Welcome to Kuala Lumpur

Welcome to Kuala Lumpur. Please use the search box below on the left hand side of the page, to quickly find tips and information for living in KL. To receive regular updates and tips please become a follower and subscribe at the bottom of the page. I welcome all your emails at: expatliving@hotmail.co.uk

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Malaysian Desserts and Sweets: Aroman Pulut Inti/ Mochi

Malaysian desserts are delicious and usually consist of rice,sweet condensed milk and coconut.
Below is a sweet called Aroman Pulut Inti and is also known as Mochi by the Japanese. These sweet, round balls are made from rice and are either filled with peanut (kacang tanah) or red bean ( kacang merah)
You can find these at Mamak stalls or in some supermarkets such as Village Grocer.

Below is the Taiwanese version of Mochi and this particular one is filled and covered with nutty sesame. Other flavours include Green tea and Taro.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Find Jobs in Kuala Lumpur

To find a job in Kuala Lumpur have a look at and register with the following sites:
http://www.toplanguagejobs.co.uk  has jobs in Europe for people who speak an Asian language plus more...

Currently (September 2012) there is a requirement for Masters or PHD graduates for job vacancies in the IT industry in Kuala Lumpur.
Resumes and cover letter to be sent to: expatliving@hotmail.co.uk

Good Luck!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Health issues that strike expats in Kuala Lumpur

This is not meant to alarm you but rather just inform you of the main health issues that Expats tend to face in humid KL that they possibly would not get back home. Where possible I have mentioned cures or prevention. I hope that it also helps you realise that you are not alone if you suddenly suffer from any of the following health problems:

Cystitis or Urinary tract infection seems to be prevalent amongst expat women. By the way not all women get it but those who do should see a doctor and get some antibiotics prescribed. If you are wary of antibiotics have a look here for alternative remedies:   Natural remedies for Cystitis/Urinary Tract Infection
Proposed prevention is :
1. Ensure you drink enough water and are always hydrated.(Expats often take it for-granted when they first arrive that they need to consume more water here. Regardless of humidity our bodies require more water in this climate.)
2. Drink cranberry juice on a regular basis.

Thrush or Candidiasis can also be a problem but is highly treatable. Please see a doctor once again if you have symptoms. Details can be found here: Details on Thrush. Moving to a new country with all it's associated stress can affect your immune system which leaves you open to illnesses such as these. Also your body needs to adjust to new germs, new diet, weather and environment. So do all you can to keep your immune system in tip top shape.

Dengue Fever caught from a Mosquito bite is not deadly but there is no vaccination or fast remedy.
Symptoms and further details available here: Details on Dengue Fever See a doctor when you have the symptoms and ensure you drink lots of fluids.
Proposed Prevention:
1. Use insect repellent
2. Use aircon at home and sleep with it on
3.Remove any still standing water that allows Mosquitoes to breed it's eggs in
4.Wear clothing that covers your extremities.

Malaria does exist in Malaysia but it seems to be contained in certain areas of the country.You will need to make the decision whether you want to take the risk that there could be Malaria in KL or take anti-malarial pills. Most sites claim that Dengue rather than Malaria is more prevalent in KL.

Common Cold aggravated by temperature fluctuations: aircon
Almost every new comer complains about the huge contrast between the temperature outside and the air-conditioned temperature in most public spaces. Walking into a cold building after sweating in the humid weather can often lead to headaches and colds. After some time in the country you will not notice this temperature shock as much as you did in the beginning. Therefore, if you are sensitive to the cold always carry a pashmina or jumper to use when you step into the freezing LRT, taxi or building.
A good Singapore Laksa or Tom Yam Soup also does wonders when you feel miserable and sore from a cold!!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Christmas Bazaar this Sunday, 13th of November 2011

Don't miss this annual event: Christmas Bazaar organised by the Association of British Women in Malaysia.

Times: 11.00 to 14.30

For detailed information have a look here:

Address: Le Meridien Kuala Lumpur, 2 Jalan Stesen Sentral, Kuala Lumpur Sentral 50470 KL
Telephone: 03 - 2284 4407
Website: http://www.abwm.com.my/
Price: RM 10 (in advance) / RM15 (at the door)

Your unwanted clothes and toys: please donate!

Hello there,

After Christmas or when you are about to move are usually great times to de clutter and donate your un-wanted items. You may longer want them or find them useful but believe me there are people living in Malaysia who would be really grateful for all the things you are throwing away.

