penang, malaysia

The first time i went to Penang, was in 2012, i hadn’t decided yet if i was going to move to Malaysia or not, so i needed to explore more before i went back to Portugal. There was also a very “American-expedition” going on that that weekend, but lets keep this PG and go on about Penang instead.

Penang is one of those places that i honestly don’t mind continue visiting. I still feel like a tourist there, even though in my past 3 visits I was the tour guide. You’ll start hearing about “Diana-Graça-Oliva-Tours” in no time!

I think of Penang as a mixture between Kuala Lumpur-Singapore-and-a-hippie-cafe-in-europe. You have a little bit of everything, the Malaysian vibe and beautiful hidden beaches; the heritage buildings and cafes properly redesigned as in Singapore; and the many-many-many boutique hotels, vintage shops, hippie cafes and proper street art as in Europe.
And i believe that it’s this weird mixture that makes Penang my TOP destination for a weekend in Malaysia.

As i’ve been in Penang many times, i think i finally found the best way to visit it, so that’s what i’ll be sharing with you today…

A few important things you need to know about Penang:
It is an ISLAND. I know it has bridges connecting it to the mainland, but its still an Island.
As an island, space is limited for roads and highways (in Penang?… lol). There is basically one road to go from the Airport to Georgetown to Batu Ferringi to Taman Negara. Therefore, the traffic jam is… lets say chaotic!
Taxis don’t use meter. It doesn’t matter how much you argue, or how much you think its not fair. They still won’t use it. And because no taxi goes by meter, the prices are usually standard. So try to agree to a good fee, but be patient. (60RM from Georgetown to Taman Negara)
The BUS in Penang, on the other hand, is great! Super cheap 6RM to do the same distance, air con, and it still goes through the same exact road as all taxis and cars.
So lets do the maths, one lane road for taxis, cars and BUS… Everyone is still gonna be driving behind the BUS. So thats what i always do – take the BUS from Georgetown to Taman Negara (and all trips within that area). Taxis just to go to the Airport, as there is a small “freeway” from outskirts of Georgetown to the Airport.

Given that you now know the basics… you will understand why i believe the best place to stay in Georgetown, actually depends on want you want to visit, and what you want to do.

I would say the best way to do this is to stay in Georgetown the first day/days, i’ve been staying in Boutique Hotels and its completely worth it. Armenian House has THE BEST location, and i can vouch for them. Khim is like the friendliest person ever, and i just need to whatsapp her and we’re ON! Another beautiful place is No 12 Penang Old House, a bit further off the historical centre, but totally worth it!
Another reason why i stay in Armenian House, or anywhere near Armenian Road, is cos you have it all in a walking distance.


For breakfast you should DEFINITELY go to ChinaHouse, its like—the most trendy, fantastic, amazing, blah blah place in Penang. You can go there for breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner, drinks… and they always have this AMAZING cakes and desert table for you to drool over. Did i mention they also have an Art Gallery on the first floor? Oh.. and a long tail piano in the bar……. This place alone is worth getting on a plane and fly from KL.


After breakfast, you should start your tour, get a map of the street art and go around to find it, go through Little India, the temples around Armenian Road – specially the Ancestral Temple, go to Beach Street, the Fort…..




Make sure you have time for yet another super cool cafe – Mugshot, great coffees and fresh juices, a nice open yard in the centre, and of course, the well known mugshot wall, so you can write your crime, and take the typical mugshot photo.


Once you’ve visited Georgetown and the South of Penang, you should move North, to Batu Ferringi.

The ideal is to book a different hotel, in Batu Ferringi, walking distance to Hard Rock Hotel, because this area has one and very dangerous road to be walking on, you won’t be able to walk around anywhere unless you’re near the Hard Rock.

Last time i stayed in Fifty Five Holiday Guesthouse, owned by a very friendly chinese girl. This is actually her family’s house, that she decorated and turned into a guesthouse. You can use the kitchen, the porch, living room… its like a home! Very close to the the best spot for food, drinks and sunset: Bora Bora Bar, right in the beach. So make sure you spend a sunset and night here.

The beach in Batu Ferringi in my opinion is not nice at all. Its fantastic for sunset, seriously, but not for sunbathing or anything like that. There’s too much boats, jet-skys, and overall not that clean. But sunsets are really worth it, and dinners by the beach. Batu Ferringi area had amazing restaurants and outdoor food-courts, so keep an eye out for that!


To go to a proper beautiful beach, you should take the Bus to the end of that creepy serpentine road, all the way to Taman Negara. There you either hike through the jungle or take a boat (150RM two ways per boat), and go to Turtle Beach.
Its about 10/15 min with a boat, but isolated, its not like Tioman or Phuket, but still beautiful. Its almost private, and its a beautiful place to spend the day. Just make sure you take food and drinks though, there isn’t much around there.


On your way back to the airport, make sure you have plenty of time to catch your flight, the traffic in the end of the day is CHAOS. In case you miss your flight…. Accidentally of course… Go back to ChinaHouse!



earth heir

I’ve been lucky to have the most amazing landlords, since the first apartment i rented in Milan.

… but my previous landlord just goes to another level of A-MA-ZING, as she is literally trying to make the world a better place, for some very special people.

Her name is Sasi Kimis, and it all started with a trip to Cambodia, and it ended in 2013 with the formation of Earth Heir, together with her sis Poomabai and friend Ee-Leng (all girls!).

Craftspeople have a huge importance in preserving the fading culture of any country. In many countries you can find beautiful handcraft pieces, with a quality that is 200 times better than any Louis Vuitton, Prada or Chanel. Not to mention the fact that you won’t find anyone with a piece like yours, as they are unique.

Now let talk about another thing: disabled people and trafficking survivors, that are living in simple and modest places, not in big fancy cities where there are programs and supporting groups. Places where finding a job is already complicated, but that any future will always be better than the past, or than no future.

Then along comes Earth Heir, uniting these two important elements. Making sure that these unique people are not forgotten.
Making sure that each piece has a story.
Making sure that you don’t just buy a scarf or a necklace, but the story of who made it.
Sasi Kimis knows the story of each piece, and will make sure you know too once you buy that piece.

And this is why, when i received an email from Sasi saying:

“Hey Di! This is a little out of the blue, but we are doing a photoshoot for our products.
We are looking for friends who could help us model the products. Please let me know if you are interested and available to help us? 🙂 Thanks so much dear.”

I immediately said: “All in!”

Anyone that knows me, knows that i am very picky with taking photos, and that i have one smile for the camera.
Thats it.
My own Hollywood smile.
A smile that took me thousands of photos to the garbage, and years to find.
So i hate to see myself in photos where i’m not in my Hollywoodish smile.

But because it was for a great cause, i just said yes!

So there i go, meeting the girls at 8.45am (after working in the office till 6am), after a quick bite at Sasi’s, make-up time!
Sasi decided to go deep full black eye shadow (which its perfect as its the only shadow color i use), and most of us got in our black fancy dresses. Classic look that would turn any handcrafted scarf into a luxury handcrafted scarf.

We left for another of Sasi’s property, an old abandoned villa, and each of us (amateur models, but pro-friends!) had our own set of scarves prepared and separated.
Scarf on and shoot!

