ULTIMATE To Do Kuala Lumpur – Bukit Bintang


Apart from the obvious KLCC Twin Tower area, Bukit Bintang is the second most sought after address for most businesses.

Bukit Bintang is well known to be the nightlife, lifestyle and shopping hub of Kuala Lumpur.

Just a quick recap, I have split the city into 4 areas, this article will cover the 2nd area:

  1. AREA 1: Merdeka Square Attractions (Historical)
  2. AREA 2: Bukit Bintang Attractions (Shopping, Fun, and Dining)
  3. AREA 3: KLCC Attractions (Modern and Traditional Side of KL)
  4. AREA 4: Botanical Gardens Area Attractions (Nature)

I will start with the most obvious attractions of Bukit Bintang:

Jalan Alor

Jalan Alor is the famous street food market in Kuala Lumpur. It is located conveniently next to the busy Changkat nightlife area.

The market is catering mostly for dinner and the late-night supper crowd that starts at around 6 pm all the way until around 3 am.

It is a very busy tourist area with a lot of food variety but biased to Chinese and Thai cuisines. Expect to be approached by the restaurant frontmen everywhere you go as restaurant competition is fierce.

Some of the Thai restaurants offer Halal food, so if you are a practicing Muslim, you could find something to eat here too. Always good to ask to be sure.

Try sitting inside the restaurant as possible as opposed to by the streets because you will be bothered by pushy salesmen selling random gifts that could get annoying over time.

The city council has refurbished a dirty back alley of Jalan Alor to make it an excellent place to take pictures. There are tonnes of millennials taking pics here on Instagram.

Although this place is generally safe, just like being in any other high traffic, major tourist place, always be careful of your belongings.

Apart from that, this is a great place to start or end your night with the cheapest beer you can get in this area before or after you hit the Changkat bars.

Changkat Bukit Bintang

This is the go-to area for nightlife in Kuala Lumpur. This place is open every night but is the busiest on Friday, Saturday and the eve of any public holidays.

Parking is quite a nightmare and expensive here. So it would be a great idea to just take public transportation or to use GrabCar to reach here.

I will be splitting Changkat into 2 sub-areas:

  • Changkat – The Main Strip
  • Changkat – Jalan Mesui

Changkat – The Main Strip Bars

Changkat is dead during the day. All restaurants will open in the evening for dinner and drinks

This is the main strip that has the most bars and restaurants. The mood of the area is high energy, to say the least. Perfect for dancing and mingling about.

The majority of the restaurants and bars are western-themed and expect the food and prices to reflect that as well.

Changkat Main Strip – Whiskey Bar

If you want to be in a relaxing bar to talk or be on a date, this might not be the place for you, you can head 2 rows down to Jalan Mesui for that.

Changkat – Halab Arab Restaurant

This is my personal favorite Arabic restaurant in Changkat. With a fabulous interior and is always occupied, it is an excellent place to meet and hang out with friends especially over indoor shisha (hookah).

Changkat – Restaurants & Bars – Jalan Mesui

On this stretch of road, 2 rows down from the busy Changkat area, you will find a calmer, more sophisticated atmosphere.

Mostly restaurants and speakeasy bars including a jazz bar.

Jalan Mesui – Isabel Restaurant & Bar

At Jalan Mesui, you can find several posh trendy restaurants such as Isabel. It’s perfect to bring a date for lunch, dinner or to celebrate a birthday.

Very chic interior
Charming Al-Fresco dining area

Isabel opening hours: 12 pm to midnight.
Isabel website.
Isabel Google Map.

Jalan Mesui – Feeka Cafe

Feeka Coffee is also a great cafe frequented by a lot of office workers, expats and tourists alike. It’s a great little cafe to take your break from exploring the city and get yourself some iced coffee and a slice of cake.

Feeka opening hours: 8 am to 11 pm.
Feeka Instagram page.
Feeka Google Map location.

Click on the link for more options on conducive cafes to work in Kuala Lumpur.

Jalan Mesui – No Black Tie

If you feeling extra sophisticated, there is a jazz bar called No Black Tie.

On weekend nights (Friday & Saturdays), they will always have a live mini-concerts featuring Jazz artists mostly from Asia.

They offer entry tickets and also tickets + dinner combo for a more memorable night out. A student discount is also available.

No Black Tie opening hours: 6 pm to 1 am.
No Black Tie website, Instagram.
No Black Tie Google Maps.

Heli Lounge Rooftop Bar

As the name suggests, it is a helipad on top of a skyscraper that is now converted into a bar.

The place is famous because you can enjoy a 360-degree view of the city skyline. Both the KL Tower and KLCC Tower will be unobstructed from this bar.

Most people come here to watch the sunset (which is at 7:20 pm), so come at around 7 pm.

Petronas Twin Towers view from Helipad Lounge Rooftop
Light show from the KL Tower

Located at the top of Menara KH. Check out their Facebook page to make sure that the place is not reserved for private events.

