48 hours in Kuala Lumpur – A 2 day Itinerary

Kuala Lumpur. Cityscape image of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia during sunset.

48 hour Guide For Kuala Lumpur 

Ahhh Malaysia’s New York inspired capital, Kuala Lumpur. This is a destination that’s super interesting to visit as it is a mixture of city life similar to that of the big cities in the US, with pockets of Balinese-inspired areas as well as colorful streets pumping with people, spices and all things nice, similar to that of India.

Situated in the center of Malaysia, it’s no wonder Kuala Lumpur has so much continental and international influence. There’s a lot to do in Malaysia and a lot to experience so let’s get into this 2 day itinerary for Kuala Lumpur to start you off on an Asian adventure.

We’ll be visiting the Petronas Twin Towers, Kuala Lumpur City, Jalan Alor Street, Batu Caves, Kanching Rainforest Waterfall, Bukit Bintang, Petaling Street, Thean Hou Temple and the Central Market.

There’s only one way to perfectly describe the experience you’re about to embark on – You’ll feel like you’ve stepped right into the world of Kung Fu Panda. By the end of this read, you’ll get why…

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Best time to visit Kuala Lumpur

The best time to visit Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia is from May to July, and December to January. During these months, the weather is generally sunny and dry, with occasional showers in the afternoon or evening. The last thing you’ll want is to be drenched while trying to explore – not the grandest feeling.

You’ll need to remember that Kuala Lumpur has a tropical climate, which means that it is hot and humid throughout the year. However, the months of May to July and December to January tend to be less rainy and cooler than other months.

Tourist season is from November to February.

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA - The Sultan Abdul Samad Building in Kuala Lumpur, the capital city of Malaysia

Where to stay in Kuala Lumpur

The Majestic Hotel Kuala Lumpur – Located in the historic district of Kuala Lumpur, this luxurious hotel is a beautifully restored colonial building that dates back to the 1930s. Prices start at around $200 per night.

The Kuala Lumpur Journal – This trendy boutique hotel is located in the bustling Bukit Bintang neighborhood, within walking distance of shopping and dining options. Prices start at $60 per night.

Sekeping Tenggiri – This unique eco-retreat is located in the residential neighborhood of Bangsar, just a short drive from the city center. The retreat features minimalist, industrial-style accommodations with an emphasis on natural materials, as well as a lush garden and a plunge pool. Prices start at around $70 per night.

The Face Suites – These sleek, modern apartments can be found in Kuala Lumpur’s Golden Triangle, close to shopping, dining, and entertainment options. The contemporary apartments have floor-to-ceiling windows with views of the city, a rooftop infinity pool, a fitness center, and a sauna. Prices start at around $80 per night.

The RuMa Hotel and Residences –  If you’re feeling like a bit of luxury, this elegant, high-end hotel is the best option for your preferences. You’ll find it in the city center, just steps away from KLCC Park and the Petronas Twin Towers. Now that’s a view you’ll remember. The hotel is adorned with spacious, stylish rooms, a spa, a fitness center, and an outdoor pool. Prices start at around $250 per night.

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA - Colonial district of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Overview Of 2 Days In Kuala Lumpur Itinerary

Day 1 in Kuala Lumpur

  • Petronas twin towers
  • Luala Lumpur city
  • Jalan alor street
  • Batu caves
  • Kanching Rainforest Waterfall

Day 2 in Kuala Lumpur

  • Bukit bintang
  • Petaling street
  • Thean Hou Temple
  • Central Market

Day 1 in Kuala Lumpur

Petronas Towers 

The Petronas Towers are one of the first things you think about when you picture Kuala Lumpur. With its vast height, identical architecture and glittering facade, these towers are worth taking a trip to see.  

Completed in 1998, the towers were the tallest buildings in the world until 2004, standing at 452 meters (1,483 feet) tall.

The towers consist of 88 floors and are connected by a skybridge on the 41st and 42nd floors. Just imagine the kind of views you’ll be seeing from up there.

If you go on a guided tour, you’ll take a visit to the skybridge and observation deck on the 86th floor.

The observation deck showcases panoramic views of the city, and visitors can see landmarks such as the KL Tower, the Batu Caves, and the Genting Highlands in the distance.

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA -  The Petronas Towers, also known as the Petronas Twin Towers are twin skyscrapers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Kuala Lumpur City

While we’re deep in the city, let’s explore a little bit more of it. Starting with a visit to the National Museum to learn about the history of Malaysia and its people, or explore the historic district of Merdeka Square, which is home to the Sultan Abdul Samad Building and other colonial-era landmarks.

For a quick reconnection with nature, spread your wings and broaden your bird knowledge at the KL Bird Park.

