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Overview

Discover the west coast of Malaysia freely and independently on a self-drive journey from Kuala Lumpur up north to Penang. Trek the lush rainforests and tea fields of Cameron Highlands, discover the historically and culturally rich Ipoh and UNESCO World Heritage Georgetown of Penang before relaxing on the white sand beaches of Langkawi.

Trip Highlights

West Coast Self-Drive Tours

Discover capital Kuala Lumpur

Tour the capital city by foot and train and visit the iconic temples for a truly local experience.

Self drive from Kuala Lumpur to Penang

Stop by Cameron Highlands for a trek in the cool and lush rainforests before driving to Ipoh for a unique historical and cultural experience.

Beach break at Langkawi

Relax after the self-drive experience at the white sand beaches and clear blue waters of Langkawi.

Itinerary

1

Arrival, Kuala Lumpur

Flight on own arrangement and TBC.

Upon arrival in Kuala Lumpur, meet with the driver be transferred to the hotel. (Please note: Standard check-in time 14:00.)

Check-in and rest. Spend the rest of the day at leisure.

Overnight in Kuala Lumpur.

2

Kuala Lumpur

Walking tour (approx. 5km) 8 hours

At 08:00 Take a closer look at the blends of cultures and history, old and new, that define the city on this Kuala Lumpur walking tour. It’s an early start to maximize the day and capture the city at its most vibrant by foot and local transportation.

Proceed, by monorail, to visit the Chow Kit Market, a classic wet market which sells anything and everything. It is KL's largest covert market. Inside, narrow walkways lead through a maze of stalls laden with local produce and seafood of any variety and size, vegetables of numerous shapes and colour, meat, spices and loads and loads of fruits. Travel to Kampung Bahru, a traditional neighbourhood founded in 1899 located in the heart of Kuala Lumpur. Peruse the streets of this 110-year-old residential area on the way to a local café.

Continue exploring Kuala Lumpur. Travel across town by Light Rail Train, one of the capital’s public transport systems, to Masjid Jamek, if possible (closed for non-Muslim during the praying time) visit this unique mosque which occupies a historic location at the confluence of the Klang and Gombak Rivers, the birth place of Kuala Lumpur. Built in 1909, this is the city's oldest surviving mosque and its design was inspired by Mogul architecture in northern India. Quickly explore the nearby Little India, with its colourful hotchpotch of people and products. The pre-war shop-houses sell a profusion of authentic Indian items such as traditional costumes in vibrant hues, Indian delicacies as well as beautifully crafted ornaments and accessories. Nearby, street vendors sell therapeutic massage oils, herbs and roots.

Move onto the historic colonial centre Merdeka Square of town. Walk along an impressive array of architectural wonders, with buildings dating back to the late 1800s. The guide will explain the origins and influences that led to the development of the stunning facades.

For lunch, opt for a traditional Indian or Peranakan meal at Old China Café (Peranakan).

In the afternoon, visit the Sze Ya and the nearby Sri Maha Mariamman Hindu Temple. The first is the oldest Taoist temple in the city with a history dating back to 1864. Built by Kapitan Cina Yap Ah Loy, one of the founding fathers of Kuala Lumpur, it features an ornate interior and elaborate roof ridges. The temple pays tribute to the deities Sin Sze Ya and Si Sze Ya. The second, founded in 1873, was originally located near the old KL Railway station and it was moved to the current site in 1885. It is the oldest functional temple in KL and was recently given the honour of being the first ever to be portrayed on a postage stamp. This popular temple is credited with having 242 idols on its 'gopuram' (gateway) and it is the starting point of the yearly Thaipusam walking procession heading up Batu Caves. Around 4pm, return to the hotel.

Having spent the day immersed in KL’s diverse traditions and cultures, return to the hotel for a rest or continue exploring the city independently. (L)

Please note: All dishes mentioned are offered on a shared basis. The routing of this program may be changed subject to the location of the hotel but all experiences will be the same.

3

Kuala Lumpur

Be picked up from the hotel for a full-day city tour of quaint Malacca. Steeped in history as a trading post due to its vital location along the Malacca Strait, the town is a melting pot of cultures resulting from distinct history from the rest of Malaysia notable due to the substantial Portuguese and Dutch influences.

Best explored on foot (a trishaw can be used for this tour at an additional cost), meander through areas steeped in history starting at the oldest remaining example of European architecture in Southeast Asia, A Famosa, before climbing St Paul’s Hill to visit St Paul’s Church and descending to one of the best examples of Dutch colonial architecture, the Stadthuys - the former Dutch City Hall which is flanked by flamboyantly decorated trishaws.

Sample food at Peranakan style restaurants in Malacca. This style of food is influenced by the Cantonese, Portuguese and Malay ingredients and methods. Taste a delicious warm Portuguese tart from one of the many nearby vendors.

Next, head to Temple Street, named for the multicultural range of temples and mosques that have lined the street since the early 18th century. This is the perfect place to get a taste of the area’s uniquely diverse local culture. Visit Cheng Hoon Teng Temple, Kampong King Mosque and Sri Vinayagar Temple to better understand Indian, Chinese and Malay religious customs.

