The Culture Run
Malaysia is a melting pot of cultures and this is most apparent in it architecture, art, food and religious harmony. Here are a few sites that we recommend you visit.
Built in 1909, Jamek Mosque is one of the oldest mosques in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. It is located at the confluence of the Klang and Gombak rivers and was designed by Arthur Benison Hubback. The mosque is a unique mix of Moorish, Mogul and Indo-Saracen style of architecture. It would be advisable to check the visiting hours before going as the mosque is closed to non-Muslim tourists during prayer times. Don't forget to check out the unique food stalls near the mosque and a great street market across the road.
How to get there: Take the LRT from KL Sentral to Masjid Jamek LRT station and walk to the mosque.
The Kuala Lumpur City Gallery
The Kuala Lumpur City Gallery tells the story of Kuala Lumpur through photos, prints and minatures. The highlight is The Spectacular City Model Show! Entry to the gallery is free, though some shows come with a fee.
How to get there: Take the LRT to Masjid Jamek and walk to the gallery from there.
Sri Maha Mariamman Temple
A temple of the same name was founded on this site in 1883, although the current structure is from the late 1960s. Its most impressive feature is the five-tier gopuram (tower), carved in the south Indian style, with more than 200 brightly coloured figures. The temple houses the silver chariot and statue of Lord Murugan, which play a central role in the Thaipusam festival. Sri Maha Mariamman Temple is generally thought of as the most important Hindu temple in Kuala Lumpur.
How to get there: Take the LRT to pasar Seni and walk to the temple.
Thean Hou Temple
Set on a hill with a spectacular view of Kuala Lumpur, this six-tiered temple is a syncretic mix of Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism. The elaborate architecture marries modern techniques with traditional styles. Amongst the largest Chinese temples in South East Asia, it has been thronged by worshippers and tourists since opening in 1989. Aside from Thean Hou, the Heavenly Mother, its principal deities are Guan Yin, the Goddess of Mercy and Shui Wei Sheng Niang, the Goddess of the Waterfront.
How to get there: Please approach Front Desk for taxi arrangements.
The Batu Caves
Site of a Hindu temple and shrine, Batu Caves attracts thousands of worshippers and tourists, especially during the annual Hindu festival, Thaipusam. A limestone outcrop located just north of Kuala Lumpur, Batu Caves has three main caves featuring temples and Hindu shrines.
Its main attraction is the large statue of the Hindu God at the entrance, besides a steep 272 climb up its steps to finally view the stunning skyline of the city centre. Monkeys frolic around the caves, and it is a popular spot for rock climbing enthusiats. Paintings and scenes of Hindu Gods can also be seen in the Ramayana Cave.
How to get there: KL Sentral KTM Station (Towards Batu Caves) - batu Caves KTM Station and walk to Batu Caves. Or approach the Front Desk for taxi arrangements.
St. John's Cathedral
St John's is amongst the most beautiful places of worship in Kuala Lumpur, thanks to its elegant and understated architecture. Inside the twin-towered stone structure the whitewashed walls are complemented by colourful stained glass windows. Although the present building was only consecrated in 1962, a simple wooden Catholic church of the same was built on this site in 1883. From those humble beginnings, St John's Cathedral is now the seat of the Catholic Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur.
How to get there: KL Sentral KTM Station (Towards batu Caves) - Bank Negara KTM Station - Walk to St. John's Cathedral.
Gurdwara Sahib Polis
The Gurdwara Sahib Police High Street, as it was originally known, is the second Police Gurdwara to be built in Kuala Lumpur. This Gurdwara was built in 1898 by the Federated Malay States Police (F.M.S. Police). At that time, more than half of the F.M.S. Police were Sikhs. The built-up area is about 7,000 square feet surrounded by a 7-feet high wall. There have been no major changes to the original structure of the Gurdwara Sahib Police. Today, over 20 Sikh families worship at the Gurdwara.
How to get there: KL Sentral KTM Station (Towards Batu Caves) - Kuala Lumpur KTM Station - Walk to Gurdwara Sahib Polis.
Sandwiched between two modern buildings, this small Taoist temple, is amongst the oldest places of worship in Kuala Lumpur. Dedicated to Kuan Ti (Guan Ti), the God of War and Literature, it was completed in 1888. The temple is "guarded" by two stone lions, which flank the outer entrance, and then by two Door Gods. A statue of Kuan Ti sits at the main altar, while other deities, including those associated with Buddhism and Confucianism, are also honoured.
How to get there: KL Sentral KTM Station (Towards Batu Caves) - Kuala Lumpur KTM Station - Walk to Guandi Temple.