Travel Hacks: How to Photograph Kuala Lumpur in 48-hours

Photo Credit: Jorn Straten, Stampsy

Kuala Lumpur is a huge metropolis, and with sights and sounds in abundance, one cannot help but ponder upon the possibility of capturing all of its beauty and elegance within the duration of 48-hours through the lens of the camera.

What if we said it was perfectly possible, would you believe us? Here’s the recipe on how to do it!

DAY 1 

KLCC Park (7AM-9AM)

It’s best to begin your day on the right foot at none other than the tallest structure to ever scrape Malaysian skies – the Petronas Twin Towers. Upon arrival, scurry over to KLCC Park located at the back of the tower to capture some memorable moments.

Photo Credit: Locationscout

One possible shot is by angling your camera towards the tower and including the palm fronds and the lake into the frame for some depth. For the rising sun effect from the glass windows, try positioning your shot towards the first rays of morning sunlight that sparkles off the glass on both towers which also adds a silhouette effect.  

Photo Credit: Meetup

It would be an added point if you could include the fountains, as well as the early joggers and Tai Chi groups which serve as other subjects.

Chow Kit wet market (10AM – 1PM)

Your next destination would be Chow Kit wet market, especially during dawn when it is at its busiest.

Chow Kit wet market holds the title as the largest market in Kuala Lumpur. The place can be hectic and congested as vendors can be pushy in efforts to sell their goods creating a chaotic ambiance. Nevertheless, it is home to some natural shades and interesting subjects.

Photo Credit: Mole

Colours radiating from fruits and spices provide some richness, whilst characters who are willing to pose for a shot or 2. Of course, it would be courteous to request their consent before you start snapping away as not everyone is comfortable having a camera shoved into their face.

For some elaborate effect, polarizing filters help saturate the already radiant picture and reduce the glares reflected from the water, metal and ice.  If there is a lack of lighting, a flash will help eliminate those shadows.

How to get to Chow Kit wet market?

Make your way over to Raja Chulan monorail station and commute via monorail to Chow Kit monorail station costing you about RM1.20.  Upon exit of the station, walk along Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman and take a left to Jalan Raja Alang. Walk along the road and the market should be on the left. The whole journey should take about 40-mins.

Aquaria KLCC (4pm – 7pm)

After having your lunch, freshening up and chilling at your hotel,  you can now proceed back to KLCC mall, specifically Aquaria.

Photo Credit: Wazariwazir

Today, Aquaria is home to over 5,000 exotic marine and land creatures from across the globe, all within 60,000 sqt feet. Don’t miss out on the feeding sessions as well, surely one worthy for the photo albums. Here’s the list of feeding times and the venues within Aquaria.

Unlike the KLCC Park, however, Aquaria will incur admission fees as stated below:

Admission Rate (no MyKad) Admission Rate (with MyKad)
Adult RM65 RM46
Child (3 – 12 years old) RM56 RM37
Senior Citizen (60 years and above) RM46 RM37

* Free admission for children below 3 years old.

With so many creatures under one roof, it is very likely you would be spending some time here. Be wary when snapping photos with flash as it may startle the creatures within their confines, spelling disaster for the caretakers whose responsibility are to care for dangerous creatures like sharks, snakes and more. Monopods are also allowed if you’re into vlogging as well.

Jalan Bukit Bintang (8PM – 11PM)

As the day draws to a close, Jalan Bukit Bintang illuminates the night skies with its lights, hanging from the trees and lamp posts. The lightings are far more extravagant during festive seasons, a common feat thanks to the multicultural Malaysian society.

Photo Credit: The Patriots

For some camera effect, it would help to use the long shutter speed and angle the camera in order to get a trailing red and yellow effect from the speeding cars on the road.

In Jalan Bukit Bintang you can always find people at a standstill, often near the traffic light waiting to cross the road. They make good subjects, and with the effects from the trailing colours, your shots will look captivating.

How to get to Jalan Bukit Bintang?

Board the LRT from KLCC to Dang Wangi LRT station. Upon exit walk along Jalan Ampang until you arrive at Bukit Nanas monorail station on your right. Board the monorail to Bukit Bintang and you would arrive at Jalan Bukit Bintang upon exit of the monorail station. Altogether, it should cost you RM1.50 with a travel duration of approximately 40-mins.