To donate your items there are several options:

If you have children, you can always ask their school if they accept donations. Many schools are affiliated with Charities and they can make sure your stuff gets to the people in need.

There are orange collection boxes dotted around KL, you can simply leave your items in one of these.
More info on the company running these on this link:

Several charities will gladly take your donations, here is a list of some:

KL Krash Pad- Chowkit- Children and Teenagers
Chow Kit Kita
E-mail: chowkitkita@gmail.com
Tel: 012-2357444

KL Krashpad
346, Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman
50350 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 03-26970137

KL Krash Pad

Hati- Malaysian Charity


If you are an expat you can contact your association and ask them for their advice on who to donate your items too.
The British women's association for example covers quite a few charities.
Association of_British Women

If you struggle to find a charity but still have clothes,toys, games and
books you want to donate then please drop me an email at

We are always looking for donations for other causes!!
Thank you once again!

If you do not wish to donate here are some other suggestions for you:

 1. How to get Rid of Your Stuff


If you are looking to give your time as a volunteer here are some options for you too:

Volunteer in Malaysia

Lake Titiwangsa Kuala Lumpur: Great Picnic spot!

Great for Picnics and walks in Kuala Lumpur! Go to Lake Titiwangsa!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Wonderful Malaysian Fauna: Cyber Moth

I am not usually an insect fan but this little fellow caught my eye the other day. A little moth with excellent  camouflage. Looked like something out of a science-fiction novel. Have a close look and see that it tricks it's enemies by having replica eyes and tentacles at the back of it's body. Really clever!!
Living near the jungle means we get all sorts of living creatures visiting our flat. Some are relatives from abroad but the rest are species from the jungle!!

Islands closed during the Monsoon

It's just not fun lying on the beach when the coconut trees are flapping horizontally in the gail force winds and rain!
We just got to Perhentian and managed a couple of dives before the 2 Islands shut down for the Monsoon.
The whole experience was great- we felt like WE OWNED the Island- no one was around!!
So if you were planning a trip for now, don't!  Wait until February next year!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Taxis/Cabs in Kuala Lumpur

Don't be offended if a Taxi driver refuses to take you to your destination. This is just one of those things you need to get used to in Kuala Lumpur. Below are some tips and things to be aware of:

1. Taxi drivers do not always know all the destinations. Well known hotels and landmarks are not a problem but a condominium in a suburb like Mont Kiara may be a bit trickier. The rapid growth of Kuala Lumpur has been difficult to keep up with (satellite navigation fails here as well)

2. All taxis/cabs have a meter but some taxis refuse to switch it on, preferring to haggle a fixed price with you. Always take a metered taxi.

3. There are however, official fixed price booths for taxis such as the one in KL Sentral. Use these ones if you know there will be heavy traffic as this would be very expensive on a per meter basis.

4. Some taxi drivers are very jovial and welcoming. Others are grumpy and tut a lot. Don't take the latter too seriously. Most taxis have the drivers name printed on the driver's door.

5. Friday afternoons (during prayers) and when it rains: taxis become very scarce. Plan for this if you have an important appointment.

6. Traffic is horrendous during rush hour so plan extra time.

7. The large blue taxis/cabs are the most expensive.

8. After midnight there is a 50% surcharge to your usual fare. ( 2011 price)

9. Be prepared to pay for toll fees on top of the meter fee, unless it is stated otherwise.

10. All taxis run on gas so they have a huge gas tank taking up space in the boot. If you travel with more than 1 large suitcase you will need to hire a larger taxi.

11. When traffic is flowing you can get in and around the main city centre for about 15 -20 ringgit (2011 prices: about $5 to $6.5) Price is significantly higher from the airport into town on average around 90 -140 ringgit from KLIA.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

October: Free NLP Event in KL!

For those of you who are curious about NLP pop into the Violet Flame in Bangsar for a free talk and discussion about it. A good opportunity as well to meet expats and locals a like in a cosy setting.

Date: Thursday October 20th 2011 at 19.30.
Venue: Bukit Bandaraya, 67-2 Jalan Bangkung
Upstairs 1st floor.

To register call:    03-20959868       or email: info@thevioletflame.com.my

For more info and a map visit: Violet Flame Free Event

Monday, October 10, 2011

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Moon Cake, Lantern, Diwali, Deepavali: festivals in Kuala Lumpur

We are so blessed with festivals and public holidays in Malaysia. We have past the Moon Cake (Zhongqiu)  festival & Chinese Lantern festival and now we look forward to Diwali, the hindu festival of lights.

