Last summer, I took a spontaneous vacation for a week with my best friends of more than a decade, Espee and Lea. It involved 2 days in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; 2 days in Yogyakarta, Indonesia; and 3 days in Jakarta, Indonesia. Our original plan was simply a domestic trip before Espee leaves for school abroad. But one day, we just went all YOLO and had a spur-of-the-moment decision. A week later, we found ourselves in the countries of Malaysia and Indonesia.
Malaysia is located in Southeast Asia occupying the Peninsular Malaysia (West Malaysia) and Malaysian Borneo (East Malaysia). It is a melting pot of races consisting of Malay, Chinese, indigenous, Indian, and others. Aside from Malay which is the official language, there are also other predominantly spoken languages such as English, Chinese, and Thai. It has a tropical climate with high temperatures, high humidity, and unpredictable weather all year round so bring an umbrella just in case and leave your thick clothes at home. Tourists are attracted by its diverse culture, different types of cuisine, vibrant city’s skyline, pristine beaches, national parks, and numerous activities.
Indonesia is also a Southeast Asian country situated between the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean. It has the world’s largest Muslim population and is the fourth most populous country worldwide. Unlike in Malaysia where English is widely used, the main language in the country is Indonesian (Bahasa Indonesia) so foreigners may struggle to communicate. Wearing lightweight yet decent clothing is recommended because its climate is tropical with dry and rainy seasons and there are places that observe strict Islamic dress codes. Tourism booms as visitors flock to its variety of attractions: natural (volcanoes, beaches, and forests), historical, and cultural.
|Day 0: Manila, Philippines to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia||Ninoy Aquino International Airport 3|
|Capsule by Container Hotel at Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2|
|Day 1: Kuala Lumpur||TWENTY5 by OHANA Hostel|
|Taste of Asia Food Court at Berjaya Times Square|
– Chocolate Gallery
– Genting Strawberry Park
– Genting Skyway
– Resorts World
|Day 2: Kuala Lumpur||Berjaya Hills:
– Japanese Village
– Colmar Tropicale
– Animal Park
|Petronas Twin Towers|
|Day 3: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia to Yogyakarta, Indonesia||Kuala Lumpur International Airport|
|Yogyakarta Adisucipto International Airport|
|Ori Gallery (Scam!)|
|Dinner at Gudeg Yu Djum|
|Day 4: Yogyakarta||Borobudur Temple|
|Lunch at Warmindo Pojok Karang near Bhumi Hostel|
|Day 5: Yogyakarta, Indonesia to Jakarta, Indonesia||Yogyakarta Adisucipto International Airport|
|Soekarno Hatta International Airport|
|Capsule Hotel Old Batavia|
|Dinner at a restaurant in Mangga Besar|
|Day 6: Jakarta||Plaza Indonesia|
|Taman Mini Indonesia Indah|
|Day 7: Jakarta, Indonesia to Manila, Philippines||Grand Indonesia|
|Soekarno Hatta International Airport|
|Ninoy Aquino International Airport|
HOW TO GET THERE:
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
We booked a flight from Manila to Kuala Lumpur via Cebu Pacific Air. We took a taxi service by coincidence during our whole Kuala Lumpur trip because someone approached us and offered to tour us at a reasonable price. We were skeptical at first as he might be trying to rip us off but he turned out to be one of the best tour guides ever. I highly recommend Mazlan because his genuine kindness was one of the reasons why our trip was such a breeze! Contact him at +6016 3135348. Otherwise, follow the instructions below if you would prefer to take public transportation.
1. Capsule by Container Hotel KLIA 2 (Source)
Go to Lot 1, 2 & 3 of Transportation Hub at Gateway, Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2.
2. TWENTY5 by OHANA Hostel (Source)
- Taxi – MYR 80 from KLIA
- Train – Take the KLIA Express train from airport to KL Central Station followed by the monorail train to Imbi Station (MYR 40 to MYR 45). Imbi Station is across Times Square while Ohana Suite is at Taragon Puteri Bintang that is within 3-minute walking distance behind Times Square.
