Exploring Pulau Warisan Kuala Terengganu

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Backtracking a moment from Payang Memory Lane, I followed Pasar Besar Payang Street to the mouth of the Terengganu River. Considering the roaming area was a coastal area, then my feet wouldn’t be far from the water. I would stop two hundred meters north, right on the banks of the Terengganu River.

While the sun was still perfectly round in the west, its rays were still able to make the skin red. Forcing me to occasionally stop behind the big trunks of palm trees by the roadside. Hhmmhh…. Terengganu’s sun was too long, it made the whole face sting.

But not long….A moment later I arrived at the northern edge of Kampung Cina (China Town). My eyes were instantly fixed on the arched footbridge at the eastern end of the village, it seemed that the object had become the main landmark of this night’s tourist attractions.

Arch bridge on the Kuala Terengganu Heritage Island.
The dividing canal between Pulau Warisan Kuala Terengganu and Kampung Cina.
The gateway for pedestrians to Pulau Warisan Kuala Terengganu.
That was where I would enjoy the atmosphere….I Love KT Park.

Unfortunately I didn’t have time tonight, my body was tired to endured the sleepiness all night at Kuala Lumpur International Airport. So tonight, I chose to soundly sleep. It was fine that I have to visit that destiation now, even though I won’t be find its culmination visitation time.

That was Pulau Warisan Kuala Terengganu, an artificial seven-hectare island on the banks of Terengganu River estuary which was commonly used for night markets, big events, music concerts, art exhibitions and the base of Heritage Island River Cruise to explore the beauty of Terengganu River which had many excellence tourist attractions in its various key spots. Locals often refered to Pulau Warisan Kuala Terengganu as i-City Terengganu, referring to the ICT-based city in Shah Alam, Selangor.

On top of the iconic archway, I freely could gaze at all corners of Pulau Warisan Kuala Terengganu. In plain view, the island was only separated from the mainland by a canal thirty meters wide. The canal looked clean and was occasionally passed by a security guard’s engine boat.

It seemed that this island wanted to reveal its identity as the pride of Terengganu with the existence of a green park on the eastern edge of the island. The park was titled I Love KT Park. From a distance, several vehicles were seen parked in the park. A group of families seemed to roll out their mats to enjoy the sunset in Terengganu River by eating the home-cooked food they brought, some men on motorbikes seemed to prepare fishing rods, they were ready to hunt fish on the banks of river.

As a venue for large events at night, the island was equipped with firing light poles in every corner. I could imagine how festive it would be tonight when the lights were turned on and poured light into the crowds of culinary tents below.

“Looks like I have to complete the adventure by sitting and relaxing at the end of the island,” I muttered as I looked at the row of shady trees in the northern shore. I started down the canal to reach the main gate of the island which was in the form of a graceful gate with a typical Chinese pattern.

My steps began to split the island right from the middle, I accelerated the swing of my steps to pass the twilight rays which still gave off their stings. I arrived….. Oh, there wasn’t a single bench to just sit on. Alright…. I took out the itinerary sheets which I compiled a few months ago. I tore off the first sheet where I had completed all the stages of the itinerary. I took a clearing under a big tree and sat down on my own itinerary sheet.

Cool….silent….safe….enchanting, that was the feeling which arised when you awere under a shady tree with my gaze thrown far to the north. I could see the expanse of Pulau Duyung (Duyung Island) which was three hundred meters away and was only separated by the waters of the Terengganu River.

Pulau Duyung Supply Centre (PDSC).
Jabatan Pelancongan Negeri Terengganu.
Seen in the distance is the Sultan Mahmud Bridge.
The beauty of the Terengganu River before sunset.

The bustle of the ships belonging to the Pulau Duyung Supply Center (PDSC), which is one of the oil and gas companies in Terengganu, was very obvious, but I didn’t know what was going on inside. The Ignorance made me only able to digest the scenery in front of me, which was like an oil shipyard.

While on the east side, there was a magnificent building belonging to Jabatan Pelancongan Negeri Terengganu. There were tourist ships neatly lined up on the banks. Maybe it was the ships that would take tourists to the beautiful islands which were Terengganu’s marine assets.

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Malaysia Airlines MH 1326 from Kuala Lumpur (KUL) to Kuala Terengganu (TGG)

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Malaysia Airlines flight path MH 1326 (source: flightaware.com).
Sleep in the waiting room in gate A5.

Not restful….

Throughout my sleep, occasionally my eyes warily narrowed at digital clock on the blue screen of Flight Information Display System. The plane to Kuala Terengganu would be flown on 07:25 am which made my sleep not perfect.

Two hours before dawn, in order to stop the anxiety, I decided to get up. While tidying my tired face, I had decided to go to gate A5. “Time to go to the destination point”, I muttered to myself.

Half unsteadily I descended an escalator leaving the International Concourse in 4th floor, then followed all signs to reach the gate. Because the previous night I got off an international flight, that morning I had to get through the immigration counter and hunted an arrival stamp in my passport to be able to go to Kuala Terengganu.

Not finding any other passengers, I now had to face an immigration officer at Kuala Lumpur International Airport alone. The immigration counter in front was guarded by a female staff who with a cold face stared at my presence.

“Good morning”, as usual I ventured to say hello. But as I predicted, my greeting went unanswered.

I slided my passport and ticket in front of her and she started to examine it carefully while frowning.

“Why do you go to Terengganu?”, was the first question from her in a low and heavy voice.

“Tourism”, a moment of silence…….“Travel”, I reiterated.

“How many days?”, the second question from her followed.

“Three days, Mam”, I confidently answered.

“Where will you spend your nights?”

“Near downtown”

“Hotel?”

“Oh, wait a minute, I don’t remember its name, Mam,” I was a little nervous looking for files on my smartphone. After a while of searching I finally found it, “The Space Inn”.

“OK”

Smoothly completing the process of taking fingerprints and facial photo, made me step happily towards the gate in front of me.

Now I was in gate A5, exactly 2 hours before boarding time. Silence still engulfed that cold waiting room, there was no one in sight… Therefore, I decided to go in and continue sleeping. Maybe I could do Fajr Pray in the plane.

Zzzzzzzzz….

Some time later,

The sounds of passengers’ trolley bags woke me up, who actually could sleep better than sleeping in upstairs last night. Now I was awake, waiting for boarding time which would arrive in less than half an hour.

On time….

The boarding call finally sounded. The small number of passengers made me very fast to verify passport data and boarding passes before being allowed to enter plane’s cabin via aerobridge.

I sat in a window seat number 24F and no one else sat in the two columns closest to me, making me feel more relieved and comfortable. I immediately went for tayammum and performed the Fajr prayer while cabin crew were busy preparing for the flight.

The plane was waiting on the apron.
The cabin of MH 1326 was empty of passengers.
Take-off at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport runway.
The beauty of Putrajaya from above.

A few moments later everything was ready. The weather was very sunny and cloudy when the plane departed its main hub, i.e Kuala Lumpur International Airport at seven in the morning.

Malaysian Airlines MH 1326 itself is a flight with an air distance of 333 km with a travel time of 57 minutes from the capital Kuala Lumpur to Kuala Terengganu in the north. This flight is taken using a Boeing 737-800 twin jet with an average speed of 363 km per hour and in the middle of the flight it can reach a maximum speed of 764 km per hour.

I was ready to explore to an altitude of 25,000 feet or about 7,620 meters.

