Chinatown - Petaling Street, Kuala Lumpur

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    Chinatown entrance
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    Chinatown.
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  • alyf1961's Profile Photo

    CHINATOWN

    by alyf1961 Written Feb 13, 2015

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    Chinatown is the original commercial centre of Kuala Lumpur. Traders first set up here in the 1880’s
    Chinatown in Kuala Lumpur is not as large as other major cities in Asia, but it is very lively and busy. During the day, stalls sell clothes, household goods and food to locals and tourists alike. Jalan Petaling is at the centre of the area, the day market turns into a thriving night market with food being the biggest attraction. Locals flock to the area at night to socialize with friends and family.
    Chinatown is a maze of alleyways and narrow streets. Old shophouses, temples and kedai kopi (coffeeshops) line these narrow streets.
    I spent many a happy hour wandering through the streets soaking up the atmosphere.

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    Shophouses of Chinatown

    by Orchid Written Jan 30, 2015

    You have had your fill of shopping for souvenirs in Petaling Street? No more need for any more Hard Rock Cafe T-shifts or fake Gucci handbags. Well do yourself a favour and stroll the teeming streets of Kuala Lumpur's Chinatown and reflect on its history and admire the architectural stylings which once gave birth to the shophouses, which were the brick and mortar reaction to the frequent fires which continually destroyed the simpler timber, mud brick atap thatch of the original buildings of the infant settlement of Kuala Lumpur.

    A typical shophouse had a short frontage but with a depth of two to three times its width. The building was set back in order provide 'the five-foot walkway'. This covered walkway or veranda was used as shelter for pedestrians from rain and shine (but more often than not crammed by cows, goats and sacks full of produce) blocking most of the walkway and onto the pavement from the shopkeeper’s store. As always practicality overrides all for ingenious utilisation of space - take a look at the upper floor. The loss of space from having to include a five-foot walkway on street level and also central air well, is compensated by extending the upper floors over and covering the walkway. The ubiquitous shuttered windows of the upper storeys to allow air circulation and reduce the weight to be supported over the walkway. At the back of the shophouse, a lane, that wide enough for bullock carts to move through to collect sewage and for the fire brigade completed the picture.

    Whilst the shophouses are built in blocks, each individual shophouse comes with its own design features - be they dutch gables or geometric art deco motifs. They are often brightly painted, though in the steamy climate, creeping mould and vegetation can add their own distinctive decorative elements!

    You will find some shophouses considerably lower than the street level. The street level rose over the years due to frequent repaving of roads. The lower the walkway, the older the shophouses. Many of the old shophouses are being demolished or refurbished…a process aided by the lifting of the Rent Control Act in January 2000 where owners of pre-war buildings are now allowed to raise the rent of their premises to the market value thus indirectly or directly turning out tenants who have lived and traded there for generations. Before this Act of 1966 was repealed, the average rental was RM200 per month - ridiculously low for our day but effective in a way, to deter many from refurbishing the shophouses or opting for new tenants. According to statistics available, the total of pre-war buildings in KL is only 2,500. And even so, the numbers are falling fast.

    You will find some of the best examples of shophouses around the Old Market Square, where they line both sides, and along Jalan Tun HS lee (once known as High Street). As you wander, you will observe folk carrying on their lives much as they have done for decades, particularly if you enter the narrower lanes between the main streets. Hole in the wall restaurants spring up each morning and are packed away at night

    Across from Jalan Petaling Just mouldering a bit! Shophouse row
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    Bustling Street, but underwhelming....

    by Orchid Written Jan 2, 2015

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    Petaling Street, in Chinatown is the most famous of the 'flea markets' in KL, but sadly, the wares on sale are virtually identical to those you can find in any market, in any city in Asia. The majority of the merchandise consists of clothes (t-shirts abound), mid-quality leather goods, including reasonable fakes, mobile phone covers, kids plastic toys, and electronic widgets including remote control helicopters and cars. If you know what you want and how much it costs at home, you might be happy with the result. No comeback if the goods turn out to be faulty of course.

    But it is a busy and lively street, roofed to keep out the worst of the heat, and torrential storms. The side alleys, particularly in the morning, are crammed with hole in the wall restaurants selling chinese food to the locals (always a good sign). Strangely, there were far fewer food sellers apparent on our evening visit.

    Male visitors will be offered a massage within 15 seconds of entering the street! If accompanied by their wives however, they are mysteriously ignored by the same vendors. Go figure.

    Jalan Petaling is something you must see, if only to assure yourself that missing it would not have been a disaster.

