Day 1: Petronas Twin Towers

check out my prelude first ---> HERE

What makes me busy 2 weeks after I got back from my first backpacking trip?

Nothing but struggling to stay awake at night again. As you all know, I've been working at night for 2 years now and that's my normal routine. Well, after my SEA trip, nasira ang body clock ko.


been very busy catching up sleep (in the office)

Tapos kung maka-demand pa kayo na umpisahan ko na yung SEA trip, hirap na hirap nga ako makatulog ngayon.. Wala kayong puso! Chos! (drama lang..)

PLANNING
First, I did research a little about South East Asia. I checked out a map and studied the countries which are side by side and can be traveled overland.
Second, I looked around forums and spotted some future travel buddies. Luckily, I found 2 girls! Yup, we don't know each at all and we'll travel together outside the country! Extreme eh?
Third, waited and booked for a promo fare. And by promo fare I meant PISO fare!
Fourth, I did extensive research in every country, including the map, route, train system, made reservations on cheap accommodations, etc. Everything that's essential.
Fifth, I bought a 15-kg luggage (smallest size). I realized I can't carry a huge bag (for 10days) that's bigger and heavier than I am.

backpacking SEA in a red trolley

My ROUTE
I intentionally put Thailand in the last leg. I found that country most interesting.

Manila - Kuala Lumpur - Ho Chi Minh - Siem Reap - Bangkok

A NEWBIE'S BACKPACKING TRIP

First Leg: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
I actually flew via Airasia, a budget airline that's based in Malaysia. My fare from Clark-Kuala Lumpur was P988. From Pasay, I took the Philtranco bus which goes directly to Diosdado Macapagal International Airport (DMIA). Fare is P350.

In DMIA, I paid the usual travel tax of P1620 and P600 for the terminal fee. Since I only have forward tickets, the immigration officer asked me a lot of questions regarding my trip. Maybe she thought I would do something illegal?! Good thing I carried my company ID with me, and bragged I have a decent job here in Manila. Then she let me pass. Yey!

flying via Airasia for the 1st time

I dont care if the airplane is not spacious as long as the flight is smooth. And it was. Aside from hindi maganda ang amoy ng mga katabi ko- I have nothing else to complain.
After 3 hours, I finally reached Kuala Lumpur. Landing is at LCCT.

first glimpse of Malaysia

I lined up in the immigration booth and it went smoothly too. I got my trolley and proceeded to Skybus terminal. This 1hour bus ride took me to KL Sentral.

I learned that in the first stages of planning, its best to download a map. You'll have an idea of everything, plus you'll have more sensible questions in mind. Ü

the efficient KL transit map

Upon reaching KL Sentral, my companions Franklyn and Mera (my ex-officemates from Trend Micro) and I walked around and looked for the monorail. It is 400m away from the bus station. Quite reachable by foot. From KL Sentral, we paid a small amount to reach Bukit Bintang, that's the area we planned to stay.

Important reminder: almost all guesthouses / hostels in KL only offer common bathrooms. And since I am not comfortable with that, we ended up no choice but to pay more and stay in a not so good hotel but with a private bathroom.

i DONT recommend staying at Season's View

We got a triple room for MYR125 (around P1,800) per night without breakfast. Location is good but the beds suck!

totoo palang may bed bugs!

Aside from the room is small, we personally saw some bed bugs. Omg, totoo palang may bed bugs! And it scared us big time. Too bad we already paid 2 nights and thought it would only hassle us to look around for some decent and cheap hotels nearby. It's raining that night, just so you know. And we've been carrying our luggages since that morning. So we decided to stay there. We just removed the thick sheets (we figured that's where the bugs are coming from) and used only the thin ones. Pero nakakapraning pa din matulog! Luckily, it worked at hindi ako nabiktima ng bed bugs. But not worth the paranoia I experienced.
Hotel Season's View
61 Jalan Alor, Bukit Bintang, 50200 KL
http://www.seasonsview.com/home.htm

Moving on, I badly need to make a phone call to Lee Chua. Yes, she's a fellow blogger from Malaysia and I need to meet her. I emailed her for some assistance and she actually helped me more than I expected. She offered us to buy 3 Genting package tickets in advance. According to her, most of the time only late afternoon trips are available if you purchase the tickets within the day of your trip.

