Kuala Lumpur- Experienced like a local

Our first full day here was spent roaming the streets of Kuala Lumpur visiting local markets, small family restaurants and soaking in the roads less travelled by tourists. We realized from our previous trips that we do not enjoy doing the “touristy” thing, seeing the usual sites, visiting restaurants targeted to tourists, etc. So that is how we came across this great tour food/heritage walking tour.

We had a young guide, probably our age and there were only 2 other people with us. Surprisingly, it was an old punjabi man (69 years old) from Chicago and his son in law who moved here 2 and a half weeks ago. We got along with them great. Our first stop was a Malaysian-South Indian fusion food (I think they are called Mukman) – where we ate dosa and some unique  stuffed roti. They say each neighbourhood has at least one of these restaurants and you definitely will not see any tourists here.

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Our second food stop was a small Chinese place – once again on locals here. Food was weird. Not our favourite. To get here we had to walk through the Chinese food market where you can buy chickens, fish, etc and they butcher it right on the spot in front of you. The fish were still moving on the shelfs.

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Lastly, we went to a South Indian restaurant in Little India. Interesting experience eating rice with our hands on a banana leaf. Once again, no tourists.

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We also saw the the first Buddhist Temple in Kuala Lumpur. Malaysia is 60% Malay people – indigenous to the area – almost all are Muslim. 30% Chinese, who are mostly Buddhist and 10% Indian – Hindus. We also saw some unique heritage buildings dating back to the start of Kuala Lumpur, less than 200 years ago when the first Chinese settlers came here, commissioned by the King to mine Tin.

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We did a little bit of shopping as well. S. is a great bargainer, bringing down the price to usually 30% of the asking price. We got some tips from our guide. Anybody want anything from here? Just ask and I’ll get S. right on it.  LV, Dior, Prada, Gucci –  you name and you can find it here for about 5% of the actual value in the luxury shops – obviously counterfeit! Even Nike shoes!

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