I have to say it was quite challenging when i was first asked to do my natural smile.
Whats natural? My Hollywood smile IS my natural smile!
There you go… issues.. i found out that apparently when i’m not doing my Hollywood smile, i look grumpy, angry or sad… Not good to sell a product apparently! After many tests, we found out that i have to do a half smile (as i call it).
Then it was just trying to remember that percentage of happy i needed to look. When i was actually really happy to be doing this, and constantly making fun of the producer.


So i learned that you have basically a million and one ways to wear a scarf. But if you’re African (you know who you are Liz!).. Then you know a million and two MORE ways of using it.

I have to say that the other ladies were AMAZING, not only they looked super good, but also super friendly and great to hang out for a whole day.
Different nationalities religions and age.
All friends of Sasi.
All girls.
All in all, the right way to do a photoshoot for Earth Heir.


kuala lumpur, malaysia

This is MY guide to KL (and Malaysia), so MY opinions, and MY criticism.. I hope i won’t hurt anyone’s feelings in the process!

I’ve been writing this post since 2012 (!!!)… first it started as a couple of tips to some friends, then to more friends, then to my sister, and now to the “world”.

So right now its in English and Portuguese, the 2 most important languages in the world obviously!!! 🙂

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First of all, if we want to compare Malaysia to Europe, we can to it in one phrase, one of the most used expressions in Malaysia: “same same, but different”. In my opinion, although Malaysian mentality is quite different , and some things that are obvious for us, but aren’t for Malaysians, we can act and react as if we were in Europe.

One of the first things we notice, is the lack of civility, Malaysia is a very young country (1957), that evolved too fast, so people’s mentality is still adjusting to that growth. People will not watch where they’re walking, so they crash against you; you might get pushed aside in the lift, so they can exit faster than you; you’ll definitely hear people burping and farting next to you as if its no big deal — for them, it isn’t, so don’t get pissed at them.

In Malaysia there are 3 main ethnic groups: Malay; Chinese and Indian. All of them are Malaysians. Because you have these 3 distinctive ethnicities, the mentality is a lot more opened than some other countries. The amount of expats living in Malaysia, also helps this country becoming one of the most westernized and free muslim countries.
The currency is Ringgit (RM), 1€ is around 4RM.

Antes de mais, comparando KL à Europa, a frase perfeita para descrever esta comparação é uma das frases malaias mais utilizadas: “same same, but different”. Na minha opinião, apesar da mentalidade ser muito diferente, e existirem grandes diferenças que para nós são dados adquiridos, de resto salvo raras atitudes, podemos agir como se estivéssemos na Europa.

Uma das primeiras coisas que notamos, é na falta de civismo, a Malásia é um pais muito recente (1957), que cresceu demasiado rapido, e a mentalidade das pessoas ainda se está a ajustar a essa evolução. As pessoas chocam contra nós imensas vezes, porque nao estao a olhar para a frente; no elevador, é muito possivel que sejam empurrados para o lado, para que eles possam sair mais rapido; e vão sem duvida ouvir pessoas a arrotar e a dar pums como se nao fosse nada fo outro mundo — para eles, não é, por isso nao se irritem muito.

Na Malásia existem 3 etnias principais: Malaia (muçulmanos), chinesa e indiana. Todos são malásios. Como há estas 3 diferentes etnias, a mentalidade é muito mais aberta do que no resto dos países. Os muitos estrangeiros que vivem na Malásia, também ajudam a tornar-la num dos paises muçulmanos mais ocidentais e livres.
A moeda malaia é o Ringgit (RM), 1€ é aproximadamente 4RM.

The best way to explain how the city works, is dividing it by the following areas:
– KLCC: means Kuala Lumpur Convention Center, where you may find the Petrona-Twin Towers, the shopping mall Suria KLCC, the KLCC park, and Aquaria
– Bukit Bintang: it is the name of a street that crosses lots of shopping malls, shops and restaurants, and one of the best and most expatriate mall – Pavilion.
– Changkat: the name of the street is Changkat Bukit Bintang, its the most well know area for expats to hang out, filled with bars and restaurants
– Chinatown: the name says it all, it also includes the Central Market, Petaling Street. Nearby Chinatown we also have Merdeka Square, the National Mosque, the Planetarium and the Museum of Islamic Arts, sorrounded by the Kuala Lumpur Lake Gardens.
– Bangsar and Mont Kiara: we may call it the most fashionable area for expats, many foreigners living in KL for some years, or with children, opt to live in these areas, for they are quieter, and although very close to the City Center, they are surrounded by green. The best option to reach these areas is to take a taxi.

A melhor forma de explicar a cidade, é dividindo-a por zonas:
– KLCC: significa Kuala Lumpur Convention Center, e é onde estão as Petronas-Twin Towers, o centro comercial KLCC Suria, o KLCC park, e o Aquaria
– Bukit Bintang: é o nome duma rua, que atravessa dezenas de centros comerciais, lojas e restaurantes, e ainda um dos melhores e mais ocidental centro comercial – o Pavilion
– Changkat: é a zona onde todos os expats, saem a noite, tem dos melhores bares em KL, e vários restaurantes . A rua chama-se Changkat Bukit Bintang, mas basta dizerem Changkat.
– Chinatown: o nome diz tudo, inclui o Central Market, a Petaling Street. Perto desta zona temos a Merdeka Square, a Mesquita Nacional, Planetario e Museu de Arte Islamica, envolvidos pelos Kuala Lumpur Lake Gardens
– Bangsar e Mont Kiara: zonas mais “in” da cidade, onde vivem muitos expats que estão em KL há mais tempo, ou com familias, pois sao areas mais calmas, e apesar de estarem perto do centro da cidade, estao rodeadas por verde. O ideal é apanhar taxi para irem para esta zona.

Malay language basics:
– good morning: Selamat pagi (SLAH-maht PAH-gee)
– thank you: terima kasih (TREE-muh KAH-seh)
– you’re welcome: sama-sama (SAH-muh SAH-muh)
– yes: Ya (YUH)
– no: Tidak (TEE-dah)
– can: boleh (BUH-leh)
– cannot: tak boleh (TAH BUH-leh)
– give me: bagi saya (BUH-gy SA-ya)
– one, two, three: satu, dua, tigga
– my name is: nama saya (NAH-muh SAH-yuh)

This may help you request anything in a restaurant…
“i want 2 fried rices”: “Bagi saya dua fried rice”

You will notice that Malaysians use the expression “lah” in the end of many expressions or phrases. Such as “can lah”, “it’s ok lah!”.. or as we already heard: “fuck you lah!”.

Básicos da lingua Malaia:
– good morning: Selamat pagi (SLAH-maht PAH-gee)
– thank you: terima kasih (TREE-muh KAH-seh)
– you’re welcome: sama-sama (SAH-muh SAH-muh)
– yes: Ya (YUH)
– no: Tidak (TEE-dah)
– can: boleh (BUH-leh)
– cannot: tak boleh (TAH BUH-leh)
– give me: bagi saya (BUH-gy SA-ya)
– one, two, three: satu, dua, tigga
– my name is: nama saya (NAH-muh SAH-yuh)

Isto ajuda a pedirem qualquer coisa num restaurante…
“i want 2 fried rices”: “Bagi saya dua fried rice”

Vão dar conta que muitas vezes os Malásios acrescentam um “lah” no final de certas expressões ou frases. Como “can lah”, “it’s ok lah!”.. ou, como já se ouviu dizer: “fuck you lah!”.

