Have You Visited the Batu Caves in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia?

1:00:00 PM Pinoy Boy Journals 5 Comments


ALL-TIME FAVORITE POST FROM 2010 RE-BLOGGED: If you're planning to go to Kuala Lumpur and spend a few days there in the city, it is a must you visit Batu Caves. When i went to KL i had an option either go to Genting Highlands or here. I thought the former wasn't really something i look forward to. It's just not my interest so i skipped it in favor of the Batu Caves.
"Batu Caves is a limestone hill, which has a series of caves and cave temples, located in Gombak district, 13 kilometers (8.1 mi) north of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. It takes its name from the Sungai Batu or Batu River, which flows past the hill. Batu Caves is also the name of the nearby village. The cave is one of the most popular Hindu shrines outside India, dedicated to Lord Murugan. It is the focal point of Hindu festival of Thaipusam in Malaysia.(Wikipedia)"

How to get to Batu Caves?
I suggest you take the easiest way going there which is via a KTM commuter train from KL Sentral to Sentul Station. Went i went there, i rode the public bus. Being the only tourist in the bus, it was a really good feeling. A few stops here and there, i got to my destination. Minus the hassle of finding the right departure location of the bus. You see the buses going to Batu Caves are lined up in between old structure building which is very hard to find. If you must here's what i've researched. 

"Batu Caves is located about 13km North of Kuala Lumpur city centre. Take Intrakota bus No 11D from the Central Market annexe or the Cityliner bus No 69 at Jalan Pudu to get to Batu Caves. Taxis are also available anywhere around city." www.virtualmalaysia.com/.

So, you've successfully arrived in Batu Caves? When i arrived there, it was boiling hot. I thought Manila was hot but at around 1PM, it was really hot. I suggest you take your time to admire the surroundings. There are really good scale Indian structures abound, birds flock, and locals praying to the gods and goddesses.

Are you ready? With over 272 steps to climb, it is a must to relax every 50 or so steps. It's hard or it's just me. It was very hard for me but i managed on. I silently prayed to the Hindu gods to give me the strength to overcome the steps. From a night of no sleep and silent hangover, it wasn't a good day to do it but i had to. The worst part was, the monkeys were playing around. They're everywhere, at around 180 steps, there they were, a group of monkeys looking at me already. I tried to ignore them and stepped my way till i got to the top. These monkeys are born here and have been here for a very long time. This is their playground. And even if you're an animal lover, touching or playing with them isn't really a good idea.

When you get to the top, there are numerous stalls that sell cold refreshments, souvenir items and uhmmm, batteries for your camera. I know its a tourist trap but heck in case your battery is dead, it comes out very helpful. Once you get inside, it's actually very quiet and serene.

It's quite interesting to look around. A few more steps is a very sacred place where people pray and give their offerings to the gods. As i look back, i realize the sanctity of this place. It just might be the pain in my back carrying my huge backpack the whole day or i am just dead tired, but i honestly wished i could have stayed longer and just take time to relax and pray. I watched the people pray, while i try to communicate with the monkeys to leave me alone. It's so hard. Below are some photos. But staring up at the hole in the middle where the light beams is a refreshing surprise.

On my way down, here comes an experience i will never forget. I was holding in my hand my coca cola. I just bought them for less than $1. Very cold, very refreshing. Then here comes the monkey bunch - brown, hairy, but very thin looking. Looking straight at my drink. I thought it was nothing, but little by little they were approaching me. Things suddenly start popping out in my head. What the hell should i do now? I instantly thought of the Ebola Virus, and Rabies,  etc. I didn't care about anything else so i just threw the can out in the open and made my way to escape. The monkey left me, thank God!

These monkeys are everywhere. The thing is, you shouldn't feed them. But these monkeys look exhausted and hungry. I couldn't point fingers because this is human nature. I just thought what a way to end my journey in Batu Caves. With monkeys going for a kill at my soda in can.

For your Information
"They are a sacred place for the Hindus in Malaysia. They consist of three main caves and a number of smaller ones. The caves are made of limestone and 400 meters long and 100 meter high. They were discovered in 1892. From your hotel in the Golden Triangle you can reach the Batu Caves easily by taxi or public bus (11 and 11d). The public busses can be boarded at the Pudu Raya Bus Terminal in Kuala Lumpur."

At your arrival, you will be greeted by lots of monkeys. They are going for your peanuts and bananas, which you can buy in several shop, before you climb up to the caves. You have to climb 272 steps, which will lead you to the religious and magnificent Batu Caves. When you don't visit the Batu Caves at Thaipusum, they are still very beautiful. Every day there is a little celebration of a group of Hindus in the Batu Caves. Every time it's an imposing event, although there's no self torture. Temple Cave or Cathedral Cave is he best known and biggest of the caves. It's visited by many devotees. The ceiling is 100 m above the ground and this huge chamber is lighted by daylight from several holes in the ceiling. At the end of the caves you can see the bright sky, when you look above you. If you go up the stairs, you can meet a lot of long tailed-macaque monkeys and if you have peanuts with you, they'll climb to you as I won't consider recommending. You might fall though.

You can take photos of them, carrying their babies for the peanuts. There are locals in the entrance who will approach you to buy peanuts!

Long tailed-macaque monkeys: they love peanuts, but they love crisps also !

So i say to people travelin' around Kuala Lumpur, you must visit this site. Heck, i suggest spending more days here than in the busy city. Because finding enough reasons to go back to Kuala Lumpur is quite hard for me, but places like this gives me more reasons to understand the different facets of Malaysia. This one in particular boosts it.

Tips in going to Batu Caves:

1. Don't go in the middle afternoon, either go here early in the morning of just before the sun sets.

2. Keep quiet, for however this is a tourist spot, it's a sacred place for Hindus.  This is their place of worship. Respect.

3. Take time to sit in one of the benches and find yourself lost in a different world out there.

4. How to avoid the monkeys: Ignore, hope for the best, run.

5. Make sure you have everything you need like batteries, etc. Everything is more expensive on top.

6. Don't smoke before you climb 272 steps.

7. Drink loads of H20 to prevent nausea and heat stroke.

8. Go your own, avoid tour groups because everything is timed. You don't want to rush your adventure here, right?

9. Be careful with the steps, always go for the side railing for extra support just in case.

10. Pray.

Additional Info sourced from Here.

5 Comments:

you're right, monkeys should not be fed by visitors. mawiwili lang sila. tourists rin ang magsusuffer ng consequence.

This comment has been removed by the author.

i clearly remember your terror over the monkeys!!! hahaha sorry hindi kita natulungan nung time na yun. oddly they werent after me that time, hindi yata nila bet ang coke zero.

@pinaytraveljunkie

i know actually sabi naman do not feed the monkeys pero marami pa ring makukulit, kasabay ko may nagpapakain ng chips. hehe.. baka nauhaw kaya nung nakita yung coke ko ayun na! hehe actually eto lang yata gusto ko sa kuala lumpur, i should really check out malaysian borneo parang ang gaganda ng napuntahan niyo from your blog. a few nights ago, i was able to watch banged up abroad in sandakan re the abu sayyaf kidnapping in the island resort but that was a long time ago, i think meron na malaysian patrol coast guard everywhere.

@purpleprincess

hehe 272 steps! haaaay, for smokers, what a feat!