Act of kindness #1
That phone call to Lee was made possible by a vendor along Bukit Bintang who let me use his cellphone for free. Thank you sir!

We had our dinner outside the hotel the famous Jalan Alor street. The best place to eat Malaysia's local favorites.

famous Jalan Alor street (right outside the hotel we're staying)

crowd favorite? ok dito tayo..

Only very few vendors speak English but that's no problem. We just pointed some favorite and best seller items in their menu.

Penang Char Kway Teow and Satay Chicken with Peanut Sauce

Super yummy (and cheap)! Bentang-benta sakin ang combo na yan. Drooling once again.. Ü

After a satisfying meal, we walked towards the very sparkling Twin Towers. And because we thought it's quite near, we decided to walk. Wrong decision. It took me 40mins to reach Suria, KLCC. That's where I need to meet Lee. I lost my companions by the way.

I lost my companion but Lee found me!

A very fine lady. Lee is very accommodating in our exchange of emails, but she's even nicer in person. She handed me our tickets and I paid her. She even toured me around.

KL at night is really very alive but Petronas Twin Tower simply stands out. May WOW factor. Its beauty is sparkling.

Suria KLCC and Petronas Twin Towers

And since I lost my companions, I asked her to take some photographs of me infront of the sparkling twin towers. Lucky me, she's a good photographer!

day 1 behind the famous landmark in KL

And for a change, here's a reflection of the sparkling towers in the lake. Nice!

lights reflecting at the lake

Lee and her boyfriend Troy even drive me back to our hotel. I really appreciated that.
Thank you Lee. Im lucky I have met you here in blogosphere, and Im luckier I met you in person. Please let me know if you have plans of going here in Manila (and Boracay) and I will help you the way you helped me.

I intentionally wrote every detail I remembered in this backpacking trip. Some may sound personal. Afterall, my blog is more of a personal blog than a travel guide blog. Ü

Click here for Day 2: Genting Highlands

44 responses:

nicquee said...

the usual chyng, i love the pictures! bilib talaga ako sa iyo! kelan ka kaya pupunta sa US and Europe?

Ang galing mo bumili ng tickets! Sana ako rin makabili naman ng ganun kamura. Gusto ko na talaga pumunta sa Boracay next year dahil sa kakabasa ng blog mo. :)

Chyng said...

pramis yung day2, mabilis lang ang interval.. Ü

rob said...

.. hoping to visit malaysia too chyng, docgelo's now based there. buti na lang di ka pinapak ng surot! haha.

dong ho said...

Wow! the long awated trip is here at parang sinabi mo rin kahit na ikwento na to iba pa rin dahil mas detalyado.

bait naman nung mama na nagpahiram ng cellphone at buti na rin at binaggit mo yung hotel para maiwasan na to.

i believe the petronas is best seen at night. i like the photo with the building's reflection. well framed.

ellen joy belmonte santos said...

hayy naku chying kakabasa ko ng blog mo mauubos yung ipon ko ahihihi pero ok lang na iinspired talaga ako sayo =)

@---@ said...

Hi Chyng. I'm a newbie here in your blog and it's awesome. I was looking for a travel blog and this is the best i found so far. very natural sounding kasi.. :) it's very helpful to those who like to travel esp me. been wanting to travel rin.. will still look around your blog! :) thanks!

JeffZ said...

this is jeff by the way @--@ :)

~Kinesics said...

Galing mo, Chyng Chyng! I admire your fierceness :) to travel alone outside the country and meeting people you've never met before!

MarcoPaolo said...

Wow... idol na kita chyng!!!

Roninkotwo said...

Ganda ng kuha mo sa petronas twin towers..=)

The Nomadic Pinoy said...

Bed bugs are certainly not our preferred bed companions! Did you not ask for at least a different room?

Now I see how blogging helps expand the social network - you had a fellow blogger help you on your first day.

kg said...

i agree...mas maganda ang petronas sa gabi. iba ang glow! he he!

Anonymous said...

2 months na ako nagbabasa ng blogs mo miss chyng.1st time ko magcomment.. parang nakakapunta na ako sa lugar na mga pinupuntahan mo.. :) my boyfriend and i made a list na kung san pupunta.. at lahat eh yung mga andito sa post mo hihi.. bukod sa affordable, talaga namang may mga advices ka na para samin :) thanks for being our VIRTUAL TOUR GUIDE :)

God bless you more :)

_ Charisse :)

witsandnuts said...