Another small detail, that i believe is common sense, is to avoid any situation that involves the police. Few police officers understand proper english, or they pretend they don’t understand, in a case of “foreigner” versus “local”, the local obviously will win, and we may find ourselves in a seriously complicated situation.
If you go as a couple, maybe try to avoid heavy kissing, butt slapping or feeling up one another. The police may fine/arrest locals over this, i know for a fact that sometimes even if local man and woman are simply talking in the car, an a policeman confronts them, and it can be complicated, the police takes advantage of the situation, mentioning they “saw” they were doing more than talking, and ends up getting a bribe.

Security wise, watch out for anything you carry in your hand, cameras, purses, backpacks.. They have two very common ways of robbing you in Malaysia: by bike snatching and cutting the bag on the bottom. Specially the bike snatching, happened to me, and happened to many of my friends. So keep your bags at all times on the interior side of the sidewalk.
Most of us walk around with pepper spray in our hands just in case. It is legal in Malaysia, and you may buy it in any Guardian store.

Um pormenor importante, mas que penso ser do senso comum, é evitar ao máximo situações que possam envolver a polícia. Para além de poucos entender bem inglês, ou fingirem entender, num caso de “estrangeiro” versus “local”,quem ganha será obviamente o local, e podemos vir a colocar-nos em situações bastante complicadas.
Quando vão em casal, devem-se evitar grandes amostras de afecto em público, especialmente muito exageradas. A policia pode multar/prender os locais por o fazerem em público, e sei que por vezes, um casal de ‘locais’ estar simplesmente a falar dentro do carro, pode ser complicado… Pois a polícia aproveita-se da situação, e exige suborno, dizendo que eles estavam a fazer mais que “falar”.

Cuidado com tudo o que levarem na mão, máquinas fotográficas, mala, mochila, nunca andem com nada do lado da estrada, porque eles passam com as motas ao lado, e puxam-nas. Não é um exagero, aconteceu a muita gente que conheço, e já assisti a vários assaltos assim.
A maior parte das raparigas anda sempre com spray pimenta no caso que seja necessario, é legal na Malasia, e pode ser comprado em qualquer loja Guardian.


When you land in Kuala Lumpur, at KLIA (Kuala Lumpur International Aiport), the best way to come to the city is by train, it is called KLIA Express, you may find it inside the airport, and it will take you to KL Sentral in 28 min, for only 35 RM. It is very convenient, clean, safe and you even have wi-fi. Once you reach KL Sentral you may get the LRT (subway) or a taxi, depending on how tired you are and on the location of the hotel.
We usually take the KLIA because its faster, cheaper and you don’t get any jam, by taxi you take about 1hour to get to the city, but it will depend on the traffic.

Quando aterram em Kuala Lumpur, no KLIA (Kuala Lumpur International Aiport), o ideal é apanharem o comboio logo no aeroporto, chama-se KLIA Express e deixa-vos em KL Sentral (35RM). Aqui podem apanhar o metro (LRT) ou taxi, dependendo do cansaço e da localizaçao do hotel.

Caso prefiram ir do aeroporto para o centro de taxi, compensa se forem mais que 3 pessoas, o preço é cerca de 70/80RM durante o dia, e mais 50% durante a noite.

To get a taxi in Malaysia is an adventure, you might get one in 1 minute, or you might take up to 40 min or 1hour!
There are two types of taxis in Kuala Lumpur, the blue taxis – premium taxis, and all the others – budget taxis.
The blue taxis are newer and cleaner, but the are more expensive, about double of the budget, but they are easier to get them to take you anywhere, and by meter. So i would advise to take these only in the city center and short distances.
Overall, taxis in Malaysia are super cheap, but you have to demand they use meter – BEFORE you get in the taxi, otherwise they will try to over charge you.
(Read more about how to get a taxi in Malaysia here)
Inside the center you shouldn’t pay more than 10RM, 15RM during the night.
The right way to get a taxi is to open the passenger’s door, tell them where you wanna go, if he says “ok”, just say “by meter ya?”, if he starts arguing, or saying they’ll do a really good price, just say “no” and close the door, cos after that even if they take you by meter, they’ll start driving around the city.

Another thing that is useful to do after getting a taxi, is to start asking the questions yourself, where he is from, if his family lives in KL, how many kids, etc. Tell them you love Malaysia, specially the food that is amazing! Mainly in Penang (an island in the Northwest of Malaysia). The taxi driver will be more friendly, and he will think you live in Malaysia, so there less probability of trying to rip you off.

If you want a trustworthy taxi, you got Mr. Charlie (+60 196 374 380) he is a lovely malay guy, drives most my friends to the airport, or anywhere else – just tell them it was Diana (the portuguese from KL that gave you the contact). Just book with at least 24/48h in advance, cos he’s busy!

Apanhar um taxi na Malásia é uma aventura, tanto podem conseguir que um taxi vos leve em 1 minuto, como pode demorar 40 minutos a 1 hora!
(leiam mais sobre como apanhar um taxi na Malasia aqui)
Ha dois tipos de taxis em Kuala Lumpur, os azuis – caros, e os outros todos, de varias cores, e que dizem “budget”. Os azuis são carros bem mais novos, e limpos, mas são mais ou menos o dobro do preço, dos outros, se precisarem de apanhar um destes carros, façam apenas para distâncias curtas – dentro do centro.
Os Taxis são baratíssimos, mas exijam sempre “by meter” ANTES de entrarem no taxi, caso contrario eles tentar fixar um preço a partida. Dentro de KL nunca devem pagar mais do que RM10 para irem a qq lado, RM15 durante a noite. O que se deve fazer é sempre abrir a porta do lado do pendura, dizer para onde querem ir, e quando ele disser “ok”, vocês dizem: “by meter ya?” se ele começar a disparatar e dizer que faz preço “muito bom”, deixem e tentem apanhar outro.

Uma coisa que podem fazer, é virar a conversa ao contrário, e perguntar-lhe de onde ele é, se a família esta em KL, quantos filhos tem, que idades têm, etc… Digam que adoram a Malásia, e especialmente a comida que é maravilhosa! Principalmente a comida em Penang (ilha a norte da Malásia). Fica bastante melhor ambiente, ele acha que vocês vivem em KL, e há menos probabilidade dele vos enganar.

Se quiserem um taxi de confiança, mas que têm de lhe ligar com antecedência, liguem ao Mr. Charlie (+60 196 374 380) é um senhor malaio amoroso, digam que foi a Diana – portuguesa que foi ao casamento da filha dele, que vos deu o numero.


