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Brigada: Adventures in Marogondon, Cavite

I was a guest and co-host for this segment of Brigada to feature Maragondon as the next travel and adventure destination near Manila. Go watch and discover what the town can offer for tourism.

Sunday, October 06, 2013

Lost in Malaysia part 1–the plans, the flight and booking dramas and arrival in KL

This is the start of my new blog series featuring our trip to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, we dubbed this trip “Lost in Malaysia” because we got lost so many times around the city, hahahaa. Its our 2nd time here in KL and its not a junket trip and we went here by ourselves. I am with my travel blogger buds - Raffy of www.pinoytravelblog.com and Enzo of www.juantraveler.com , Our trip and adventure is documented in a 11 part video blog series that you can watch it here at http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLHNFaXLZ7WyolBTf-oeZ3r12o-dQqsF2B

Me and Enzo was here before in KL via a junket organized by Zest Air, and then Raffy was in another junket trip the same day and he went to Kota Kinablu. We got separated from both junket trip because we thought that we will be flying together, but we didn’t know that there are two separate junket flights – in KL and in Kota Kinabalu.

Our booking dramas started way back before the junket invitation to KL, so the result is.. we have two flights to KL for this year. Our KL first booked flight was on a later date and before the junket trip. Ohkay.that’s a good problem for us.

Here’s the real drama of this trip
1. Raffy got the idea that we visit KL via booking with Air Asia and taking the advantage of the 1 Peso airfare
2. We contact Enzo if he’s willing to join with us, it took 2 days to get a confirmation from him, because he was in Taiwan for a trip, and he wasn’t aware about the plans
3. We booked our flight for August and then after two days, Enzo finally received our FB message and told us that he’s interested to join, problem is the 1 Peso airfare promo of Air Asia is over
4. Enzo booked a flight via Zest Air on the same day of our flight but with different schedule
5. Our Air Asia flight got cancelled due to airline maintenance
6. Enzo got worried that he might fly alone to KL, we told him that we will get another booking with the same date
7. We delivered our concern to a rep. of Air Asia to help us get a transfer from Air Asia to Zest Air, I know its okay, because back in May 2013-August 2013, both airlines are having a strategic alliance.
8. After two days, we got confirmation from Zest Air that we will fly with Enzo on the same schedule and flight
9. Our flight is on August 21, 2013, but a news broke out on August 16 that Zest Air is suspended for safety problems , we got worried because the suspension might cover til our flight schedule
10. Then we received a news that Zest Air flights resumes on August 22
11. The suspension date hits our flight sched, so we reached a rep. from Air Asia again to help us rebook another schedule, this time we will be booked as one group and not individually
12. We got a rebook flight for August 22
13. On the week of Aug 22nd, the monsoon rains flooded the whole city of Manila, and it also flooded our airports and massive cancellation of flights were expected.
14. We were transferred to another date which is Aug 23, but then Zest Air cancelled all flights due to flooding in the airport and lots of passengers were stranded bec. all commercials flights are not yet normal.
15. Zest Air auto rebook us again and got a schedule of Aug 24 , I told my team to wait for more time and let the bookings and airports to recover after the monsoon rains.
16. Then Zest Air told us that we have 30 days for rebooking, they will just wait for our next flight booking plans
17. We got busy in the entire month of September 2013. Then we agree to rebook again for another flight to KL, Malaysia
18. We successfully got a sched and flew to KL on Sept 22, 2013
19. Upon arrival in KL, we started to get lost around the city hahahaha.
20. And lastly… We learned that Zest Air is finally acquired by Air Asia and it will be rebranded now as Air Asia Zest (news at http://www.pinoytravelblog.com/2013/09/21/zest-air-to-be-rebranded-as-airasia-zest-flyzest-airasiaph/ )

After we got the final booking details, it took me 4 days to organize an itinerary for the three of us, I used Google in searching for the “things to do in Kuala Lumpur” and I landed in some blogs sharing their travel stories. I also read some tips at Tripadvisor, and also thanks to our familiarization tour from the KL junket trip, I used it as one of my reference for our trip.