In Brief:

Moon Cake & Chinese Lantern festival:
is a mid-autumn chinese festival that involves buying and sharing delicious Moon cakes with their various fillings such as red bean paste and jujube paste. Red lanterns and lanternsof all shapes and sizes are used to decorate streets and homes. This festival is also a time for moon watching or lunar worship and seems to have several origins.
A) It is said to be linked to the mythical goddess Chang E (Mood Goddess of Immortality). The cakes often have chinese symbols of "harmony" and "longevity" imprinted on them.
B) The second possible origin was said to be during the Soong Dynasty when the chinese were being opressed by the Mongols. Moon cakes were used then to smuggle secret messages amongst the rebels to plot an attack to overthrow the Mongol oppressors. Permission was granted for these cakses to be distributed because the rebels pretended to use the cakes to promote the longevity of the Mongol empire as a PR stunt. Hense the imprinted symbols.
Whatever, the origin, we are glad these delicious festival still survives for us to enjoy in the 21st Century.
This year the festival fell on the 12th of September.
For images please click here:   Moon Cake and Lantern Festival Images

This is still to come this year on the 26th Of October 2011 and marks the Hindu New Year. The various names for this festival when translated means "row of lamps/lights" therefore, it is also fondly known as the " Festival of Lights". Several activities collide on this day from cleaning homes, prayers to Lakshmi and Ganesha, igniting fireworks, lighting diyas/dipas (clay oil lamps) to sharing good food and gifts. It is a celebration too of Good overcoming Evil and Light overcoming Darkness: so an all round positive, bright and devotional day. We can't wait to witness it!!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Street food in KL: Traditional Ice cream

I just love roasted maize, reminds me of home. So I was over the moon when I came across these guys opposite Sephora near the Pavillion Shopping Mall. The maize was delicious and so in-expensive.
You must try some if you come across this anywhere in KL.

Have you tried some traditional Ice cream delivered on a motorbike? The ice cream comes in square cubes. I have never seen ice cream like this before and they were selling fast!!

Pandan is  Pandan or Screw Pine Leaf
Keladi is Yam
Kelapa is Coconut
Jagung is Maize

Yummy flavours!?!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Car Hire/Rental and Buying a Car in Kuala Lumpur

To hire a Car :

Best rates and reliability of cars is a tie between Avis and Hertz. They even have pick up locations in KL downtown and not just the airport. Hertz are also known as Simedarby rentals.

Jalan Raja Chulan
Lot G01A-02A, Ground Floor, Wisma MPL
Kuala Lumpur
Phone: 60 3 20262497
Hours of Operation: Mon-Sat 0800-1830, Sun 0800-1330
LRT station
Raja Chulan, JLN Sultan Ismail
Feb 2013: Hundai rental 125 ringgit per day

Car hire for Lower

Avis Kuala Lumpur
AVIS, Renaissance Hotel, JLN Ampang, next to Monorail Bukit Nanas
May 2011: cost 520 ringgit for 4 days equals 130 ringgit per day =£26/ $43

To Buy a car:

Motor Trader
Car List

Expats tend to:
1. buy a second hand foreign car from any one of the second hand car dealers
2. buy a new Malaysian made car such as the Perodua Myvi.

Imported cars in Malaysia are extremely expensive. Malaysia produces its own cars such as Proton, Perodua and Naza which are more affordable. Some expats steer clear of the Malaysian made cars for fear of safety and quality whilst other expats are very happy especially with the small Perodua Myvi.
Click link below to see the Perodua Myvi.

Second hand Hondas tend to be quite popular.  A new Honda costs 115,000 ringgit upwards (approximately: $39,000 US).
A second hand Honda can cost anything between 37,000 Malaysian ringgit to 100,000 ringgit.

Compare the cost of living in different countries, click below:

I did my driving licence from scratch here in KL. The process was smooth but required as usual a theory test, driving lessons and a practical test. I now have a probationary licence that allows me to drive around for the next 2 years. After that I can qualify to have a full licence. This is the system here.

As a learned driver you can convert your licence to a Malaysian licence at Putra Jaya, the administrative capital in KL but the rules keep changing. You may or may not have to sit a test.

Some reciprocal countries can use their licence for a couple of months or for as long as it is valid before having to convert. UK licence is one of these.
Please look at the links below for more information.