I was at that side of Petronas Tower, too, few days ago. :)

Diamond R said...

Ang galing, bilib ako sa energy na meron ka. Yes, Ching if there is an opportunity to travel i'll invite you.

keep it up.

danda07 said...

question about petronas twin tower.. talaga bang para silang nag uusap? hihi! ( from the movie miss you like crazy.. hehe! )

Meedge said...

Chyng, share your IT with me, pretty please? Hehe:)I wish I had your planning skills!

Meedge said...

chyng, anong lens mo? heehee:) ganda kasi nung shot nung wing ng plane! thanks!

docgelo said...

daig mo pa akong nasa penang na, nakapunta ka na ng petronas kami hindi pa hehe. from KL airport kasi via cebu pacific, we're fetched by a private bus then went on to penang.

kadiri naman yung beds nung hotel, may surot?! you should have complained and asked for a refund or an upgrade.

invite dyanie and i'll show you around penang island. george town and gurney drive are must-see whether you like to visit a UNESCO World City and do a walking tour or feast your eyes on sale items on gadgets, clothes and whatnot up to 70 to 80% off tipong pinamimigay na ang tinda! saya!
i recently bought 330 thread count linen set originally priced at RM149 down to RM29! how good was that?

btw, the official abbreviation of ringgit is RM. =) yakagin mo na si dyan, rob and others, make penang one of your stopovers. libre nyo ako ha. =)

rianess said...

hi miss chyng! newbie ako dito sa blogspot and kakasearch ng mga pwedeng i follow, nakita ko page mo. i was so amazed with your blog. nakaka engganyo basahin mga blog mo, lalo na sa boracay. kakagrad ko lang last march and im on first job now. dahil sa mga posts mo, gusto ko na din mag travel. balak ko gastusin sweldo ko sa pag travel. hahaha. to be honest, di pa ko nakakapunta ng boracay, bohol, etc. ang napuntahan ko palang na white beach e yung sa laiya, batangas. hope you could help me this want-to-travel dream. good luck to your other trips and please keep your followers posted on your trips. God Bless! =)

pusang kalye said...

natuwa naman ako sa surot story...of all plaes---Malaysia pa. hahaha

never tried Air Asia....kinda hesitant to try it. maybe inbthe future. pag mapapaMalaysia din ako kasi laway na laway na anman ako dito sa post mo---esp. that picture in front of the Petronas Towers~~~~

Chyng said...

@nicquee,
go to boracay, maeenjoy nyo yun n baby mo!

@rob,
katakot na surots! have a safe flight home.

@doms,
yun na, pag galing sayong maganda yung shot, it means maganda talaga yun. :)

@joy,
mas maganda may pinag-iipunan diba? kesa sa ibang bagay pa mapunta yung sweldo. hihi

@jeff @--@,
wow thank you for the kind words. i visited your blog too! Ü

@emil,
wow blogging again? salamat!

@marco,
idol tlga eh? parang april boy.. hehe

Photo Cache said...

it's always fun to travel and meet new people.

i don't think i have the stomach to do it solo like you had - i salute you.

Chyng said...

@sir lloyd,
maganda tlga yung petronas. super sparkling!

@dennis,
hay nako, wala ng available na ibang room. nagpapalit kami ng sheets, ganun din naman, may bugs din. kainis na experience!

@kg,
true, super ang glow. imposibleng di ka mapa-wow!

@charisse,
hello charisse! good thing you found my posts helpful. i want to forward the kindness of other people who helped me in my previous trip. update mo ko sa mga trips nyo! (at comment ka lagi dito) thanks! Ü


@witsandnuts,
haha that was nice. traveling from the middle east to south east, Ü

@diamond,
noted. thank you!

@nicole,
uhm ang hirap ng tanong mo.. hehe parang hindi naman.. (wala talaga akong romantic side) hihi

@meedge,
ano email mo? or add me in FB!
kitlens lang gamit ko jan. Ü

@doc,
ok RM gamitin ko sa day 2 and day 3 doc. thanks for correcting.
sana nga makapunta kami jan, paexperience mo samin ang penang!

Chyng said...

