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Travel With Bender

Uncovering the best family holidays

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Our Kids Love The KLCC Playground & Petrosains Discovery Centre

KLCC Playground

Nothing prepares you for this playground, it seems to stretch for miles, and as a matter of fact it actually covers 2 acres. Next to it is also a public wading pool with waterfall and toilets. The 2 acres is part of a 50-acre park in total, so ask for direction or read the maps and avoid wandering the grounds for hours.

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Finding it for us was not a major issue, as my husband is a wiz with maps, however my biggest problem with this park is keeping track of the children. The playground has multiple levels with anything from swings, slides, monkey bars, etc. And they wanted to try everything and be everywhere.

We have visited the city centre several times now. The whole of KLCC is one big underground car park so parking is fantastic; remembering where you parked and how to get there is a whole other matter. However, you come up the lift to Suria Shopping Mall.

Suria is a multilevel shopping centre mainly selling designer brands. They have a great cinema and on the top floor you can find the Petrosains Discovery Centre. Once you go outside the doors you find a large man-made lake, which has a great water fountain display. Come 8/8:30pm the lights turn on and the music and you can simply watch a musical water display to arrival that of Vegas. People crowd the lake every evening to watch, and it’s definitely worth a moment.

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Past the lake & wading pool you hit the playground. Our first visit we made it about 7pm. The sun was no longer beating down and the kid’s enjoyed the spaciousness completely. My paranoid mothering side was more worried about the growing dark and where they were and whom they were with. But this worry is completely overshadowed by the glowing twin towers. As evening hits they light up like a Christmas tree and you can understand the growing number of people standing around with cameras in hand & on tripods, awaiting the coming darkness.

Our second trip to the playground was made with our friends from Lemonade with Lemons. Again in the evening the kid’s had an absolute blast playing for hours. Afterwards we grabbed some pastries, cheese & crackers, etc. from the grocery store and sat on the grass to watch the water-light display before all heading home with very happy, sleepy children.

Highly recommend a visit here. Come about 4ish (after the heat), have an early dinner or head straight to the park, have a swim, a play and then watch the light display with a picnic or just with a camera. It makes for a simply lovely afternoon out, a whole day if you want to add the movies or Petrosains as well.

Petrosains Discovery Centre 

A shameless self-promotion of the mighty oil conglomerate, yet a refreshing positive piece of propaganda you will not find in Australia anywhere.

This Discovery Centre is located on the 4th floor. The middle elevators will get you there, but not the fastest way. They are often full and take a number of trips before finally reaching an empty one. We braved the escalators with the prams instead of waiting.

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We arrived late on a Sunday afternoon about 4:30pm with our friends. The Suria mall was crazy with shoppers on Sunday, especially since it is Arab holidays. I was a tad nervous choosing a weekend for the trip, however the late entry actually worked in our favour with a minimal amount of people inside.

Entry was about $8 per adult,  $5 per child 3 – 12 and under 2’s free.  It’s closed Monday’s, but open every other day from 9:30am to 5:30pm/6:30pm on weekends.

On entry you hop on a ride, which goes through a dark tunnel showing movies and bits and pieces about the how and why of producing oil. My frightened/tired 3 year old was scared of the darkness, but honestly there is nothing scarey about it, except the dark. I gave her my iPhone flashlight, which helped calm the nerves… Honestly where did this fear come from? The last few days we have been working on this by singing a little song from the Veggietales every time she get’s scared: “God is bigger than the boogeyman, He’s bigger than Godzilla or the monsters on TV. Oh God is bigger than the boogeyman and He’s watching out for you and me.” She loves the little diddy and I like to think it’s working, time will tell.

Totally off topic, sorry! Check out dental blog for more information on origins of fear.

Back to the Discovery Centre. It’s a giant science museum all based on the oil company. You can dig in tractors, touch mirages (I will always treasure this memory of Caius trying to catch a mirrored car mirage and not working out why he couldn't just grab it, he studied it for a long time), go in a booth to feel hurricane winds, ride motor cars, throw baseballs to clock your arm speed, visit with dinosaurs (kids were not to sure about that one, still learning pretend from real), draw, play, and more.

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Despite the shameless self-promotion and green effects aside the centre is fabulous for kids. There is so much to touch and do & they can just run free. There is no need to say “don’t touch”, “come back”, “don’t walk there” as nearly everything in the centre is hand’s on. My kids loved their freedom and I loved not having to be the “no” mum.

There is playground for the real little one's half way... and for parent rest. There is oil rigging to climb and an evacuation chute to climb down. You even get to see crew quarters, how they sleep, where they eat. I am surprised there was no sign up sheet at the end... not that I could sleep on a bunk in a cell like that.

We spent at least 1.5 hours in there and if the kid’s weren’t so tired, because of the long day we could have spent longer. Towards the end we had to stand in line to leave the centre the same way we came in, on the ride. This was a rather terrible ending as it was closing time the line was extensive, specially when all you want to do is get out!  After we were finally out the kids were stoked to pick up some tiny dinosaur toys to fit in our suitcase. 

Goodbye to Travelling Friends

Standing outside the Petrosains in the Suria Mall we said goodbye to our friends that we first met in Bali. It had been a great week with them here in KL. Travelling can sometimes be a lonely life. We try to make friends wherever we go so when we get to meet up with fellow travellers and share experiences with them it is always a special time. Especially with like-aged children to keep each other amused. We wish Lemonade with Lemons all the best with their travels and look forward to catching up somewhere else in Asia. After all who would have thought a family from Sydney and one from Perth would have met & hung out in Bali & KL?  The travelling community is a great source of knowledge and inspiration to us & it’s been a pleasure doing KL with you guys.

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