Converting your drivers licence:

Getting a brand new licence:  http://expatriateabroad.blogspot.com/2011/02/learning-to-drive-in-kl.html

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

How many expensive, luxury cars are there in KL?

Kuala Lumpur must be one of the few countries in the world where you are guaranteed to see at least 1 expensive luxury car on the road every day. I don't mean a rented luxury car that is only taken out as a treat but actual people driving their own Porsche, Ferrari etc around town. They also come in all sorts of colours that you wouldn't see in Europe for example. The amazing thing is not only the sheer number of these cars but also the fact that they cost 3 times more than they do abroad due to import taxation!

Check out what I mean below:

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Language Lessons in Kuala Lumpur

Bahasa Malaysia is taught at the YMCA in Kuala Lumpur. They are based near Sentral Station and they also offer other language courses such as Spanish, French and German. Unfortunately, they do not offer Italian lessons which I am still looking for.
So don't be bored at home, get out there and learn a new language!
More info:
95 Jalan Padang Belia
off Jalan Tun Sambanthan
50470 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 03-22741439

You can also learn german via the Goethe-Institut. For more information click here:
Goethe Institute Kuala Lumpur
Oh and I have now found Italian Lessons via Ringo: Ringo Language Centre

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Mosquito Control in Kuala Lumpur.

I had guests staying over from Europe about 4 months ago. One afternoon we were all sat on the balcony chatting away and enjoying the afternoon. One of my friends saw a car in the distance and shouted: "Gosh, that car's engine is smoking and the driver isn't stopping, the whole thing could explode any minute!"
We all stood up to take a look at what she was pointing at and just caught sight of the car as it turned the corner of the building next door. There was definitely, a huge cloud of smoke frothing in it's wake. We all braced ourselves, clenching our face muscles in anticipation of an explosion. Nothing! The deep droning of the car on fire just kept sounding behind the neighbouring building. "Why doesn't the guy stop the engine and get out of the car?" asked my other friend. We all numbly shook our heads as the droning started to get louder. Then the car re-appeared from behind the building and I burst into a fit of laughter. "What are you laughing at? What's going on?!"
"Look!" I said. "It's a rentokill car!"
"And, so what?"
I calmed my friends down and explained to them this phenomenon they had just witnessed which is unknown in Europe.
"The car is not on fire it is fogging against Mosquitoes!"

Fogging is repeated once a month in residential areas to control mosquito infestations in Kuala Lumpur.
See photo below:

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Some more exotic food in Kuala Lumpur.

Mmmh! Nyummy, Singapore Laksa. Look at the colour of this one! Coconuty deliciousness!

How about a steam boat? This one took me by surprise. Never seen one of these before. It is like a giant Mongolian BBque or a mega non-cheese fondue!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Haberdashery, Sewing paraphernalia and material shop in Kuala Lumpur.

For all those stay at home mums who have a creative edge why not make your own cushions, curtains or even wall deco to match colours and themes that you love. For all those who love to sew and are looking for bits and bobs: ribbons, needles, Velcro, I have found the place in KL for you.

All can be found in the Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman between Masjid Jamek and the Sogo shopping mall.

For sewing paraphernalia check out a store called Syarikat Bunga Reben. They have 2 stores in the area one of which is opposite Bata Shoe shop, KFC and next to Princess Shop.

For all sorts of Material check out the store Kamdar. Kamdar has 2 stores in Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman and 1 store in Mid Valley shopping Mall.

I am pleased to say that I have finally found a place with some great fabric. Most of their pre-made cutains are still not to my taste but that is alright because they provide rows of other fabric from which you can tailor make your own curtains. The only downer is they are on the expensive side so my next challenge will be to find a tailor who can make curtains at a reasonable price.

But for now here is the place:

Sarah Hughes @ Globe
185 Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman, 50100 Kuala Lumpur,
Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 03-2699 7115

Website: Globe by Sarah Hughes

It is near Sogo shopping Mall and curtains are on the 7th floor. The entrance doesn't look like much but
you will be surprised what you find on the upper floors!

Price of Alcohol in Kuala Lumpur

As promised see attached spreadsheet here:
Price of Alcohol

For more information go to this link:
Tax free Alcohol

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Holistic and Alternative Therapy shop in Kuala Lumpur.

If you are looking for a Holistic Shop and therapy centre that provides anything from Reiki Healing to Essential oils and Meditation Cd's then do check out the Violet Flame.
They have a presence in Bangsar at :

The Violet Flame 
67-2, Jalan Bangkung,
Bukit Bandaraya,
59100 Bangsar,
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Phone no: 03-20959868 
Their website is: http://www.thevioletflame.com.my/

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Hungry Ghost Month!