Lot 10 Mall

This mall is located smack in the middle of all the action. There’s Bukit Bintang Monorail station next to the mall. Driving here as in any other part of central Bukit Bintang is a nightmare and is not advisable.

Apart from the usual mall offerings, there are several unique selling points of this mall that I personally recommend:

Lot 10 – Japanese Food Court (Upper Level)

At level 4 of this mall, there is an all Japanese food court and as far as I can tell, it is owned and made by real Japanese people and is as close to the real deal as you can get in Kuala Lumpur.

The place is not so crowded as not many people know about it. So if you are sick of eating at a place where there are too many people, this is the place to be. The prices are competitive especially considering the central location.

The food quality is much better than mainstream Sushi chains in my opinion.

Check out their website. It seems that they are promoting the place with a lot of online discounts.

Lot 10 – Isetan Japanese Food Court (UG Level)

At the lower level of Isetan, there is another Japanese style food court. As it is run inside Isetan which is already an upscale outlet by itself, the food court is a little more premium than the one at level 4. Expect the prices to reflect the Isetan branding.

Much better quality than mainstream mall sushi chains

Lot 10 – Hutong Food Court

This food court at the Lower Level of Lot 10 mall offers predominately Chinese cooking. It is supposed to emulate Chinese style street hawkers. Even if you don’t like Chinese food, I think the place is still worth a stroll. You might see something you like or want to be adventurous enough to try!

Hutong Food Court’s beautifully done modern website.

Book Xcess – Fahrenheit 88 Mall

Book Xcess is a bookstore chain that sells new books at a ridiculous price of around or less than RM20 a book!

Since it is located along Jalan Bukit Bintang anyways, it definitely worth a pop in to see if you can pick up your next book for your bedtime or commute reading.

Read my article on bookstores in Kuala Lumpur here.

Pavilion Mall

The Pavilion is an upscale mall, arguably one of the fanciest after KLCC Twin Towers itself. It houses mostly upscale brands. Not a place to be if you want to shop on a budget.

The place is crowded no matter what time of the day or week. There is a Tokyo street food area on the top level of this mall. A few worth a mention are the Japanese Steamboat and also the fatty Tonkotsu Ramen.

Most Middle Eastern restaurants in Malaysia are Yemenis. Their specialty is the Lamb Mandy rice.

But there is Al-Amar Lebanese restaurant that is a bit different than Yemen cuisine. Personally, I love Lebanese cuisines better as I think they have more variety.

The restaurant is decorated very well and the prices are on the high side. But I definitely think the high prices are justified. Especially if you come during dinner while they have belly dance performances.

Al-Amar Lebanese restaurant Facebook Page.

Pavilion Mall website.

Arab Restaurants – Jalan Sultan Ismail

Low Yat & Imbi Plaza

This is the go-to place to purchase all things electronics such as cell phones, computers and it’s accessories.

Haggling and negotiating is a must. My personal recommendation is to ask for prices of the thing that you want starting from the ground level and work your way up. You will notice that the prices drop the further up you go inside the mall.

Busy high traffic mall. As always, be aware of your belongings at all times.

Berjaya Times Square

There is a hotel, mall and indoor theme park in Berjaya Times Square. It is also a hub where buses drop you off especially from Singapore.

The ground floor of the mall houses the normal shops that you usually find in malls, e.g. Starbucks, fast foods, etc. But at the higher level of the mall, there’s a lot of small boutique clothing shops.

The Imbi Monorail station attached to this mall. Across from the Berjaya Times Square, there is an Arab restaurant named Castle Restaurant. Their Shisha (or hookah) at RM20 is one of my favorites in Kuala Lumpur.

Operating Hours: 10 am – 10 pm.
Berjaya Times Square website.

KL Eco Forest Park (Bukit Nanas)

This is a small nature reserve in the middle of the city. It is right next to the KL Tower. The park is free to enter and surprisingly big enough to have tall enough trees to have a canopy walk.

Something to note: Because of the free entrance, none of the public toilet works. Something to take note of if you have a small bladder.

Opening Hours: 8 am to 6 pm.
KL Eco Forest website.

Lorong Raja Chulan Restaurants & Bars

Lorong Raja Chulan is located next to the KL Tower and KL Eco Forest Park. It is a road housing old colonial buildings that have been refurbished and changed into high-end restaurants and bars.

The place is mostly frequented for dinner and supper.

KL Tower

KL Tower on the left, Petronas Twin Towers on the right

Not to be confused with the twin towers, KL Tower is a single tower with a rotating observing and restaurant deck.

Operating Hours: 9 am – 10 pm.
KL Tower Website.

Wrapping It All Up

This article covers the vibrant and busy Bukit Bintang area. Check out my other articles that covers the other parts of Kuala Lumpur city:

  1. AREA 1: Merdeka Square Attractions (Historical)
  2. AREA 2: Bukit Bintang Attractions (Shopping, Fun, and Dining)
  3. AREA 3: KLCC Attractions (Modern and Traditional Side of KL)
  4. AREA 4: Botanical Gardens Area Attractions (Nature)

Helmi

Business owner and online content creator for balkonihijau.com.

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