I listed down the sites to visit and plot them all in my Google Maps profile and all destinations are available for public view, you can check it out at http://bit.ly/teamklmap

The Google Map helped me to check how far the sites that we plan to visit per day and how far it is from our hotel (btw we checked in at Tune Hotels Downtown KL)

here’s my proposed itinerary – and I’m glad that they agree.

1 day before our flight..I got info from Enzo and Raffy that we will be going to Singapore..I was surprised when I learned that they are serious to have a side trip in SG, the plan was to visit Sky Scanner office in SG and the country manager invited us to visit them there. So I inserted that SG trip in our itinerary. (we didn’t make it to SG bec. of lack of time to travel)

Sept 22 - day 16:55am - Manila departure
10:35am - Arrival in LCCT, KL
11:30 am - check in Tune Hotels
12nn - rest and lunch
2pm - walk around, buy supplies (water and food)
3pm - rest
4pm - explore around Tune Hotels ( Jalan Sultan Ismail and
Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman)
5pm - Petronas Tower - tour around inside and outside
6pm - visit Lake Symphony outside Petronas, KL City Park and
Aquaria KLCC
7pm - KL Tower
7:30pm - Bintang Walk
8pm - Dinner at Jalan Alor
9pm - Tour around Bukit Bintang
10pm - chill out and go back to Tunes hotel

Sept 23 - day 2
Trip to SG ??????
6am - Ride bus early in KL Sentral
11am - arrival in SG
12nn - tour around SG
6pm - ride bus back to KL
11pm - arrival in KL
11:30pm - go back to Tunes Hotel

Sept 23 - day 2KL only
7am - breakfast
8am - chillax
9am - regroup - ride train to Batu Caves
10am - Batu Caves (tour around)
11am - inside Batu Caves
12nn - snacks at shop 10
1pm - ride train going to Royal Selangor Visitor Center
By Light Rapid Transit
Take the PUTRA LRT, alight at Wangsa Maju station and hop into
a taxi to take you to the Visitor Centre.
1:30pm - arrival in Royal Selangor
3pm - go back to Tune Hotels
4pm - rest in hotel
5pm - visit Masjid Jamek, Merdekah Square and KL City Gallery
6pm - Central Market Annexe
7pm - eat dinner somewhere
9pm - go back to Tune Hotels

Sept 24 - day 37am - breakfast
8am - chillax in room
9am - regroup
10am - visit Chinatown in Jalan Petaling
11am - visit Sri Mahamariamman Temple
12nn - lunch somewhere
1pm - go to Little India in Brickfields
3pm - Thean Hou Temple
5pm - go to Berjaya Time Square
6pm - chillax
7pm - eat dinner there
9pm - go back to Tune Hotels

Sept 25 - day 46am - breakfast
7am - check out of Tune Hotels
7:30am - travel to LCCT
8:30am - arrival in LCCT
9am - check in luggage and get boarding pass
10am - wait in LCCT lounge
11:20am - departure from KL
3:00pm - arrival in Manila

Day 1 itinerary wasn’t followed bec. we meet up with www.Rebeccasaw.com , top blogger in Malaysia, and also met her friends, too. We compressed our day 1 and 2 itinerary for our 2nd day trip and then followed by day 3 and 4 itinerary. I dropped the visit in Royal Selangor, Little India, Berjaya time square and some temples visit, bec. the travel route is not workable anymore for our trip. But we got a cool visit in Jalan Dutamas and Petaling Jaya.

Here are my travel photo story
Seated by the window is always awesome hahah!! I was sleeping during the trip and I woke up and we are now in Malaysia airspace.

Safely landed in Kuala Lumpur Low Cost Carrier Terminal (KLCCT)
We meet again Malaysia!!

The difference when you are in junket trip, you have a guide and the luxury of traveling without any hassle, for our part by traveling on our own, we started to get confused on how we can travel via bus or train going to the city.

At the exit of the terminal, we found some booths that sells bus and train tickets to KL, photo above was proposed to us and priced at RM 12.50 via KLIA transit train. We learned that we need to ride a bus going to the train station, its two ride going to KL Sentral. We went to the next both to check out a much affordable rate.