Have you noticed quite a bit of incense or paper being burned around town? We are in the middle of the Chinese Hungry Ghost Month which started on the 31st of July and will run through to August 28th, 2011. Last night and tonight there will be some festivals to mark this years Ghost month. The Chinese believe that during this month spirits and ghosts of the deceased are released and are allowed to roam here amongst the living. It is advised to be very careful this month and to pay the utmost respect to the spirits. Incense is burned to appease and others ensure that they keep seats vacant and free for ghosts to join in with any meals or activities such as concerts that take place.
Some of you may read this and possibly judge this as superstitious, macabre, hocus pocus but it is truly fascinating for me to draw parallels between different cultures who celebrate similar festivals:

Mexicans have the" Day of the Dead"
In Austria and in the Catholic Church first days of November is respected
as "All Souls Day"
USA has Halloween

I am sure there are many more.
Either way be safe this month!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Kuala Lumpur Boleh! Things to know about Kuala Lumpur.

My new home city Kuala Lumpur is wonderful! Where do I even start to decribe all the great things I have
discovered and experienced. There is of course the food. Everyone talks about the food. In London we used
to talk about the weather, in KL we talk about the best meal we had yesterday and which restaurant to try out next. The trio of cultures that makes up Malaysia has influenced it's cuisine and also the number of festivities we foreigners and visitors get to enjoy. We are now experiencing Ramadan which will be punctuated at the end by the great celebration of Eid. To date we have laughed and clapped at so many festivities from New Years's Eve in January, Chinese New Year in February through to Muhammad's Birthday, Buddha's birthday and now we are waiting in anticipation for Eid.
As if that weren't enough jolly for a year, Diwali and Christmas still await us.

But it's not all about food and cultural celebrations. No, Malaysia has so much more to offer. There are the highlands in Cameron with it's cooler air and tea plantations. Then there are the Islands, so beautiful and a heaven for scuba divers and Robinson Crusoenians. There is Borneo for the nature lover in you and Mount Kinabalu magnetically draws you to challenge yourself up her granite slopes. With Malaysia's low cost airline: Air Asia, all these dream locations are possible within a weekend's trip from Kuala Lumpur.

I also love the tropical jungle that surrounds and decorates pocket areas within the capital city. It feels so lush and enjoyable to drive past these leafy lungs that cool the motorway air and allows the city to breath! No smog to be found here!

I could go on and tell you more about Batu Caves, Mega Shopping Malls, Durian......but I wouldn't want to give it all away! It would just be better for you to come and discover it all for yourself. Why read about it when Malaysia is waiting here for you to experience it?

Happy travels!

Where to find maize meal or maize flour in Kuala Lumpur.

If you are from Africa and you are searching high and low for our beloved white maize flour, search no more. I did the same thing when I first moved here but in vain. I got a serious craving for Ugali/Pap/Mealie meal/Sadza/Nshima but could not find the flour anywhere in KL.
1. If your stomach cannot take any more noodles and roti,
2. If you cannot wait any longer for your next trip home to Africa,
3. If your friends let you down and forget to bring you back a packet

then drop me a line at: expatliving@hotmail.co.uk.

If you are from anywhere else in the world and would love to try something wholesome full of magnesium,
vitamin B6 and protein then contact me too to order your maize flour.

In the meantime stare at the photos below and lick your lips!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Prices of groceries at supermarkets in KL.

As promised before, I have finally got a price comparison table of certain grocery items at various supermarket chains in KL. I hope this will help you decide where is best for you to do your grocery shopping.
At present I seem to do a bit of a mix: some shopping at wet markets such as the one at TTDI, main groceries at Village Grocer, detergents etc at the mini mart in our condo and good quality cheeses, pork, etc at Gourmet in Bangsar Shopping Centre.

Please note that these prices are as of April 2011, are in Malaysian Ringit and may change over the course of time but for now it should give you a good comparison and possible an idea of how much you need to budget.

I welcome you to share any other of your own bargain and quality finds so that these can help others  and new comers out there.

Grocery Prices here

For a list of supermarkets in KL go to this Link:
Supermarkets and Malls in KL

Monday, July 25, 2011

Setting up office at home.