Continue to see restored Peranakan buildings (a cultural mix of Han-Chinese and Malay that forged its own style, known as the Baba-Nyonya, from the 15th century).

Visit the excellent Baba-Nyonya Museum along the way to learn more about the unique Peranakan culture before exploring some interesting antique stores and cafes along the famous Jonker Street.

Stop by a traditional Malay house to learn about distinctive Malay customs and visit a Portuguese settlement where descendants of Malay and Portuguese have been intermarrying since colonial times. Within the Portuguese settlement, the square is central to Portuguese culture and is the only one of its kind in Malaysia.

Later take a river cruise along the newly developed key side for a unique view of the city. (L)

Return to hotel approx. at 17:00.

Overnight in Kuala Lumpur

4

Kuala Lumpur – Taman Negara

Breakfast at the hotel restaurant.

Today, the rented car will be delivered to the hotel lobby for a self-drive towards Jerantut and then to Kuala Tahan through plantation and secondary forest. On arrival in Kuala Tahan, park the car, (top tip, don’t park it too near the river, just in case the level rises overnight!) and take a boat across the river from one of the floating restaurants. It costs RM1.00 (to be paid locally) and takes just a few minutes.

Then, check-in and spend the remainder of the day relaxing.

Check in to the resort at 15:00 and enjoy a couple hours at leisure before evening dinner followed by night activities.

Dinner at 19:00 at Seri Mutiara Restaurant.

This evening, at 20:30, experience the jungle at night with a nocturnal guided night walk.

(Recommended Kit: Torch for the night walk and closed, sturdy walking shoes as trails can be slippery when wet. Long sleeved clothes.)

Overnight in Taman Negara National Park.

Note:

  • For the activity request, client may deal directly with the resort
  • Suggested them to park the car at Kuala Tahan area directly

5

Taman Negara

This morning, have breakfast and meet the guide at 09:00 for the day’s activities.

Depart for a mornings trek under the high-density rainforest canopy for about 1.7 km from the Wildlife HQ to Bukit Teresek. It will take up to 45 minutes (335m) to reach its peak. Enjoy magnificent panoramic views of Gunung Tahan which can be seen in clear weather.

At 14:30, cruise upstream on the Tahan river to Lata Berkoh and enjoy the riverside flora and fauna and a few rapids along the way. Take a short walk to reach a cascading waterfall and take the opportunity to swim in the natural pool or spend time relaxing and enjoying rainforest.

At 19:00, dinner will be served at the Seri Mutiara Restaurant.

(Recommended Kit: Sturdy walking shoes as trails can be slippery when wet, insect repellent.)

Overnight in Taman Negara.

6

Taman Negara – Cameron Highlands

Breakfast at 07:30 and departure.

Take a 5-minute river crossing from the Resort to the jetty in Kuala Tahan. Self-drive to Cameron Highlands.

Upon arrival, park the car at the hotel parking and proceed to check-in.

Overnight in Cameron Highlands.

7

Cameron Highlands

Embark at 08:15 on a full day exploration of Cameron Highlands. Pick up from the hotel by an experienced nature guide and transfer by 4WD to Cameron Highlands Tea Plantation for a photo opportunity and short walk through the plantation. Take a transfer to higher heights of the mossy forest of Gunung Brinchang. Learn all about the value of medicinal plants that can be found in the forest and the ecosystem of the rainforest. An interpretive walk with the nature guide into the mossy forest by the platform trail will reveal some of the most exotic floras on earth, like the Pitcher plant, Orchids, Primitive Ferns, Spices and Medicinal Plants.

Following this take a short walk around the Sungai Palas BOH Tea Factory for a light refreshment.

**Tea factory and Tea House closed every Monday and Public Holidays

Lunch at a local restaurant to fuel for the afternoons moderate trekking experience.

Proceed to The Montane rainforest of Cameron Highlands at 13:30 for a 3-hour trek on two trails covering a variety of eco climate. The forest is characterised by high rainfall with a minimum of 1750 – 2000mm. Walking inside the rainforest is quite easy as the undergrowth rainforest is hampered by the poor penetration of sunlight, however still challenging with the typical jungle floor of a maze of tree routes so tread carefully.

By the end of exploring Cameron Highlands and walking in the heart of the rainforest brings the awareness of how it can provide valuable timber, animal product as well as precious medicinal plants to the communities around.

Transfer back to the hotel for 16:30.

Notes:

*Mossy Forest easy platform walk available from February to October every year

*Mossy Forest trekking on forest floor and uneven terrain from November to January (easy platform walk will be closed during monsoon season every year for repair and rehabilitation)

8

Cameron Highlands – Ipoh

Breakfast at the hotel and spend the rest of the day free at leisure.

At 11:30hrs, check and depart Ipoh. Upon arrival, park the car at the hotel and proceed to meet the guide at 14:00 for an Ipoh walking tour.