A flight that was actually ordinary but felt very special, considering it was a flight to a new place, a place I had never been to, a place which for the past three years had only inhabited my dream….But now a dream had come true, MH 1326 was taking me there. Thank you, God……

The special visit which was delivered by the 49-year-old flag carrier, the pride of my neighboring country, made the moment still linger to this day.

Although this time I took a premium flight, but because of its short distance, the airline didn’t provide in-flight meal. But that was okay, I still had a piece of burger form Mr. Younes which gave to me last night. I also relaxed to eat it during the flight because I was very impressed by the view of morning sky which was really enchanting. Every now and then the inflight magazine “Going Places” managed to interrupt my eyes which were engrossed in that special sight.

Under clouds just before cruising.
Cruising above clouds to Kuala Terengganu.

Yup, I didn’t feel it, I’d been in the air for almost an hour…..

Now the plane was starting to lower its altitude, cabin crew swiftly checked the readiness of passengers to landing, slowly, the appearance of Kuala Terengganu city was visible from a height….Wouuuwww, my heart was immediately pounding wanting to track it. “Patience Donny, in a moment you will be there”, I soothingly thought.

Now, the plane had lowered the flap to hold it in place and then smoothly landed in the runway of Sultan Mahmud Airport, a tiny airport which is the gateway to Kuala Terengganu tourism.

Kuala Terengganu from above.
It was a nice airport.

Welcome to Kuala Terengganu.

To get flight tickets from Kuala Lumpur to Kuala Terengganu, you can search for it in 12go Asia with the following link:  https://12go.asia/?z=3283832

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Hot Burger in Kuala Lumpur International Airport

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Arrived at International Concourse.

The time marker showed half past eleven when Malaysia Airlines MH 724 landed at Kuala Lumpur International Airport. I took a deep breath when the plane was perfectly parked in the apron, it was because the connecting flight Malaysia Airlines MH 1326 would only fly to Kuala Terengganu on 07:25 hours next day. That means, for the next nine hours I had to spend all night at KLIA.

Overnight at KLIA2….Have you ever?….Yes, I was twelve times already, I tasted the “hard mattress” of KLIA Terminal 2

 Overnight at KLIA?….Have you ever?….Nup, this was my first time staying at KLIA Terminal 1.

While walking in arrival hall, I took a boarding pass which I got from Soetta airport’s check-in desk. After I looked at it, the boarding pass I was holding didn’t show the gate number. Therefore, I tried to find flight status information in Flight Information Display System (FIDS) located at arrival hall….Finally, I got the gate number….Yupz,A5.

So that was…. There was already a gate status.

So that tomorrow morning I won’t have to find the gate, I also intend to rehearse to find a way to the gate in question. From the International Concourse at level 4, I went down one level to Domestic Concourse. Please note that domestic flights at KLIA are flown from gate A and gate B, while international flights are flown from gate C, gate G and gate H.

My rehearsal was forced to end in front of the immigration counter, but at least I understood how I had to go to the gate tomorrow morning.

Domestic Concourse atmosphere.

From in front of the immigration counter, I was forced to climb back up to International Concourse to find a place to close my eyes.

Meanwhile, a few minutes into the middle of night, I was sitting on one of International Concourse’s seats when a couple of middle-aged tourists approached and took the empty seat to my left.

“Helloo, Sir, where are you come from?”, I ventured to say hello.

“Hi, I’m from Algeria”.

“Oh I know, it’s a country in north of Africa”, I tried to make the conversation warmer.

“Ohhhh….yeaaa….yeaaaa, you know that. I will go home tomorrow and will transit in Doha”, he started to tell about their travel plans.

“Oh, Doha will be the last destination in my traveling this time”, I started to relate my trip to their trip so that the conversation would be more intense.

“Oh, good. What is your traveling for?….Business?”

“Oh, no. it’s just for tourism. I’m Donny from Indonesia and Oh yeaaa, what is your name, sir?”

“Oh, I’m Younes and she is my wife”

“Hi, Donny, nice to meet you”, Mr. Younes’ wife also greeted me

“Hi, Madam. Nice to meet you too”

“Donny, let’s we have dinner together!” Mr. Younes took out four burgers from a paper bag that his wife had brought with him.

“Thank you, Sir. I had dinner since from Jakarta”, I gently refused.

“No No No…. It’s different, It’s to accompany us while talking about our traveling”, he forced me to accept a piece of burger that was still warm.

As a result the three of us were talking to each other while enjoying a burger together. And when we finished eating the simple dish, they said goodbye to go to the gate.

But…..Before the two of them left their seats, Mr. Younes’s wife handed me one last burger.

“It’s for you, Donny. Just take it, we are moslems, we are family”

“It’s really, I think you need it more in your journey, Mam”, I subtly declined.

“No, Donny, It’s for you”, she came closer sticking the burger in front of me

“Thank you, Mam. Allah is always with you”, finally I couldn’t resist it.

“Amen, Good night, Donny, Assalamu’alaikum”.

“Wa’alaikumsalam”

Very pleasant meeting in the early hours of that morning. I put the warm burger in my backpack. I’d better save it for breakfast tomorrow.

After the meeting, I decided to change places to find a row of empty seats to sleep while straightening my body so I could close my eyes comfortably.

Come on….Found a place to sleep.

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Nine Hours Stopover in Kuala Lumpur International Airport Terminal 2

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Landing at KLIA2.

For most travelers, Kuala Lumpur International Airport becomes the most fantastic point to jump into other Asian countries. Of course, the existence of Air Asia’s Low Cost Carrier (LCC) makes it so. Since 2001, Air Asia has been providing travelers with low-cost access to travel around Asia. Thanks to Air Asia, I have stopped at KLIA for 21 times when exploring Asia.

But in this story. it was eighth stopover….Yup, this was the eighth time I set foot in Kuala Lumpur International Airport.

After ten o’clock at night, the giant wheel of Air Asia D7 505 gently touched against KLIA2’s runway. The 5 hour 50 minute journey from Seoul was over. My first impression of tasting the wide body Airbus A330 was really pleasant. Flying across Yellow Sea and East China Sea took place with virtually non-existent turbulence, calm and smooth without a hitch. That was probably one of the advantages of riding a large plane when exploring sky.

After taxiing for a few minutes, Air Asia D7 505 was stopped in apron and as soon as the plane door opened, I entered KLIA2 building via aerobridge. I returned to KLIA2 after ten days before stopping by at it before jump to Kaohsiung, Taiwan. It was such a happy feeling that night because I was already close to home, only 2 hours 15 minutes away by air.

And for me, stopping at KLIA2 would be more convenient if I left immigration counter, because I could find many culinary offerings at Gateway@klia2 mall instead of just sitting in transfer hall.

“Transit, Sir. I want to find food for dinner”, I lightly greeted an immigration officer in front.

“Where are you going?”, he asked while checking my green passport.

“From Seoul, want to go back to Jakarta, Sir”

“Oh…”, He briefly answered and then ordered me to face the camera and do fingerprints. By midnight that night, actually my stomach was already filled with wind because the dinner schedule had long passed. But to complete the schedule, I chose to hasten my steps towards a restaurant. It was NZ Curry House which was an Indian restaurant located at Transportation Hub level 1 Gateway@klia2 mall.

Subscribed restaurant.

(On my last visit at KLIA2 at the end 2019 when I was about to fly to Kochi-India, this restaurant area was undergoing renovations, either closed or just being repaired).