The park has over 3,000 birds from 200 different species. The KL Bird Park is a popular attraction for families and nature lovers and even has several different zones, including a free-flight aviary and a bird show.

During the day or evening, be sure to check out the vibey bars/ nightlife scattered throughout the city.

Some of the best rooftop bars can be found in Kuala Lumpur City, such as Changkat Bukit Bintang or Bangsar. These are best for sundowners and making memories till dawn.

Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur, Skyscrapers in modern metropolis in Kuala Lumpur the capital city of Malaysia. Concept of green environment in the city.

Batu Caves

We’re taking a break from high risers and heading in the opposite direction to explore below. Next up, is the Batu caves where we’ll get our steps in for the day whilst also learning about the religious culture in Malaysia.

Batu Caves is a limestone hill that houses a series of caves and cave temples located in Gombak, Selangor, Malaysia.

The caves are a complex of three main caves and several smaller ones, all of which have been formed due to natural erosion over the years. Within the grand walls, you’ll also find various religious shrines.

The main attraction of Batu Caves is the Temple Cave, which can be accessed by climbing a steep flight of 272 steps. Inside the cave are several Hindu shrines and statues, including a 140-feet-tall statue of Lord Murugan, the Hindu God of War.

The statue is the largest in the world and is a significant religious symbol for the Tamil community in Malaysia.

Another popular cave to visit is the Dark Cave. In this cave, you’ll come face to face with a variety of unique plant and animal species, including bats and cave insects.

The cave is a popular destination for eco-tourists and nature lovers, and there are guided tours available that provide visitors with insights into the cave’s unique ecosystem.

Batu cave, hinduism temple in a sunny day in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Kanching Rainforest Waterfall

Whilst we’re in explorer mode, one of the most unique places you can visit during your time in Kuala Lumpur is the Kanching Rainforest Waterfall. The waterfall is located just 30 minutes outside of the city and is a perfect escape from the hustle culture of Kuala Lumpur.

After spending the day frequenting a lot of the touristy areas, filled with people, noise and stressful situations, this trip into a secluded forest, surrounded by trickling water is the best way to calm down, breathe and reconnect with Asian harmony.

To get there, you can take a taxi or hire a private car. Once you arrive, you’ll need to pay a small entrance fee to access the waterfall area, but it is definitely worth the trip and money to get here.

The Kanching Rainforest Waterfall consists of seven cascading waterfalls, each with its own unique water flow, pattern and speed. You can just imagine the symphony of sound, the feel of the spray on your skin after a hot day filled with exploring and the taste of the fresh, cool water on your tongue.

The waterfall is surrounded by a jungle of emerald greenery and is an excellent spot for a picnic or a swim in the refreshing pool of water below.

You can also take a short hike to the top of the waterfall for a birds eye view of the surrounding forest. If neverland were real, The Kanching Rainforest Waterfall would be it.

Sedim river undisturbed waterfall in nature forest.

Jalan Alor Street

Time for a pause in the itinerary for a bite to eat. All of the people, streets, city noise and energy of today will have you needing a brief breather. However, we’re sticking with tradition for today’s dinner menu.

There’s no way we’re passing up the opportunity to try a wide range of delicious Malaysian and Asian cuisine in Jalan Alor.

Jalan Alor is a popular street in Kuala Lumpur that is known for its food stalls and restaurants, drawing foodies from near and far to try the umami goodness that can be found at the stalls along the streets.

The street is lined with colorful, brightly lit food stalls, with vendors selling everything from seafood, noodles, and rice dishes to fresh fruit and desserts. One of the most popular dishes to try at Jalan Alor is the grilled seafood, which is cooked on open flames right in front of you.

Other popular dishes include char kway teow, a stir-fried noodle dish, and nasi goreng, a flavorful fried rice dish.

Visitors can also try local delicacies such as chicken satay, which is marinated and grilled over charcoal, and bak kut teh, a rich pork broth served with meat and vegetables.

Accompanied by drool-worthy dishes are local musicians who play throughout the evening, making your meal a memorable one.

Street restaurants in Kuala Lumpur. The streets of Asia. Kuala Lumpur / Malaysia

Day 2 in Kuala Lumpur

Well fed and well rested, we’re onto day two in our Kuala Lumpur journey. Today we’ll see more local neighborhoods, try new delicacies and learn more about Kuala Lumpur’s influential culture.

Bukit Bintang

This quintessential Malaysian neighborhood isn’t’ short on activities and food options. Which is why we’re starting our day off with an oriental breakfast buffet that rivals that of The Radisson Blu. Food stalls and restaurants are around every corner in Bukit Bintang, so you’re really spoilt for choice.

Bukit Bintang is essentially the Harrods of Malaysia and you’ll find several high-end shopping malls, including Pavilion Kuala Lumpur, Starhill Gallery, and Lot 10. Shoppers can purchase a wide range of luxury and designer brands, as well as local and international fashion labels.

