>>>Malaysia’s metropolis

Malaysia’s metropolis

48 hours in Kuala Lumpur, (or how to pose like a superhero on the Petronas Towers, enjoy the best grilled chicken and connect with major Asian cities).
E
veryone can do as they please. Some will want to gaze upwards for 452m, while endeavouring to capture the towers on a smartphone screen. Some will analyse their cement, steel, aluminium and glass structure. Others may observe the eight-pointed-star design, homage to Muslim architecture, employed by Argentinian architect, César Pelli. And others still will simply climb the 88 floors in a lift, to see Kuala Lumpur from above. But, the best way to enjoy the Petronas Towers, the twin towers that, from their opening in 1997, until 2004, were the tallest in the world, is standing in front of them, crossing your arms defiantly and getting someone to take your picture from below. Wow, I look like a superhero. Just like Superman reigning over metropolis.
10 minutes from the centre of Kuala Lumpur, you can visit KL Bird Park.

‘Kuala Lumpur fried chicken’

Jalan Alor, in the centre, is the best-known street for dining in the city. There are dozens of small restaurants and posts selling street food, where you can enjoy simple, flavoursome dishes, like the grilled chicken that has been served at Wongh Ah Wah for more than 30 years.

Particularly at dusk, there is a touch of science fiction, as if special effects have been used, created by the Petronas, the major attraction in Kuala Lumpur. It is a gross understatement to say that they are an essential stop on any journey to the Malaysian capital. The Petronas, which will soon celebrate their 20th anniversary, are Kuala Lumpur. You can also admire them as you stroll near their base, in KLCC Park, where dozens of Malaysians and tourists gather to spend the afternoon around the lake or swimming pool, just 30cm deep, where children splash about. It is a little incongruous at the heart of the city’s financial district, where you expect to find suits, briefcases and everyone rushing around.
But, Kuala Lumpur is, first and foremost, livable and comfortable. Despite having been designed for cars, it stands in sharp contrast to the chaos and crowds typical of large Asian cities. Indeed, it has just 2million inhabitants. It is a city without urgency, and one you can visit in 48 hours, even if you do spend an entire afternoon at the twin towers. Before going there, you may like to wander around the financial district, or go in search of panoramas from other skyscrapers, like the Menara KH tower, which has views of the Petronas (with rooftop bar included). Perhaps you would like to take shelter from the heat in a shopping mall. Afterwards, you can dine on Changkat Bukit Bintang, the city’s busiest thoroughfare, packed with two-storey restaurants, bars and clubs, which open onto the street.
At night, Chinatown fills with tourists and locals.
To reinforce this sensation of being in an oasis (perhaps even too relaxed), use your second day to pay a visit to the modern National Mosque, passing through Taman Tasik Park, with its long paths, botanic garden and butterfly, bird and turtle reserves. Back in the centre, two of the most historic sites in the city are Masjid Jamek mosque and Merdeka (independence) square, where the Malaysian flag was first flown. There will still be time to visit one of the most popular parts of the city: Chinatown, home to street vendors hawking counterfit goods, fine street food and cold beer.
The staircase has 272 steps.

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