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September 21, 2013

My first tour in Kuala Lumpur and Hop-On Hop-Off bus ride

View of Petronas Twin Towers from Cititel Express Hotel
Magnificent view of Petronas Towers at night
     I could still recall out trip in Kuala Lumpur back in 2009 it was the last day of October then, I remembered there was a coming strong typhoon which will hit Metro Manila and its nearby towns.  On our way to Ninoy Aquino International Aiport terminal 3 we heard from the news on radio that airlines were cancelling their flights for that night, we were worried that our flight might be included.  But fate is with us, Cebu Pacific did not cancelled flight to Kuala Lumpur and leave at exactly 8:55 p.m.

View of Petronas Tower from Cititel Express
The Petronas Twin Towers were covered by clouds as viewed from our hotel 
     It was four hours flight from Manila to Kuala Lumpur Airport and when we checked-out our taxi driver was already waiting outside.  He was in his mid forties, a jolly person and he said he was from India and he spoke English fluently.  From Kuala Lumpur to our booked Hotel in Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman it took as thirty minutes without interruption except when there was a stop sign, but he droves fast and there were few vehicles on the road at that wee hour and I felt that we had already travelled far and it seems that we already toured the city of Kuala Lumpur and the buildings we saw are just the same from what we encountered but from a different angle, and once in awhile the driver was talking on his mobile phone in his language so we presumed that he did not know where our Hotel’s location and that we are lost in the middle of nowhere.  But the driver explained that some streets are one way that’s why it seems were rounding the whole city of Kuala Lumpur and at the same time heavy rains poured in and some lightning are hitting the dark sky, so we were joking that we thought we were able to escape the storm in Manila but it seems it followed us.

Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman street infront of Cititel Express Hotel
Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman Street  

 We were dog tired when we arrived in our hotel which was almost 2:00 am and it took me few minutes just before I dozed myself in bed. That morning we woke up late at 8:00 am, and that was already late for us since we used to wake up at 6:00 am.  We prepared ourselves to go out for our first tour of the City but before that we had our buffet dinner in our hotel which was included in our bookings.  On our travels we usually include breakfast in our bookings so there would not be any problem for us where to eat in the morning. 
Monorail at Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman
Monorail in front of Cititel Express Hotel in Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman Street  

 Our itinerary for that day was a tour around the city of Kuala Lumpur so we decided to take a Hop-on-Hop-Off bus tour, a city tourist bus that will get you to the strategic tourist spots at a cost of RM33 at that time, for adult which is valid for 24 hours, they have different rate for children.  RM stands for Ringgit Malaysia, Ringgit is their monetary unit.  KL Hop-on-Hop-off bus can be purchased in two options, one is for 24 hours validity and the other is 48 hours validity, we paid our tickets on the bus to the lady tour guide.  It is called hop-on hop-off because you can ride on the bus and get down from the bus anywhere you want as long as it stopped on the designated stop location and ride to another bus, just ensure that you are taking the hop-on hop-off bus, you’ll never go wrong because they have distinct color and signage and they have enough buses, if the bus got full packed immediately there will come another bus every fifteen minutes.
Jalan Rajah Laut Street where Hop-On Hop-Off bus will stop
We walked to Jalan Rajah Laut Street via Jalan Sri Amar from our hotel to reach KL Hop-On Hop-Off bus stop

Station 18 of Kuala Lumpur Hop-On Hop-Off bus
Station 18 of KL Hop-On Hop-Off bus in Jalan Rajah Laut.  There are 22 stations located around Kuala Lumpur

Inside Hop-On Hop-Off bus
We were the first tourists to hop in the tourist bus.  

Pamphlets, directories and maps of Kuala Lumpur city
Pamphlets, directories and maps of Kuala Lumpur to guide tourists especially like us who were first timers in KL.

     The bus is a two-decker bus with a driver and an assistant or tourist guide, there are two kinds of Hop-on Hop-off bus I saw and rode on one is fully enclosed with air conditioning and the other has half open top.  The bus is clean and equipped with sound system and a voice recording in many languages that will automatically speaks where your exact location and tells some significant story about the place.

This is a peek only of my tour in Kuala Lumpur I will show you more of my experience in my next post, so stay tuned.. 

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