Bukit Bintang is a courteous neighborhood that has one desire – That everyone is happy and leaves with a smile on their face. Whether you’re looking for live music, DJ sets, or a quiet cocktail bar, Bukit Bintang has it all.

If history is more your thing, Bukit Bintang has got you covered too, with attractions such as the Sri Mahamariamman Temple, a Hindu temple located on Jalan Tun H.S. Lee. as well as the Kuala Lumpur Tower, one of the tallest telecommunications towers in the world.

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia - Lok Lok is popular street food on the counter of a market at Kuala Lumpur city. Selective focus

Petaling Street

If you havent noticed by now, Kuala Lumpur really loves its streets. But the amazing thing about them is that no street is the same and provides its visitors with a stimulating experience every time.

The next street you’ll be marveling at is Petaling street. Every country has their version, this is Kuala Lumpur’s Chinatown.

It was once the center of Kuala Lumpur’s Chinese community and is home to several historical landmarks, including the Sri Maha Mariamman Temple, one of the oldest Hindu temples in Kuala Lumpur,

The street is lined with shops and stalls selling a variety of goods, from traditional Chinese medicines to souvenirs and knock off designer products. Test out your negotiation skills with the vendors to get a good deal on your purchases.

The food scene is also chinese inspired catering to lovers of dim sum, noodles, and dumplings, as well as Malaysian favorites like nasi lemak and satay.

If your favorite way to travel is by immersing yourself in the culture of a city, Petaling Street ticks all of the boxes and will make you feel like you’ve lived in Malaysia for years within just a few glorious hours.

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia - Panorama of colorful market in Chinatown district on Petaling Street

Thean Hou Temple

With vibrant red turrets, golden accents, blue mosaic roofs and splashes of pearl, the Thean Hou Temple looks like a temple that’s drawn inspiration from a dragon. If it were alive, you’d surely see it.

This is a beautiful and intricate temple that will have you staring in awe for hours – and that’s okay! Our time in Kuala Lumpur is nearly over, so spend as much time as you can soaking it all in.

The temple is dedicated to the goddess Tian Hou, also known as Mazu, who is known by many in the Chinese community as the protector of seafarers and fishermen.

The temple was built in the 1980s and is an impressive six-tiered structure that blends traditional Chinese architecture with modern Malaysian design elements.

The main hall features a large statue of Tian Hou, as well as murals depicting scenes from Chinese mythology and legends. Visitors can also explore the temple’s beautiful gardens. 

The temple hosts various events and workshops throughout the year, including calligraphy classes, traditional Chinese musical performances, and martial arts demonstrations. This place gives serious Kung Fu Panda vibes – especially relating to the scene whereby Po is chosen as the dragon warrior.

In Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in Thean Hou Temple is adorned by Chinese lanterns. temple dedicated to Mazu sea goddess. During the Chinese New Year of water Rabbit, temple is decorated with red lanterns.

Central Market

Our 2 day itinerary of Kuala Lumpur comes to an end in the best way possible, surrounded by a culmination of all things Malaysian. End off your trip amidst an energetic cultural experience and ponder your favorite parts of the trip at the Central Market.

Central Market is a historic landmark and cultural hub in Kuala Lumpur that has been in operation since 1888. Originally a wet market, it has been transformed into a central point for arts, crafts, and culture.

Now’s your chance to purchase those last few souvenirs to take home as a memento of your trip to Kuala Lumpur. The market sells traditional Malaysian handicrafts, such as batik prints, wood carvings, and silver jewelry. There are also several shops selling souvenirs, clothing, and accessories.

No trip to Kuala Lumpur is complete without one final traditional, exotic dish to savor before eating the infamous airplane food. Stick with your favorites or try the market’s specialities which are inspired by Malay, Chinese, Indian, and Western cuisine.

While you eat, you can experience Malaysian dancing, singing and musical performances which often take place throughout the day. All of which pay tribute to Kuala Lumpur’s roots from both   historical and religious perspective.

After 48 hours filled with history, temples that look like dragons, oriental food from across the globe, waterfall chasing and scenes that made you feel like Po in more ways than one, the trip through Kuala Lumpur has come to an end. Ready for round two?

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia - Central Market sign in front of main entrance in Art Deco style building. The market was constructed in 1888

Recommended tours in Kuala Lumpur

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Author

  • Samantha King

    Sam, a seasoned traveler across four continents and 49 countries, is a leading authority in travel planning. Her website, Travelling King, offers tailored itineraries and expert guides for seamless trips. Sam's expertise in luxury travel, fast travel, and destination guides keeps her at the forefront of the travel community.

    View all posts https://www.tiktok.com/@travellingkng

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