The mainstay menu which I often order when I stopped at this restaurant was “Nasi Lemak” with boiled eggs and a cup of hot O tea. For that menu, I usually only spend 6.5 Ringgit.

While tasting spoon by spoon of Nasi Lemak, I understood that after that I would only spend the night on the 1st floor while waiting for tomorrow to arrive. Therefore, I wasn’t in a hurry to eat my simple dish.

After eating, I took the time to change into a t-shirt in the toilet near restaurant and then went up for a while to level 2 to look for souvenirs at Jaya Grocer. For me, KLIA2 was also a favorite place to look for souvenirs if I didn’t have time to stop by in downtown, the halalness of Malaysian products, which were 61% of its citizen was Muslim, was a guarantee in itself. My main shopping target was the packaging of “Teh Tarik Aik Cheong” so I could enjoy it in my working days in my homeland’s capital. A package of Teh Tarik Aik Cheong contained 15 sachets I redeemed for 13 Ringgit that night.

After I got souvenirs, I immediately looked for a spot to lay down in 1st floor because that time had touched the dawn and my eyes had also turned red as if asking me to immediately close them.

Shortly after choosing, there were rows of empty seat in 1st floor in a corner of hall. After acquiring it, I felt half asleep on it until dawn.

However, I deserved to be grateful for KLIA2’s presence in my long history of traveling around Asia.

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Mengampar di Pulau Warisan Kuala Terengganu

<––Kisah Sebelumnya

Mundur ke belakang sekejap dari Lorong Kenangan Payang, aku menelusur Jalan Pasar Besar Payang menuju muara Sungai Terengganu. Mengingat area jelajah adalah kawasan pesisir, maka kakiku tak akan jauh-jauh dari perairan. Aku kan menghentikan langkah dua ratus meter di utara, tepat di tepian Sungai Terengganu.

Sementara matahari masih saja membulat sempurna di barat, sinarnya masih mampu membuat merah kulit. Memaksaku sesekali berhenti di balik batang-batang besar pokok palem tepi jalan. Hhmmhh….Terlalu lama tersiram surya Terengganu membuat segenap muka terasa perih.

Tapi tak lama….Sesaat kemudian aku tiba di tepian utara Kampung Cina. Mataku sekejap tertuju pada titian lengkung di ujung timur kampung, sepertinya obyek itu menjadi tengara utama tempat wisata malam ini.

Jembatan lengkung di Pulau Warisan Kuala Terengganu.
Kanal pemisah antara Pulau Warisan Kuala Terengganu dan Kampung Cina.
Gerbang masuk bagi pejalan kaki menuju Pulau Warisan Kuala Terengganu.
Di sana lah aku akan menikmati suasana….I Love KT Park.

Sayangnya aku tak punya waktu malam nanti, badanku telah lesu demi menahan kantuk semalaman di Kuala Lumpur International Airport. Jadi malam nanti, aku memilih untuk tidur pulas saja. Tak mengapalah aku harus mengunjungi tempat wisata malam ini sekarang, walaupun aku tak akan menjumpai puncak pertunjukan.

Inilah Pulau Warisan Kuala Terengganu, sebuah pulau artificial tujuh hektar di tepian muara Sungai Terengganu yang umum digunakan untuk pasar malam, acara-acara besar, konser musik, pameran seni serta pangkal atraksi Pulau Warisan River Cruise untuk menyusuri keindahan Sungai Terengganu yang menyimpan banyak tempat wisata unggulan di berbagai spot utamanya. Khalayak sering menyebut Pulau Warisan Kuala Terengganu sebagai i-City Terengganu, merujuk pada kota berbasis ICT di Shah Alam, Selangor.

Di atas titian lengkung ikonik itu, aku bisa dengan leluasa menatap seluruh sudut Pulau Warisan Kuala Terengganu. Secara kasat mata, pulau itu hanya terpisahkan dari daratan utama oleh sebuah kanal selebar tiga puluh meter. Kanal itu tampak bersih dan sesekali dilalui oleh perahu mesin petugas keamanan.

Tampaknya pulau ini ingin menampakkan jati dirinya sebagai kebanggaan Terengganu dengan keberadaan taman hijau di tepian timur pulau. Taman itu bertajuk I Love KT Park. Dari kejauhan tampak beberapa kendaraan merapat di taman itu. Sekelompok keluarga tampak menggelar tikar untuk menikmati suasana senja di Sungai Terengganu dengan menyantap hidangan rumahan yang dibawanya, beberapa laki-laki bermotor tampak mempersiapkan alat pancing, mereka siap berburu ikan di tepian sungai.

Sebagai tempat penyelenggaraan event-event besar saat malam, pulau ini dilengkapi dengan tiang-tiang lampu tembak di setiap sudutnya. Bisa dibayangkan betapa meriahnya malam nanti ketika lampu itu dinyalakan dan menyiramkan cahaya ke keramaian tenda-tenda kuliner di bawahnya.

Sepertinya aku harus menggenapkan petualangan dengan duduk bersantai di ujung pulau sana”, aku bergumam ketika memperhatikan deretan pokok nan rindang di tepian utara. Aku pun mulai menyusuri kanal untuk menggapai gerbang utama pulau yang berwujud gapura anggun bercorak khas Tionghoa.

Langkahku mulai membelah pulau tepat dari tengahnya, kupercepat ayunan langkah untuk melintas sinar senja yang masih saja menitipkan sengatan.  Aku sampai…..Oh, tak ada satupun bangku untuk sekedar berduduk manis. Ya sudahlah…. Kukeluarkan lembar-lembar itinerary yang kususun beberapa bulan lalu. Kusobek lembaran pertama yang segenap tahapan itinerarynya sudah paripurna kujalani. Aku mengambil tempat lapang di bawah sebuah pokok besar dan terduduk diatas lembar itinerary buatanku sendiri.

Sejuk….sunyi….aman….mempesona, begitulah perasaan yang muncul ketika berada di bawah pokok nan rindang dengan tatapan terlempar jauh ke utara. Tampak hamparan Pulau Duyung yang jaraknya tiga ratus meter dan hanya dipisahkan oleh perairan Sungai Terengganu.

Pulau Duyung Supply Centre (PDSC).
Jabatan Pelancongan Negeri Terengganu.
Tampak di kejauhan Jambatan Sultan Mahmud.
Keindahan Sungai Terengganu menjelang matahari terbenam.

Kesibukan kapal-kapal milik Pulau Duyung Supply Centre (PDSC) yang merupakan salah satu perusahaan minyak dan gas bumi di Terengganu sangat kentara, tapi entah kesibukan apa yang terjadi di dalamnya. Pendeknya pengetahuan, membuatku hanya mampu mencerna pemandangan di depan sana tak ubahnya sebuah galangan kapal-kapal minyak.

Sedangkan di sisi timurnya, tampak bangunan megah milik Jabatan Pelancongan Negeri Terengganu. Tampak kapal-kapal wisata berjajar rapi di tepiannya. Mungkin itu adalah kapal-kapal yang akan mengantarkan para wisatawan ke pulau-pulau indah yang menjadi aset bahari Terengganu.

Aku benar-benar menikmati pemandangan Sungai Terengganu dari sisi yang berbeda. Aku memuaskan diri dengan berlama-lama duduk di tepian pulau hingga suhu Terengganu benar-benar reda untuk kemudian melanjutkan langkah.