If you are planning to set up an office in your home one of the places to go and get your IT equipment from is Low Yat here in Kuala Lumpur. But don't make the same mistake as us and buy the Brother fax/printer/scanner model MFC-J415W. It will cost you an arm and a leg in toner cartridges!! Is it just this model or are all home desk top printers ink guzzlers??! I have hardly done any printing (15 pages at most) and within 2 months of purchase we had to go out and purchase some more teeny toner cartridges that cost 40 ringit each. There are cheaper toners on offer but they involve refilling your cartridge casing with ink using a syringe! Messy and prone to leaking which can end up costing you buying a whole new printer.
I unfortunately, cannot offer at this point a printer I would recommend so please take this as a warning of what not to buy!
All your views and advice are welcome so please leave a comment or drop me an email. I will post this to the Low Yat forum as well. The Low Yat forum is a good place for you to check out what others are saying in the KL techy world.
Link to Lowyat Forum

P.S: A helpful samaritan on the Low Yat Forum suggested buying a Laser printer instead. Make or model was not mentioned.

Avoid buying this printer/fax at all costs!!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Leadership Training, Executive Transition Coach, Cross-Cultural Training, NLP practitioners Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Moving abroad can be stressful and may leave you extremely vulnerable. In my previous blog entry I gave all the tips that helped me when I moved to Malaysia from London. You can find them here:
Tips for Moving abroad

However, if you are very anxious and need to talk to someone about it, I would highly recommend a wonderful lady called Louise Legat who is a Life Coach and has a speciality in helping people through transitions and moving abroad.

If you are bored, frustrated, lifeless, feeling stuck, don't know the next steps in your life, then I would recommend you speak to an NLP practitioner. Sounds scary? Not to worry, they are wonderful people and have some incredible skills that will get you feeling motivated and ready to move on with your life and towards your goals.

NLP is also extremely effective when it comes to changing people's behaviours and the culture in a company. Particular results are achieved in Leadership Programmes and Culture Transition Programmes.

Transition/Moving abroad Coaching: contact Louise Legat:

Website: http://coaching.positiveenergy.ch/
Blog: http://www.louiselegat.com/
Email: louise@positiveenergycoaching.com
Swiss mobile: (+41) 0788 152 161
UK mobile: (+44) 07974 642 145

NLP Coaches and Cross Cultural practitioners in Kuala Lumpur:

Erika Zechner on 019 221 2075
Website: http://www.blueprintfive.com/
Sharmini Hensen on 012 391 2272
Website: http://www.sharminihensen.com/

Leadership and Soft Skills Training Programmes:

Website: http://www.blueprintfive.com/

Herbal Medicine and All Natural, Organic Cafe in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

I am extremely interested in how different countries use plants and herbs for medicine, teas and cooking. So I was so pleased when I was introduced to Joe. Joe runs a Nature Cafe, in Sunway Damansara. You can find him in the complex just before the Carrefour. For new comers, Sunway Damansara is located between The Curve (Ikea) and Tropicana Medical Centre, diagonally opposite Tropicana Golf and Country Resort.

The Nature Cafe is brilliant and gives you an insight into the healthy world of living with nature. All of Joe's products are harvested wild and he puts all of his nutritious, organic ingredients together to create traditional dishes with a modern twist. If you do not have time for a sit down meal, just grab a fresh fruit juice on your way to work or boost your metabolism and virility with one of Joe's traditional root teas.
All of the furniture in Joe's cafe is hand made from wood with a specific design to ensure you can sit comfortably for hours and improve your posture.
Joe also stocks herbs that you can purchase and make your own teas at home. (E.g.) Tongat Ali and Kacip Fatimah.

Passionate about Malaysia and preserving all that is natural, Joe can talk for hours about plants. So if you are on a search for answers, have a good long chat with him and he will be able to point you in the right direction.

If you are looking for something new and different or want to revitalise your energy by reconnecting with all things natural, go visit Joe!!

De Fine Nature Cafe
No. 16, Jalan PJU 5/5
Dataran Sunway
PJU Kota Damansara
47810 Petaling Jaya
Tel: 0123362214  or from abroad +6 0123362214

For Map click here

Monday, July 18, 2011

Need more storage space? Buy a wall mounted concertina Clothes Rack


Having lived in the UK, I am used to living in a small flat. So it was so wonderful to move into our flat in KL with all it's extra space and views! As the unpacking continued it was strange to find out that we actually didn't have quite enough cupboard space. My stuff started to spill over into the guest room cupboard which was a no no. 1st solution was to buy some new cupboards either from a Teak furniture shop or Ikea. 2nd solution was to utilise the store room better. (I know, I am spoilt for space here!)
It became a mission to find a strong enough clothes rail that I could mount on the wall in the store room.
I have finally found it! It is so versatile because you can store towels above it and hang clothes below it. It is very strong and they come in all different sizes. Alternatively you can also use it outside in your wet kitchen to hang up your clothes to dry. Best of all they are inexpensive and are portable. Easy to take with you when you move!
Prices start at 200 ringit. For more info call 0192212075 or email expatliving@homail.co.uk.

