For a city so in love with new high-rise buildings, not to mention motor vehicles, Kuala Lumpur is surprisingly green. Not in an eco-friendly sense, although that is improving slowly, but in terms of how much vegetation there is in among all the concrete. It is also well served by public open green spaces, most notably KL Lake Gardens, KLCC Park and Titiwangsa (no smirking at the back of the class) Lake Gardens.
Starting with the most convenient to get to, KLCC Park is a pleasant resource right in the commercial heart of the city. As well as a paddling pool, a jogging track, and a children’s playground, it has a number of shady spots to sit down, and chill out. The park also boasts great photo opportunities, and even provides a helpful map of the best places to take your Twin Towers snaps. The nearest LRT stop is, strangely enough, KLCC.
It may have a funny name, but Titiwangsa is well worth a visit, especially if you are travelling with kids. The gardens boast great views of central KL, as well as having boats for hire (from 5 ringgit per hour), a small equestrian track (Sat/Sun/public holidays only), where you can go horse riding (1 ringgit per round, kids; 1.50 ringgit per round, adults) or take a ride in a horse drawn carriage (50 sen per round, kids; 1 ringgit per round, adults).
Titiwangsa has both an LRT and Monorail stop, but these are at least a 15-minute walk (or a short taxi ride) from the gardens. Another option is to take Rapid KL bus B114 to Titiwangsa from KLCC. The nearest stop is at the National Cultural Centre (ask for the Istana Budaya). Follow this link for the exact route. It’s also one of the stops on the Hop-on Hop-off bus.
The largest and most pleasant of the city’s public open spaces, is KL Lake Gardens. The 92-hectare area includes a deer park, a butterfly park and an orchid garden, as well as the attractive lake itself. Although it can get mobbed at weekends, during the week it is a very peaceful spot and one of the few places in KL where you escape the noise of traffic. It has numerous shady places too for a pleasant picnic.
Unfortunately, the gardens are difficult to get to by public transport, with the nearest LRT stations (Pasar Seni to the east, and KL Sentral to the south) long, unpleasant walks away. The Hop-on Hop-off bus also stops at the main entrance to the park, but all in all, getting a taxi is the best option. The gardens can be combined easily with a visit to the Islamic Arts Museum and the National Mosque.
By Pat Fama.
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