Malaysia is a country unlike any other: Full of promise and fragility. Its history, cultural and religious diversity make it a rich, compelling and surprising land.
It was two days before the trip and I had not even booked my flight from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur. For some reason, Air Asia declined to take my card details. At this point I was about to enter panic mode. Luckily, my host in Singapore used her card and I was able to withdraw cash. What a way to start a trip.
BACK HOME HOSTEL
I arrived in Kuala Lumpur and took the longest Uber ride in existence to Back Home Hostel in the city centre. I would say this is one of the most well designed hostels i’ve ever been in equipped with a restaurant, two lounge areas, multiple shared rooms and washrooms and the best breakfast I’ve had in a hostel, which isn’t the basic toast and coffee. All this for 1,200KSH a night. Well, shut up take my money.
Generally, people in the hostel were quite friendly but they would never talk to you unless you talk to them. I found this quite odd as I read lots of solo traveller articles stating that people are quite friendly in hostels. However, I met 4 people in my room and we instantly bonded over how people in the hostel kept to themselves.
After settling down, I opted to take a walk around the area especially to see the Petronas Towers. I could not help but notice the stares I got as I walked through Kuala Lumpur especially from people of Indian heritage. However, I quickly got used to this as curiosity is human nature. The motorcycle rider who took me to the Petronas Towers kept on telling me that I look like Janet Jackson in a deep accent.
As expected, the grounds of the Petronas Towers were full of tourists and people trying to sell counterfeit iPhone 7s. As you do in places with lots of tourists. As the sunset, however, the towers never looked more beautiful.
The next day, I went to Batu Caves with an Egyptian couple and an American that I met in the hostel. I noted that I had left my Memory Card back at the hostel, so I do not have any photos of the caves. The Caves are a sacred Hindu shrine located at the top of a limestone hill in Gombak, Selangor with a long series of steps. On that day, the sun decided to come out with all his children making the climb to the caves unbearable. At the same time, workers were giving tourists bricks to carry up to the caves and sorry to say I did not feel the least bit helpful that day.
It was interesting seeing that the place was open to all people of all faiths. It was lovely seeing a Hindi woman teaching a Muslim woman the significance of a bindi and how to wear it. This image strongly engraved in my memory.
On my last nights, I had dinner in China town with more people that I met at the hostel .We had the Char Kway Teow which is stir fries rice noodles with chicken. This was the only traditional food I had whilst in Malaysia cause I was scared to be honest. I found myself in McDonald’s or Burger King most of the time. But the Char Kway Teow was worth it.
TOUR OF THE CITY.
On my last day, I took a tour round Kuala Lumpur with Lukas, a German I met at the hostel. (hey, if you’re reading this). We went to the Islamic Arts Museum, Petaling Street, the Botanical Gardens, Merdaka Square, the National Museum and finished the day off at the View Rooftop Bar where you get a lovely view of all of Kuala Lumpur.
Malaysia takes pride in its architecture as most spaces we were in allowed had different architectural exhibits that to be honest I was fan-girling about. Especially when I stumbled upon the Bamboo Playhouse which I did research on in my 3rd Year of Architecture School. I honestly nerded out explaining to Lukas the significance of this project.
All in all, solo travelling Kuala Lumpur was an overall success, from the people I met and all I learnt about Malaysian culture and architecture.
Have a lovely week
Question: Have you solo travelled before? How was that experience for you? Share in the comments below 🙂