Kisah Selanjutnya—->

Malaysia Airlines MH 1326 dari Kuala Lumpur (KUL) ke Kuala Terengganu (TGG)

<—-Kisah Sebelumnya

Jalur penerbangan Malaysia Airlines MH 1326 (sumber: flightaware.com)
Tidur di ruang tunggu di gate A5.

Tak nyenyak….

Sepanjang tidur, sesekali mataku menyipit waspada menatap jam digital di layar biru Flight Information Display System. Pesawat menuju Kuala Terengganu akan diterbangkan pada pukul 07:25 pagi lah yang  membuat tidurku tak berlangsung sempurna.

Dua jam sebelum masuk waktu Subuh, demi menghentikan rasa was-was itu, aku memutuskan bangkit. Sembari merapikan muka yang kucel dan kusut, aku telah memutuskan untuk menuju gate A5. “Saatnya menuju titik tujuan”, aku bergumam dalam hati.

Setengah gontai aku menuruni escalator meninggalkan International Concourse di lantai 4, lalu mengikuti segenap markah untuk mencapai gate. Karena pada malam sebelumnya aku turun dari penerbangan international maka kali ini aku harus berhasil menembus konter imigrasi dan membawa arrival stamp dalam paspor untuk bisa menuju ke Kuala Terengganu.

Tak menemukan satupun penumpang lain, aku kini seorang diri harus menghadap ke petugas imigrasi Kuala Lumpur International Airport. Konter imigrasi dihadapan dijaga oleh staff wanita bertubuh tambun yang dengan wajah dingin menatap kehadiranku.

Selamat pagi ”, seperti biasa aku memberanikan diri untuk menyapa. Tapi seperti yang kuprediksi, sapaan itu tak berbalas.

Aku menggeser paspor dan tiketku ke hadapannya dan dia mulai memeriksa dengan seksama sambil mengernyitkan dahi.

Untuk apè pergi ke Terengganu?”, pertanyaan pertama darinya dengan suara bernada rendah nan berat.

Melawat”, sejenak suasana hening…….”lancong”, aku menegaskan ulang.

Berapa hari?”, pertanyaan kedua darinya menyusul.

Tiga hari, Cik”, aku menjawab dengan percaya diri.

Bermalam dimanè?

“Dekat Bandaraya”

Hotel?

“Oh, sebentar, saya tidak hafal namanya, Cik”, aku sedikit gugup mencari file di smartphone. Setelah beberapa saat mencari akhirnya aku menemukannya, “The Space Inn”.

OK

Menyelesaikan proses pengambilan sidik jari dan foto wajah dengan lancar, membuatku melangkah dengan sumringah menuju gate di depan sana.

Kini aku sudah di gate A5 tepat 2 jam sebelum boarding time. Sunyi masih menghinggapi ruang tunggu yang dingin, tak tampak siapapun di dalamnya….Oleh karenanya, aku memutuskan masuk dan melanjutkan tidur. Mungkin aku baru bisa menunaikan Subuh di dalam pesawat.

Zzzzzzzzz……..

Beberapa waktu kemudian,

Geretan-geretan trolley bag para penumpang membangunkanku yang sebetulnya bisa tidur lebih lelap dbandingkan tidur di lantai atas semalam. Kini aku terjaga, menunggu boarding time yang akan tiba dalam waktu tak sampai setengah jam lagi.

Tepat waktu….

Panggilan boarding akhirnya terdengar. Sedikitnya jumlah penumpang membuatku tak terlalu lama memverifikasi data paspor dan boarding pass sebelum diizinkan masuk ke dalam pesawat melalui aerobridge.

Aku terduduk di window seat bernomor 24F dan tak ada seorang penumpang pun yang duduk di dua kolom bangku terdekatku, membuatku merasa lebih lega dan nyaman. Aku pun segera bertayamum dan menjalankan ibadah shalat Subuh ketika awak kabin sedang sibuk menyiapkan penerbangan.

Pesawat yang sudah menunggu di apron.
Kabin MH 1326 yang sepi penumpang.
Take-off di runway Kuala Lumpur International Airport.
Indahnya Putrajaya dari atas.

Beberapa saat kemudian semua telah siap. Cuaca sangat cerah berawan ketika pesawat beranjak terbang meninggalkan main hubnya, yaitu Kuala Lumpur International Airport pada jam tujuh pagi.

Malaysian Airlines MH 1326 sendiri merupakan penerbangan dengan jarak udara 333 km dengan waktu tempuh 57 menit dari Ibu Kota Kuala Lumpur menuju Kuala Terengganu di sebelah utara. Penerbangan ini ditempuh menggunakan pesawat Boeing 737-800 twin jet dengan rerata kecepatan 363 km per jam dan di tengah penerbangan bisa mencapai kecepatan maksimal 764 km per jam.

Aku pun bersiap menjelajah ke ketinggian 25.000 kaki atau sekitar 7.620 meter.

Penerbangan yang sebetulnya biasa-biasa saja tetapi serasa sangat istimewa, mengingat ini adalah penerbangan menuju ke tempat baru, tempat yang belum pernah kukunjungi sama sekali, tempat yang selama  tiga tahun terakhir hanya menghuni alam impianku….Tapi kini mimpi telah menjadi nyata, MH 1326 sedang mengantarkanku ke sana. Terimakasih ya Allah……

Kunjungan istimewa yang dihantarkan oleh flag carrier berusia 49 tahun kebanggan Negeri Jiran itu membuat momen itu masih membekas hingga kini.

Walaupun kali ini aku menaiki penerbangan premium tetapi karena jaraknya yang pendek maka maskapai tidak menyediakan inflight meal. Tapi tak apa, aku masih punya sepotong burger pemberian Tuan Younes semalam. Aku pun santai menyantapnya selama penerbangan karena aku sangat terpukau pada pemandangan langit pagi yang sungguh mempesona. Sesekali inflight magazine “Going Places” berhasil menginterupsi mata yang asyik dengan pemandangan istimewa itu.

Di bawah awan sesaat sebelum cruising.
Cruising di atas awan menuju Kuala Terengganu.

Yup, tak terasa, hampir satu jam sudah aku mengudara…..

Kini pesawat mulai menurunkan ketinggian, awak kabin dengan sigap memeriksa kesiapan penumpang untuk mendarat, perlahan penampakan kota Kuala Terengganu tampak dari ketinggian….Wouuuwww, hatiku berdebar segera ingin menjejaknya. “Sabar Donny, sebentar lagi”, batinku menenangkan.

Kini, pesawat telah menurunkan flap untuk menahan lajunya dan kemudian mendarat mulus di atas runway Lapangan Terbang Sultan Mahmud, bandara mungil yang menjadi gerbang pariwisata Kuala Terengganu.

Kuala Terengganu dari atas.
Kecil-kecil cabe rawit nih bandara.

Selamat Datang Kuala Terengganu.

Untuk mendapatkan tiket penerbangan dari Kuala Lumpur ke Kuala Terengganu, Anda bisa mencarinya di 12go Asia dengan link sebagai berikut:  https://12go.asia/?z=3283832

Kisah Selanjutnya—->

Burger Hangat di Kuala Lumpur International Airport

<—-Kisah Sebelumnya

Tiba di International Concourse.

Penanda waktu menunjukkan setengah sebelas malam ketika Malaysia Airlines MH 724 merapat di Kuala Lumpur International Airport. Aku menghela nafas panjang ketika pesawat telah terparkir sempurna di apron, itu karena connecting flight Malaysia Airlines MH 1326 baru akan mengudara menuju Kuala Terengganu pada pukul 07:25 esok hari. Artinya, selama sembilan jam ke depan aku harus bermalam di KLIA.