Food is one of the most important things in Malaysia, not just because its fantastic, but also because Malaysians love eating! So it is super cheap, and a big offer.
The best places to eat usually have a trashy look, so this is the perfect time to stop being picky! In Portugal i would never ever enter any of these places, but here is “just another day in Malaysia”, and you’ll find that it’s the best way to eat great local food. Either way, rest assured, these places are still safe, i’ve never been sick or indisposed, you might be more sensitive, but i think if you are less picky in the beginning of your journey, you will adjust better and the the experience will even be more rewarding.

The most common places to eat local food are the coffee shops (usually basic restaurants inside pseudo-garages), or the hawker stalls (a big open space, that may or may not be covered, with several small stalls surrounding the sitting area, where people cook specific tipical dishes) here you should pick what to eat in a stall, tell them where you are sitting, and they’ll bring you the food once cooked.

If you don’t usually carry tissues, this is a good time to do so, not only cos some restaurants that don’t have them, but also for the bathroom.

Basically we have two concepts of “places to eat”: the locals, that like i mentioned, don’t look great, but the food is fantastic; and the restaurants “for the rich”, or lets say for the foreigners or locals that have more money, the food is not always great, but they are clean and “nice looking”.

A comida é das coisas mais importantes na Malásia, para além de ser óptima, como os Malásios adoram comer, é muito barata e há muita oferta.
Os melhores sitios para comer, têm mau aspecto, por isso não se façam de esquisitos! Em Portugal eu nunca na vida entraria num sitio destes, mas aqui é normal, e a melhor forma de comer boa comida local. Mas fiquem descansados porque são seguros, até hoje nunca fiquei doente, ou mal disposta, cada um é como cada qual, mas penso que quanto menos esquisitos formos logo no início, melhor é a adaptação e a experiência.

Para comer comida local o mais comum são os coffee shops (restaurantes muito simples dentro de pseudo-garagens) ou os hawker stalls (um grande espaço coberto ou ao ar livre, com “carrinhos” à volta onde diferentes pessoas cozinham especificos pratos tipicos), aqui vocês escolhem o que querem comer num stall, dizem-lhes onde estão sentados, e eles vão lá entregar depois de a cozinharem.

Uma coisa importante é levarem sempre lenços de papel, serve tanto para alguns restaurantes (que por vezes não têm guardanapos), como para as casas de banho, que tambem não têm papel por vezes.

Basicamente temos dois conceitos de espaços de refeição: os de comida local, que como disse, não têm o melhor aspecto, mas a comida é maravilhosa; e os restaurantes virados para os estrangeiros, ou Malásios com dinheiro, nem sempre bons mas sao mais limpos e “bonitos”.

Local Restaurants:
– Jalan Alor: its the most well know street to eat good chinese-malaysian food, in the middle of the street there is a “restaurant” with a big yellow sign saying “LaLola”. When you get there ask to be served by Lola, she is a really nice chinese lady that we know for some years. I would tell you to order: grilled sting ray, lalas, ginger frog or beef ginger, deep fried baby squid, black pepper beef, butter crab, as a side dish get garlic baby kaylan (amazing veggies) and of course – fried rice.
Price (without alcohol): 20/30RM

– in the corner of Jalan Alor, there is a big chinese restaurant, cleaner and also pretty good, try barbecued chicken rice, with barbecued pork, its a really simple dish, but still one of the favorites amongst foreigners.
Price (without alcohol): 10RM

– Hakka Restaurant (Jalan Raja Chulan), this is the most fancy of the local chinese restaurants, and also has amazing food. I would suggest the same things as in LaLola, plus the deep fried pork, the rosted duck and the mayonese prawns!
Price (without alcohol): 20/30RM

– Old China Cafe (chinatown): is one of the oldest “cafes” in KL, the chinese food is also pretty good, try the pie tees, chinese wraps, and deep fried chicken.
Price (without alcohol): 20/30RM

– 15 or Limablas (fifteen in malay): in Jalan Mesui, perpendicular to Jalan Nagasari (Changkat area). Its the best malay restaurant, from Malacca, that i know of. Its cheap, has a super nice design, the waiters are super friendly, and the food is obviously: fantastic! Try pie tees as a starter – at least 2 per person, then ayam ponteh or/and ayam curry (a bit spicy), you can pick between steamed white rice or fried rice.
Price (without alcohol): 20/30RM

– Suzy’s Corner: Lorong Ampang Ulu, next to jalan ampang, nearby Cheras. Serves one of the best steaks in town, and the best in price/quality! Go for the tenderloin! You may also try there a typical desert: roti tissue, pretty simple to love desert!
Price (without alcohol): 30/40RM

– Beef Noodles Shop (Chinatown): in Jalan Tun Tan Cheng Lock, coming through Petaling Street turn left, there is a super small restaurant that serves the best noodles in KL, in the window you can read “beef noodles”, and thats exactly what they serve. You can pick the type of noodles, meat and with/without soup. My pick is always: beef noodle soup with kway teow, meat balls and regular meat.
Price (without drinks): 7RM

Restaurants a bit more expensive, and with western food:

– thirty-eight restaurant, at the Grand Hyatt, KLCC. Perfect for a super fancy dinner, on the 38th floor, with one of the best views of KL, and amazing live music.
Price (without alcohol): from 120RM up!

– Ben’s: you have this restaurant in Suria KLCC and Pavilion. It serves western and asian food, salads, pies, pastas, and really good deserts.
Price (without alcohol): 30RM

– Dim Tai Fung, Pavilion. Serves THE best dim sum i ever ate!! Mandatory: 001, 002, 003, fried rice, and baby kaylan with garlic. Try the hot tea as well.
Price (no alcool): 30RM

– Chinoz at the Park, Suria
Price (without alcohol): 30RM

– Breakfasts or Brunches in KL are a must! We got used to going somewhere to eat in the morning almost every weekend

– Harrods Cafe: Suria KLCC
– Chinoz at the Park: Suria KLCC
– The Pressroom Bistro: Pavilion
– Antipodean: Bangsar
– Yeast: Bangsar, for me the BEST!

Restaurantes Locais temos:
– Jalan Alor: é a zona mais conhecida para comer boa comida local chinesa-malasia, no meio da rua, há um “restaurante” que tem um placard amarelo e diz “LaLola”. Peçam mesa, e digam que querem se atendidos pela Lola, é uma chinesa muito simpática, que já conhecemos ha uns anos. O que vale a pena comer na Lola é: grilled sting ray (raia), lalas (ameijoas), ginger frog (rã em gengibre) ou beef ginger, deep fried calamares, black pepper beef, butter crab, para acompanhar garlic baby kaylan (vegetais optimos!!) e claro – fried rice.
Preço médio (sem alcool): 20/30RM

– na esquina da jalan alor, ha um restaurante chinês que também é bom, e mais limpo, experimentem “barbecued chicken rice, with barbecued pork”, é um prato super simples, e um dos preferidos de muitos estrangeiros.
Preço médio (sem alcool): 10RM

– Hakka Restaurant (Jalan Raja Chulan), este é o “fancy” dos restaurantes chineses locais, é perto do centro comercial Pavillion, e também tem optima comida típica. Aconselho as mesmas coisas que na Lola, e ainda os mayonese prawns, que são maravilhosos!
Preço médio (sem alcool): 20/30RM

