After a relaxing three days in Penang, we made our way back to Kuala Lumpur–via a really awesome luxury bus, complete with an attendant. We stayed in Kuala Lumpur twice last year, and once already on this trip, so we know it a little better than some other cities. We knew immediately that for our last few days in Malaysia, we wanted to stay in Chinatown. Kuala Lumpur’s Chinatown is a hub in this bustling city–it’s filled with market stalls, delicious and cheap Chinese food, and it’s close to the MRT and to Little India.
We remembered it fondly, but we were a bit more let down by Malaysia in general this time around. It rained a lot when we were there, making it hard to do much. Kuala Lumpur seemed rougher around the edges than we remembered–a bit more chaotic, a bit dirtier, a bit less friendly. Nothing in particular happened to change our minds about Kuala Lumpur, but overall, we just felt less enamored with it this time around.
One thing that hadn’t changed since the last time we were there was the awesome hostel where we stayed. We enjoyed our stay at The Explorer’s Guesthouse so much last year that we decided to stay there again–and we were not disappointed.
The Explorer’s Guesthouse has everything you want in a hostel–it’s super secure, the staff are friendly, the rooms are really clean, and they have free breakfast. There are quite a few common hang out areas–a living room and dining room, a small kitchen, and two rooftop balconies. The bathrooms are communal, but both times we’ve been there have been spotless. My only complaint is that the internet doesn’t work in the rooms, but it’s fast in the communal areas, and there are a couple of computers available for those without a laptop.
We ended up having some drama during our stay there. I was nearly out of passport pages and urgently needed to visit a US Embassy. However, the embassy in Malaysia was closed for two consecutive days for an American holiday and a Malaysian holiday. Since we had already booked our onward ticket to Cambodia, we would be gone by the time the Malaysian embassy reopened. So we thought we could planned to get more pages while in Cambodia. I started searching for information about the US Embassy in Cambodia, and then realized that it would be closed for a month. I started to panic–I wouldn’t have enough pages to get out of Cambodia.
We decided to just eat some of the money and change our plane ticket to Cambodia to one day later so we could make it to the Malaysian embassy. Luckily, with our added day we made it to the embassy just fine and got the pages just in the nick of time, and thankfully, the Explorer’s Guesthouse was super nice, and let us extend our stay with absolutely no hassle. It was such a relief to not have to change hotels, or even change rooms. Overall, it’s a great (and affordable) place to stay if you’re in Kuala Lumpur’s Chinatown!
The Explorer’s Guesthouse graciously sponsored part of our stay, but all opinions are my own.