Regarding the entrance fees for tourist attractions, Kuala Lumpur has been a nice change comparing to Indonesia. In Indonesia, we had to pay for literally everything that was perceived by locals as an attraction. On the other hand, in Kuala Lumpur, many things can be done for free. Kuala Lumpur is an economical and cultural capital of Malaysia. Within Southeast Asia countries it ranks first in many categories. It is a home to many multinational companies, many regional startups such as AirAsia or Grab car.
Is it possible to get around Kuala Lumpur for free?
Well, yes, some of the sights are easy to walk to, depending on a location of your accommodation. For example, if you decide to stay in Chinatown, then you can walk to National Mosque, Masjid Jamek, National Monument, Chinatown, Little India and also Petronas tower. Batu Caves are far away regardless the location of your accommodation, thus you will have to take a metro to this place anyway. However, if you don’t plan to spend 3 to 4 days in Kuala Lumpur, then using an underground system will save your time and energy as it could be very tiring walking in burning city whole day.
How much it cost to use an underground system?
From the first sight, it is clear that Kuala Lumpur is a rich and developed city, easily comparable with a Western world. Due to its huge size, I would recommend to get a subway pass called Touch and Go, as it is not possible to walk everywhere. Touch and Go is a prepaid card that you will use every time using metro and some trains. The main advantage is that you don’t have to wait in a long queue to buy tickets every time you need a ride. You just swipe your card and it will take money away. Another advantage is also that you can pay with this card in partner shops such as Subway and much more.
To see all the places below I would put around RM40 on a card that can be spent on trains ERL as well as underground system KTM Komuter. But bare in mind that this card does not work on a way to the airport on KLIA trains. To use a line going to the airport, everyone has to buy special tickets. In general using a metro costs from RM2-5 depending on a distance, using a monorail can cost around RM4–8 again depending on a distance. To get to the airport costs RM55 via KLIA Trains.(Ekspres or Transit)
So what are the things to do in Kuala Lumpur for free?
Get amazed by Batu Caves
Batu Caves are located right next to the last station of the underground system. At the entrance to Batu caves, a huge statue of God Murugan, god of war welcomes visitors. There is only 10 caves or hill dedicated to God Murugan, 6 are in India and 4 in Malaysia. Batu caves are the most important of the sacred places for Hindu people in Malaysia. Every year, Batu caves becoming a place of a pilgrimage of Malaysian Hindu as well as Hindu people from Australia, Singapore, and other countries. During a festive period, Hindu community gathers and brings offerings to the God.
It is possible to walk up the stairs, however proper dress code is required. Shoulders and knees have to be covered. However, it is possible for RM2 to borrow a sarong in case it is needed. On the top of the hill, after walking 272 steps, there is a complex of caves with Hindu temples. It is not possible though for visitors to enter the temples, as they are available only for praying purposes.
Take an Instagram picture of Petronas Tower
Petronas twin towers are a symbol of Kuala Lumpur. Huge colossus of glass, concrete, and steel. Towers were completed in 1996 and since then they became a headquarters of Malaysian oil giant, Petronas. They have been tallest buildings in the world from 1998 to 2004, however still ranks as the tallest twin building in the world. You can pay RM45 to get up to the tower. It is possible to buy tickets online here: https://www.petronastwintowers.com.my/tickets. However, we enjoyed admiring this piece of architecture from the outside. You can walk around the whole KLCC complex, to get twin towers from different angles. And I would also recommend coming during a day as well as during a night time.
Learn about Islam in National Mosque (Masjid Negara) or Masjid Jamek
Both of the mosques are open to tourists in a given times a day and the entrance is for free. You only have to respect the proper dress code. There are many requirements on how to be dressed when entering into a mosque, however again you can rent a proper dress for free at the entrance. Non-Muslim visitors are allowed to enter the complex of a mosque from Mon- Sunday 3 times a day: from 9am-12pm, 3pm-4pm, 5:30pm-6:30 pm. On Friday it is possible to visit a mosque only twice a day in the afternoon, from 3pm-4pm and 5:30pm-6:30.
It is allowed to walk around the area, however, it is forbidden for a non-Muslim visitor to enter the main praying room. There are also volunteers who explain in English the history of Islam and they are keen on answering all questions, thus this is a great opportunity to learn about Islam from Muslims.
Enjoy the hustle of Chinatown
Chinatown has everything you ever dreamt about. And of course, they have it for a cheap price. From Michale Kors bags to Gucci watches. You will really find everything you need. Apart from this, you will find plenty of Chinese restaurants in this area as well as all kind of street food. It’s a feast for your sight and taste.
Smell the aroma of Little India (Brickfields)
Little India is another part of Kuala Lumpur. In this area you will find a lot of Indian restaurants, serving cheap food. It is also a place of a reflexology massage done by blind people. While walking around this area you will find many shops offering typical Indian fabric and clothes.
Learn about history at Merdeka Square
Merdeka or Independence Square is huge square situated in the center of the city with a huge flagpole in the south of the square. It is surrounded by a building of Ministry of Communication and Culture on one side and Royal Selangor Club founded in 1884 for high-rank society members. It is a first place where Malaysian flag was raised, thus it is symbolized the independence from the British empire.
Monorail ride in the night
To ride a monorail is not for free, it can cost up to RM8 depending on a number of the station you decide to ride, however, the view from the elevated train is spectacular. The train goes through the city center, thus on the way you can see KL Tower as well as Petronas tower and other skyscrapers.
Hope you liked the article. What are other cool places to see in Malaysia? I would love to keep this list updated. Happy Travels and don’t forget to share this post or PIN the picture below for later.