For 1 night only!
I think that Johor Bahru (just over the causway from Singapore) itself is a bit of a let down. It is one of those places that you can only stay 1 night. You'll probably end up doing that anyway. Sorry to anyone that lives here!
Unique Suggestions: Have a walk around the city or go shopping.
Fun Alternatives: Head straight for Kuala Lumpur.
Beware of Taxi Drivers
Being a local doesn't exclude you from the occasional mountebank. Taxi drivers are required to use the meter, yet many charge a fix rate.
Unique Suggestions: Always discuss with the driver before actually getting in to the car about the destination and the rates they charge... tip is not obligatory, though i do it on habit.Related to:
- Study Abroad
- Business Travel
- Budget Travel
Taxi at Puduraya
Don't believe the taxi driver at pudaraya, not matter how you bargain, you will find out the price is much higher than the normal rate.
Unique Suggestions: If your luggages are too heavy, you are no choice, then you should start bargaining, any trip within Kuala Lumpur City should not over RM15.
Fun Alternatives: Make use of the public transport, i.e LRT, it is a LRT station right behind puduraya, study to route, if your destination is close to any LRT station, it cost you not more than RM4.
Another way to avoid "cut throat", away from Puduraya, hire those running taxi or Q at the taxi station near Kotaraya, instead those stopped roadside
do compare the different and decide yourself.Related to:
- Road Trip
Hiring a driver - not a good idea
If you plan on hiring a driver to tour you around, which is economically viable, this driver won't take you where you ask to be taken. Instead, he'll stop at every single one of his friend's local shops or rubber factories. It's really annoying - no matter how firm you are, or how insistant that you absolutely refuse to go anywhere except for where you ask, it doesn't matter - you'll still end up nowhere that you want to be anyway. All we wanted was to go to the rice paddies - we tried five times and didn't get there once.
Fun Alternatives: Alternatively, I would rent a car, buy a map, and hope for the best.
Tipping is not obligatory or expected in Malaysia, though it is acceptable to tip moderately for courteous and efficient service in restaurant and hotels.
Unique Suggestions: There is already a service tax included in the bill
Fun Alternatives: If it's really good service, you can always round the bill up to the nearest Ringgit.
Bus tickets: Taman Negara - KL
At Taman Negara National Park, fellows wearing officially looking T-shirts sell bus tickets to KL. When the bus arrived, the driver told us that tickets bought from the one guy we had been so lucky to meet, were no good. Because this particular guy was too slow paying the money pack to the transportation company. There was absolutely no way anyone could tell this one guy apart from the rest of the salesmen. So there we were standing, with three expensive invalid tickets...
Unique Suggestions: Argue! Tell them - over and over - that it is their responsibility to control their salesmen. Don't give up! Threaten to put the name of the bus company on the internet for all tourists to see - and that no one will ever use them again once words get around that they can't be trusted.
After an hour of smooth talking, threats and pleads we were put on a huge, air-conditioned bus to KL, just the three of us.Related to:
- National/State Park
- Jungle and Rain Forest
Trapped by Fishermen!
Actually, this is no tourist trap. But if you happen to get caught in this guys fishing net, then you certainly will be trapped!
This photo was taken in Georgetown, Penang. This guy picked up more junk than he did fish. And the fish that he caught were really small too!
Unique Suggestions: Bring a knife just in case you get caught in the fishermen's nets. Then you can cut yourself out of the net and swim to safety.
The Malaysian are in general...
The Malaysian are in general very honest and sincere! They even run after you if you've forgotten some change at a shop! In all my travels I never was a victim of a tourist trap and I never felt like I had paid too much for anything. Some of the cheap tours (like in the Cameron Highlands) are quite funny, because they do not only show you sights (like a tea plantation), but also places where you can buy honey, strawberries, ect. Not that bad!
Before your get there, please have at least one travelling guide with you!
When you wanna travel around the city area, before you get into any taxi/cab, please ask for a few to compare the prices, you may want to check the market rate with local people, they can tell you.
Some of the market are prominenet in selling fake products, you may need to argue for price, if you really interested to buy, or else don't ask how much!
Watch for parking. You may be...
Watch for parking. You may be tempted to park anywhere, but maybe you can go in a paying parking. Even anywhere, check for the parking attendant under a tree.
It might cost you an incredible outrageous 10 cents for a whole day. It's better than a US$1 ticket ;-)
KL Petronas Twin Towers
Don't bother actually going to the towers because you can see them from anywhere in Kuala Lumpur and you can't go in them unless you're very lucky and even then its not worth the money spent.
Unique Suggestions: Go at night, the view is amazing. As long as you stay in a hotel nearby, you can walk to it (but watch the traffic). If you really wanna go in them. Get there first thing in the morning because they only let 100 people in a day.
Fun Alternatives: Get a great view of the city from the Observation deck on the Menara Kuala Lumpur tower. Its one of the highest structures in the world and you'll get great photos. But don't allocate too much time. I reckon do this and the towers all in one morning.
Light and Sound show in...
Light and Sound show in Melaka. The light show consists of green and red floodlights momentarily brightening the nearby mansion and A'Famosa and the sound show is a muffled account of Malaysia's history. Trust me, just go to the museum which, by the way, is free.
Penang. Yes, all of it.I was...
Penang. Yes, all of it.
I was told that I absolutely could not miss Penang, but why I've yet to work out. It's brutally polluted and not very interesting - lots of crumbling colonial architecture and little else to occupy tourists. If you've only got a short time, skip it - there's lots of good food elsewhere in the country.
The jungle train.One wacked...
The jungle train.
One wacked out guidebook suggests that the views from the day jungle train are 'superb'. Yeah, right. Look, the first hour is fun and you get to see lots of greenery flashing by, but by the 5th hour you're a bit bored and by the 12th hour you'd like to slit your wrists because you realize that you've wasted a perfectly good day on a rather boring, rattling, hot train. Take a bus or take a night train, unless you have an awful lot of time to kill. There were quite a few tourists on the train (we all had the same guidebook) and we were all disappointed. Oh yeah, here's another thing our guidebook didn't mention: if you take the day train you're going to get stuck in a little crappy town which doesn't even appear on some maps. The train pulls in around 7pm but the connecting train for Singapore doesn't show up until 2am and there are no evening buses on to Melaka so you have to spend the night and take a bus the next morning.
ALWAYS BARGAIN. When you go to...
ALWAYS BARGAIN. When you go to stalls for souvenirs or something, do be careful as some would mark up the original price. This happens especially when you go to markets or anywhere likewise. Remember, never fall for it.
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