    Open Day.... ....and night Selling tat....
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    Bargain shopping

    by Paulm1987 Updated Oct 26, 2014

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    Chinatown is Flea Market known of its cheap products sold by street vendors including food as well. A visit during the night will be awesome. I only went during the day and got myself some cheap goodies.
    Remember you can eat and drink at a cheap price :)

    Petaling Street Morning passby
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    Chinatown

    by Cathy&Gary Written Mar 11, 2014

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    Petaling Street Chinatown is well known for the amount of fake handbags, shoes, clothes, DVD’s, phone accessories and souvenirs.  So if you are into those types of goods then you will love it there.

    It is a lively vibrant area especially at night and there are plenty of good restaurants and food stalls to choose from.

    Have to say that after a few visits over the years I am totally over the fake goods and the extremely pushy sellers who will not leave you alone.  Although I did buy a handbag for MR100 which I have never used, might come in handy for a present one day!

    Chinatown Chinatown Chinatown Chinatown Chinatown
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    Chinatown

    by IreneMcKay Written Oct 20, 2013

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    Petalang street is a street lined with market stalls in the centre of Chinatown. However, don't forget to explore Chinatown's sidestreets, too with their dragon lamposts, hanging umbrellas, shops, temples, cafes.

    Chinatown. Chinatown. Chinatown. Chinatown. Chinatown.
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    CHINATOWN

    by draguza Written Sep 30, 2012

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    Chinese temples are either Buddhist or Taoist temples. Devotees gather at temples, lighting joss sticks and chanting prayers. The city's Chinese temples are heavily embellished, with arched entrances, pillars and carvings. You won't miss this bright red, incense-wreathed temple, located close to Chinatown. Time seems to stand still as you have your fortune read at the altar at Guan Di Temple in Chinatown. Hindu's flock to temples to give offerings or pujas to their chosen deities, seeking their blessings. Hindu temples are characterized by their intricately embellished tower like structures that crown the main temple like complex. Founded in 1873, the Sri Mahamariamman Temple is the city's oldest. Look up and you'll see the ornate and vibrant hues of its five-tiered Raja Gopuram tower of sculpted Hindu gods. Take time to enter the temple to view its large silver chariot. The Sri Mahamariamman Temple, several doors down from the Guan Di Temple, is an important cultural heritage.

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    Chinatown: Petaling Street

    by cal6060 Updated Aug 17, 2012

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    Petaling Street is one of the famous tourist outdoor markets in Kuala Lumpur. It is being located in a strategy location near the Pudu Long-Distant Bus Station, and surrounded by office buildings, old shop houses, and hotels.

    The tourism board has overly emphasis promoting this outdoor market to foreign tourists, and covered up the street with transparent rooftops, line up with vendors selling counterfeited goods, like nike t-shirt, LV bags, and etc. It tries to impress the public with a giant LCD TV screen on the traditional Chinatown Gate. Would it be better to spend fund to preserve the rundown old shop houses? or build one or two museums to showcase the people life in the region?

    The first time I visited here in 1990s, it was different than what it is like today. It was more like a local outdoor night market we called it " Pasar Malam", with local vendors selling daily use products with bargain price, and food vendors selling delicious street foods. Today, this place has became a market to ruin tourists' ringgits. Prices here are more expensive than anywhere else in Malaysia, so you need to bargain hard!!

    Anyway, you can find some nice local restaurants serving Chinese food. There are some backpacker hostels and cafes nearby.

    Petaling Street, Kuala Lumpur Petaling Street, Kuala Lumpur Petaling Street, Kuala Lumpur Petaling Street, Kuala Lumpur
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    Chinatown.

    by cachaseiro Written Jul 13, 2012

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    Kuala Lumpur has a large chinese population and thereofr also a fairly big Chinatown.
    It's located quite central in Kuaal Lumpur, close to Bukit bintang and little India.
    Chinatown is a bustling place with lot's of trade going on and it's the place to go if you are looking for a cheap bargain while in Kuala Lumpur.
    Chinatown is also the part of Kuala Lumpur that has most of the cheap places to stay, so if you are after a rock bottom cheap hotel then this is also the place.
    For the same reason, most backpacker places are also located in Chinatown.

    Chinatown in Kuala Lumpur.
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    CHINATOWN OR LITTLE INDIA

    by davidjo Written Mar 14, 2012

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    Forget Little India, not much happening there, but for a few carpet shops although we did find a decent restaurant that we enjoyed. Chinatown is a bustling place, lots of restaurants and the usual things to buy at such a market, bags, belts, T-shirts, watches and many fake items. Be ready to bargain hard, difficult to beat the Chinese at their own game.

    CHINATOWN

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    Petaling Street Market - Chinatown

    by Mikebb Updated Jan 16, 2012

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    Chinatown was the first place we visited, immediately after hotel check in a few of us decided to visit Chinatown mid afternoon. Not the best time to visit during the heat of the afternoon, a smarter decision would have been the evening - Cool Air, Colourful Lights!

