THERE is so much more to the country’s capital than just tall buildings and iconic landmarks, and one of the best ways to see Kuala Lumpur from ground level is by hopping on and off an open-top bus, KL Hop On Hop Off bus (KL HOHO).
This is how it works: Get your tickets which are valid for the next 24 hours. This means you can always get on the bus again the next day for as along as it is still within the 24 hours period.
The tour goes by the “hop-on, hop-off” concept, which allows us to get on or off the bus at our own leisure time at its designated stops. There are two routes: Garden and City Routes.
The KLHOHO bus arrives every 20-30 minutes (depending on traffic and weather conditions), so it’s best to plan your stops and time yourself at each stop.
THE GARDEN ROUTE
From KL Sentral, the open-top bus moves along a couple of stops such as the National Museum and the old Istana Negara before heading to Lake Garden.
Within the Lake Garden stop, there area couple of interesting places worth-visiting – the KL Bird Park, the largest aviary in Asia established in 1991 and the Butterfly Farm.
From here, the bus makes stops along Jalan Raja in front of Dataran Medeka and the Royal Selangor Club. Here is the unmistakable Sultan Abdul Samad building that was built in the 19th century, with its trademark red bricks and white plastered arches and banding.
With so many things to see here, it’s good to get off at the station in front of the KL Gallery, just opposite the National Textiles Museum.
Go on a self-guided “Colonial Walk” to Jalan Lebuh Pasar Besar (between Jalan Tun HS Lee and the intersection of Medan Pasar), where Central Market is located.
If you go along the Colonial route, you’ll come across various historic buildings (the Sultan Abdul Samad building and Panggung Bandaraya DBKL, among them) that were previously used by the British administration during colonial times.
From the Sultan Abdul Samad building, take the corner and stop at the River of Life and you will see another iconic city landmark, Masjid Jamek. Its main entrance faces Jalan Tun Perak, where the road connects to Jalan Petaling (where Chinatown is) towards the east and Jalan Raja Laut on the west.
Still on the heritage trail, go along Jalan Lebuh Pasar Besar to marvel at the pre-war shop houses that have since been taken over by foreigners running various businesses.
A clock tower commemorating the coronation of King George IV, erected in 1937, stands in the middle of the square. Known as Old Market Square, it was once a thriving market with banks, textile shops and even traditional medicine halls.
It was a trendy place back in the days of Kapitan Yap Ah Loy, one of the founding fathers of Kuala Lumpur.
THE CIYY ROUTE
From Central Market, hop on the bus to explore the interesting places along the City Route.
Compared to the Garden Route, the City Route covers the entire major shopping hub of Kuala Lumpur such as the Sunway Putra Mall and Bukit Bintang, the city’s Golden Triangle.
If you’re into for a short hike in a city’s forest reserve, get off at the KL Tower station and walk a short distance to the entrance of the KL Eco Forest Park.
The park features an impressive 200m canopy walk, which towers as high as the trees in this permanent forest reserve nestled in heart of Kuala Lumpur.
From the highest point of the canopy, one can see the vastness of the city and beyond. Some of the more prominent buildings around the area can be seen from here too.
Previously known as the Bukit Nanas Forest Reserve, it is one of the oldest rainforest reserves in Malaysia. The park, gazetted as a forest reserve in 1906,sits on a nine-hectare piece of land. Some of the trees found in the area include agar wood (karas) and camphor (kapur).
From Jalan Raja Chulan, go on foot to Petaling Street on the southside. From Muzium Telekom, walk towards Menara Maybank on JalanTun Perak. From here, Petaling Street is less than a five minute walk away.