Exploring Selangor, Malaysia
This is probably the most spontaneous trip I've ever had. I just got back home from our Indonesia trip when I decided to check tickets to nearby countries. I came across a cheap ticket to Kuala Lumpur and thought that maybe I should try and celebrate my birthday in a different country. I thought about it for a few days and finally convinced myself to book the ticket. Luckily, the price didn't change. I couldn't believe that in two weeks, I'll finally be able to visit Malaysia! I've been telling my friends in Malaysia that one day I'll visit and I'm glad it was finally going to happen.
I arrived in KLIA at around 8PM -- was supposed to land at 6PM but my flight got delayed so I had to wait a bit longer. From the airport, I took the KLIA Express to KL Sentral. I think it's the fastest way to get to the city without having to drive through rush hour traffic. The ticket usually costs RM55 (about 14 USD) but there is a machine that lets you buy tickets using your credit/debit card and gives you 10% off, so I opted for that.
I arrived at my hotel at around 10pm. I scheduled a dinner with my friends (who I met through Instagram) and I feel so bad that I had to make them wait for me (Sorry Trisha and Sher Reen!!) -- Anyway, they took me to a nearby Chinese restaurant in Bukit Bintang. I was told that it was one of the best places to go for food! No photos were though! We were just so hungry and excited that we finally got to meet in person! I've been promising Trisha that I will visit but it never happens and I'm glad this time, it finally did!
Woke up early the next day because someone was picking us up at our hotel to bring us to the meet up place for #EatTravelWrite 4.0 Selangor tour. Took these photos before leaving my room with the beautiful view of the KL Tower.
After breakfast, we boarded the bus and made our way to our first stop, BOH Teh Farm.
We got to tour the inside of the factory where they pack all the tea.
Of course one of my favorite parts of any trip is snack time! One of the things that caught my attention when we got to the place was this mushroom looking thing. I initially thought that they were giant mushrooms (one would assume since they're called mushroom buns!). Apparently, it's bread (or pau as they call it) that was made to look like mushrooms! Inside these mushroom looking paus is creamy chicken mushroom soup. I'm not sure how to describe the taste but for me, it tasted like bread dipped in mushroom soup.
After, we headed to the Royal Mausoleum of Sultan Abdul Samad. Located in the royal town of Jugra. Sultan Abdul Samad was the fourth sultan of Selangor.
Our next stop was a nearby museum called Muzium Insitu Jugra. This place was originally a police station and a prison! The first floor was the prison and the second floor was a court.
Near the museum is Bukit Jugra. A hill that gives you a beautiful view of the Langat river. This is also a jump off point for paragliding! Sadly, we didn't get to try it out (a bit happy cause I'm a scaredy cat lol!)
We had lunch infront of Istana Bandar / Istana Alaeddin (no not the Disney one hehe!) This is also one of my favorite sights during my trip around Selangor. The place is huge (2 storeys with 15 rooms!)! Plus, the photo above is actually the back entrance of the Palace (unfortunately I didn't get the shot of the front entrance. Boo!)
We were able to go around inside but the place was empty... What caught my attention was how beautiful the windows were.
Before heading to the hotel, we passed by Ros Kerepek. In here, they make crackers from banana and yam. These crackers are what I miss during meals in Malaysia. I remember that in a buffet, there will always be a giant jar waiting for you at the end of the table which I obviously abused.
The following day, we went around Endah Village. We checked out a few homestays (photo above) and tried out a few yummy snacks along the way.
One of my favorite sweets during our tour was the dodol. If you're from the Philippines and you've tried sundot kulangot / calamay, that's how it tastes like just a bit more chewy.
We also visited a mushroom farm! It was actually my first time to see a mushroom farm. I didn't know that they were grown this way. We were actually not allowed inside / go too near the mushrooms cause they apparently "get shy" (I'm actually not sure if they told us that just so we wouldn't go in or if they were serious...)
Above: Kuah Kacang (peanut sauce) is made -- peanuts, sugar, and chili (lots and lots of it!)
Below: Kuih Abuk-abuk - made of sago, grated coconut, salt, pandan juice, palm sugar, and sugar.
We spent the rest of the afternoon in a homestay in Endah. It was actually pretty cosy. The house had a lot of windows so it was pretty cool inside the house. I had the urge to lie down on the couch and take a nap lol!
The next morning (my birthday yay!), we got up early to go to a GO-Kart track! I was almost convinced to ride one but I was too chicken (I seriously need to do something about my fear of everything LOL!) I had fun watching the others drive around though. Maybe one day I'll be able to ride one. I'll keep everyone updated.
This one is Kuih Lemper. Javanese snack which is made of rice on the outside and a whole lot of stuff inside (garlic, candle nut, ground coriander, cumin, brown sugar, vegetable oil, minced shallot, coconut milk, kaffir lime leaves, salt and pepper). This version came with shredded fish as filling but some use chicken or beef.
Mangrove forest in Taman Rekreasi Paya Bakau in Sijangkang.
Just recently, Professor Awang opened his studio to students. They usually stay here for 3 months. In the above photo is one of the students currently practicing his art in Professor Awang's studio.
After our trip to the studio, we headed to a homestay where we will stay for the rest of the trip. During dinner, we had Nasi Ambeng. It's a meal shared by a few people and they eat in one big plate. I was told that it was a symbol for equality. After dinner, a few people performed the traditional Javanese Martial Arts infront of us called silat. It was pretty amazing to watch actually. Too bad my camera died before all these happened -- boo! I will try my best to find photos so I can show you guys what happened! After everything, I opted to ride with a friend going back to Kuala Lumpur since the next day was just for shopping.
Next couple days were spent exploring Kuala Lumpur (malls included LOL!) with friends: Kerol, Sher Reen and Pojie.
One place I loved and made me wow so many times was Masjid Wilayah. It was an unplanned trip actually. After having lunch with Kerol, he needed to pray so he brought me with him. It was my first time inside a mosque and wow, it is amazing. The details on the doors, walls, and windows are so intricate. Everything was so beautiful!
Pretty packed schedule for Eat Travel Write tour but I definitely enjoyed all of it. It was pretty nice to experience a different side of Malaysia during my first visit to this country. I'm pretty sure this won't be the last. I'm already looking forward to my next trip to this country! Melaka, I'm looking at you. Haha!
Disclosure: I was a participant of Gaya Travel Magazine's #EatTravelWrite 4.0 tour around Selangor.