| Part 9: Kuala Lumpur,
Boulevard, KL. RM 326 for the
room. The rate includes the breakfast for two and Internet in the room
mostly overcast the whole day. Some rain in the early afternoon.
spent not doing much. At 2pm we move to the Boulevard hotel.
Hotel Boulevard, KL
mostly sunny the whole day with a thin clouds layer. Nice sunset.
sleep long. At 11am I take a taxi into town (RM 10) to the Islamic
museum. I'm in town until 1:30pm, walking around and shopping a bit.
Taxi back to the hotel (RM 15), then lunch in the Midvalley mall. Then
I babysit Natasha while Shirley goes shopping. At 5pm I have a haircut,
then I meet Shirley who is taking care of Alissia and her niece from
At 6pm I walk out again. This time there
is a long
queue of people at the taxi stand and not enough taxis. After some
waiting I decide to take the train, but walk to the wrong mall
entrance, where I happen to catch a taxi, one or the expensive ones.
of traffic jam and in fact I only reach KLCC at almost 7pm (RM 30 for
the taxi, quite expensive). Nice sunset, until 8pm I take photos of the
KLCC complex. Then I have some snack for dinner and start looking to a
way to get back. A taxi driver offers to bring me back for RM
I decline and walk to the taxi stand. Again a queue of people and no
taxis. So I walk into the MRT station and take the next train to KL
At 8:50pm I'm in KL Sentral and am
to take a taxi or the next train to Midvalley. The board shows the next
train at 8:52pm, so I queue up and buy a ticket. It's 8:54pm and I rush
to the trains platform.
Judging from the huge
number of people the train must not have come yet and must be delayed.
So I wait.
train only arrives at 9:15pm. By now there are even more people and I
doubt that they can all fit into the train. Big rush when the train
opens the doors. I manage to secure a spot in a wanita coach (later I
realise I'm in a waggon reserved for women, although I'm not the only
The waggon becomes unbelievably full and
does not leave
the station. It stands there for 10 minutes and finally only leaves at
9:25pm. Had I known this would happen I would have taken a taxi in KL
Sentral. The situation is unbelievable. They need to do something to
improve the public transportation system, perhaps add more trains in
peak hours. Like this they are at the level of a fourth world country.
hotel apartments, Dubai. 418 AED for a big room with A/C which
reality is a small apartment, complete with kitchen, washing machine,
cooking place etc. Lots of furniture, TV, phone etc.
Bathroom with bathtub and shower. Only drawback is the
queen size bed (we usually take a king size bed and Alissia sleeps in
the middle, and Natasha in baby cot). Friendly staff. Free wireless
Internet in the lobby. Very good buffet breakfast included in the room
No cold water available in the shower. Apparently the
in the tanks on the roof heats up a lot during the day. To have cold
water the hotel would have to artificially refrigerate the water.
overcast the whole day in KL. No rain. Still very hot and humid in the
late evening in Dubai (38°C at 11pm).
get up at 9am and have breakfast. After some shopping we pack our stuff
and check out. At 1:30pm, while Shirley brings Alissia to a dance
class, I take a taxi (RM 10) to Bukit Bintang street and shop around a
Then I take the monorail to KL Sentral, where
I check if
it would be an option to get to KLIA with the KLIA Express. It's
feasible to arrive by taxi with luggage and bring it to the KLIA
Express, but the total cost for a family of four is RM 100 (2 adults
pay RM 35 each, kids aged 2-12 pay RM 15 each). Add to that the cost of
the taxi ride to KL Sentral, and not so much money is saved compared to
a taxi ride for RM 150 in a large taxi.
are available near the bus station. Coupon system, a taxi to Midvalley
costs RM 14. It's probably less expensive if you walk to the main road
where there is a taxi stand with metered taxis.
taxi ride to
Midvalley takes a lot of time, because there is a huge traffic jam on
the way to Midvalley. Quite possible that lots of people are going to
Midvalley for shopping because it is Saturday. In any case, I can't
remember such huge traffic jams in KL in the past years. It seems that
the situation got worse, i.e. more cars on the streets and that the
public transportation system is inadequate. The only public
transportation system I'm aware of which stops in Midvalley is this
pathetic KTM commuter train.
