The capital of Malaysia greets its guests with a frantic combination of colonial English flavor, Asian mystery and ultra-modern progress. Such a cocktail of styles and trends in architecture will become a real fairy tale for fans of urban tourism. Among the architectural directions of city attractions, every tourist can admire:
- Neo-Moorish style (Mughal architecture);
- Tudor style;
- Victorian style;
- Islamic architecture;
- Malay motives.
With all this splendor of trends in the art of urban planning, the most famous architectural representative of the sights of Kuala Lumpur is a representative of postmodernism. The Petronas Twin Towers have become such a hallmark of this city.
Twins Towers, as this miracle of modern architectural thought is called by analogy with the English language, is not just a landmark, it is an 88-storey or 452-meter object of pride for every resident of not only the capital, but throughout Malaysia. The shape of the buildings is very reminiscent of two ears of corn, however, all geometric shapes and forms used in the design of skyscrapers carry Islamic symbolism. For example, in cross-section, each tower represents two crossed squares, forming an eight-pointed star, which means integrity, unity, stability, harmony and rationality in the Muslim faith.
The two towers are connected by a bridge or, more simply, a observation deck on the 41st floor, which offers a beautiful view of the entire capital of the kingdom. Admission to the observation deck is free, however, it works until 16-00 and the number of such free tickets is limited to only a thousand, which means that in order to get the coveted ticket, you need to get it early in the morning, and go up to the platform at the time strictly indicated on the ticket. / p>
Relatively recently, Malaysia became a state independent of the British Crown, which is clearly felt literally in every square meter of the modern metropolis of Kuala Lumpur. This:
- Tudor-style Anglican St Mary’s Cathedral,
- Kuala Lumpur National Museum,
- Clock Tower,
- Victorian-style City Library,
- Church of the Holy Rosary,
- Catholic Cathedral of St. John in the neo-Gothic style.
In general, the modern look of the 21st century metropolis is also due to a kind of Anglo-Saxon globalization with its skyscrapers, fountains and modernist hotels.
Another attraction of Kuala Lumpur and its reminder of the English metropolis is Merdeka Square or Kuala Lumpur Independence Square . In colonial times, it was a field for playing the favorite fun of the English nobility – cricket. Actually, this is practically the last place in the modern metropolis, where so many British colonial buildings have survived, such as the Information Department, the City Hall, the General Post Office and the Palace of Sultan Abdul-Samad .
Temples and palaces
Today in Kuala Lumpur there are an impressive number of palace attractions, among which there are two main ones: the royal palace of Istan Negara and the palace of Sultan Abdul Samad. Istana Negara is the current residence of the current king of Malaysia. This is one of the main attractions of the capital, and the main entertainment of tourists in the palace is the daily changing of the guard.
Except for neo-Mauritanian and colonial style palace architecture , the capital of Malaysia is rich in religious and temple buildings, which are in themselves a work of architectural art and deserve a separate examination. Among them:
- Stalactite caves of Batu and a large statue of Buddha;
- National Masjid Negara Mosque;
- Masjid Jamek Mosque;
- Temple of the Goddess of Mercy (Ten Hau );
- Shri Mahamariamman Temple.
The entire spiritual life of Malaysia is made up of the good-neighborly coexistence of the Islamic faith, Hinduism and Buddhism.
Masjid Negara Mosque
The original structure of the national Masjid Negara Mosque is the spiritual center of the Muslim population of the entire country. The main feature of this mosque is in its architecture, or rather in the unique ribbed dome, the silhouette of which resembles a royal umbrella and looks like a star. And the eighteen facets of this bizarre dome symbolize the “five pillars” of the Islamic faith and the 13 states of the Malay state.
Shri Mahamariamman Temple
This beautiful Hindu temple of the late nineteenth century is the main temple building of Malay Hindus. The facades of the temple and the internal walls are decorated with incredibly beautiful frescoes, colorful ornamentation with gilding and marvelous tiles created by masters of pictorial art in Spain and Italy.