– Old China Cafe (chinatown): é um dos “cafes” mais antigos de KL, tem comida chinesa muito boa, aconselho: pie tees, chinese wraps, e deep fried chicken.
Preço médio (sem alcool): 20/30RM

– 15 ou Limablas (quinze em malaio): na jalan mesui, perpendicular à jalan nagasari (zona de changkat). É o melhor restaurante de comida malaia, de Malacca, que conheço. É barato, tem uma decoração bem engraçada, os empregados são super simpáticos, e a comida é obviamente, e para variar – óptima! Peçam pie tee para entrada – pelo menos 2 por pessoa, e ayam ponteh e/ou ayam curry (um pouco picante), podem escolher entre arroz branco a vapor, ou arroz frito.
Preço médio (sem alcool): 20/30RM

– Suzy’s Corner: Lorong Ampang Ulu, paralela à jalan ampang, perto de Cheras. Servem um dos melhores bifes da cidade, e sem duvida o melhor em termos de qualidade preço, obrigatório comer o tenderloin! Podem também experimentar uma sobremesa típica: roti tissue, não se preocupem pois é bastante simples, e quase impossível de não gostar.
Preço médio (sem alcool): 30/40RM

– Beef Noodles Shop (Chinatown): na Jalan Tun Tan Cheng Lock, quando saem da Petaling Street à esquerda, ha um restaurante fantastico que serve os melhores noodles de KL, é pequenino, no vidro tem escrito “beef noodles”, e so serve mesmo isso. Escolhem o tipo de noodles, o tipo de carne, e com ou sem sopa. A minha escolha é sempre: beef noodle soup with kway teow, meat balls and regular meat.
Preço médio (sem bebida): 7RM

Restaurantes mais caros, e western:

– thirty-eight restaurante, Grand Hyatt Hotel: em KLCC. Se querem fazer um jantar à rico, num restaurante o 38 andar, com uma das melhores vistas das Petronas, ao som de óptima musica, este é o sitio a ir.
Preço médio (sem álcool): 100RM

– Ben’s: este restaurante ha tanto no Suria (klcc, centro comercial por baixo das Twin Towers/Petronas), como no Pavillion (centro comercial em bukit bintang, ligado ao Suria por uma skybridge pedonal). Tem comida western, e local, as saladas, pies e pastas sao optimas, e as sobremesas também valem muito a pena.
Preço médio (sem alcool): 40RM

– Dim Tai Fung: no Pavilion. Serve os melhores dim sum que já alguma vez comi! Obrigatorio: 001, 002, 003, qualquer um dos fried rice, e baby kaylan with garlic.
Preço médio (sem alcool): 30RM

– Chinoz at the Park: no Suria
Preço médio (sem alcool): 30/40RM

Pequenos Almoços ou Brunch fora de casa são um forte de KL também, e nós habituamo-nos a fazê-los quase todos os fins-de -semana.
– Harrods Cafe: no suria KLCC
– Chinoz at the Park: no suria KLCC
– The Pressroom Bistro: Pavilion
– Antipodean: em Bangsar
– Yeast: em Bangsar, é sem duvida o melhor de todos!

Unlike food, alcohol is unfortunately very expensive, because Malaysia is a Muslim country, there is an extremely high tax for alcohol. You might pay 20RM for a beer, and 30RM for a glass of wine, or a cocktail. Obviously there are cheaper places, and the best is actually to find a bar with happy hour, or better, start memorizing at what time the happy hour is, in each place, and then just do some “bar hopping”. Usually is cheaper to buy a bottle of wine, instead of a glass.

– Changkat Bukit Bintang, you have several options here: Pinchos, Havana, 21, Magnificent…
– No Black Tie, in jalan mesui (changkat), its a very cozy bar with live jazz music, its totally worth it if the band playing is good. So make sure you know who’s performing.
– Thirty-Eight, at the Grand Hyatt: in KLCC. This is without a doubt one of my favorite spots in the city, not just to get a drink, but to listen to the best music in KL, if you like covers, acapella and Frank Sinatra style! There is a fantastic filipino band that plays almost every night, 4 singers, piano and guitar. Thirty-Eight is actually a restaurant, so you may actually have an amazing meal, or just order their heavenly deserts! (the Pettit-Gateau with raspberry ice-cream and vanilla toping is my absolute favorite!

Just like in any other city with plenty of skyscrapers, it is MANDATORY to go to a rooftop bar, specially for sunset:
– Thirty-Eight (again!)
– Helipad Lounge Bar: this is a relatively new marvel of the city, the bar is located in the top floor of the building, but then you can go one more floor up to the helipad on the actually rooftop, because its an helipad, there are no protections or rails on the edges, there is simply a yellow line, and security guards that make sure you wont fall off the building! Absolutely worth it to go for the sunset, you have an amazing view over the whole city, and you can clearly see the city lights starting to overturn the city.
– Skybar at Traders Hotel: you need to book a table with at least 2/3 days ahead, make sure you get a table by the windows (+60 3-2332 9888)
– Marini’s on 57, at Petronas Tower 3, at sunset its pretty calm, but then the music starts pumping, and its good enough for clubbing (+60 3-2161 2880)
– Luna Bar, at Pacific Regency Hotel Suites (+60 – 2332 7777)

As of clubbing, we are still trying to find an actually good spot, so for now, the best we can get is:
– Zouk (jalan tun razak)
– 2nd Floor of Piscos (jalan mesui, in changkat)

Ao contrário da comida, o álcool infelizmente, é caro, com os muçulmanos não “podem” beber, existe um taxa extra para o álcool. Podemos chegar a pagar 20RM por uma cerveja, e 30RM por um copo de vinho ou cocktail. Claro que ha sitios mais baratos, e o melhor a fazer e mesmo encontrar um bar com happy hour ou mesmo comecar a perceber de que horas a que horas sao os happy hours em cada bar, para depois se andar de bar em bar. Normalmente compensa comprar garrafa de vinho, em vez de ir pedindo ao copo.

– Changkat Bukit Bintang, têm várias hipoteses: Pinchos, Havana, 21, Magnificent…
– No Black Tie, na jalan mesui (changkat), é um bar de musica jazz ao vivo, vale a pena ir se tiver um bom grupo. Por isso o melhor é verificar na net quem vai actuar.
– Restaurante Thirty-Eight, Grand Hyatt Hotel: em KLCC. Este é um dos meus sítios preferidos para ir tomar um copo à noite, ou sobremesa depois de jantar (antes das 11pm), e principalmente ouvir a melhor musica de KL. A banda toca todas as noites, normalmente há 4 cantores, acompanhados por piano e baixo, cantam de tudo, desde clássicos de Frank Sinatra, a Pink, mas versões quase acapella.

