Time to move onto Kuala Lumpur!
Waving a fond farewell to Melaka and our lovely guest house we made our way to the main bus station and jumped aboard a bus bound for KL, the journey was fine (although I am not sure how long the gearbox will last on that bus, making such a noise!) and we arrived at KL bus station, all good, taxi journey, good if not a little expensive- he seemed to know where he was going and hostel lovely, result! The first two nights we were booked into stay at the Reggae Guest House, a lovely clean little hostel in the midst of China Town madness, good choice! It didn't stay that way as we had to move hostels, but more on that later!
As we arrived late afternoon all we got around to doing that day was eating at the lovely Bob Marley inspired 'Reggae Bar', Malaysian cuisine with a Jamaican edge, pretty good food and ladies night on spirits too so some rum had to be drunk! After a nice few hours in there we head out with the plan to do some shopping on the markets on Petaling street, the main street in China town, unfortunately all that seemed to be on offer here were 'genuine fakes' of handbags, watched and perfume, not exactly what we had in mind! The 'hello lovely lady' sellers would not have any of our money that evening! :)
The next day we left the hostel to go to Merdeka (Independence) Square which claims to house the worlds tallest flag pole, I am not sure I believe this with the American need for tall flagpoles but that's what the guidebook said! Surrounding the area there were some mock tudor looking houses that surprisingly, seem to look at home here and a lot of other stately looking buildings around the sides, all very grand! A short walk from there and we came to a really interesting looking fountain designed as a giant tree and the water fed into each branch on its way down to the pool at the bottom, really interesting feature!
Following under the monorail tracks (these cities with these things may be efficient at getting people around, but they do destroy the landscape a bit) towards Masjid Jemak, the oldest Mosque in KL, unfortunately we couldn't go in as they have an extremely strict dress code, but we got a view of the outside and heard the traditional cry to prayer which was pretty cool. After sheltering from the afternoons torrential downpour we made our way over to the lake gardens to take in a few stately homes, interesting I am sure if you can read Malaysian and then walked through the stunning Hibiscus, national flower of Malaysia, gardens and Orchid gardens, they have made a great effort with the architecture here and it made for some nice photos. A bit more sheltering from the rain later we decided to make a run for it and see the sculpture gardens, half way there the heavens opened and we were stuck! Again making for some rather amusing photos, before a lovely taxi driver took pity on us and dropped us back at our hostel! After drying off we found a very amusing Beatles inspired bar and thought, why not go in for a few drinks? It was hilarious, dodgy inspired karaoke versions of Beatles songs, Eagles and Rod Stewart and alike with really bad backing videos, yes, worse than that Chinese in Bexleyheath on a Saturday! In an attempt to get some photos up to date and listening to the advise of lonely planet we headed to one of the many LAN gaming stores for 'quick internet access' it wasn't quick but the experience was certainly entertaining, 100 lads playing each other on computers and exclaim in English all of the catchphrases they were hearing, loud but very amusing!
Unfortunately we had to leave that hostel behind and move to a certain 'Hostel Cosmopolitan', disguising place, needs to be housed down with disinfectant! The guy who owns it took no interest in us (or the place) at all until we checked out at which point he asked which of us made the booking (me) and carried my nag down all the while saying that he hoped that we gave him a good review, hummm, that is not going to happen! Anyway, we decided that the least amount of time spent there the better and on we went to the massive Times Square Shopping complex, 10 floors of shops, restaurants and amusements including a roller coaster!! After some retail therapy- lovely skirts for 6GBP- we went onto the KL tower for a view of the city. The KL tower looks a bit like the BT tower in London, when we arrived there we were just in time to see a cultural dance performance which was cool, loads of colour! Then we made our way up the tower and were given a hand held TV and audio device that guided us round, quite a nice touch as the day was a bit overcast. They pointed out key landmarks and we certainly felt we got more out of the experience with it and best of all we got a lovely shot of the Petronas twin towers. I was clearly very excited at this point as I managed to launch mo poor camera through the air and landed on the concrete floor, it is working fine, thank goodness, just the casing is a little bit out of alignment, silly me! Included on the ticket was entry to a small animal enclosure with monkeys, racoons, snakes and toads (!!) and entry to go on the F1 simulator, which was great fun, I came last, but great fun none the less! There is quite a lot of F1 stuff in KL due to the race being held there and sponsored by Petronas.
In order to get the free tickets to go up the Petronas Twin Towers (that I now know isn't pronounced as in the Harry Potter films) you need to get there early to queue for tickets, we were not there early enough evidently as they had all gone but some lovely tourists from the Philippines had overheard the commotion and offered us their two spare tickets! Lovely people! After killing a few hours it was time to go up the 40 odd floors out of the 80 to the lower walkway- the upper walkway is for Petronas workers to make their way between the towers- for a great view of the city! We had a few photos with our new found friends and took in the views for a little while. The Malaysians are very proud of this building and I can see why, its a lovely design and looks amazing at night! The weather was really rainy after that so we killed a little time in the shopping centre before heading back to our hostel! We had planned to see a little more of Malaysia, making our way up to Penang, but due to transport issues this wasn't possible this time around which is a shame!
We spent the evening getting ready for the Thailand leg of our adventure which we are extremely excited about! We are quite glad to be getting out of KL.