It's a mystery why
such a huge
mall as Midvalley has no own subway station with frequent trains. It's
also the case that a new higher end mall, adjacent to Midvalley has
opened in the last 2-3 years.
Shortly before 5pm we
taxi to KLIA (RM 150), arriving there at 5:45pm. Then we
and proceed through immigration, security etc.
at the Emirates check-in, because we have three suitcases and want to
check two through until Munich and one and the stroller until Dubai
(we'll need it in Dubai). Because we are one group everything can only
either be checked through until Dubai or Munich. I propose to formally
split us up into two groups and that seems to work.
Emirates plane takes off on time and lands early around 10pm
time in Dubai. Things then proceed quite smoothly. We get quickly
through immigration and do not have to wait long for our luggage. Then
we get into a taxi (around AED 40) to the hotel.
airport the temperature is surprisingly high. 38°C at 11pm. The taxi
driver explains that during the day the temperatures climb up until
Seems a bit hard to believe.
After some searching
here and there (nobody knows where this Splendid hotel is) we arrive to
the hotel and check in.
Home, sweet home
unbelievably hot and humid in Dubai. 38°C in the morning, which climbs
to 41°C by noon. I'm told that it does not climb much beyond that
because of all that humidity. Toughest climate I've experienced so far,
"for the real men only". Wouldn't walk on the streets with my
here. You can't spend more that half an hour or so under the sun. It
feels like a Finnish sauna.
Fresh in Munich in the evening,
with temperatures well below 20°C.
get up early at 7 something
am and take a shower. Wow, the cold water is hot! Not too hot to take a
shower, but quite at the upper end. Shirley and the kids are still
sleeping. I take a taxi and head first to the creek, thinking of
getting a good view of the Burj Khalifa, the world's highest building.
no, from the creek the Burj Khalifa is barely visible, because it is
very far away and because there is so much humidity in the air which
blocks the light. So I tell the driver to bring me directly to the Burj
There is a big pond around the Burj
Khalifa and from
here there are good views of the tower. What a spectacular building.
Adjacent to it is the The Dubai Mall, a large and very upmarket
shopping complex. Lots of outlets of very high end brands. No wonder,
this is the tallest building in the world and being here gives you a
lot of prestige. And with a height 828m it will likely also remain the
tallest building in the world for a while.
don't spend much time at the Burj Khalifa and by 8:40am I take a taxi
(AED 23) back to the hotel. I'm there shortly after 9am and have
breakfast with Shirley and the kids who woke up and are ready to have
After breakfast, at 10:15am we take a
car for AED 23) to The Dubai Mall. There in the entrance hall is a huge
aquarium with tons of large fish (schools of fish), even sharks and
sting rays. The acqurium is probably 10-15m high and is really
impressive. The glass window of the aquarium is probably 10m tall.
Entry tickets for the aquarium are quite pricey (over 100 AED per
Inside the mall there is a huge rink, where
skating on the ice. This must be open year round and entrance probably
is not that inexpensive either.
We actually are
the Kidzenia place, where we would leave the kids for an hour. Takes
quite some effort to find this place, because it is well hidden or
perhaps because this mall is so huge. The whole mall must be consuming
a lot of electricity due to all that air conditioning.
find the Kidzenia place. Too expensive (AED 125 per kid) and not
suitable for our purposes since it seems to target older kids than
ours. The AED 125 allow you to leave the kid for the whole
there, although I'm not sure if you can leave it alone there.
opt instead for a fun fair place, where I buy an AED 70 card which can
be used for a number of games and machines (AED 2-5 for the simple
I leave Shirley and the kids there and go
out again for
some more photos of the Burj Dubai. It's almost noon and by now the
temperature has climbed over 40°C outside. I manage only to spend 20
minutes outside in the heat, then I get back inside the mall. I'm
sweating like crazy.
At 12:15pm I meet Shirley and
They haven't managed to finish the card value, so we do some games
together until the card is empty. Luckily I didn't buy the AED 100 card.
then have lunch in an Asian restaurant overlooking the ice rink. It's 1
something pm when we finish. We rush back to the hotel (taxi AED 20),
take a shower, pack our bags, check out and take a taxi
the hotel car, AED 50) to the airport.
empty at this time of the day (3pm). We check in the luggage and
proceed to the gate. The plane takes off on time and is not that full.
Emirates plane arrives in Munich at 9pm. We reach home before 11pm.