Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and Cruise Conclusion
Our last stop before making our way back to Singapore was Port Klang, Malaysia on Christmas Day. Since there is absolutely nothing in Port Klang your options are either to stay on the boat or make the 60-90 minute drive to Kuala Lumpur. Since the price for the cruise excursions were insanely priced I hired a tour guide ahead of time to pick us up at the harbor. It's always a concern that said person won't show up, but sure enough he did.
Our first stop was at The Blue Mosque (or so I thought until I went looking for a link and kept finding the blue mosque is the Sultun's mosque and is not the one we saw, so now I wonder what is the name of the place we went to?) and it was a great stop. We were both given robes to wear and I had to even cover my head. A mosque tour guide came to show us around and give us information about the Mosque and the religion. It was really nice actually hearing about the structure and where ideas and materials came from. The marble and jewels came from India and Turkey. It was crazy. It holds about 5,000 people. The first floor is for men and the second floor is for women behind innately carved wooden screens.
On the tip of these towers are speakers that do the call to worship
One thing we were impressed with is the lighting system, no lights! Look at the silver globe like thing, it catches light though the windows and reflects all natural light inside. So cool!
A couple had just been married and asked if we would be in their professional wedding pictures! Etta kept referring to her as 'princess', it was so cute.
The photographers offered to take a family picture of us in front of the mosque
Before leaving she asked if we would sign the guest book and had handkerchiefs for the girls and I. She offered us the Koran in English but we said no thanks. I'm not sure if I need to spend time reading the Koran when I already have a hard time squeezing in my own Bible.
We then went to the Batu Hindu Cave Temple. Funny, this link says shrine and my itinerary clearly says temple, I wonder which is correct? We climbed up the 272 steps to the top of the cave; Eric carrying Etta and I carrying Chloe. I was sweating by the time we made it to the top.
Taking a breather, Chloe seemed to get heavier as we got higher.
I was sad when we saw that there were more stairs going down and then back up further into the cave (to see the shrine/temple).
Since we were on a time crunch, we decided to check out the inside where we stood and called it quits. We had more to see in KL and only so much time to see it.
On our way down there were tons of monkeys on our left. They were hanging out in hopes of getting food from passerbyers.
Our tour guide met us at the bottom of the stairs and we told him the girls needed to eat something otherwise we'd hear a lot of crying in the car. He pointed out a popular vegetarian Indian restaurant just outside the the temple. He pointed out a few things that he recommended and we found some seats in the very busy restaurant.


I was kind of freaked out by the place. It was so loud and crowded and lets not get started on sanitary conditions. But, I put everything aside and said ok lets just get something to eat. Eric ordered something (see video he talks about it) and we waited. Soon we got a plate and then a communal bowl with three different types of dishes (one potato based, one Dal based, then something I couldn't distinguish).
I liked the cold coconut milk while the girls stuck with spriteNo utensils are used in this place, everything is by hand. We had one of the more clean dishes too! The girls liked the type of bread used to soak up the food. Not bad.We ordered another dish since the girls were eating away
We had to wash hands after lunch as well as use the bathroom. I don't even want to describe that experience. But, we left without a stomach ache and spent about $5 on everything. On to the next site.
With my itinerary, I was under the impression we were going into the Petronas Twin Towers and walk between the two since that's what our tour guides' website insinuated. But, for some reason we only did a drive by (felt that it would be a pain to get the girls out of the car just to walk around the towers or do designer shopping inside). That was going to be the highlight of our trip and was a big let down. No tip for our tour guide! But, here are some of the shots from the car.
If you saw Entrapment with Catherine Zeta Jones, you may recall the towers


After the Petronas drive by we did a little shopping at the Central Market. I was a little disappointed with the variety of shopping here, but we did manage to buy some local trinkets for very little. Chloe fell asleep while shopping which made it SO much easier. We hung out for about 2 hours, which really cute into our sightseeing but we were ok with that since she was napping!
We did some more drive by sightseeing since we wanted to get back to the boat about 45 minutes before the departure. We really didn't want to be left behind in Kuala Lumpur just because it took too long to get back to the harbor.
We made it just when we wanted to, plenty of time to spare


After we got cleaned up from our hot day in KL, we went back to our favorite spot, the Flamenco Bar for happy hour. The girls still had a couple of coupons for their virgin drinks, here they are picking out which one they wanted.
This was our daily server in the bar. She always knew what we wanted and how to bring it. She even knew our names without asking. She was great! We had to take pictures since it was our last night on the boat.
This will kill my dad, but the girls called this guy Poppy the entire time on the cruise. He was always entertaining the girls and they really enjoyed him. Slight resemblance to my dad too!
These were our wonderful servers at the restaurant every night, Vaasu and Suzan. They were great and catered to the girls constantly.
Trying Vaasu's hat on for size
Etta took this picture of Chloe
Etta took this picture of me
You guessed it, Etta took this picture of Eric
One last picture and hug with Suzan

Here is some highlights of our time in Kuala Lumpur
video
More on our arrival to Singapore in my next blog; too much to talk about there. But, I do want to mention how much fun we had on this cruise. Things I learned on this cruise: I never need to go to Indonesia again, European men wear smaller bathing suits than European women, and kids surprise my by behaving well when least expecting it (as well as the opposite too). This was a great first cruise and would definately look at another Costa cruise for the future, especially while traveling with kids. If it was just Eric and I, I'd look for something a little more special. That's a long ways off in the future though. We're hoping we come across another spectacular deal while here in Japan. We'd love to see a little more of Asia before coming back to America (nearly 95% chance of being on US soil as of this summer). Hope you enjoyed seeing our cruise experience.

309 comments:

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Jen said...

Thanks for sharing all your pictures! It looks like it was a really fun adventure. I am still hesitant to do a crusie because I worry about getting motion sickness, but it doesn't seem like that ever came up for you or the girls!

Pam said...

A long cruise with two little ones, but it all worked out just great. I know it was good to get back home and to a routine for the girls. Hopefully Chloe can get started up again on her potty training, since it flew out the window on the trip.

Tara said...

It was fun reading about your cruise and seeing all the pics!

Christy said...

Hey Jen, we were concerned about motion sickness too since the girls throw up all the time in the car. So much so we brought 4 boxes of medicine for the girls. The first day I felt a little funny but was acclimated the next day. One day was pretty rough at sea and there were bags throughout the ship just in case but they also had medicine available for all cruisers just in case. The girls never once complained about being sick.
we did have one conversation with a server and he said during the typhoon they went through several months before, he threw up 9 times. So, as long as you don't get caught in a storm you should be ok.

Jen said...

Ha ha...the idea of being sick "if" there is a storm is enough to keep me off of one altogether!

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