DAY 2 

Masjid Jamek (7AM-9AM)

It will only make sense to begin day 2 of your 48-hour photography at Masjid Jamek. It is the oldest mosque in KL and is located on the very spot on which the city took shape.  

Photo Credit: Berita Daily 

Position yourself to capture the dome and minaret of the mosque which projects a silhouette effect from the dawning light. The geometric shapes on the mosque can also be used as an abstract effect adding extra depth to your photos.

Photo Credit: Quranicgen

Religion is a central part of the Malaysian society, so it pays to be vigilant and respectful of their privacy and regulation on holy grounds.  

Religious venues are often populated with people, thus making excellent subjects for your photos. You are still able to stand at a distance and capture the photos as well.

KL Bird Park (10AM – 1PM)

The KL Bird Park is an excellent area to add some depth to your 48-hour photography frenzy. Instead of human beings, you can add birds to the mix.

Photo Credit: World for Travel

The KL Bird Park is home to 3,000 species of birds from over 200 species of local and foreign birds. They are placed in aviaries, which are very similar to their natural habitat.

When snapping pictures in this humongous aviary, try adjusting your camera’s shutter speed as you transition between different locations, in and out of sunlight. With colourful birds, lush greenery and relaxing nature-like setting, you can also play around with the saturation setting on your camera to bring out the colours in your photos.

The KL Bird Park is open from 9AM – 6PM with admission fee as stated below:

Admission Rate (no MyKad) Admission Rate (with MyKad)
Adult RM63 RM25
Child (3 – 11 years old) RM42 RM12

* Free admission for children below 3 years old.

How to get to KL Bird Park?

Simply board the train from Masjid Jamek LRT station to KL Sentral LRT station and interchange to the KTM Komuter to Kuala Lumpur KTM station. Upon exit of the station walk along Jalan Sultan Hishamuddin, take the first exit at the roundabout into Jalan Perdana. Follow the road and take a right into Jalan Cenderawasih. The entrance should be on the right. This journey should cost RM2.00 with a travel duration of 40-mins.


KL Forest Eco Park (10AM – 1PM)

Similar to the Masjid Jamek old mosque, the KL Forest Eco Park lies in the heart Kuala Lumpur, approximately a 15-minute drive away from the former.

Photo Credit: Lonely Planet

Being 11,000 sqf wide, you are bound to have loads of nature-themed photos, especially atop their canopy walk which suspends 200m in length. It also provides a sweeping view of the Menara KL Tower and the KL Skyline nearby.

Photo Credit: Vietravel

Look out for wildlife like birds, monkeys and other small mammals that would give your photos a Discovery Channel-like feel.

There are also other facilities like the playground, campsites and wooden gazebos which make good backgrounds for a worthy photo session coupled with other fellow visitors.

How to get to KL Forest Eco Park?

There’s no need for public transportation from Masjid Jamek to the KL Forest Eco Park, purely accessible within walking distance. Walk along Jalan Tun Perak and take a left on  Jalan Hang Lekiu. You should then take the first right and then left into Jalan Raja Chulan. Follow the road until you see the park entrance on the left. It should take about 15-mins to arrive at your destination.

Petaling Street (6PM – 8PM)

This would be your final stop for your whole 48-hour journey. At this hours Petaling Street would be flooded with bodies, having to jostle pass the masses to move around. Hence, be wary of your belongings and equipment as it might get damaged or stolen if not vigilant. 

Photo Credit:

On the bright side, this heavily populated area is filled with reliable subjects. You can add some blurring effects to the people walking past. This will require you to mess around with the ISO settings in your camera to be able to execute such shots.  

How to get to Petaling Street?

Petaling Street is quite accessible. You must make your way back to Masjid Jamek LRT station situated near Masjid Jamek, board the train and disembark at Pasar Seni LRT station. You will then have to walk along Jalan Sultan before arriving at the southern entrance of Petaling Street. The whole journey should take approximately 15-mins and cost RM1.20.


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