Kuala Lumpur - Malaysia
Kuala Lumpur is one of three Federal Territories
in Malaysia. It was ceded to the Federal Government by the Selangor
State on 1st February 1974. Labuan, located off the coast
of Sabah was declared a Federal Territory on 16th April
1984, and on 1st February 2001, Putrajaya, the new adminstrative
hub of the Federal Government was officially declared a Federal
More than any other spot in the country, Kuala
Lumpur, or "KL" as it is commonly known, is the focal point of new
Malaysia. While the city's past is still present in the evocative
British colonial buildings of the Dataran Merdeka and the midnight
lamps of the Petaling Street nightmarket, that past is everywhere
met with insistent reminders of KL's present and future. The city's
bustling streets, its shining, modern office towers, and its cosmopolitan
air project an unbounded spirit of progress and symbolize Malaysia's
unhesitating leap into the future. To some, this spirit seems to
have been gained at the loss of ancient cultural traditions, but
in many ways KL marks the continuation rather than the loss of Malaysia's
rich past. Like Malacca five hundred years before, KL's commercial
centre is a grand meeting place for merchants and travelers from
all over the world.
In the same way, the city brings together Malaysia's
past and present, its many constituent cultures, and even its remarkable
natural treasures, allowing first-time visitors an invaluable opportunity
to see Malaysia as a whole before setting off to explore its parts.
In the botanical and bird parks of the Lake Gardens one is treated
to a first glimpse of the unsurpassed beauty and variety of Malaysia's
plants and animals. In the vibrant Central Market, music, crafts,
and cultural practices from Kelantan to Sarawak can be explored
and experienced. And in the National Museum, the dizzying multiplicity
of Malaysia's cultural history comes into focus. As the entry point
for most visitors and the meeting point of the country's many attractions,
Kuala Lumpur is a grand gateway to a fascinating destination.
Located at the confluence of the Klang and Gombak
Rivers, Kuala Lumpur quickly grew into a settlement for early immigrants
engaged in the flourishing tin-mining trade in the hinterland. The
town was established in 1857, when a group of Bugis tin-miners led
by Raja Abdullah landed here. Later, the arrival of Chinese immigrants
attracted by the possibility of making their fortunes in the tin
trade, brought more development. They were put under the control
of Chinese Kapitan or headmen, the most famous of whom is
Yap Ah Loy.
In 1870, civil war erupted with the Chinese community
being split along partisan lines into the Cantonese Ghee Hin or
the Hakka Hai San secret societies. The British were called in to
help end the strife but many of the buildings in the settlement
were burnt down or severely damaged. The rebuilding of Kuala Lumpur
in 1882 is credited to Sir Frank Swettenham, the British Resident
of Selangor at the time. He was responsible for the street plan
of what is now the older part of Kuala Lumpur City, and some of
the landmark colonial heritage buildings were built during his time
Years later, with the formation of the Federated
Malay States in 1896, the states of Negeri Sembilan, Perak, Pahang
and Selangor were united under a central administration based in
Kuala Lumpur. Vast infrastructure improvements followed, with new
houses and roadways.
When the country achieved independence in 1957,
Kuala Lumpur was declared the capital of the Federation of Malaya
and, later, Malaysia in 1963. As the central hub of government and
business, the city grew quickly and was given city status in 1972.
Kuala Lumpur was declared a federal territory on 1st
Kuala Lumpur is situated midway along the west
coast of Peninsular Malaysia, at the confluence of the Klang and
Gombek rivers. It is approximately 35 km from the coast and sits
at the centre of the Peninsula's extensive and modern transportation
network. Kuala Lumpur is easily the largest city in the nation,
possessing a population of over one and a half million people drawn
from all of Malaysia's many ethnic group.
The Kuala Lumpur Federal
Territory flag comprises 14 alternating white and red stripes
divided equally by a field of dark blue. The stripes represent
the 13 states and the Federal Territory in the Malaysian Federation.
The crescent moon and star are the symbols of Islam, the official
religion of the country; dark blue represents the ethnic diversity
of Kuala Lumpur. The colour white signifies purity and cleanliness,
while red stands for courage, and yellow is the colour of
peace and prosperity.
a height of 1,453 feet, one of the world's tallest buildings now
rises above the skyline of Kuala Lumpur. The twin towers are called
the Petronas Towers, and, inevitably, they have become the symbols
for the astounding growth that has taken place in Malaysia over
the last two decades. As fate would have it, however, their supreme
status was shortlived: Shanghai's World Financial Center exceeds
this with a world record-breaking 1,508 feet.
The Jamek Mosque is situated at the confluence
of the Gombak and Klang Rivers, where the early settlement of
Kuala Lumpur began. It is the oldest mosque in Kuala Lumpur and
was built by A B Hubback in 1909. The architecture of the mosque
was greatly influenced by Moorish design.
Petaling Street, also known as 'Chinatown',
is located in the older section of Kuala Lumpur. The open-air
night market in the street is popular with bargain-hunters. Clothing,
accessories and local Chinese food can be bought at very reasonable
Located within the Tasik Perdana park not far
from the Parliament House, this monument was erected in memory
of the nation's heroes who gave their lives during the Emergency
period in Malaysian history, following the end of the Second World
War. The 15.54 m copper sculpture was designed by sculptor Felix
de Weldon and completed in 1966. This is one of the largest freestanding
copper sculptures in the world.
The National Mosque is located at the entrance
to the Tasik Perdana park, close to the Kuala Lumpur Railway Station
and Dayabumi. The design combines Islamic, modern and local elements.
The open umbrella-shaped dome symbolizes royal patronage, while
the 73 m tall minaret resembles a flower bud. The mosque was designed
by Baharuddin Abu Kasim and completed on 27 August 1965.
Located on Jalan Damansara, close to the Tasik
Perdana park, the National Museum was opened in 1963. It has one
of the largest collections of historical artefacts in the country.
Visitors will be able to trace the roots of Malaysia's rich heritage
and development via exhibits on history, culture, natural history,
music and sports.
Kuala Lumpur Tower
Located on the Bukit Nanas hill, the Kuala Lumpur
Tower (Menara Kuala Lumpur) is the tallest concrete tower in the
world; and the fourth tallest telecommunications tower after the
CN Tower of Canada, the Ostankino Tower of Russia and the Shanghai
Tower of China. Soaring 421 m above ground level, the top four
floors of the towerhead are reserved for telecommunications technology.Visitors
can go up to the observatory deck for a bird's-eye view of the
city. There are also restaurants and shops within the tower. The
Kuala Lumpur Tower is a member of the World Federation of Great
Kuala Lumpur Railway Station
Kuala Lumpur Railway Station was built in 1910. The Moorish architecture
of the building was the inspiration of its colonial architect
A B Hubback. In 1986, the building was renovated to include modern
facilities such as air-conditioning, restaurants, food stalls
and a tourist information booth. This is the hub of the railway
network. From here, trains travel to various destinations all
over Peninsular Malaysia, from north to south on the west coast,
and as far as Tumpat on the east coast
||243 square km
Breakdown of Races (1994)