June 19, 2017 Catherine Mendoza 12Comment

Malaysia

the first country that I’ve traveled solo and so, my heart was jumping in joy when I set my foot again for the third time. Specifically, Kuala Lumpur’s twin towers that captive my heart.

First Time Couchsurfing

Have you heard of it? If you haven’t, well, Ima give you a bit background about it. It is a platform where you can stay at a stranger’s house for free when you’re traveling, of course you have to be careful and choose your host wisely and be nice all the time. 

Luckily, my host was a nice local person. It was actually great and fun more than what I had expected. Experiencing this chance to getting along with a stranger but also a fellow traveler  was a bit doubtful for me at first but then I was in good hands all throughout.  You may want to learn more about it here My first time couchsurfing experience  

Trying out Local Cuisines 

You may have not known but Kuala Lumpur has one of the sumptuous cuisines I’ve ever tasted and remarkably most restaurants come with buffet which is relatively cheap. Can you believe that the cheapest food you can find here is as low as .50c? This restaurant is called Restoran Sambal Hijau in Petaling Jaya. There are varieties of sweets and drinks too! Although, I’m bad at remembering the name of each foods I ate, I would still strongly suggest to you have a taste of the mouth watering dishes without hurting your pocket. Nazi Lemak is my best recommendation. It is a Malay fragrant rice dish cooked in coconut milk and pandan leaf.

The photo below is a just a snap of what it looks like at most restaurants in Kuala Lumpur. You’ll get really full and not even spending much bucks. Trust me!

After getting stuffed with the delectable cuisine, my host Zikri took me a to a nice cafe shop where we some locals go to and find their quiet time.  Do you know that Petaling Jaya has numerous of cafes too? And some of them served local coffee.  Although this is quite far from the main city of Kuala Lumpur, you’d still feel the vibe and chill of the cafes that usually presence and can be found in the big cities.

Seriously, #coffee can make your #day 😍 ☕️#escapesanddiaries✏️ in her #southeast #asian #trips #latepost #couhsurfing👣✅📍☺️

A post shared by Cathy, Filipina Blogger ✈️ (@escapesanddiaries) on

I only stayed in Kuala Lumpur for a couple of days, like what I’ve said, I’ve been here twice already and this time was my third. Unfortunately, on my last night, something unfortunate happened.

Experiencing Discrimination in the most unpleasant way

Zikri and were I supposed to have a drink and hang out at Reggae Mansions rooftop bar. At the reception area, there were 1 staff on the phone and 2 Bangladesh security guards ( Bangladesh according to my him). I smilingly and politely approached the security that we would love to go to the rooftop bar. He said no you can’t. I asked him why? He said because the rooftop bar is open for guests only. It got me a little upset and continued to ask him since when? He only said that depends on the management. I didn’t ask further but he was evidently not wanting us to enter. He was even grinning like a Manchester cat that’s a bit insulting. We left. As we stepped out of the door, we bumped into this group of white girls and guys.

Prior to that, we already bumped into them on the road while we were on our way, probably, they were also looking for a place to drink or hang out. As we went out, I wanted to inform them that they can’t go up to the rooftop bar because they’re not checked in guests which I didn’t. I was expecting them to be declined like we were but NO. As we walked our way back to where we parked our car, I looked back at them and click! THEY LET THEM IN. HOW COME?

I didn’t go back and confront the hostel staff about what happened because I didn’t want to make any scene. In my mind, maybe they’ve had just changed the regulation so that’s acceptable. Even so, I told my friend that I’m going to send their management an email or a direct message on Facebook to confirm if that was true. I hurriedly ran back to my room to check their website if there was any regulation stating to NON-GUEST AT the rooftop bar policy. I DIDN’T FIND ANY. I sent a direct msg and ONLY SEEN and an email, no response at all. RACIST, ISN’T IT?

I read from their website that they don’t accept locals to book via online, but they can somehow walk in but that still depends on the availability of the room. Was that because I was with a local that night and I look like a local because I’m Asian? STILL NO.

I was disheartened to be treated this way by their staff because I personally like this hostel and I had once stayed here before on my second time in Kuala Lumpur.

After that night of incident, I felt really bad because during the times that I have been traveling, I’ve never experienced such a disgraceful act especially from Asian like me. Anyhow, I thank Zikri for looking after me. We just dropped by to see the twin towers and then finally headed back to his flat to have our drink.  I hope you won’t experience the same incident I had and if you ever did, I hope you fight back and get the justice you deserve.

The next day, I took a bus to Singapore as my second destination. I didn’t let the last part of my journey here ruin my entire trip. This time, I had a better and amazing story.  Thats gonna be on my next writing. Stay tuned! 

If you liked my story, please feel free to share or comment. 

                                             Thanks for reading! ♡

12 thoughts on “Local cuisines, couchsurfing and experiencing discrimination. Kuala Lumpur for the third time around

  1. Couchsurfing is no doubt an interesting idea.I would love to try it sometimes. seems like particularly popular in south east asia

  2. I have read a lot about couchsurfing, but not tried it myself. I see you had a good host. I guess it all depends on the host you get. But the advantage is that yo get to have a local and immersive experience as you get closer to local culture.

  3. Never experience couchsurfing and I’m not sure if I will. Maybe yes if my host love to drink and stay late hahaha. I love KL but I know a lot of racist incidents going around the city specially with the hostel industry. Some of my volunteer friends in Bangkok who went to KL to volunteer in a hostel was advised not to accept any asean guests of people from middle east. That’s so racist!

  4. Disheartening tlga yang pagiging racist ng ilang bars. When I get back to KL, I’ll see if we could enter without being hotel guests. Haha, matry lang! Kung hindi tyo pinapasok, magiging viral tlga sila. Lol xD

  5. I can understand your frustration at the discrimination metted out but hey, look at the bright side. You had an awesome host who took you to experience the local scene. I am glad you enjoyed KL enough to be there thrice already !

  6. You were lucky with your Couchsurfing experience. As with me, unless I know the person I’m staying with I am no longer doing that couchsurfing thing. You know already why. But do you think you can introduce me to your friend so I have someone to tour me around? I will only be in Kuala Lumpur for a day.

    So sorry about your experience at Reggae Mansions. So far I haven’t been discriminated in a country, although I did get scammed. I don’t know what I would have done if it happened to me, probably I’d just let it go but I’m definitely going to write about it.

  7. I am sorry to be responding this late to this thread but here goes. You have poured out your heart in explaining what happened to you in that hotel. Let us give a benefit of doubt to those guards and be happy. For all we know, those white people maybe the personal guests of the management. Who knows? And in case, you are planning to come over to Delhi, please contact me. I promise there will be no racism at all!

  8. Couchsurfing seems safe from your experience. I think it is a matter of luck too to get the right kind of hosts with whom you can connect. Too bad about the security guards not letting you in. Wish they take some action on this.

  9. I’ve always wanted to try couch surfing but for some reason never have. I’ve heard many people have really good experiences with it. Also, I recently met someone who said KL was their all time favorite place they’ve visited. I’ve only been there on a long layover and definitely want to go back as it seems like a really incredible place, sans the racism you experienced (I really hate to hear that, by the way).

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