This is it!! we bought this one bus ride to KL Sentral for only RM9.00, I explained to Raffy that LCCT to KL travel time is around 1 1/2 hour, and it depends if there’s traffic along the highway. Bus ride is faster and comfortable going to KL. The train ride usually stop in every station and there’s a delay, It’s a bit faster but its hard to sleep in a train that usually stop and then move in every minutes.

we hunt for resto and café for us to eat our breakfast

After eating our breakfast in Marybrown fast food, we went to the bus terminal at the end of the LCCT and there we found our Sky Bus

The Sky Bus leaves LCCT with full of passengers, Its best to have a CR break first before you board this bus, because the bus will not pull over while roaming the long highway to KL.

There’s a toilet infront of the bus terminal, so when you see this..don’t think twice.

Inside Sky Bus.
Air conditioned bus with comfy seats, curtains and luggage carrier.

HotLink mobile network, I always see lots of signs of telco companies here in Malaysia, but we didn’t tried getting a prepaid plan for 4 days, I’m happy already with a data plan but I don’t know which is the BETTER network. Accdg. to Kevin, a tech blogger in Malaysia that we just met, he shared that http://www.u.com.my/ U mobile is the better network here in KL.

After we arrive in KL Sentral via bus, this is the look of our face hahahah
We started to get lost and didn’t know how to go to Tune Hotels Downtown KL. I’m glad that we have the address, we ask around and the info booth told us that we should ride the KL Monorail located outside the KL Sentral.

KL Sentral is a network of train and bus station that connects everyone around KL

It’s like an airport and mall too

Outside KL Sentral

We are now here at the KL Sentral Monorail station. We made it ahhaahaa!

Morning rush hour at KL Sentral Monorail station, it is also the first station.

There’s our destination Medan Tuanku

Enzo inside the Monorail

Here’s Raffy freaking out as he ran towards the monorail ticket entrance machine, that red thing opens and closes after you scan the plastic token to the machine. The red divider can close the entry after a passenger is scanned through and safely out of the red divider.

View from below… that’s the KL Monorail
so beautiful…

From Medan Tuanku monorail station, its just a walking distance going to Tune Hotels Downtown KL.
One short walk and one cross of a road intersection

And now we are here in Tune Hotels Downtown KL

Watch out for more blog post about our trip and how we started to get LOST IN MALAYSIA!

If you are in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and you’re traveling in a budget..then I suggest you
Check in at Tune Hotels Downtown KL

1. After arriving in LCCT or KLIA , take a train or bus going to KL Sentral (bus ride approx 1 hour to KL)
2. At KL Sentral, walk out of the terminal and head to KL Sentral Monorail, located outside the KL Sentral terminal
3. in KL Sentral Monorail station, buy a token going to Medan Tuanku station, price is at 2RM
4. At Medan Tuanku station, you can walk via the elevated walkway or the sidewalk street going to Tune Hotels Downtown KL
You can also ride the taxi from KL Sentral, but riding the Monorail is much more fun, convenient and affordable.
take note: some taxi drivers at KL Sentral will propose to you a 40RM ride going to Medan Tuanku area. I suggest just take the Monorail, of if you are in a hurry or traveling with your family with child, you can take the special taxis offering a ride with special price.

At Tune Hotels, single bed price is around 45RM per night (Php 700 per night)

Tune Hotel - Downtown KL
316 Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman,
50100 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

The blogger

Azrael Coladilla is the blogger and founder of Azrael's Merryland Blog. This blog started as a personal blog in 2003, and then converted the blog into a lifeblog about his interest and reporting about pop culture, lifestyle, entertainment, technology, food, travel, toys, outdoor adventure, internet and social media. Awarded as the 2009 Most Influential Blogger for Luzon, Philippines, awarded by the Philippine Blog Awards. He is the founder of several online communities - Manila Bloggers Network, PBNetwork PH, Oh My Food! community, Cavite Bloggers, Travel and Blog Community, and Philippine ToyCon. He loves to travel, explore, discover, eat new food, document and record his life, meet new people, do photography and collects Transformers toys.

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