- Bus – Take the KLIA bus to KL Central Station followed by the monorail train to Imbi Station (MYR 20). Imbi Station is across Times Square while Ohana Suite is at Taragon Puteri Bintang that is within 3-minute walking distance behind Times Square.
3. Berjaya Times Square (Source)
- Train – Take the ERL (MYR 35) or KTM Komuter trains to KL Sentral followed by the KL Monorail to Imbi Station (MYR 1.60).
- Taxi – MYR 75 from KLIA, MYR 60 from LCCT, MYR 8 from KLCC, MYR 10 from KL Sentral
- From Jalan Stesen Sentral 3, take the B112 toward Maluri and get off at Alliance Bank, Jalan Pudu (MYR 1). Take the U41 toward Bandar Sungai Long and stop at Berjaya Times Square. (MYR 1)
- From KLCC, take the B103 toward Bukit Bintang and get off at Wisma Genting, Jalan Raja Chulan (MYR 1). Take the U35 toward Pandan Indah, and stop at Berjaya Times Square. (MYR 1)
- From KLIA (MYR 10) or LCCT (MYR 9), take a bus to KL Sentral and then take the buses mentioned above.
4. Istana Negara or The King’s Palace (Source)
Take a cab or a KL Hop-on Hop-off service.
5. Batu Caves (Source)
- Car or Taxi – Batu Caves is situated beside the main highway of MRR2 in Batu Caves area.
- KTM Komuter – Take the KTM Komuter train service from KL Sentral to Batu Caves.
- Monorail and Bus – Take the monorail service from KL Sentral to Titiwangsa station, and then take a bus to Batu Caves.
- Bus – Take Intrakota bus no. 11D from the Central Market or the Cityliner bus no. 69 at Jalan Pudu.
6. Genting Highlands (Source): Chocolate Gallery, Genting Strawberry Park, Genting Skyway, Resorts World
Genting Express Bus – Available at Pudu Sentral, KL Sentral Station; Terminal Putra LRT Gombak; and One Utama, Petaling Jaya. Bus and Skyway fares range from MYR 9.8 to MYR 11 for adults, and MYR 9.6 to MYR 9.9 for children. On the other hand, Bus Only fares range from MYR 3.4 to MYR 4.6 for adults, and MYR 2.6 to MYR 3.5 for children.
7. Berjaya Hills (Source): Japanese Village, Colmar Tropicale, Animal Park
Take a shuttle service from Berjaya Times Square Hotel Entrance West Wing (see no. 3) to Berjaya Hills Resort/ Colmar Tropicale. The shuttle leaves at 9:30 AM, 12 PM, 6 PM, and 10:30 PM. Return journey costs MYR 60 for adults and MYR 55 for children. One way journey costs MYR 38 for adults and children. Both are inclusive of 1 entrance ticket to Japanese Village and Botanical Garden. Meanwhile, one way journey from Colmar Tropicale Hotel Lobby to Berjaya Times Square costs MYR 28 for adults and children. The shuttle leaves at 8 AM, 10:45 AM, 4 PM, and 7:30 PM.
8. Petronas Twin Towers (Source)
- Taxi – The Petronas Twin Towers are in between Jalan Ampang and Jalan Raja Chulan. It is also next to the Mandarin Oriental Hotel and opposite The Ascott.
- LRT – The KLCC station is on the PUTRA LRT line.
9. Chinatown/ Petaling Street (Source)
- Train – Get on the Kelana Jaya Line and get off at the Pasar Seni LRT Station. Petaling Street is within a walking distance from the station. Walk along heading to the west direction for about 400 meters.
- Taxi – It costs around MYR 7 to MYR 14 from KL Sentral
We booked a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Yogyakarta via AirAsia.
