Now one could always argue that this was a superficial outsiders un-researched take. But then that's what this blog is meant to be. A sum up of first impressions. I was actually at KL for more than a week. First for a conference. And then with Kainaz when she joined me. We did the touristy bits. Saw the Twin Towers. Climbed the other tower. Went to the Batik factories. The Museum and the Malls. Scoured the streets for food. Went to a highly recommended disc. Zouk. Which was shut. We were happy and relived to move onto Langkawi.
Three years down the line I discovered that the best way to see KL is to skip the Twin Towers!
If you look at KL from the surface then it is hard to find anything which distinguishes it from other Asian Tiger cities. What you need is someone who loves the city. And shares common interests with you to give you a real peek into the city.
Folks like Arindam and Sasha. Bengalis who moved into KL from Calcutta then Delhi and finally Mumbai. Arindam was earlier upset when he read that I was not impressed by KL. And was incensed that I had called Singapore the food capital of the world. He was bent on proving me wrong. Soon the opportunity came and I landed at their place at KL one Friday. What followed was a culinary romp through buttered pork, suckling pigs, chilly pan mee, siew yoke, fried frogs and lots lots more with a bit of touristy shopping thrown in at Ikea, Watsons and Carrefour.
We didn't see the Twin Towers. And I had a whale of a time.
Moral of the story. It pays to connect with someone who knows the city before you land up there. Ideally someone who has common interests with you. This will not always be possible. But you will be surprised what a little bit of blog searching or Facebook questioning could throw up. I learnt this from the expert. Sasha actually reads up travel sites and enters into discussions there before she plans Arindam and her vacations. Individuals tend to give less exhaustive but more intense and useful information. You are likely to gain much more than just going to impersonal travel directories, books or agents. I am going to do that the next time.
Anyone interested in Mumbai, Calcutta (slightly dated info), Baga Goa feel free to ask me questions. Especially if they are to do with food.
And you can go to my food blog, Finely Chopped, to see what we were up to in KL this time. Check this for live updates from KL and some more posts after I returned.