Bermalam di KLIA2….Pernah kah?….Yes, dua belas kali sudah, aku mencicipi “kasur keras” KLIA Terminal 2

Bermalam di KLIA?….Pernah juga kah?….Nup, kali ini pertama kalinya aku menginap di KLIA Terminal 1.

Sembari berjalan di arrival hall, aku mengambil boarding pass yang sudah kudapat dari check-in desk Soetta. Setelah kuamati, boarding pass yang kupegang belum mencantumkan nomor gate. Oleh karenanya, aku berusaha mencari informasi status penerbangan di Flight Information Display System (FIDS) yang terletak di arrival hall….Akhirnya, aku mendapatkan nomor gate….Yupz,A5.

Nah itu….Sudah ada status gatenya.

Supaya esok pagi aku tak keteteran mencari gate, aku pun berniat melakukan rehearsel untuk mencari jalan menuju gate yang dimaksud. Dari International Concourse di level 4, aku turun satu level menuju Domestic Concourse.Perlu diketahui bahwa domestic flight di KLIA diterbangkan dari gate A dan gate B, sedangkan international flight diterbangkan dari gate C, gate G dan gate H.

RehearseI yang kulakukan pun terpaksa usai di depan gerbang konter imigrasi, tetapi setidaknya aku telah memahami bagaimana aku harus melangkah menuju gate esok pagi.

Suasana Domestic Concourse.

Dari depan konter imigrasi, aku terpaksa naik kembali ke International Concourse untuk mencari tempat demi memejamkan mata.

Sementara itu, beberapa menit lagi memasuki tengah malam, aku duduk di salah satu bangku International Concourse ketika sepasang turis setengah umur mendekat dan menduduki kursi kosong di sebelah kiriku.

Helloo, Sir, where are you come from?”, aku memberanikan menyapa.

Hi, I’m from Algeria”.

Oh I know, it’s a country in north of Afrika”, aku mencoba membuat percakapan lebih hangat.

Ohhhh….yeaaa….yeaaaa, you know that. I will go home tomorrow and will transit in Doha”, dia mulai bercerita tentang rencana perjalanannya.

Oh, Doha will be last destination in my traveling this time”, aku mulai mengaitkan perjalananku dengan perjalanannya supaya terjadi percakapan yang lebih intens.

Oh, good. What is your traveling for?….Business?

Oh, no. it’s just for tourism. I’m Donny from Indonesia and Oh yeaaa, what is your name, Sir?

Oh, I’m Younes and she is my wife

Hi, Donny, nice to meet you”, istri pak Younes turut menyapaku

Hi, mam. Nice to meet you too

Donny, let’s we dinner together!”, pak Younes mengeluarkan empat potong burger dari kantong kertas yang sedari tadi dibawa istrinya.

Thank you, Sir. I had have dinner since from Jakarta”, aku menolak lembut

No No No…. It’s different, It’s for accompany us while talk about our traveling”, dia memaksaku untuk menerima sodoran sepotong burger yang masih hangat.

Alhasil kami bertiga pun saling berbincang sambil menikmati burger bersama. Dan ketika kita usai menyantap hidangan sederhana itu, mereka pun berpamitan untuk menuju ke gate.

Tapiiii…..Sebelum mereka berdua meninggalkan kursi, tetiba istri pak Younes menyodorkan satu potong burger terakhir kepadaku.

It’s for you, Donny. Just take it, we are moslems, we are family

It’s really, I think you more need it in your journey, mam”, aku menolak halus.

No, Donny, It’s for you”, dia semakin dekat menjulurkan burger itu di depanku

Thank you, mam. Allah is always with you”, akhirnya aku tak kuasa menolaknya.

Amiin, Good night, Donny, Assalamu’alaikum”.

Wa’alaikumsalam

Pertemuan yang sangat menyenangkan di dini hari. Aku memasukkan burger hangat itu di dalam backpack. Lebih baik aku menyimpannya untuk sarapan esok hari.

Usai pertemuan itu, aku memutuskan berpindah tempat untuk mencari deret bangku kosong untuk tidur sembari meluruskan badan sehingga aku bisa memejamkan mata dengan nyaman.

Yukz….Cari tempat untuk tidur.

Kisah Selanjutnya—->

Sembilan Jam Singgah di Kuala Lumpur International Airport Terminal 2

<—-Kisah Sebelumnya

Mendarat di KLIA2.

Bagi sebagian besar pengelana, Kuala Lumpur International Airport menjadi titik paling aduhai untuk melompat ke negara asia lainnya. Tentu keberadaan maskapai Low Cost Carrier (LCC) Air Asia yang membuatnya demikian. Sejak 2001, Air Asia telah memberikan akses murah bagi para pejalan untuk berkeliling Asia. Berkat Air Asia pula sudah 21 kali aku menyinggahi KLIA selama menjelajah Asia.

Tapi dalam kisah ini adalah delapan….Yups, ini kali kedelapan aku menjejakkan langkah di Kuala Lumpur International Airport.

Lewat jam sepuluh malam, roda raksasa Air Asia D7 505 berdebam lembut menyentuh KLIA2. Perjalanan 5 jam 50 menit dari Seoul pun usai sudah. Kesan pertamaku mencicipi pesawat berbadan lebar Airbus A330 sungguh menyenangkan. Terbang melintasi Laut Kuning dan Laut China Timur berlangsung dengan turbulensi yang bisa dianggap tiada, tenang dan mulus tanpa hambatan. Itu mungkin salah satu keuntungan menunggang pesawat berbadan besar ketika menjelajah angkasa.

Usai taxiing beberapa menit, Air Asia D7 505 pun merapat di apron dan sesaat setelah pintu pesawat terbuka, aku pun memasuki bangunan KLIA2 melalui aerobridge. Aku kembali menjejak KLIA2 setelah sepuluh hari sebelumnya menyinggahinya untuk melompat ke Kaohsiung, Taiwan. Sungguh perasaan yang membahagiakan malam itu karena aku sudah berada dekat dengan rumah, hanya 2 jam 15 menit jauhnya lewat udara.

Dan bagiku singgah di KLIA2 akan lebih afdol jika keluar dari konter imigrasi, karena aku bisa menemukan banyak sajian kuliner di Gateway@klia2 mall daripada hanya berdiam diri di transfer hall.

Transit Pak Cik, ingin cari makan malam”, sapa ringanku pada seorang petugas imigrasi di hadapan.

Dari mane mau kemane?”, tanyanya sambil memeriksa paspor hijauku.

Dari Seoul, mau pulang ke Jakarta, Pak Cik

Oh…”, jawabnya singkat lalu mempersilahkanku untuk menghadap kamera dan melakukan sidik jari.

Menjelang tengah malam itu, sebetulnya lambungku sudah lebih dahulu dipenuhi oleh angin karena jadwal makan malam sudah lama lewat.Tetapi untuk melengkapi jadwal itu, aku memilih untuk menyegerakan langkah menuju tempat makan langganan. Adalah NZ Curry House yang merupakan restoran India yang terletak di Transportation Hub level 1 Gateway@klia2 mall.

Restoran langganan.

(pada kunjungan terakhirku di KLIA2 di akhir 2019 saat akan terbang ke Kochi-India, area restoran ini sedang mengalami renovasi, entah tutup atau sekedar diperbaiki).