Have a look:

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Same Same but slightly different!!

What do you say to this:?
And this:

And finally.......

Which mobile phone service provider to use in Kuala Lumpur?

I am in the process of switching from Celcom to Digi mobile and the good thing is I can keep my number. I am switching from post paid with Celcom to pre paid with Digi. Reason being Celcom's processes don't allow me to switch to pre paid within Celcom. So I need to switch to Digi first and then back to Celcom. Very complicated indeed. So let's see what Digi has to offer: I will most probably just stick with them. I am also curious to see what happens with the deposit I paid to Celcom once I switch over. Their helpline has told me different timescales for the refund : 4-6 months (crazy I know!!) or 3-7 working days.

If you are confused about which service provider to go for have a look at the price comparison table for pre-paid rates via the link below:

Pre-paid rates compared: Digi, Maxis, Celcom and Tune Talk, 2010

Saturday, July 2, 2011

6 hour layover in Kuala Lumpur KLIA Airport

I have been recently asked if you can dash into town and see the Petronas Towers if you have a 6 hour layover at the KLIA international airport? The answer is yes. How? Read on....

N:B: Just be aware this is different if your layover is at the other KL airport, LCCT!!

If it rains or you are visiting on a Friday afternoon then avoid cabs as there can be some awful traffic jams that would delay you considerably. Better option below:

1.There is a train from the KLIA airport that takes you straight into KL Sentral (spellt that way)
2. From KL Sentral you can take the LRT(metro) to the station called KLCC.
I recommend the LRT over cabs in case there are traffic jams and you do not want to get caught in one of those!!
3. Calculate 1 hour to get into town and 1 hour to get back using the train and LRT.

4. The train ticket to and from the airport should cost you 70 ringit, divide by 3 to get US dollar equivalent.
LRT ticket one way is about 2-3 ringit. 30 minute journey airport to KL Sentral. and 15-20 minutes by LRT to KLCC. In total budget 80 ringit for transport.
5.There is a huge shopping mall beneath the Petronas towers so maybe budget some money and time for browsing around there and taste a few dishes.

Quick and easy giving you some time to see the centre of KL. Enjoy!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Getting Lost in KL? Map of Kuala Lumpur.

Why is it so easy to get lost in KL?
I have to admit that I find Kuala Lumpur very dis-orientating and yet it is a fairly relaxed and organised city. So what is it about KL that has so many of us cursing at our Satellite navigation systems or going round and round in circles?

Well there are a few things that all add up:

1. Ring Roads: made in such a way that you can approach one place from 2 completely opposing directions.
Example: Getting to Mont Kiara from both KL Sentral and Bangsar

2.Places with similar names: KLCC versus KLGC, Petaling Jaya or Putra Jaya (careful when you ask for PJ)

3. Streets with the same names but different numbers both before the street name as well as after.
(E.G.) 11 Jalan Setiakasih 5.

4. The length and the pronunciation of street names. Try saying:  Desa Sri Hartamas

5. Last but not least the rapid rate of building and development; simply put the Sat nav cannot keep up.

If you are tired of getting lost!
If you are tired of the taxi driver either not knowing where he is taking you or pretending not to know!

Why not check out these clever maps online and plan your journey before you set off? These are really helpful. Have a look:
Maps of Kuala Lumpur

If all else fails and you have money to spare: Hire a driver!

Looking for a Birthday Cake in KL?

One of the most delicious birthday cakes I have ever purchased was called "Death By Chocolate".
Now I am not much of a fan of chocolate cake but my husband is. So I was pleasantly suprised when I had a taster slice during his Birthday last week. I soon grabbed my own piece to devour.

Where can you buy such a cake? At Bangsar Shopping Centre in their Gourmet section in front of Cold Storage super market.

There is also a bakery attached that sells all sorts of breads and pastries as well. Both are rapidly becoming my favourite pastry shop in KL.