Como em qualquer cidade com arranha-céus, é obrigatório em irem rooftop bars:
– Helipad Lounge Bar: este bar/discoteca é a nova maravilha de KL, o bar localiza-se no topo do edifício, na zona de aterragem de helicópteros, não há barreiras, nem protecções, para alem dos seguranças que controlam se nós ultrapassamos a linha amarela. Para subirmos temos de pagar uma garrafa, pode ser vinho, ou de whiskey, vodka, etc (eles oferecem o gelo, e misturas).
– Skybar no Traders Hotel (têm de reservar mesa, liguem logo no primeiro dia, ou logo ca em Lx, +60 3-2332 9888, e peçam para vos marcar um sofa ao lado das janelas
– Marini’s on 57, na Tower 3 das Petronas (+60 3-2161 2880)
– Luna Bar, no Pacific Regency Hotel Suites (+60 – 2332 7777)

Depois de irem aos bares, podem ir a uma das discotecas mais conhecidas:
– Zouk (jalan tun razak)
– 2° Piso do Piscos (jalan mesui, em Changkat)

Besides being a food paradise, KL is an hub for shopping, in KL alone, there are more than 70 shopping malls, for every taste.
The most well known are obviously more expensive, have the most expensive brands, and are more tourist/expat, or rich locals oriented, due to this fact they are also cleaner and modernized.
– KLCC Suria (underneath the Petronas Towers)
– Pavillion (Bukit Bintang) – besides shopping, has an amazing food court in the lower floor.
– Starhill Gallery (Bukit Bintang)

Then we have the malls that are more locals, there won’t be any Louis Vuitton, Chanel or Prada, but you will still find the most well-known asian stores as (Vincii, Charles & Keith, Kitschen, Niccii,…) and other super cheap and local stores.
– Berjaya Times Square
– Fahrenheit 66 (Bukit Bintang)

Finally, we have the totally locals-oriented, packed with people and small local stores, Vincii for once is in all of them. The prices in these shopping malls is super low, but of course, so is the quality and service. Here you may also find “fake” branded bags and purses, sometimes cheaper than in Chinatown.
– Sungei Wang Plaza (Bukit Bintang)
– BB Plaza (Bukit Bintang)

If you wish to buy electronic equipment, you have most stuff in every single mall, but the most well known is Low Yat Plaza, it only has IT stuff, its about 7 floors filled with everything, you can bargain, but don’t forget to request for the “fake”or the real thing, depending on what you are searching for.
If you wanna buy a new iPhone, iPad, or any other Mac item, it better to just go to an original shop, its still cheaper than most countries, including Singapore.

Kuala Lumpur para além de ser o paraíso da comida, é o paraíso das compras. Apenas Kuala Lumpur tem mais de 70 centros comerciais para todos os gostos.
Os principais e mais turísticos, são mais caros, têm as marcas mais caras, como tal, sendo mais virados para os estrangeiros, ou locais com dinheiro, são também mais limpos e modernizados.
– KLCC Suria (por baixo das Petronas)
– Pavillion (Bukit Bintang) – tem um óptimo food court no piso mais a baixo
– Starhill Gallery (Bukit Bintang)

Depois temos os mais locais, continuam a ter boa condições, mas são mais simples, já não têm marcas como Louis Vuitton, Chanel, ou Prada, mas continuam a ter das marcas mais conhecidas na Ásia (Vincii, Charles & Keith, Kitschen, Niccii,…) e outra lojinhas mais locais e mais baratas.
– Berjaya Times Square
– Fahrenheit 66 (Bukit Bintang)

Por ultimo, temos os centros comercias completamente virados para os locais, muito atolados de lojas pequenas, locais – a Vincii felizmente há em todo o lado. Os preços nestes shoppings são bem baixos, mas claro que a qualidade e servico também não sao as melhores. Aqui também conseguem encontrar malas, carteiras, etc, ‘fakes’ e muitas vezes mais baratas que em Chinatown.
– Sungei Wang Plaza (Bukit Bintang)
– BB Plaza (Bukit Bintang)

Para fazerem compras de equipamentos electrónicos, têm quase tudo em praticamente todos os centros comerciais, mas o mais conhecido é o Low Yat Plaza, SO tem equipamentos electronicos, e conseguem regatear, não se esqueçam é de dizer se querem a marca verdadeira ou cópia, pois podem acabar a comprar um iPhone fake!
Mas se quiserem comprar um iPhone, iPad ou qualquer outro item da Mac novos, aconselho-vos a ir a uma loja original, que mesmo assim sao mais baratas que na maioria dos paises, incluindo Singapura.

As usual in Asia, there are massage places everywhere, prices go around 60RM to 100RM per 1hour full body massage, but there are always more expensive. Try to avoid doing a massage in Bukit Bintang, the places look sketchy, and you might end up getting a “happy ending” by a “lady of the night”.
– The Tropical Spa – we always go here, its fantastic, and you only pay 60RM for a 1 hour full body massage, just make sure you request the “oil” massage, cos if you go for the fully Thai one without oil, you’ll suffer a lot! (parallel to Jalan Alor, Changkat area)
– Thai Odyssey (both in Fahrenheit 88 and Berjaya Times Square)
– Dona Spa, in Starhill Gallery – 400RM

Como normal na Ásia, há massagens em todo o lado, os preços rondam os 60 e os 100RM, para uma massagem de corpo inteiro de 1hora, mas claro que também há os de topo, e caros. Evitem fazer na bukit bintang, apesar de haver muita oferta nessa rua, nem todas são de confiança, pois há muitas meninas a ‘venderem’ finais felizes, ou “happy endings”.
– The Tropical Spa – por norma vamos sempre a este, e fantastico, e apenas pagamos 60RM por 1 hora de massagem, nao se esquecam de pedir a massagem com oleo, porque se pedirem a Thai sem oleo, vao sofrer bastante! (paralela a Jalan Alor, na zona de Changkat)
– Thai Odyssey (têm no Fahrenheit 88, Berjaya Times Square)
– Dona Spa, no Starhill Gallery – 400RM

The most important section of this “guide book”, i separated by areas to optimize time, this is what i believe its the most important things to visit:

A parte mais “importante”, separei por partes para optimizar o tempo, ao principal que acho que deve, visitar:

– mandatory to go to the KLCC Park, in front of the Petronas Towers (specially in the morning or at sunset)
– if you enjoy visiting aquariums, you may visit Aquaria KLCC
– the mosque in KLCC Park is also very beautiful to visit (outside), during sunset or at night.
– when the towers are lit up they are absolutely gorgeous, so make sure you see them at night and sunset (as usual!)
– if you want to go up to the towers, both bridge and top, you need to get an early rising, and go stand in line at 8.30am, to get tickets (80RM)
– relatively close, you have Menara KL, or KL Tower, that has an amazing 360 view of KL.

– obrigatório irem ao KLCC Park, parque em frente das Petronas (principalmente durante a manha ou por do sol)
– se quiserem ir a um aquário, tipo Oceanario, versão malaia, têm o Aquaria KLCC
– vale a pena verem a mesquita do KLCC Park à noite, nao podem entrar, mas o edifício com as luzes acesas é lindo!
– as torres quando estão acessas são fantásticas, por isso arranjem maneira de as verem no fim de tarde e noite.
– para subirem às Petronas, têm de ir para a fila logo às 8.30am, para conseguiam comprar bilhetes (80RM).
– relativamente perto têm a Menara KL, ou KL Tower, com uma vista 360′ de KL.


