Saturday, June 23, 2012

Petaling Street (茨廠街) and its Surrounding in the Morning @ Chinatown, Kuala Lumpur (吉隆坡) [Malaysia]

In many travel guides, Petaling street is often said to be THE place for counterfeit products with the focus on its night market. But, i would strongly recommend a visit in the morning when the street is cleared of any makeshift stalls.

It's an entirely different feel and given the lack of human traffic that is quite tormenting at night time, we can relax our pace and take in the sights of century old buildings.

Our first point of contact - the morning wet market.

For the younger generation in Singapore, this is a typical scene of the wet markets in Singapore approximately fifteen years ago! Back then, regulations on display of fresh meat were pretty lax and they were sold openly on the counter, exposing themselves to bacteria in the hot, humid weather.

Live chickens were also delivered to the market for slaughtering to ensure their freshness. It was a messy business and the raw smell of blood lingered in the air; definitely not for those with nasal sensitivity.

We reached too early that morning (around 8.45am) although some stalls were already open for business. I guess a good time to visit would be around 11am when many shops (not stalls) start their business operation.

Most importantly, my purpose that day was to get some breakfast! It's not a difficult task since the street has quite a number of stalls hawking food like deep fried sweet potato balls.

Plastic chairs and collapsible tables lined the street for this pretty famous stall with over seventy years of history that sells porridge and chee cheong fun. I had them a long time ago and thought they were good (and cheap) albeit not exceptional.

I would have loved to try the roast ducks (people were raving about them on the web) but the serving was too much for both Alex and I. We could not stomach half a duck (their minimum order) and it would be so wasteful! 

Tried a box of muah chee from the queen if muah chee. Check out my review here.

Unlike at night, the street is open for vehicles to weave in and out. So be very careful as the street is very narrow and the cars can get very close.

All the power points outside the shops were there for a structural reason; power for the makeshift stalls that cluttered the street at night.

The existence of a flea market caught me by surprise as i didn't remember it in my last visit to Petaling street which was over two years ago.

A temple that worships the Chinese God of War; Guan Yu.

Stone lion outside the temple's entrance with a slip that asked worshipers not to place any incense sticks in the lion's mouth, which is a common practice.

The major renovation in 2003 saw the installation of a green roof stretching the entire touristy section of Petaling street. The wavering design of the roof has given it a well deserved, cultural title: the green dragon.

Despite the period being Malaysia's school holiday, i saw a group of students taking paper and pencil to draw out the heritage essence of Petaling street.

Delivery man making his rounds. From the look of the boxes, they were destined for the fruit stalls.

Bouquets of beautiful flowers for sale! Compared to Singapore's pricing, they were a steal starting from as low as RM5 for the ones on the bottom left of the picture.

Unknown to many tourists, KL Chinatown has a number of shops (some as high as four storeys) providing wholesale pricing for lady accessories, bags and gifts.

However, the wholesale price would only be given if you buy more than ten of the same item. This might be a deterrant although you might wish to note that most of the time, the wholesale price is more than fifty percent off the original!

For a miser like me, it is the main reason why i always visit Petaling street in the morning.

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