10 Facts You Didn’t Know About Kuala Lumpur

Kuala Lumpur, or KL as it is fondly called, is one of the fastest-growing cosmopolitan cities in Southeast Asia. With its mix of Malay, Indian, and Chinese population, glitzy skyscrapers, lush parks, lively street markets, and historical monuments, Kuala Lumpur has come far from its humble beginnings. Check out these fun facts about this much-sought-after tourist destination.

  1. Kuala Lumpur literally translates to “muddy confluence”. It is the perfect name considering KL is located at the junction of the Klang and Gombak rivers.
  2. Kuala Lumpur was founded by Chinese tin miners who were the first to discover rich sources of tin in the area. It’s also worth noting that although KL is a fast developing city today, it didn’t acquire “city” status until 1972.
  3. The famous Petronas Twin Towers were designed by Argentinian architect, Cesar Pelli. One of the towers was built by the Japanese Hazama Corporation, while the other one was built by the Korean Samsung C&T Corporation. The one that’s built by the Samsung group is level but the other tower is tilted by almost 10 inches! The construction was completed in only 6 years and between 1998 to 2004, they were considered the world’s tallest buildings. While that honor has now gone to the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, the Petronas Towers are still considered the tallest twin buildings in the world!
  4. Kuala Lumpur has the highest literacy rate in all of Malaysia. That’s not really surprising, considering that it is a business hub and one of the largest international tourist destinations in the world.
  5. Shopaholics will love Kuala Lumpur as it is the fashion and retail hub of Malaysia. With more than 65 shopping malls, you can literally spend days shopping away. It is home to 1Utama, which covers a whopping 5 million square feet making it the world’s fourth-largest mall. The Sunway Pyramid mall is also pretty iconic with its Egyptian-inspired sphinx architecture.
  6. Kuala Lumpur is home to the magnificent Istana Negara, which is the official residence of Malaysian monarch Yang di-Pertuan Agong. Visitors can tour the royal museum in the old compound to see some spectacular installations and exhibitions.
  7. Believe it or not, the government of KL actually introduced a ban against excessive lipstick and high heels for Muslim women in 1996. They defended the decision by saying that these things attract unwanted attention and compromise the safety of women.
  8. Other than the Petronas Towers, Kuala Lumpur also has the KL Tower which is the tallest of its kind in Southeast Asia and the 7th tallest telecommunication tower in the world!
  9. The cuisine here is a wonderful amalgamation of Malay, Indian, and Chinese flavors. For an authentic experience, try eating at the many street-food markets in KL. Affordable and delicious, what more could you ask for?
  10. Flooding is extremely common in Kuala Lumpur because of the tropical rainforest climate. Remember to pack an umbrella before you visit!

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