[update Feb 2016: FRIM’s canopy and trekking are closed]

– get up early, get a taxi to go to FRIM (Forest Reserve Institute of Malaysia), ask the taxi driver to leave you in D Building, after the security check.
Make sure you go early, cos the last entrance in the Canopy Walk is at 12.30pm. In the D building there is a small shop, where you NEED to buy the tickets to the Canopy Walk (10RM), get a map and some water. Total you will take about 2 hours, so don’t forget to follow the map’s indications towards the Canopy Walk.

After the trekking and the waterfalls, you’ll get to a road, you can eat at the local restaurant. Then follow the road all the way to the security check again, as soon as you start walking, start calling for a taxi, or call them in the security check, and ask the guards to call you a taxi for you. Make sure you call a taxi to go to the Batu Caves.

– the Batu Caves, are a set of temples carved inside the caves, filled with monkeys. You may also take a look in the Dark Cave, if you’ve never been in a deep-filled-with-bats-cave before, its 35RM per person, including a tour guide, helmet and a flashlight. The tour guide will take you inside the cave, and will show you the fauna inside the cave, from bats to spiders, to flying snakes and gigantic centipedes.
– to get back to KL, is better to get the train, and hop off in the Kuala Lumpur station. The train is on the right side, if you are coming out of the caves, next to the statue of the “Green Monkey God”.

(if you which to do the FRIM and Batu Caves in the same day, always follow this order, because the Canopy Walk is only opened till 12pm)

[update Fev 2016: a canopy e o percurso de trekking fecharam]

– numa manha, e apanhem um taxi e peçam para ir ao FRIM (Forest Reserve Institute of Malaysia), peçam para ele vos deixar no edificio D do FRIM (tem de entrar dentro do parque, passando a seguranca na entrada).
Atençao que a ultima entrada na CANOPY WALK é as 12h30. Nos Edifícios D, há uma pequena loja, teem de parar e comprar bilhetes para a CANOPY WALK (10RM), pedem um mapa, e seguem as indicações. Aproveitem e comprem água.
No total devem demorar 2 horas. No percurso não se esqueçam de seguir as indicações para a CANOPY WALK.
No final do passeio, depois de passarem as cascatas, e chegarem à estrada, podem comer
no “restaurante” coberto.
Sigam para a saida, de volta ao sitio onde estavam os seguranças, e entretanto liguem logo para os taxis, para pedirem um taxi para vos levar para as Batu Caves (se eles nao entenderem nada, quando chegarem aos segurancas peçam-lhes para eles ligarem a chamar um).

– as Batu Caves, sao principalmente um conjunto de templos dentro duma gruta. Se sao nunca estiveram em nenhuma gruta daquele genero, vejam tambem a Dark Cave, que é do lado esquerdo depois das escadas, são 35RM por pessoa, com guia, capacete e lanterna. A guia leva-vos dentro da gruta, e mostra-vos a vida animal la dentro, entre morcegos, aranhas, cobras voadoras e centopeias gigantes.
– depois regressem de comboio, em direcção a estacao Kuala Lumpur, a estação encontra-se do lado direito de quem sai das Batu Caves, ao lado do da estatua do “Deus Macaco Verde”.

(Sigam sempre esta ordem: FRIM e depois Batu Caves, porque a Canopy Walk do FRIM só está aberta de manhã)

Get the LRT, and get out in Pasar Seni, cross the river through the bridge, to Kuala Lumpur KTM station.
– as soon as you exit the station, you may see in front of you the KTM building, and on the left side the Majestic Hotel, these two, together with the station are 3 nice examples of the colonial architecture in KL
– on the right side, you will have the Masjid Negara = National Mosque of Malaysia (check the praying times, because you are restricted to them to visit the mosque)
– if you continue going up, you will find the beginning of the park, and you’ll find the Muzium Kesenian Islam – Islamic Arts Museum, and over it, another really beautifull building, with an amazing view over the city
– continuing going up, you have the Planetarium, Bird Park, Butterfly Park e Orchid Park, if you have time its worth going specially to the Bird Park, but take a taxi, otherwise you will loose a lot of time walking.

Apanhem o LRT, e saiam em Pasar Seni, depois atravessem a ponte para o outro lado do rio, em direccao a estacao de Kuala Lumpur
– mal sairem da estacao de Kuala Lumpur, a antiga estacao central de KL, podem ver o edificio da KTM, e a esquerda o Hotel Majestic, estes dois, mais a estacao sao 3 exemplos da arquitectura colonial em KL.
– Mesquita Nacional = Masjid Negara – National Mosque of Malaysia (so podem entrar quando nao for hora das prayers, por isso verifiquem na entrada da mesquita)
– podem subir um bocadinho o jardim ao lado da mesquita, para o Muzium Kesenian Islam, é o museu de arte islamica, mesmo que nao queiram entrar, o edificio é bonito, e se continuarem a subir ainda teem outro edificio muito bonito e com uma optima vista.
– mais a cima têm o Planetario,Bird Park, Butterfly Park e Orchid Park se tiverem tempo vale a pena, mas vao de taxi, senao perdem muito tempo a pe.

Get the LRT, and get out in Pasar Seni
– in this area its a must to see the Sri Mahamariamman Temple, the Guandi Temple, the Central Market, e a Petaling Street (the actual Chinatown)
– to shop in Chinatown, always fight for your price! They will always try to rob you. You will be able to at least go under 40% of the original price. If you are buying bags, and they are in thick plastic bags, its because they are “Made in Korea” so slightly better and higher price, they cost about RM200/300. The others are Chinese, so cheaper, so don’t pay more than RM90. For a wallet dont pay more than RM30.
– for sunglasses dont pay more than RM40, if they look really good. If they are cheap looking, maximum pay RM20.
– if you wanna buy necklaces, bracelets, pareos, sarongs/batiks, for cheaper and typical gifts, go to Central Market. Preferably the 1st floor. If you wanna buy more serious stuff, there is an amazing chinese shop in Petaling Street on the left side, right before Jalan Sultan, it has beautiful silver jewelry, jade, and … real pearls, that cos about RM20 each string!!!!

Apanhem o LRT, e saiam em Pasar Seni.
– nesta zona é obrigatório irem ao Sri Mahamariamman Temple, o Guandi Temple, o Central Market, e a petaling street (a verdadeira Chinatown)
– Para compras em chinatown, regateiem sempre! Eles tentam sempre enganar. Pelo menos 40% do valor inicial conseguem baixar. Se estiverem a comprar malas, e elas estiverem dentro dum plastico transparente espesso, é porque sao made in Coreia, sao mais caras, e melhor qualidade, dependendo da mala, paguem entre RM200 ou RM300. As chinesas, são piores e não deem mais que RM90. Para uma carteira, nao paguem mais que RM30.
– para comprar oculos, nao passem dos RM40 para os que parecem muito bons, os baratinhos, nao paguem mais que RM20.
– Se quiserem comprar colares, pulseiras típicas, pareos ou sarongs/batiks, para prendas tipicas e baratas, o ideal é Central Market. De preferencia no 1’piso. Para coisas mais “sérias”, há uma loja duns velhotes chineses no cimo da petaling street, do lado esquerdo, quase a chegar a Jalan Sultan, que tem coisas fantásticas e diferentes, tanto em prata, jade, e… Pérolas verdadeiras baratíssimas, a RM20..