Menu andalan yang sering kupesan ketika singgah di restoran ini adalah adalah nasi lemak dengan telur rebus serta secangkir teh O panas. Untuk menu tersebut biasanaya aku hanya mengeluarkan uang sebesar 6,5 Ringgit.

Sembari mengecap suap demi suap nasi lemak itu, aku faham bahwa setelahnya aku hanya akan menghabiskan malam di lantai 1 sambil menunggu esok tiba. Oleh karenanya, aku tak terburu-buru dalam menyantap hidangan sederhana itu.

Usai makan, aku menyempatkan berganti t-shirt di toilet dekat restoran dan kemudian naik sebentar ke level 2 untuk mencari oleh-oleh di Jaya Grocer. Bagiku, KLIA2 juga menjadi tempat favorit untuk mencari oleh-oleh jika tak sempat menyinggahi kota, kehalalan produk Malaysia yang 61% berpenduduk muslim menjadi jaminan tersendiri. Target utama belanjaku adalah kemasan Teh Tarik Aik Cheong untuk bisa kunikmati pada hari-hari bekerjaku di Ibu Kota nanti. Satu kemasan Teh Tarik Aik Cheong berisi 15 sachet kutebus dengan 13 Ringgit malam itu.

Setelah oleh-oleh kudapatkan, aku segera mencari spot untuk merebahkan diri di lantai 1 karena waktu telah menyentuh dini hari dan mata juga telah memerah seakan memintaku untuk segera memejamkannya.

Tak lama memilih, terlihat deret bangku kosong di Lantai 1 di sebuah pojok hall. Usai mengakuisisi, aku tertidur setengah lelap diatasnya hingga subuh nanti tiba.

Bagaimanapun itu, aku pantas berterimakasih pada keberadaan KLIA2 dalam sejarah panjang perjalananku berkeliling Asia.

Kisah Selanjutnya—->

KL Sentral….Awesome Transit Oriented Building

I don’t know how many times I’ve said KL Sentral as far as publishing this 221 traveling articles. I remember, I have five times traced this phenomenal building. Five years also, various sides and interesting moments which I stole from Kl Sentral languishing in external hard disk which neatly wrapped in a desk drawer in my bedroom….Room which continually give me many inspiration in conquering beauty of the earth.

It’s not fair, if its greatness isn’t shared with you. Because I’m sure that you will visit it someday….Or maybe, you have visited it but you don’t understand yet its details.

Operating 18 years ago, KL Sentral has played an important role in Malaysian tourism. KL Sentral meritorious in being the link between Malaysia’s first gate (i.e Kuala Lumpur International Airport) and important tourism spots in city center…. Fast, effective and efficient. Maybe that’s what will be pursued by Manggarai Central Station in 2021 (It’s a station central in Jakarta).

Gives you a basic view of KL Sentral. Here’s my best photo at KL Sentral level 1:

KL Sentral level 1 which seen from Nu Sentral mall on level 2.
KL Sentral level 1 was seen from Kelana Jaya Line platform on level 2.

KL Sentral Bus Station

Before exploring level 1, I will invite you to look at KL Sentral basement level. Why?….Because 100% of my arrivals to KL Sentral use the cheapest transportation mode….Yups, Skybus, Aerobus and Airport Coach which its tickets are only worth USD 3.1.

After passing through Stesen Sentral Street, bus will enter basement level and stop at shelter which sells Aerobus/Skybus/Airport Coach/Resort World Genting Bus tickets. While, behind escalator (is used to go up to level 1), you will find Rapid KL Free Bus shelter which is used by tourists towards Batu Caves.

Left is Airport Coach ticket counter to KLIA and right is Skybus/Aerobus ticket counter towards KLIA2
Airport Coach towards KLIA (Terminal 1)
Skybus towards KLIA2 (Terminal 2)
Bus towards Genting Highlands.
Direction sign to Rapid KL Free Bus to Batu Caves.

Twice, I went down to KL Sentral basement level and immediately left KL Sentral towards Westree Hotel (2018) and M&M Hotel (2019) through this corridor:

The corridor at Basement level leads to Tun Sambanthan Street.
This is appearance of Tun Sambanthan Street.

Nu Sentral Mall

If you want to continue your trip using KTM ETS (Kereta Tanah Melayu-Electric Train Service), Kelana Jaya Line LRT, Seremban Line commuter KTM, Monorail, airport train (KLIA Ekspres and KLIA Transit) you have to go up to level 1 KL Sentral using escalator near Skybus/Aerobus ticket counter.

Or….you can also go up to level 1 as access to go to Nu Sentral mall on level 2….Let’s look at Nu Sentral mall.

Connector escalator between several train gates on 1st floor to Nu Sentral mall which is on level2
Nu Sentral mall situation.
Nu Sentral mall situation.

Finished shopping at Nu Sentral mall, then look for pedestrian bridge to Tun Sambanthan Street. The pedestrian bridge is directly connected to Nu Sentral mall.

Direction sign towards Tun Sambanthan Street.
This is the pedestrian bridge which I mean.

Transportation Area

Before going back down to level 1, you should see where the monorail station is. The floor plan shows that KL Sentral monorail station is a separate building from KL Sentral itself. But not to worry because there is a connection bridge from KL Sentral to monorail station.

Yuhuuu….It was in front of monorail station gate.
Here it is, the monorail….On its way towards Titiwangsa Park.

Come on!….We explore 1st floor. This floor is allocated as access to various modes of train transportation.

Starting from commuter train. There are two commuter train lines in KL Sentral namely KTM Laluan Seremban and KTM Laluan Pelabuhan Klang.

Preparing to take KTM Komuter Laluan Seremban to Batu Caves.
That’s KTM Commuter platform in basement.

Besides KTM Commuter, the most popular transportation mode to city center in Kuala Lumpur is LRT (Light Rail Transit). LRT Laluan Kelana Jaya was the one which was lucky because it was the only chosen LRT which visited KL Sentral.

Let’s rides LRT to city center!
Ticketing vending machines….Where to buy LRT tokens (tickets).
Automatic gates menuju platform LRT Kelana Jaya di level 2.
Finally caught a picture of LRT Laluan Kelana Jaya at Pasar Seni Station.

Besides Skybus/Aerobus and Airport Coach, Malaysia tourism also presents KLIA Transit and KLIA Express which are premium trains to Kuala Lumpur International Airport. Premium is certainly synonymous with expensive prices but certainly guarantees a comfort.

KLIA Transit ticket counter and its automatic gate
See, KLIA Transit!…Cool right?.
Of course….Super comfortable.

Eatery

Regarding food….As the biggest transit hub in Malaysia, KL Sentral certainly provides many eateries.

At level, there are several food and beverage shops such as La Cucur Express, Panettone (vegetarian food), Meals Station, I Love Yoo !, Chatime, Swiss Oven, Secret Recipe, Starbucks, Burger King, Ayam Penyet Express and many more.

Eat “Penang White Curry Bowl” at Panettone (2018).

Outside KL Sentral (around Tun Sambanthan Street), there are also some reasonably-priced food stalls with topnotch taste. I visited it because I often stayed around KL Sentral.

ABC Bistro Cafe….My hangout place around KL Sentral.

Nearest Cheap Hotels

Tun Sambanthan Street is an important road in Brickfields area. This area provides restaurants, shops and residences. Brickfields also provides many hotels from five-star hotels to budget-friendly hotels.

Westree Hotel during my Malaysia-Singapore trip on 2018
Hotel M&M while visiting an international event on 2019

So….Visit KL Sentral well and just enjoy its facilities.