    Again I was the leader for 5 or 6 of our group, and not a very good job as we left the train at the wrong station and had to walk a few hundred metres extra. It would have been OK if there had been shops, but some of the girls started to grumble in the heat.

    We stumbled into Petaling Street and the colour of Chinatown, however it was mostly busy with the vegetable market. A few clothing shops were open, we could not find a decent coffee shop.

    Lesson learnt, visit Petaling Street at night and you will have a wonderful time.

    Petaling Street  - Entry To Chinatown Petaling Street Chinatown, Mid Afternoon Petaling Street Market - Chinatown Fruit Stall - Petalying Street, Chinatown
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  • Chinatown in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia

    by viorocket Updated Apr 4, 2011

    Chinatown in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia, is a special market to shopping. All tourist must go there. For more information about the cultural, building, history and community in Chinatown Kuala Lumpur, visit our blog at http://www.mentionangels.blogspot.com. Please leave a comment to article titled "Intercultural In Chinatown". We wrote the article for our project Intercultural Communication. We hope can add more information about the Chintown in the future. Thanks a lot for our guess.

    Petaling Street at Chinatown souvenir shop at Chinatown Central MArket at Chinatown
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    Chinatown

    by mansionion Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    The original Chinatown of KL was established during the British colonial days in the Petaling Street area as a settlement site for the Chinese community in KL. For years the area maintains much of its traditional atmosphere, with a Bhudist temple and shops selling incense, gems, traditional medicines as well as famous Chinese eateries.

    Early in the afternoon till late evening vendors will spread their wares on the street with more items to sell. The place is especially notorious for imitation goods on sale here - from designer stuffs to illegal VCDs/DVDs.

    Recently, the area has been upgraded with canopy roof covering the streets. Nevertheless, the area still maintains its charm and still pulling in the crowd for bargain hunting, especially for imitation goods.

    Even if shoping or dining is not the main purpose of going there, wandering around in Chinatown still an enjoyable experience with its spectacular sights and sounds.

    The entrance to Chinatown with its canopy roof.
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    Petaling Street Market

    by Airpunk Written Jan 26, 2011

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    For friends of a far eastern street market – including watching, eating, haggling and fake football shirts – this is the place to be in Kuala Lumpur. The market at Petaling Street is right in the heart of Chinatown in a pedestrianized zone. Its central point is the crossing of Petaling Street with Jalan Hang Lekir, which you will identify quickly. Even if you don't dare to buy or eat anything, it is worth to enjoy the atmosphere, especially at night. For those how wish to eat something, you will find street stalls at the borders of the market as well as some smaller restaurants around. Furthermore, there are also mobile street vendors of cold drinks and snacks. The goods you can get there range from tourist souvenirs via fake brand clothes and bootleg DVDs to household items. If you want to buy anything (excluding food), try to haggle. I did not bought anything, but the friends I was with made some good experiences by starting with 40-50%of the asked price. Although the area is generally lively and safe, be aware of pickpockets. And remember that some of those goods may cause a conflict with customs and laws in another country.
    Anyway, Petaling Street Market is still something I would recommend, even just for the taste of real street food and the atmosphere.

    Petaling Street Market Petaling Street Market
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    China Town

    by RakeshKapadnis Written Nov 22, 2010

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    We were staying at D'Oriental Hotel in ChinaTown. D'Oriental Inn is in the centre of Chinatown so we were able to see all the colors of Chinatown in all the hours of the day.
    Petaling Street is the center of Kuala Lumpur's original Chinatown. It's the place that never sleeps. Adventurous visitors should not miss a walk on Petaling Street.
    Even in daytime you have great bargains. Petaling Street is not open for the traffic. It is a great place for locals to get some goods at bargain prices and certainly an eye-opening experience for tourists.
    Chinatown has a bustling market serving as a bargain hunter's paradise and one of the premier shopping areas in the city with its distinctly oriental atmosphere.
    Petaling Street is particularly famous for its all-day parade of stalls, that sell imitation goods of all sorts, like: wallets, handbags, t-shirts, watches, shoes and many other things.
    You can buy imitation goods of Rolex, Seiko, Cartier, Christian Dior, Adidas, Nike, Calvin Klein, Armani, Gucci, Prada, D&G, Louis Vuitton.
    Bargaining here is an absolute must. Bargain hard! It's the ideal place to test your bargaining skills.
    The area attracts many locals and visitors in search of bargain items, including inexpensive dresses, sunglasses, shoes, fabrics and souvenirs.
    You can get anything from food to bags and sunglasses to handicrafts all along Petaling Street. We bought sunglasses, wrist watches, wallets, T shirts, bags, miniatures of twin towers etc. Chinatown is a must visit place in KL.

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