Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
At the 41st and 42nd floors, the towers are connected by a steel bridge that weighs in at 750 tons. The bridge is the highest accessible point to the general public. The bridge has been open to the public since 2000 and tickets are free. The catch is that they only give out 800 a day so you need to get there early. The elevator up is one of the fastest on the planet. Guests are allowed ten minutes on the bridge to take pictures.
The Towers’ primary resident is national oil company Petronas. The other offices above the bridge are home to Malaysia’s national banking system. The towers are the largest banking center in Asia.
The drive into Kuala Lumpur was fascinating. We drove from the island of Penang for about four hours through dense rainforest. We saw nothing but green for miles and all of a sudden the magnificent towers we’d seen in “Entrapment” rose up out of the jungle. You can see them for miles. The city itself is very modern. This is the most contemporary Muslim society in Asia – similiar to Dubai in many respects. There were plenty of high-end retail shops and spectacular restaurants with a diverse fusion of cuisine. Our favorite meal was at the Kuala Menora Lumpur. This is the fifth largest tower in the world and is a short drive from Petronas. At the top of the tower is a revolving restaurant with an amazing selection of regional favorites. The view is one of the most spectacular on earth. You can see the stunning city limits fade into the dense rainforest miles away. We celebrated a truly glorious sunset over a bottle of berry-infused champagne. The restaurant takes about a half hour to fully rotate. Looking out and seeing the Petronas Towers outside our table window was priceless!
KL is one of the least expensive modern mega cities you’ll find. The currency is the Ringit and trades at roughly 3:1 against our dollar. The time is 12 hours ahead of Ocean City. We reached KL via a 10-hour flight from Moscow to Bangkok. From there we drove about 12 hours south into KL with a few stops along the way. The most direct flights from BWI to KL would get you there in about 22 hours. Don’t even think of smuggling in drugs into Malaysia. Soldiers boarded our bus at the Thailand/Malaysia border and checked all of our bags. The penalty for drug possession is death and they make you sign a waiver that you aware of this fact.
Out of all the Muslim cities we’ve visited, this was by far the safest. The weather was perfect and the hospitality was generous. Seeing some of the most unique modern architecture in the world made this an amazing expedition for Cassandra and I. Ma’ Alsalam!
– The Rox