Another favourite of mine is The Loaf. Further details found here:
The Loaf and Other Bakeries

One to also check out is The Breadshop at 11 Jalan Setiakasih, Damansara Heights.

Happy tasting!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Cost of Alcohol in Kuala Lumpur

Alcohol is heavily taxed in Kuala Lumpur and therefore, more expensive than back home. If you are planning a party and need to get some reasonable priced booze then head for the Malaysian Island of Langkawi where alcohol is sold tax free and have your party there. (About 1 hour's flight with Air Asia). You can bring back alcohol from Langkawi but you are of course limited.

 If a trip to Langkawi is out of the question then have a look at the attached spreadsheet comparing alcohol prices in several KL supermarkets.

Alcohol Prices in Ringit

Internet providers

Looking for internet service for your new home in KL? There are several suppliers to chose from and they are listed on the following sites below:

Maxis, Digi and Celcom provide internet services as well as mobile phone services.
We currently use Streamyx for our internet.
Telecom Malaysia are promoting Unifi, high speed broadband and I am looking to hear what people's feedback is on this service.

Explore these sites for more options:

One Stop
Allo Expat

Post offices in KL

According to the official post office website there are 63 post offices in Kuala Lumpur.
In addition to sending mail and parcels, you can also pay your bills at post offices but check if they accept credit cards. The one at Plaza Mont Kiara only accepts cash.

A quick glance at where some of the post offices are:
Ampang Park Shopping Centre, Berjaya Times Square, Midvallley Mega Mall, Plaza Mont Kiara (old buildings), Suria KLCC.

Most Post Offices are open Monday to Saturday but opening hours vary greatly. Some are also open on Sundays such as the one in KLCC and Midvalley. The Link below gives you specific details and a phone number to call to double check before you go.

For more locations and exact addresses and opening hours please have a look here:
Post Offices

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Is KL a safe place to Live?

As mentioned in a previous post: KL is a safe place to live.
To read the first post on safety please click here:
KL; safe or not?

Best places to Live in KL have a look here:
KL Hot spots

One of the main crimes here is bag snatching and therefore, the sign below is very appropriate!

Same same but Somehow different: Swim wear in Malaysia!

Swim wear style that you can find in Malaysia. See photo below.
Of course, this is available in addition to bikinis and swimming costumes. All tastes are catered for!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Wet Market (second trip)

Further discoveries in a wet market in Kuala Lumpur.
Some paw paw and grapefruit.

Some baby mangoes.....

Some fresh meat.........

Some fresh crabs......

And finally some curious looking things. Help! anybody know what these are??

Friday, April 29, 2011

Thunder storms in KL.

I absolutely love the thunder storms in Kuala Lumpur! We had a particularly ferocious one yesterday with sheets of rain and very loud smacks of thunder. The lightning too is spectacular and we can sit on our balcony watching the storm pass by, completely mesmerised by it. Our balcony is only used as a spectator box when the rain isn't coming in sideways and drenching all of our balcony furniture. (It did this yesterday!)

The only other place I have experienced such energy and showmanship from a storm is in Johannesburg, South Africa. There the lightning strikes a pose long enough for you to take a photo of it! The electric tentacles weave across the sky, over and over again, as you watch holding your breath.

In Kuala Lumpur the rain literally looks like sheets of water falling from the sky and visibility is obscured as if you were looking through steamed up glass.
Have a look:

Petronas Towers obscured by the rain storm.

The fact that the temperature sinks slightly but is still warm enough to wear shorts and a t-shirt always brings a smile to my face. There have been times though that I have jumped out of my skin because the thunder was so close and so very loud. You can watch too, as the birds go crazy, flying around just as the storm is moving on. I call them "dare devils" because they fly around when they could still be struck by lightning. I am guessing that they are feeding on insects that are airborne because of the storm. They look like swallows but don't quote me I am not an ornithologist.
The other quite scary occurrence is how quickly the water accumulates on the roads and over flows from the drains. The water in the canal section that goes past Central Market Area, (LRT station Pasar Seni), doubles if not triples in volume. You can tell because the water level reaches right up to the graffiti artwork along the walls of the canal.

It's useful to have a passenger on your motorbike a.k.a an umbrella holder.

Things to try in KL.

If you never have before you must try yellow water melon. It is absolutely delicious!

Most people have at some point had fresh coconut juice. If not you must also give this a try as it is highly nutritious and refreshing on a hot day.

Fresh coconuts at Batu Caves, Kuala Lumpur.

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