Kuala Lumpur – At the muddy river mouth

Mein Schiff Southeast Asia cruise: Day 10 – heading for Port Klang in the Strait of Malacca at 14.7 knots

While we have already learned yesterday in our educational unit that we will reach the port of Klang this evening around 18:30 at a leisurely pace, we are now thinking the whole time back and forth, whether a visit to Kuala Lumpur on the eve of the actual full lay day is worth it. The city, called KL for short, means translated “muddy river mouth” and probably goes back to the time of its foundation, where nothing more than this existed before the first houses or skyscrapers shot up. We finally decide (or I do, Daniel is indifferent) to go to the city tonight.

Transfer Port Klang to Kuala Lumpur: Unlike in the other states Thailand and Vietnam, which we have visited so far, there are fixed cab prices here. Whether you have booked a transfer to the metropolis in advance via Kiwi Taxi, for example, or want to drive spontaneously, the costs do not differ. There are fixed radii, with which is calculated and thus fixed prices.
We join two fellow travelers and pay only the tip for the driver instead of about 50 to 60 dollars each way – they had reserved in advance and were kind enough to give us a ride.

We get the hotel room at the Renaissance Hotel near the Petronas Towers. Many people, including me, have the Twin Towers and Formula 1 in mind when Malaysia is mentioned. And only those two things, but not that the country is one of the strongest economic forces in Southeast Asia.

Kuala Lumpur is indeed the capital of Malaysia. Putrajaya, south of KL, however, is where the administration of Malaysia’s 13 states sits, nine of which have a sultan family who elect one as their king (Malaysia is a constitutional monarchy). Since the last king recently departed abroad through his marriage to Miss Moscow, the election of the new king is still quite fresh. But even this one is rather unconventional and was Malaysia’s representative in FIFA for years. Well, for now he is the elected head of state for five years. Putrajaya itself seems probably not particularly worth seeing, since it is a complete planned city and exists only since 1995. We did not visit it.

What Kuala Lumpur, the economic center of the state, still has to offer, we will then explore today at night today as well as tomorrow during the approximately 22 kilometer bike ride.

Tip: Since KL has no city center in the European sense, but Chinatown, Little India, and the sights are otherwise quite widely distributed, it is ideal to plan an excursion by bike or motorized if you have little time.

Because we can now enjoy tonight no all inclusive catering as on the ship, Daniel decides to have first a Long Island Iced Tea and then a Mai Tai. He ignores the note on the menu “Please note that Long Island Iced Tea and Mai Tai have an increased alcohol content”. After all, it has to be worth it – accordingly, we eat a snack before we disembark at 6:30 pm.

Still before the search of the hotel we visit after approx. one hour transfer time into the city a somewhat different Skyline bar and finally a Street Food market… from the latter we had actually hoped for something less touristy (we never listen to tips from hotel employees on evening pastimes again). The Heli Lounge, on the other hand, was really worth the drink – a strong view of nighttime KL awaited us from the deck that served as a helipad during the day. Somewhat sparsely secured, but with enough distance to the edge, we could enjoy our drinks at moderate prices (no comparison to the usury in Bangkok…). Open from 18:00, at 23:00 we were asked for the last order.

// Rooftop bar: Heli Lounge at Menara KL, Jalan Sultan Ismail, Bukit Bintang, Kuala Lumpur

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