Duden Waterfall, Antalya, Turkiye.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Antalya, Turkiye.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Paris, France on May 1st.

Saturday, December 30, 2023

Welcome to Malaysia, country #67 for us!

With a 9:10am flight departure time, we left the hotel at about 6:30am. We originally thought about taking a Grab taxi, but there was hardly any traffic so we decided to walk to the airport. From the hotel it was just under 2 kms so we were still there by 7:00am.

We were already checked in online, but we had to check our carry on bags. We found the check in counter for AirAsia, and we were surprised to find that there was a huge line. This is when we almost made a rookie mistake!

We had only been in the line a minute or two when Ruth suggested I go see if we could exchange our left over Thai cash. So I went for a walk. I got far enough to see a sign that said "International Check In" and the AirAsia counter with nobody in line at all!

We had been in the Domestic Check In line! There was no sign there saying so. So I quickly went back to Ruth and we went to the proper area. Chiang Mai doesn't have very many international flights. The vast majority of them simply go back and forth to Bangkok. Anyhow, we were quickly checked in, and went up and waited in the international departure area.

Flying at Christmas time isn't cheap, even on a discount Asian airline. Total price for the two and a half hour flight from Chiang Mai to Kuala Lumpur was $238 CAD ($180 USD) each.

Departing Chiang Mai right on time.

Arriving in Malaysia.

It sure looks green down there!

Palm tree plantation.

A one hour time change, even though we flew pretty much due south.


Welcome to Malaysia... country #67. I updated our country list here.

About 45 minutes to get through customs and immigration. KUL is a huge airport, with a big shopping mall right in the terminal. I found the spot to get a Digi Malaysia SIM card, and we got 30GB of data for RM45 ($9.80 USD, $13 CAD). Probably the fastest we've ever purchased, activated, and installed a new SIM card. Different countries have different procedures for registration and activation, but at this particular shop we were in and out within five minutes!

And then we had to make our way from the airport to central Kuala Lumpur. A distance of about 50 kms (30 miles). There are three common ways to do this... the train, a Grab taxi, or the bus. The train is the most efficient, but also the most expensive at RM55 each. A grab taxi is about RM75 total. Or the bus is RM15 ($3.25 USD, $4.30 CAD) per person.

I bet you can guess our choice!

It's rainy season here in Malaysia, and it tends to rain for an hour or two every afternoon.

A lot of big and tall apartment complexes.

The bus actually arrives downtown at the Sentral Train Station. It was about a 2 km walk to our condo, but it was still spitting with rain so we grabbed a Grab taxi. Traffic was actually quite heavy, and it took about a half an hour due to the convoluted route he took. Still, it only cost RM12 ($2.60 USD, $3.50 CAD) for the ride. Money well spent.

We booked a shared condo through Airbnb. It's a large three bedroom, and each room has its own private bathroom. With shared living room and kitchen. There is a younger German guy in one room, and a couple from Austria who are about our age in the other room. The location is the selling point, although it's also a really nice place. 

Common living room area.

At $56 CAD, ($42.25 USD) per night, it's more than we would normally spend. However central Kuala Lumpur isn't cheap. And, it's New Years Eve and there is a lot to see and do in the central area. Also, our friends who are picking us up on the 3rd are staying at a hotel that is only 800 meters away, so it's convenient.

View from our 6th floor balcony.

Our facilities.

The host gave us a bottle of red wine and two glasses and said "happy new year". 
Nice surprise.

We were starved. We never had any lunch, and it was now almost 5:00pm! The host told us about a nearby street food market, so that's where we headed.

My first Malaysian beer!

There won't be many of them though... alcohol is more expensive here in Malaysia. 

We were so hungry, I never took a photo of dinner. 

Yep, it's a busy street food market.
More expensive than Thailand though.

We are close to the nightclub area.

Scenery along the way.

We bought dessert!
Jackfruit and sticky rice.

Gotta get out exploring early! The weather is nicer in the morning. 90% chance of rain this afternoon. High 32C (90F) and low 25C (77F).


And in Canada...

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