After our visit to Petronas Towers, we next walked some distance to the KL Tower, locally called Menara Kuala Lumpur, until we reached the verdant and green Bukit Nanas Forest, the only gazetted forest reserve in the country. Before anything else, we opted first to have lunch at Bangkok Expresso, which serves Asian, Indochinese as well as Thai cuisine. We tried the pandan chicken among other dishes. Here, as in many areas in the city, we met up with Filipinos employed in the restaurant. Once done, we walked up to the gate at the base of 94 m. high Bukit Nanas (Pineapple Hill), where the tower stands. Here, we availed of the free shuttle service, up the hill, to the tower entrance at the upper ground level.
At this level are 9 shops, a fastfood restaurant, a 222-pax, open-air amphitheater, souvenir shops and a mini-theater that shows a documentary, every 15 mins., of the construction of the tower. After paying the entrance fee, we proceeded to the fast speed elevator that brought us up the 335-m. high observation deck.
At its observation deck, we finally manage to get a panoramic, 360° bird’s eye view of the city, better than at its sister landmark as it is actually taller (at 515 m. above sea level) than the Petronas Towers, being built on a hill. At the deck, we were given hand-held devices with Sony headsets that guided us through each of the windows and explain each of the attractions. Around the deck are some souvenir shops and some Nikon 30×80 II coin-operated binoculars.
The KL Tower, locally called Menara Kuala Lumpur, was designed to withstand wind pressures of up to 90 mph. It was built, with 45,000 cu. m. of concrete, over a period of 4 years and was completed on May 1996. Used for communication purposes, its antenna reaches 421 m. (1,381 ft.), currently making it the tallest in Southeast Asia, the second tallest freestanding tower in the world and also ranking it fourth amongst the tallest telecommunications towers in the world (after 553 m. high CN Tower in Canada, the 537 m. high Ostankino Tower in Russia and the 468 m. high Shanghai Tower in China). Here, we clearly saw the Genting Highlands, the Klang Valley and other buildings of Kuala Lumpur, including the Petronas Towers.
The tower’s Islamic tiles, classic Islamic floral and abstract motifs and soothing color combinations reflects the country’s Islamic heritage. Designed with vertical ribs on its external surface, the tower weighs 100,000 tons and was built on freestanding land with no piles.
Bangkok Expresso: The Weld Shopping Center, 76 Jalan Raja Chulan, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Menara Kuala Lumpur: Jalan Puncak, Off Jalan P. Ramlee, 50250 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Tel: 603-2020 5444. Fax: 603-2034 2609. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Website: www.menarakl.com.my. Open daily, 9 AM–10 PM.