Ipoh Heritage Walk is a leisurely stroll around the compact and historic old town area of Ipoh. The walk is about 4 miles long but there is a choice and option to extend or shorten the trip depending on physical ability. Take in several notable historical landmarks around the city. In just over 130 years Ipoh transformed itself from a sleepy Malay village to the bustling city it is today. The Ipoh Heritage Walk starts at the Railway Station, a superb example of colonial architecture and might end at Town Padang Mosque, constructed in 1908 in Moghul style. Continue past the mosque at Ipoh and onto the Birch Memorial clock Tower, built in 1909 in memory of James WW Birch, Perak’s first British Resident.

Stop for a coffee at Old Town coffee shop and from here get lost in the numerous hidden cobblestone alleyways of the old town experiencing the rich culture of the old-world colonial era. The Walls of the old town have been restored and turned into pieces of art and old shops are now quaint cafes. Finish the walking trail at the vibrant concubine lane which is home to the best antiques in Ipoh and fantastic architecture.

Return to the hotel.

Overnight in Ipoh

9

Ipoh – Penang

Breakfast at the hotel.

Depart from the hotel by self-drive to Penang and check-in to the hotel.

Drop off the rental car key conveniently at the hotel lobby. Choose to either drop the keys during or the next morning if the car is needed to explore the city at night.

Overnight in Penang.

10

Penang

At 08:30 this morning, explore a variety of ethnic Chinese clan houses to streets full of Bollywood music and saris, Penang never fails to disappoint. Join a guide for a full day walking tour to discover all of this and much, much more.

Start in Georgetown, an area rich in history, culture and food. The guide will give a short introduction to the town’s past, learning how merchants from around the world used Penang as a refuge between two regional monsoon weather systems and thus bringing a variety of international influences into the local culture.

Armed with this understanding of Penang’s cultural background, set off through town to explore. Stop for a cup of local coffee at a bake house and sample Bengali bread, while the guide explains the origins of this popular Penang breakfast.

Continue the Penang walking tour through the old town, stopping to admire some of the architectural wonders that earned the town UNESCO World Heritage status. Admire the streets’ mix of old and new, hearing the fascinating tales behind some of the historic structures and seeing modern, whimsical street art. Keep an eye out for small workshop where craftsmen may be making items such as joss sticks or weaving rattan items.

Next up is a visit to Khoo Kongsi to learn about the practice of ancestor worship that is so embedded in the local culture. Continue down the so-called ‘Street of Harmony’ where various spiritual shrines and houses of worship can be found then step into vibrant Little India. Mingle with the locals as they shop for colourful flower garland offerings and enjoy the smells emanating from the street hawker stalls. Then pop into a 150-year-old wet market, still abuzz with local life.

Having experienced the sights, sounds, tastes and smells of Penang, return to the hotel around 15:30.

Please note: Snacks on this trip are offered on a share basis to provide a diverse sample of the various cuisine available on the walk.

Overnight in Penang

11

Penang – Langkawi

Breakfast at the hotel.

Be picked up by the private driver then be transferred to Penang Jetty for the next public ferry to Langkawi.

Ferry Schedule: 08:30 and 14:00

Duration: Approximately 3 Hours

Important: Please note that the Ferry is subject to availability and need to be booked in advance to secure the seats.

Upon arrival at Langkawi Jetty, meet the driver and transfer to the hotel.

Overnight in Langkawi.

12

Langkawi

Breakfast at the hotel and spend the rest of the day at leisure

Overnight in Langkawi.

13

Langkawi

Breakfast at the hotel and spend the rest of the day at leisure

Overnight in Langkawi.

14

Langkawi, Departure

Spend the morning at leisure before being transferred to Langkawi International Airport for the onward flight.

Flight TBC (own arrangement)

Important Information

Our services include:

  • Accommodation in a shared twin or shared double room
  • Meals as mentioned (B= Breakfast, L= Lunch, D= Dinner)
  • English speaking local guide for Sightseeing and Nature Tours (for other languages supplements apply)
  • 1-way public ferry from Penang to Langkawi
  • Transfers as mentioned by private air conditioned vehicle
  • Drinking water during tours & transfers
  • Car Rental based on SEDAN HONDA CITY 1.5 AT (from day 4 until day 9) include Delivery & Collection Fees, Inter-City Rental & GPS Navigator

# The Rental rates are quoted inclusive of the following: –

1. 6% Goods & Services Tax

2. Hire and Drive permit as required by law

3. Unlimited Mileage

4. Road tax annual renewal

5. Theft Protection, Collision Damage Waiver & Super Collision Damage Waiver

6. Full Maintenance of the vehicle due to normal wear and tear

7. A replacement vehicle will be provided within 24 hours should the rented vehicle be grounded for accident/mechanical repairs or regular servicing. The replacement vehicle can be of any age and similar capacity to any make and model

8. 24-hour Roadside Assistance Service (Nationwide)

9. Insurance’s coverage of unlimited liability for death or injury to third parties and property damage liability up to RM 3mil

Our services do not include:

  • Other meals than mentioned
  • Other services than mentioned
  • International and Domestic Flights
  • Laundry, telephone calls and expenditure of a personal nature
  • Tips, Travel insurance (must include helicopter evacuation for Malaysia)
  • Visa for Malaysia
  • Camera/video entrance fees
  • Entrance fees National Park is under clients own account
  • Tourism tax of 10MYR per room per night

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