24 Tourist Attractions at Kuala Lumpur in 3 Days 2 Nights

A flight to Kuala Lumpur, which was barely caught due to race with time along Jakarta-Serang toll road, was added with pale faces due to the bitter interrogation of Malaysian immigration staff because of my inconclusive appearance, then making my heart and spirit go high together with my success first steps to leave the KLIA2 immigration counter.

Guys …. My journey in Kuala Lumpur for first time began. Very happy at that time. My fridge magnet will add to be three. Yes like that, number of fridge magnets in my house shows how many countries I have visited….Later when I have visited 100 countries, I will buy a refrigerator as high as my house ceiling. So I can put all fridge magnets on it….Hahaha.

—-****—-

The trip that had been planned since 9 months before departure was finally realized. Still couldn’t believe when I really entered this neighbor country. The itinerary which I detailed in three sheets had taken me to the following 24 destinations:

1. KL Sentral

KL Sentral is the first stopover which is often used by travelers before exploring Kuala Lumpur. Yes, most public transportations from KLIA will end here.

KL Sentral was indeed built by Malaysian government as a transit-oriented transportation building. No wonder, this transportation center is never empty of visitors.

Beware, Donny…Your zippers.

For the first time, arriving here on the first day of my journey, at exactly 11:23 hours. I took time to explore Nu Sentral which is a shopping mall which is integrated with this modern building.

2. Batu Caves

The time that was too late to begin my trip to Genting Highlands made me choose this Hindu temple as my next stop. Located in Gombak area which is 15 km north of KL Sentral with a distance of 40 minutes travel time making the yellow statue of “Dewa Murugan” as the favorite icon in Kuala Lumpur after Petronas Twin Tower.

So, if you can’t use a tripod….Ask someone else to just take a your photo, Donny!….Huh.

90 minutes is more than enough time to dispel my curiosity about the cave which is located in a 400 million-year-old limestone hill.

3. Suria KLCC

After returning from Batu Caves and after hunting for hotels in Pasar Seni area which ended with staying at Agosto Inn, in a light drizzle I hurried to Kuala Lumpur City Center (KLCC). KLCC is center of Kuala Lumpur which offers a modern shopping mall i.e Suria KLCC, a row of five-star hotels, iconic view of Petronas Twin Tower and a large urban park (KLCC Park).

Even though I don’t like shopping, I’m just curious to see this mall which has 350 tenants. The Suria KLCC architecture is in crescent shape when viewed from above….Cool, huh. And you need to know that Suria KLCC construction is an integrated project with Petronas Twin Tower.

4. Petrosains

Before leaving Suria KLCC, I made time to visit Petrosains in 4th floor. Petrosains is Petronas’s petroleum education site, a Malaysian oil giant. Simply set aside Rp. 35,000 to study in Petrosains.

What are you doing….?

5. Petronas Twin Tower

Right to the left of Suria KLCC exit, I finally found the phenomenal twin building. Soft drizzle which accompanied me to enjoy Petronas Twin Tower was unable to drive me out of front yard of the tallest twin building in the world.

Security: “Get Downnnnnnn…..!”

Petronas Twin Tower is the last destination on the first day of journey. Rest faster at Agosto Inn to prepare myself for Genting Highland tomorrow.

6. Genting Skyway

On 6:30 hours, seeing my presence at dining table made hotel staff seem rushed to prepare breakfast which was only oatmeal, orange sunkist, toast and warm drinks which I could take as much as I could from tea and coffee pots.

A morning that was still very quiet I passed to KL Sentral to catch the first bus to Genting Highlands which will depart at 08:00. By paying for a round trip ticket from KL Sentral to Genting, USD 5.5 (price in 2014, in 2019 price have gone up to USD 6.3) I arrived at Genting Highlands 1 hour 15 minutes later.

First time riding a cable car….

That price includes Genting Skyway ride. While the one-way price for this transportation mode is USD 2. The gondola’s lower station is in Gohtong Jaya and its Upper Station is in Maxims Hotel, Genting Highlands.

7. Genting Highlands

Twenty minutes later, I arrived at Genting Highlands after hanging in the eight-persons seat gondola

The main purpose of second day journey, which had to give up my all time in second day was taken away. Deprivation which absurdly excites me . Hope, there was a repetition like this at another time.

Watch out, Donny! Don’t be in the middle of way!….Many people want to pass.

Two hours I explored the resort at top of Mount Titiwangsa in northeast of Kuala Lumpur. If you have much money, you can spend the night in Genting. But passing every mall without shopping, restaurants without taking lunch and casino without gambling, surely that’s me who has never had enough money to do all that.

8. Bukit Bintang

I just needed to reverse my departure way so I could go back to KL Sentral.

15: 30 hours….”Wow, I can still explore,” My thought cheering. Bus, done!….LRT, done!….Commuter, done!….MRT, not yet Donny!, they werw still seen dredging the ground next to Pasar Seni. So what will you ride next?

I decided to try the only monorail route in Kuala Lumpur. When else can I ride it if not now?. This is also my first time riding a monorail which three years later I rode the same mode for free at Sentosa Island, Singapore….Yup, that was Sentosa Express.

Don’t be too long, Donny!. Many people in your back, wait for took photos too.

The famous destination on KL Monorail Route is Bukit Bintang. Bearing a title as the most famous shopping and entertainment venue in Kuala Lumpur makes Bukit Bintang as the most popular retail center which is always hunted by shopping enthusiasts, from housewives, office workers to young women and even tourists.

Aren’t you a tourist, Donny? … No, sir. I’m just a fortunate wanderer who was given a chance to travel around 25 countries….Plakkkk Plakkkk Plakkkk…I hit you, Donny!

9. Taman Tasik Titiwangsa (Titiwangsa Park)

Killing time in a city park at north of city center was my journey’s closing on second day. Founded in former of tin mining during British colonialism made it reasonable by existence of a large lake as former of mining activities.

Sorry viewers….I ran out of battery when in the park….That was better picture.

At four o’clock in afternoon, I was present in the park in a crowd of extraordinary citizens’ activities. Until maghrib pray call reminded me that I wasn’t in “Bluntas Park” (the park name which is closest my home in Jakarta….Hahaha). The mean was, time began to expel me to immediately leave Taman Tasik Titiwangsa (Titiwangsa Park) and better spend my evening near hotel where I stay overnight.

10. Hop On Hop Off Bus

Time is indeed unfriendly when confronted with curiosity. Suddenly I was pushed into last day of journey. Long exploration time is successful in compromising with my tired calf veins in affecting my brain. Then my brain whispered, “Just relax in spending last day in Kuala Lumpur, Donny!“.

USD 11.6, I was forced to give it to double decker bus tour guide…. It’s called HOHO bus….Or, Hop On Hop Off bus.

Hurry up!….Don’t trap in the evening.

HOHO Bus Stop No. 09, located in Central Market, made it easy for me to catch it….It took less than 5 minutes to reach it from Agosto Inn. Not accepting loss, I insisted on visiting several tourist destinations along HOHO bus line.

11. Istana Negara

Only 15 minutes. After that, every ladies and gentlemen can go back to bus or join to next bus“, her voice became clearer with presence of a mic under guide’s lips. Her face was beautiful within hijab (girl moslem wear ). She Made me melt.

