If you are backpacking in Malaysia and you are looking for a nice and quiet spot to relax before reaching your final destination, well Kuala Terengganu is definitely the answer. My partner and I were travelling from Kuala Lumpur, where we spent 48 hours, to the Perhentian Island but we were still exhausted from our London- Kuala Lumpur flight, so we decided to stop somewhere in between destinations to rest a little. Travelling from London ( UK) directly to the Perhentian Island would be pretty much a 24 hours journey so you can understand the importance to take little stops here and there.
Even though Kuala Terengganu is probably not the most famous city to visit in Malaysia, we liked quite a lot for these 5 very reasons:
- It is quiet! We loved KL but it took all our strength away as it is a massive city and in 48 hours we run around like nutters to be able to see as much as possible so we were happy to stop in a place where we could just walk to the centre and slow down a bit. You can reach KT from KL by bus, which takes 6/7 hours and costs around 40 RM, or by flight which takes 1 hours and it costs around 200 RM- £36 (including luggage). We opted for the second option only because we arrived in KL during the Independence Day Celebration and we couldn’t find a bus leaving on the 31st of August.
- It is colourful! I have never seen a place with so many colours and graffiti! Every corner of town is literally cover in beautiful paintings made by local artists, especially the small alleys in Chinatown, are an explosion of very vivid colours!
- It is authentic! We haven’t seen many Europeans around the area, only 5, including us, most of the tourists were actually Asian. Everything you see here is real and authentic and it tells the story of the real Malaysia. The restaurants are cute and small serving local food (prices go from £ 2 to £ 6/7, depending on what and where you eat), the shops are simple and selling only local products, only a few people actually speak and understand English but they feel anyway very uncomfortable in speaking a language that it is not theirs so they will try to avoid any conversation with you if they can.
- The Food Market is amazing! Every morning, right behind Chinatown, there is a massive food market selling literally all sort of Asian, Malaysian, Chinese and Indian food. The smell is quite intense as there are many flavours and strong spices all together, so bear in mind there that it is going to take a few minutes to adjust to it.
- It is safe! I have heard many people saying the KL is dangerous but to be honest, we haven’t had any problem at all, well Kuala Terengganu is super safe, we have seen a lot of Asian tourists with families, kids and elderly too.
We stayed at the Felda Residence, minutes walking from China Town and right on the Marina, a perfect spot for very nice pictures, especially on the sunset. They serve breakfast on the top floor which offers an amazing view on the waterfront!
Next Stop of our backpacking adventure in Malaysia: Perhentian Island!
#Malaysia #Asia #KualaTerengganu
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