1. Bhumi Hostel (Source)
- Transjogja Bus – Take the 3B bus in the north parking area of Adisucipto Airport and alight at Jl. Nyi Pembayun (Lapangan Karang) stop. The hostel is in the south west corner of Lapangan Karang football field. (IDR 3,600)
- Taxi – Take the Rajawali Taxi across the hallway north of the ticket office. The counter is next to Roti’O outside the Domestic Arrival Gate of the airport. Inform the ticket office office your destination and pay for the taxi ticket.
2. Ori Gallery (Warning: SCAM!)
DO NOT GO THERE!!! Read about it here.
3. Gudeg Yu Djum
Gudeg Yu Djum at Jalan Wijilan is within a 7-minute walking distance from The Palace of Yogyakarta.
4. Borobudur Sunrise and Mount Merapi Jeep Tour Package
Bhumi Hostel assisted us with the booking. Reach them at +62 274 376547 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
We booked a flight from Yogyakarta to Jakarta via AirAsia.
1. Capsule Hotel Old Batavia (Source)
- Bus – Take the airport bus with “Soekarno Hatta – Gambir” route to Gambir train station (IDR 35,000). From Gambir:
- Bus – Take the Bus Transjakarta Medium Size at the Galeri Nasional across the street from Gambir.
- Taxi – Take a Blue Bird taxi. (IDR 25,000)
- Bajaj (Tuktuk) – IDR 25,000 per ride
- Ojek (Motorbike Taxi) – IDR 25,000 per ride
- Taxi – approximately IDR 170,000 + airport surcharge of IDR 15,000 + highway toll of IDR 15,000 to be paid by the passenger
The hostel is on Cikini Raya Street. Landmarks include Taman Ismail Marzuki (TIM) and 7-Eleven. Once you see Bank Mandiri on the right lane, look for Texas Fried Chicken and enter the alleyway beside it.
2. Mangga Besar
Take the KA Commuter Jabodetabek (Bogor-Jakarta Kota Line) and alight at Mangga Besar Station.
3. Cafe Batavia, Old Town
Take the KA Commuter Jabodetabek (Bogor-Jakarta Kota Line/ Bekasi-Jakarta Kota Line/ Tanjung Priok-Jakarta Kota Line) and alight at Jakarta Kota Station. Old Town is within a walking distance from the station.
4. Plaza Indonesia, Grand Indonesia
Take the KA Commuter Jabodetabek (Bogor-Jatinegara Line) and alight at Sudirman Station. The malls are near the station.
5. Taman Mini Indonesia Indah
Take a Blue Bird taxi. (approximately IDR 70,000 + IDR 8,500 toll fee)
Our total expenses amounted to approximately USD 600+. You can save up to 50% off than what we spent if you could snatch a low airfare deal. Our airline tickets caused a spike in our total expenses because they weren’t on sale. These were then offset by our cheap hostel accommodations worth more or less PHP 1,000/ 21 USD each for 2 nights. Opt for budget hostels because fancy hotels are pointless when traveling since you only need a bed after a long day of exploring and you get to make friends from all over the world as well. Lastly, prevent scams as much as possible by researching about your destination and being wary of excessively nice yet suspicious people.
|Airfare||Cebu Pacific (Manila to Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta to Manila)||10460|
|AirAsia (Kuala Lumpur to Yogyakarta)||283|
|AirAsia (Yogyakarta to Jakarta)||407500|
|Accommodation||Capsule by Container Hotel, KLIA 2 (6 hours)||80|
|TWENTY5 by OHANA, Kuala Lumpur (2 nights)||76|
|Bhumi Hostel, Yogyakarta (2 nights)||250000|
|Capsule Hotel Old Batavia, Jakarta (2 nights)||300000|
|Pocket Money||Food, Transporation, Admission Fees, Tours, Shopping, etc.||13000|
Malaysia and Indonesia have their own distinct charms that kept me wanting more but I believe that Malaysia’s warmhearted locals and Indonesia’s appetizing food were the main reasons why I truly enjoyed both. My friends and I knew we made the right choice when we took home with us the memories we created together in these culturally rich countries and impressive attractions without breaking the bank.
Click here to read a separate post about the 10 must-see attractions in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.