Are You Attracted By Kuala Lumpur's Concrete Blueprint? If So, Search No Further. Let Us Impress You!
The following Kuala Lumpur attractions and landmarks are just a few of the many local must-sees of this city. They are in no way ranked by importance. All are fabulous if you ask me and deserve to be mentioned here. Lets get right to it, shall we? Chop Chop!
1) Petronas Twin Towers (KLCC) - Made famous by the movie Entrapment and always a prominent feature of any picture taken of the Kuala Lumpur skyline, the Petronas Twin Towers are the pride and joy of Malaysia. It is by far the tallest twin towers in the world and is located in the heart of Kuala Lumpur. KLCC is a definite must see! Jokes aside.
2) KL Tower - Standing 421m (1,389 ft.) tall, this concrete structure is the third-tallest tower in the world, and the views from the top reach to the far corners of the city and beyond. At the top, the glass windows are fashioned after the Shah Mosque in Isfahan, Iran.
3) Jamek Mosque - The first settlers landed in Kuala Lumpur at the spot where the Gombak and Klang rivers meet, and in 1909 a mosque was built here. Styled after an Indian Muslim design, it is one of the oldest mosques in the city and is one of the most photographed buildings in Kuala Lumpur.
4) Dayabumi Complex - The city's first steel-framed skyscraper. It's structure is influenced by Islamic artwork and blends with the Mughal elements of the colonial buildings around it. Dayabumi houses the General Post Office as well as a simple shopping centre and offices. To be honest, this is a fascinating construction period. Interesting history, worth a look but shouldn't take up much of your time.
5) Kuala Lumpur Railway Station - Completed in 1911, the old KL Railway Station is connected by an underpass to the KTM Berhad building which is basically the management building of the locomotive company, Keretapi Tanah Melayu (KTM). With a flurry of minerats, colonnades and arches, the two complement each other and together form a lovely gateway into the city centre.
6) KL Sentral - In 2001, the main rail terminus was moved to this modern building and is now also the hub for LRT and monorail services. KL Sentral, also dubbed as an "aero city," international airline passengers will be able to check-in their baggage before boarding an express rail link (ERL) to the Kuala Lumpur International Airport.
7) National Monument/Tugu Negara - The monument was erected in memory of fallen heroes who gave their lives during World War II and the Emergency (1948-60). Inspired by American sculptor Felix de Weldon, this 15.54m monument comprises seven bronze figures. The national flag is held aloft by one of the figures. Every one of the statues represent a different quality such as vigilance, leadership, unity, suffering, strength, courage and sacrifice.
8) Parliament House - Built after independence, its tower block is clad with concrete "scales" that resemble the skin of a pineapple but which also serve a functional purpose as sunshades. The podium of the complex sports a series of triangular structures fashioned after the traditional Melakan roof form.
9) Putra Mosque - Putra Mosque is the biggest mosque in Putrajaya, and one of its most prominent landmarks. Sitting as if afloat on Putrajaya Lake, the breathtaking mosque consists of three main functional areas - the prayer hall, the "Sahn" or courtyard, learning facilities and function rooms. The prayer hall is supported by 12 columns, with the highest point below the dome being 250 feet above ground level. The "Sahn" is landscaped with decorative water features and bordered by colonnades. The minaret is 116m tall - the tallest in the region.
10) Thean Hou Temple - Do not be intimidated this temple that sits atop a hill overlooking Jalan Syed Putra. This magnificent religious monument is one of the largest Chinese temples outside the Orient. The grandiose building was designed in an interesting combination of modern architecture and authentic traditional design.
11) Guan Yin Temple - The century old temple with its widely curving roof honours Sakyamuni Buddha as its principle deity. Next to its statue is an icon of Guan Yin or the Goddess of Mercy in her thousand arms and thousand eyes form. This represents Guan Yin as the omnipotent saviour looking in all directions, sensing the afflictions of humanity and extending her many arms to alleviate them.
12) National Mosque - Built from funds raised by the city's various ethnic groups, the mosque was erected to honour Malaysia's first prime minister, Tunku Abdul Rahman, but he insisted that it be called the National Mosque. The main prayer hall of the mosque can accommodate 15,000 worshipers at one time.
13) Seri Perdana Complex - Of all the palatial buildings in Putrajaya, the one structure that perhaps commands the most importance is the Prime Minister's official residence, Seri Perdana. It is a landmark that rises above the rest and is majestic in every way. Dubbed the People's Palace by then Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad himself, the Seri Perdana Complex is indeed a magnificent building and one that fits in well with Putrajaya's role as the new federal administrative capital.
14) Sultan Abdul Samad Building - Bangunan Sultan Abdul Samad was built in 1897 to house the various administrative departments of the British Government at that time. Its Moorish features have attracted the interest of visiting historians and students of architecture. Today, the building houses the Supreme and High Courts.
15) Merdeka Square - Situated next to the Sultan Abdul Samad Building, Dataran Merdeka is a significant historic site as it was here that the British Union Jack was lowered for the last time when Malaysia gained its independence on 31st August 1957. A 100 meter-high flagpole, one of the tallest in the world, marks this spot.
16) National Sports Complex - The world class complex served as the focus of Kuala Lumpur 98 - XVI Commonwealth Games. The complex include the National Aquatic Centre, Putra Indoor Stadium, Bukit Kiara Stadium, National Squash Centre, National Hockey Stadium, National Lawn Bowl Centre as well as a Family and River Park.
17) Kuala Lumpur International Airport - Designed by renowned Japanese architect Kisho Kurokawa, the KLIA is a spectacular feat of construction which combines futuristic technology, Malaysian culture and the rich, tropical splendor of its natural resources. It incorporated forms and systems suggesting advancement and modernization while at the same time, support Malaysia's cultural history.
18) Istana Kuala Lumpur - Istana Kuala Lumpur which means national palace in Malay, is the official residence of His Majesty The King of Malaysia. It is a stately mansion sits on a 28-acre plot of land on a hill within a beautifully landscaped garden overlooking the river. It is hard to see from the road as the palace is surrounded by a high fence. The mansion used to be the personal residence of a wealthy Chinese businessman built in the 1920s.
19) National Millennium Monument - The obelisk-like, amber-coloured monument in Precinct 2, Putrajaya was built as a timeline, marking Malaysia's historical milestones from the formation of the Malacca sultanate, through independence, and to the present day.
Usually, i'm not too thrilled about the idea of nature making way for modernization. Multi-storey buildings are sprawling up just about every corner we look. And they are doing so in a pretty rapid rate. One moment we are enjoying the sun's ray on our skin and the next, it is being reflected off by some mega structure which we aren't even sure if it's suppose to be there in the first place. Even so, our Kuala Lumpur Municipal Council has done a brilliant job in not just preserving the old structures but also enhancing them so that the people of the next generation can continue to witness them and appreciate the stories of each of these constructions.