@ria,
hello! madami more beautiful and white beaches. specially yung calaguas. maiiba definition mo ng white beach pag nakita mo na ang boracay at calaguas. malayong malayo sa batangas.
i visited your blog, and i hope everything will be well for you soon.. God bless you too. Ü


@anton,
choosy pa to. parang cebupac lang yan airasia. budget airlines galore!

@photocache,
sa una lang mahirap magtravel alone. yung mga nexts, parang wala na lang. Ü

rianess said...

thank you miss chyng! i adore your blog. really. i'm finding new things to look forward to in life despite the heartaches and pain. and now, my goal is to travel locally muna. na inspire talaga ako sa blog mo. =) keep safe always! =)

nina said...

docgelo: Puede ba makisingit sa tour na yan? Miss ko na Penang!

Chyng: Di ba madali lang mag backpack sa Southeast Asia? ;) Mukhang trolley din ang beauty ko next next week. Nag give up na si Viktor :(

Allen said...

mukha namang sosyal yung hotel ate chyng ah. haha

cant wait for the next part!

x'tian said...

i have nothing to say...
this is my friend ^_^
so proud of you

Che said...

Can't wait for the next one, BF! =)

KRIS JASPER said...

Yep I agree! Beautiful towers captured by a beautiful person.

=)

Meedge said...

@chyng: I added you in FB na.:) email: poohpotato@gmail.com. anong cam yan, chyng? galing mo naman, ang pangit nung airplane shots namin eh. hahaha. d namin alam anong setting dpat. noooob:D

The Gasoline Dude said...

Hindi ka umakyat sa taas? SKY Bridge ata tawag dun. Went there with my Mom last month. Good thing we met someone who works at Petronas and gave us passes to go to the bridge.

But the bad thing is, I wasn't able to see Petronas Towers at night. :(

mishi said...

whew! atlong last!haha!Humirit pa rin eh noh? ;)Sana we could visit Malaysia din soon (syempre pa I have passport na haha!)Super ganda ng shot mo dun chyng,and super helpful tips.Next enrty pls. :)

lechua said...

hey chyng, wow i'm so touched to have read what you wrote. actually it was very minimal what i did (u made it sound like i saved u haha). i'm still amazed how u walked from jalan alor all the way to KLCC without a map! anyhow i think it was very brave of u to have conquered South East Asia - unfortuate about Seasonsview. i hope the rest of ur stay in kl was alright. will be following ur SEA story!

tim said...

the wonderful escapades... awesome.. ganda ng view..

journeyingjames said...

try couchsurfing.org para tipid ka sa travels abroad. at walang bedbugs. the pic of signages reminds me of boracay signages

sǝıʞooɔʞuıdʎɯ8n said...

super enjoy ako mag-shopping in KL!!

purple_camote said...

WOW, Malaysia (Truly asia..)!!
the best talaga itong blog mo, ching.. =) Ginagawa ko ng reference yung blog mo sa mga next destinations ko (OK lang naman di ba?). More power to you and I hope your next stop will be somewhere in Europe or South Africa. Take care! -melai

Im fabjam! said...

Hi chyng! Ask ko po san ka ngpapalit ng peso to ringgit? D2 b sa manila or kl? And saan po sa manila/kl?tnx ng marami.ü

Chyng said...

^hello!
I advise you to exchange your peso in dollars currency here in Manila. Then exchange you $ to Ringgit when in KL. Malaki kasi palitan ng dollars pagdating mo dun kesa pag peso dala mo.
Make sure you exchange $50's or $100's to maximize the exchange rate.

Camille said...

Galing galing ng blog mo.. Saludo ako sayo.... More power.. Godbless!! =)

throwcautiontothewind said...

I'm waiting for airasia'a free seat sale this May para matuloy tuloy na din ang pinapangarap kong indochina backpacking trip. Your day-to-day account for the 10-day trip is very very helpful. Thanks, will definitely help me in planning my itinerary. Again, great photos chyng! galing!

jamesannjo said...

Hello po, kung mag-a-advance booking po for the theme park sa Genting po, how many days po maximum advance booking? Pwede ba months? Pano po kayo nakipag-coordinate sa friend niyo po kasi we're first timers and we don't know anybody in Malaysia po but we want though na makasecure ng earlier trip going to Genting although we're leaving around October pa po.

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