Get the LRT, get out in Masjid Jamek
– worth seeing the Masjid Jamek (mosque)
– then continue to the Merdeka Square, that has some really nice colonial buildings, including the St Mary’s Cathedral, and some other governmental buildings
– in the end of the square there is KL City Gallery, you will see the “i love KL” red sign next to it. Its a free museum, not big, and totally worth seeing the HUGE model of the city they have, the museum also has a couple of info of the history of KL and Malaysia.

Apanhem o LRT, e saiam em Masjid Jamek.
– vale a pena espreitar a Masjid Jamek (Mesquita)
– sigam para a Merdeka Square, têm alguns edificios coloniais bem antigos, incluindo a St. Mary’s Cathedral no inicio, e edificios tipicos do lado contrario (do governo e museus)
– ao fundo da Praça, está o Kuala Lumpur City Gallery que tem um “i love KL” à entrada. É grátis, e vale a pena entrar para ver uma maquete enorme da cidade, e aprendem um pouco da historia de KL e da Malásia (é pequeno mas vale a pena, e nao perdem muito tempo).

Get the LRT, and get out in KL Sentral
– go down the street to Jalan Tun Sambanthan
– there’s not much to see, but its a funny colorful street, with lots of indian shops

Apanhem o LRT, e saiam em KL Sentral, e desçam em direcção à Jalan Tun Sambanthan
– nao há muito para ver, mas tem essa rua tem a sua graça, a decoração é típica hindi, e está cheia de lojas indianas

…. and thats all babes!!! You’ll be able to see and experience the best of KL, looking through my eyes. Hopefully, you’ll love to visit it as much as i love living here!

… e e tudo babes!!! Assim conseguem ver e experimentar o melhor de KL, pelos meus olhos. Espero que gostem tanto de visitar KL, como eu adoro ca viver!

(I will be updating the post occasionally.)

pangkor, malaysia

Another island. Yet another perfect getaway for a weekend, without hopping on a plane!

1. History
According to wikipedia, Pangkor was a refuge for local fisherman, merchants and pirates — unfortunately no Johnny Depp’s or Orlando Bloom’s… Or Sam Claflin’s!

2. Getting There & Around
To get to Pangkor, you have a couple of options: by plane, by car or bus to Lumut, then get a jetty to the island.
Malaysian Airlines and Firefly are the two airlines that fly to Pangkor, taking off in Subang’s Airport, a couple of Km outside KL, and costs can go up to 400RM.
By bus it will cost you less than 30RM, and takes about 4hours to arrive to Lumut.
We drove to Lumut, taking about 2h30/3h to get there, through the highway to Ipoh, then turning left to the coast. When arriving to Lumut, you can park the car in the city right next to the jetty, just don’t forget to pay the parking at the local shops.
The jetty is quite cheap, 10RM two ways ticket, and takes around 40min to reach Pangkor Island.

Once you reach Pangkor, you can easily get a taxi to your hotel/chalet.
To drive around the island, we rented motorbikes, for 40RM each. You should have the international driving license, so that is easy to rent a bike in Asia, because sometimes they don’t let you rent it with your own country’s license. It’s important to check if you have gas, cos most times you only have enough for 1Km, so go straight to the gas station.

Its worth it to get a bike, cos its easier to travel in the island, and you can take a tour in Pangkor, got the other beaches, etc..

Coral beach was our choice, its very calm, beautiful beach, amazing water, and you can take a kayak to a really small island in front, and enjoy being even more isolated!


3. Accommodation
As far as accommodations go, there is a big contrast between very low budget “chalets” and 5 star resorts.

We stayed near Coral Beach, in a budget room, with very very basic services. If we compare it to the general Asian standards, it was not bad, we had a clean enough room, clean sheets, air-con and tv. Most rooms in Malaysia have only one electric plug, so its important to always carry a “double”. The bathroom, as in typical malaysian budget rooms, was a all-in-one-space bathroom and shower, meaning, a very small bathroom, where the shower is right next to the toilet and basin, so everything gets wet once you have a shower… So slippers are mandatory!! Many of these budget hotels don’t have towels, shampoo, or toilet paper, so go prepared. Mosquitoes have a very exquisite appetite for Westerners – take mosquito repellent!

Now, if you want something fancier, a friend of mine stayed in Pangkor Laut Resort. Its in the small privately owned island of Pangkor Laut, you’ll need to get a ferry from Marina Island Pangkor, nearby Lumut. One way trip costs 80RM, it takes 15 minutes to get to the Resort, and the good thing is there are a few time schedules during the day.

Pangkor Laut Resort is fantastic, you have different types of rooms, either bungalows by the sea, or villas by the “jungle”, the rooms are beautifully decorated, with the Asian Beach style we love so much.

Its a bit expensive – Asian-wise, but absolutely worth it!

4. Activities
Everything to do with the sea, snorkeling, kayak rides, waverunners, that banana-pulling-thingy, etc…

Snorkeling wise, is not as nice as Tioman, or the any of the East Coast islands, but its still pretty good, and either way definitely better than Europe!


5. Flora & Fauna

As everywhere else in Malaysia, the green in Pangkor is gorgeous and everywhere…

Then… There are Monkeys.
Monkeys everywhere.
Monkeys hitchhiking.
Monkeys checking out the girls in bikinis.
Monkeys stealing food.
Monkeys stealing food and eating in the middle of the road.
Monkeys stealing food and eating in the middle of the road, while controlling if any car is gonna run them over.
Monkeys stealing food and eating in the middle of the road, while controlling if any car is gonna run them over, plus fighting for the bigger burger.
Lots of Monkeys.


6. Eat & Drink
We basically only had one actual meal, dinner at a pretty nice restaurant, lots of seafood rice, and… I have no idea of the name of the restaurant (sorry!!!)! I kinda know where it is, South from Coral beach, on the main road by the coast… New building, kind of minimalistic design.

Because we only stayed for one night, we didn’t have time to find any bars..We ended up taking our own stash of alcohol, we bought some bottles, and that was the best idea we had!

Overall, Pangkor is an amazing little island, great for a weekend getaway!


the shirt and the biker


Bikers in Malaysia are a big thing, not only there are many of them, but also there are so many interesting, rather – peculiar about them.
I had been trying to take a good photo about the subject above, but i hadn’t had never been fast enough to get the camera.
Finally today i was ready for it!
When you see a biker on the street, about 80% of the times they’ll be wearing a long sleeve shirt – backwards.
Yes, BACKwards.
And yes they know its backwards.
From what i’ve been able to observe, each biker has an extra shirt/jacket to use over they’re own clothes, so when they get to their bikes, they just put them on, and off them go.
There are many supposed reasons for it i guess, although i can find any.
Specially when their justification for it is: “its easier the dress it backwards”.
That was the same face i had when i first heard it.
Finally i got a better explanation for it.. Apparently its to block the sun in the arms, and by dressing it backwards, the arms are protected, and they won’t get too hot on their backs!
Thats a reason as good as any other i believe…