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Singapore to KL and return ideas?

Cambridge, UK
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Singapore to KL and return ideas?

Dear all,

My wife and I have just booked flights in to Singapore on 20th May 2014 and back home to the UK on 9th June: we'll probably spend the first and last couple of days in Singapore, and between we wish to travel in peninsular Malaysia. We're looking for travel and itinerary advice in general and for specific things & places we might like.

We're late-50s experienced SE and Southern Asia travellers (for example we have spent a year working in Hong Kong and 3 months in Thailand in the past, plus China, India and Sri Lanka) but surprisingly we've only transited through Changi and have never visited Singapore or Malaysia before.

We enjoy 'colonial' style accommodation, history, art/culture, wildlife/ecology, photography, hiking, good food; we enjoy beaches for a day or two, but not more. We're not in to crowds, shopping and 5* antiseptic hotels and malls (but we do want to see Singapore and (maybe, but not necessarily) KL for a few days each).

Should we fly from or to Singapore and drive the other way, or do a driving circuit from Singapore? (I'm an experienced SE Asian driver, but would be happy to hire a car and driver for some of the trip). If so, which coast should we follow at that time of year for the best weather?

On balance we prefer to stay longer at fewer places rather than drive every day.

All ideas and experiences gratefully received.

Birmingham, United...
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1. Re: Singapore to KL and return ideas?

Doesnt sound like singapore or kuala lumpur are places u would b interested in.

I would suggest Penang/Melaka/Kota Kinabalu as places to look at

Kuala Lumpur...
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2. Re: Singapore to KL and return ideas?

Agree with the above. You will find a lot more joy in penang / Melaka or Kota Kinabalu.

That being said, Singapore is still a lovely city for a visit and it does have a colonial past.

Spend a few days in Singapore and head to Penang and give KL a miss. If you are ok for nicely restored (but expensive colonial hotels try the Raffles)

Singapore is clean, green and beautiful, and has a lovely restored colonial past. Then take a flight to Penang where you can stay at the E&O Hotel (again if you liked the Raffles). Penang has fantastic street food and will tick your boxes for beaches for a few days.

You can also extend the trip to Langkawi by ferry.

Edited: 12 November 2013, 01:21
Norfolk, United...
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3. Re: Singapore to KL and return ideas?

LOL, Just up the A10 from you, in another place with the initials of KL!!

Singapore and Kuala Lumpur need to be seen - they are very modern cities now. They [sadly] ripped the colonial heart out of Singapore at the beginning of this century, and then rebuilt all they ripped down. However, both Singapore and Kuala Lumpur are worth visiting. You won't find a huge amount of colonial style in both, especially Kuala Lumpur but there are some lovely sights to enjoy. Chinatown in Kuala Lumpur still retains some of its original charm.

Penang, however, and perhaps Malacca are worth visiting. Lots of history and heritage. Penang has kept many of its heritage colonial buildings. Another overlooked place is Ipoh, which is about half way between Penang and Malacca.

You could also look at Kuching in Sarawak or Kota Kinabalu in Sabah, both in the Malaysian bit of Borneo.

I would not drive in Kuala Lumpur or Penang, and Mr Mitch drives for a living and we have driven from Bangkok to Phuket with no issues.

You could investigate getting the train rather than hiring a driver or hiring a car (which you can't transfer over the boarder between Singapore and Malaysia). It is a cheaper option. http://www.seat61.com/Malaysia.htm Do the train one way and fly back?

All these places are popular, so in SE Asia you will struggle to avoid the crowds. I suspect you may find Langkawi a bit soulless, and is more about beaches than much else.

Hope that gives you some food for thought?

Cambridge, UK
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4. Re: Singapore to KL and return ideas?

Excellent - that's really helpful. Plenty to think about and research.

Has anyone got further recommendations for smaller places where we might like to stop on the way between Singapore and Penang? Maybe a bit off the usual tourist route.

Kuala Lumpur...
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5. Re: Singapore to KL and return ideas?

The problem will be accessibility.

The ideal stops will be Singapore-Malacca-KL-Ipoh-Penang.

The problem is, the only way to do this easily is by car. However, renting a car out from Singapore (at Singapore car prices) might be a bit steep, adding a hefty surcharge if you want to arrange a drop off in Penang. Else drive it back to Singapore. Maybe do a Sin-KL-Penang-Ipoh-Malacca-Sin?

If you don't mind roughing it a bit, you can do long distance coaches between each stop and take a flight back.

6. Re: Singapore to KL and return ideas?

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Jakarta
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7. Re: Singapore to KL and return ideas?

post # 6 -spam

8. Re: Singapore to KL and return ideas?

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