Gardens and parks
The central part of Kuala Lumpur is rich in park areas. The main ones are considered “ Gardens by the Lake “, which include an orchid and hibiscus garden, which, by the way, is the national flower of Malaysia. These two gardens are home to several thousand species of orchids and beautiful red hibiscus flowers. Also on the territory of the complex there is a butterfly park and a deer park, with more than 120 different species of butterflies in their natural habitat. The deer park has collected in itself unique species of these artiodactyls, even such miniature ones as mouse deer.
What to bring from Kuala Lumpur
Whether you want to bring a souvenir from Malaysia to yourself or your loved ones, Kuala Lumpur is a shopping paradise. From handicrafts to jewelry, there is plenty to find here that symbolizes Malaysia’s rich culture, so you won’t leave empty-handed.
So, we have compiled a list of souvenirs that you can bring from Kuala Lumpur, and from Malaysia in general:
- Baju Kebaya – traditional Malay women’s clothing. It usually consists of a blouse and a skirt, so you can purchase the whole set or any part separately. Depending on the fabric, the price also varies, but if you choose a high-quality outfit, for example, from batik or songket, then you will not be ashamed to appear in people in it.
- Tin products for which Malaysia is known all over the world. You can choose from a wide range of decorative and household items. Of course, you can find inexpensive products that are not made of pure tin, but still, if your budget is limited, take a small but high-quality item as a souvenir – a vase or wine plug.
- weaving – from bamboo, rattan, coconut shells and pandanus leaves. Bring home a bag, basket, wallet or any other item to commemorate your trip to Malaysia.
- Dodol sweets (dodol) – local likeness of sweet toffee. There are different colors and flavors, such as Pandan and Durian Dodol.
- Songket fabric (songket) is a combination of gold and silk threads intertwined with threads of a different material to create a unique fabric in a variety of colors … From it you can buy clothes, a cut for interior decor, tablecloths and more.
- Pua Kumbu fabric (Pua Kumbu) – cotton fabric made of dyed threads, used for ceremonial tribal clothing Iban and Orang Asli. Pua means “blanket,” and kumbu means “wrap.”
- Batik is a type of silk or cotton fabric that is usually made using wax and dyeing. In Malaysia, you will find a wide variety of colors and designs, usually with flower, butterfly or bird motifs. In addition to the fabric itself, you can buy clothes made from it, decorative items and accessories, such as a scarf.
- Kerongsang brooch (Kerongsang) – usually this set is sold in three separate pieces of different sizes, so how Malay women usually wear a set of kerongsangs: one for the headscarf, the second for clothing, and the largest is usually used as a brooch. But you can also buy one brooch, which will be a great souvenir for mom, grandmother or girlfriend.
- Jug Labu Sayong – A pumpkin-shaped earthenware jug, usually black in color. The water stored inside stays cold despite hot weather. The water from Labu Sayong is believed to have medicinal properties that can be beneficial to health. There are different sizes and designs.
- Nyonya Slippers (Nyonya) – beaded slippers with patterns of flowers, birds or butterflies. A wonderful bright souvenir, the price of them depends on the material used, beads and size.
- Pearls from Sabah – These natural pearls from the coast of Sabah are usually cream, pink, white or bluish – gray tint. Sabah pearl bracelets, rings, necklaces and earrings in Malaysia tend to be cheaper than other countries.
- Chongkak Board is a traditional Malay board game (Congkak).
- Cucuk Sanggul Hairpin (Cucuk Sanggul) is a traditional Malay hairpin made of gold, silver or other material. It is usually long and slender, with a décor at the end. This hairpin was previously used to secure a topknot at the back of a Malay woman’s head during a traditional wedding ceremony. Depending on the budget, you can find expensive, even antique, or even simpler modern ones.
- Wau Kite (Wau) is a traditional Malaysian kite. For a long time, Malay men have actively participated in the Wow flight competition in Kelantan. Wow Bulan (Moon Kite), the most popular type of wah kite, is one of the symbols used by the national airline MAS or Malaysian Airlines. Because the Wau kites are quite big and you won’t be able to carry it on board on your way home, the shops offer miniature wows in different colors and at affordable prices.