Beware don’t cling to wall !….You could make the wall dirty, Donny….Huh

I rushed away as fast as I could to approaching palace gate. Took a picture with palace guard who stands like a statue and a very tame palace horse even though dozens of different faces took turn taking pictures with it.

12. Dataran Merdeka

A large square adorned with an iconic Mughal-Moor building becomes my next stop. Sultan Abdul Samad is name of the building. Sultan Abdul Samad himself was the leader of Selangor state which was famous for moving capital city of Selangor from Klang to Kuala Lumpur.

Yes….Not bad pose.

The plain is known as Dataran Merdeka, the place where Malaysia independence from British colonial government was declared.

13. KL Tower

HOHO bus which didn’t stop for long time at that communication tower, didn’t make me give up. I nimbly jumped out of bus and a second later HOHO bus left me in KL Tower yard.

Hurry up got in bus!…. Don’t be long time.

I would explore KL Tower before heading to Muzium Negara (State Museum).

If you have more guts, go to Sky Box!, if you want to lunch in an elegant way then try revolving restaurant! ,then go to observation deck to catch beautiful view of Kuala Lumpur city closer to your eyelids!.

Me?….I missed the first two parts. My wallet was only able to put me in the last part….It was better than nothing.

14. National Museum of Malaysia

Want to quickly know about culture of a nation?….Come to its national museum!.

For this reason I was present at Muzium Negara (National Museum of Malaysia). The journey of Malaysians from time to time is clearly displayed in this museum. Starting from prehistoric life….Kingdom life….Even the story of Majapahit Kingdom (Biggest Kingdom in Indonesia) is here.

Like I’ve never seen train before….Huh.

The nuances of Kuala Terengganu kingdom seem to strongly influence this museum architecture which looks so magnificent.

The Malaysian struggle session from British colonialism closed the history learning session at this building which is located on Jalan Damansara.

15. Taman Tasik Perdana (Perdana Botanical Garden)

Hop On Hop Off slowly entered into Kuala Lumpur green area….Amazing, this was the famous Taman Tasik Perdana (Perdana Botanical Garden).

Known as Lake Garden, this park was my best solution to stay away from hustle and bustle of Kuala Lumpur city which gradually made my ears noisy.

Hi, don’t stick!….Hahaha.

I saw how happy Kuala Lumpur people picnic as a family, swinging their feet along jogging track, rowing a boat on a beautiful lake and I was dissolved with my steps to enjoy green trees which cooling surrounding air.

16. Kuala Lumpur Orchid Park

The colors of flowers were like a magnet which pulled me closer. I was cheerful when a park signboard whispered information that I didn’t need to pay a cent to enter it.

Hi, don’t step on the grass!….Wew, ask for a fight.

A woman with wide hat greeted me with a happy smile. Her duty in arranging the park was finally visited by a thin-pocketed traveler. Without embarrassment, the traveler also posed in front of camera which held by the woman….Already entered, free of charge, also gave an order to catching a picture…. Beuh, plaaaaaakkkk #hitmyface.

17. Kuala Lumpur Deer Park

Ma’am….Is there something where doesn’t require an entrance ticket in Perdana Botanical Garden?“, I asked without shame

There, Sir….There is deers across. At the end of this road then turn right “, She said mixed with a smile.

Beuh, if it’s free, don’t ask….Donny is the best searcher and Donny will be the fastest to visiting. As fast as lightning, I was already inside Kuala Lumpur Deer Park.

Hahaha….Similar

All visitors who all quickly entered the park and also quickly left it. In contrast to me who really enjoy behavior of those deers whose its brothers like to steal cucumbers in Indonesia (Indonesia have famous story about a deer that love to steal farmer’s cucumber).

Beuh….Those deers dung beat my bad habit….Free attraction hunter.

18. Kuala Lumpur Bird Park

The biggest bird’s nest in the world. Home for three thousand birds. This time there was no mercy for my wallet. USD 10.2 flew just to see birds freely roam in the park.

Don’t touch the sign, Donny!….It can collapse….Huh

If you go there, you will find a mandarin duck which for the first time I saw it. Don’t forget to also take part in feeding program for KL Bird Park “residents“!.

19. National Mosque

Exiting Perdana Botanical Garden, HOHO bus drove me to perform Asr prayer at National Mosque.

Be polite!….

National Mosque, which is capable of accommodating 15,000 worshipers, was established to give thanks to God for country’s independence from colonial government without bloodshed.

Feel coolness of main room with soft carpet while worshiping in this mosque. Guaranteed peace and make sleepy.

20. Kuala Lumpur City Gallery

I slowly moved away from Perdana Botanical Garden area to return to city center. Apparently, I had circled the city 360 degrees, because I had arrived again at Dataran Merdeka. This time I was visiting Kuala Lumpur City Gallery.

Like a villager.….Hahaha

Do you want to know about Kuala Lumpur city development plan?

Want to know also how much Malaysia’s income from tourism?….Fantastic.

Want to know too, what building which they want to build to defeat Petronas Twin Tower which actually has also become the tallest one in entire world?

Just pay USD 1.2 and enter into it….It’s great, I guarantee.

21. National Textile Museum

Yup, there was still a little more time…..

Crossing road in Dataran Merdeka, I was shocked by existence of National Textile Museum. No need to spend money to visit it.

Be saw by security guard from inside…..

The museum, which is placed inside a building which is more than a decade old, offers historical and cultural journeys through a series of typical Malay fabrics which are displayed therein. Also some of relics of Kuala Terengganu’s artistic objects which must have been luxury items in its era

22. Petaling Street

Goodbye Hop On Hop Off bus, thank you for taking me to know Kuala Lumpur.

I immediately headed to hotel to pick up a backpack which I had left in receptionist since morning because my stay finished at 12:00 hours.

But yes, back to the habit….Not wanting to lose against time which kept rolling, I pushed toward Petaling Street which is close to hotel.

You want to shop….Do you have money, Don?

Petaling Street is center of Chinatown in Kuala Lumpur. Quite crowded when I enter it and explore each stalls which offer a variety of souvenirs and food.

You have to eat roasted chestnuts….It’s delicious, oath!

23. Pasar Seni (Central Market)

It was getting darker….No need to worry, my flight was still tomorrow. A thing which limited me was LRT’s last operating hour, which was 23:00 hours.

I only needed a few minutes to move from Petaling Street to Central Market. Sitting and enjoying culinary time in Petaling didn’t make me realize that the dark had begun to acquire the day. Maybe it was also because of my tiredness which had conspired with the dark to make me forget

Borrowing pictures from someone (year 2019).

Ma’am, what can i get with this amount of money?….Just packing as avail as possible, ma’am. Just a souvenir, Ma’am….Don’t pack foods. I want to go back to Jakarta” words which indicate that I was tired and couldn’t think anymore to choose souvenirs.

24. Kuala Lumpur International Airport Terminal 2 (KLIA2)

Only a few minutes before 21:00 hours, I closed curtain of my journey in Kuala lumpur. It was time to head to airport which will be my bed on the last night. Combination of traveling using LRT Kelana Jaya and Skybus made me arrive at KLIA2 at a little over 22:00 hours.

He who had a Central Market picture above….He came from future….Wow!

Hi, man….Airport is not a tourist destination….Yakss, for you maybe not….For me is yes, because I often invest time in exploring airport which for the first time I visited.

For me, KLIA2 is an exotic place like a seven star hotel which has contributed to taking me around the world.

Already finish….Need three days to write this article. The longest article which I’ve ever written. This article have 2,679 words, Wow.

Try to count by yourself….!