilos (yes you heard me right!) of Malaysian chocolates. I got to take only one kilo though. Our Tamil guide for the city tour was excellent, taking us through the city's history and the important monuments. Throughout the tour, a sense of wonder and amazement prevailed. Everything was so tidy and perfect. No traffic jams, no honking of horns, buildings, roads and trees laid out as if an an artist had painted them on his canvas, towering buildings which strained my neck; KL made me feel that all was right with the world. And I guess I reveled in that feeling.
Situated at about 75 Kms from the city, I will remember the Genting Highlands the most for the Cable Car ride over the rain forests and the road that lead to it. And yes, I also saw a Casino for the first time though didn't dare to try out my luck! The day trip was a little tiring because of the huge crowd which had gone there to enjoy the weekend which led to long queues for the couple of outdoor rides that I took.
A little more expensive than Bangkok, I liked KL the most out of the three cities. I think the laid-back atmosphere of the city in spite of being such a big tourist attraction and commercial center did the trick. Also the fact that they are celebrating 50 years of their independence and tourism is a huge focus area for them. So the entire city was all decked up. Add to it that it was new year's eve and I can't think of a better time to go there. Kuala Lumpur, truly lit up my year end.