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Old 11th February 2011, 12:46 PM   #1 (permalink)
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KL not that tourist-friendly?

KL not that tourist-friendly?



Several tourists said more could be done to improve their sojourn in the city on foot more pleasant.

By Dawn Chan, New Straits Times | Sat, Feb 5 2011


KUALA LUMPUR - There is no mistaking the popularity of Kuala Lumpur as a holiday destination, but several tourists Streets spoke to said more could be done to improve their sojourn in the city on foot more pleasant. Swedish tourist Ann Carlbrand, who was into her third day in the city, gave two thumbs up for the maps she picked up for providing comprehensive details on places she wanted to visit.

"However, when I made my way on foot to the area, it was difficult to ascertain if I was in the right place because there were no street signs to indicate where I was," said the 49-year-old information technology consultant.

Carlbrand was spotted at Lebuh Pasar Besar together with her husband and teenage daughter trying to navigate their way to Dataran Merdeka recently.

She added that pedestrian walkway in the city was not user-friendly as they had come across stretches that were not suitable for the handicapped or parents using strollers.

At some areas, Carlbrand found pedestrian walkways elevated much higher than the roads, making it difficult to get on them.

On commuting by trains, Carlbrand found it confusing to change from one line to another at the Masjid Jamek station as it was not integrated.

"We also had to purchase tickets for respective lines. I wished it was merged into one to make it hassle-free," she said.

However, the Swede praised tourist attractions such as the National Museum, Little India and Chinatown as the places she had fun the most. She also said that it was heartwarming to observe people from all walks of life, regardless of race and religion, living in harmony.

"I like it that the authorities allow shopping complexes here to remain open until 10pm. That's something because back home stores close early. It is nice to see that even late into the night, the city is still very much alive and vibrant," she said.

Australians Luke Hunter and Alex Dudas loved the fact that Kuala Lumpur reminded them of Melbourne when they spotted graffiti art in several areas around the city.

"It reminds us of home. We love the climate here. Everyone is friendly. We have been walking around the city and everything has been good so far. The train services are really good, too," said 40-year-old Hunter.

However, Hunter and Dudas, 31, said they found some discrepancies on the maps they obtained.

Over at KL Sentral, the duo said they experienced difficulties soliciting information from its customer service counter.

"We were getting contradicting information. The directions weren't clear, making us confused," said Hunter when met at Jalan Raja Chulan near Menara KL.

Students from Denmark Liva Thoft and Sarah Holm Jacobsen, (pictured on cover) who were in Kuala Lumpur for the first time, said they had a hard time trying to get help for directions.

Twenty-year-old Jacobsen said they were turned away by some people when they tried to find places marked on maps.

"Most of them just nodded their heads and walked away. However, one woman who saw us struggling with the map, offered help. We wish there were more people like her."

Nonetheless, Thoft said they liked the wide roads in the city and the spacious pedestrian pathways which made their exploration on foot pleasant.

Felix Tubiana and Tim Lawrence from United States, who hopped on the Express Rail Link from Cyberjaya to get to KL Sentral, praised its good service.

However, upon alighting from the train, Tubiana and Lawrence from New York and Los Angeles, respectively, had a hard time finding their way out of the station to start their journey on foot to explore the neighbouring areas.

"There were no clear signs as to where we should exit and we found it difficult to make our way on foot as KL Sentral is surrounded by highways. I asked for a map at the information counter and was given one, but unfortunately the person manning the counter did not offer us any help or recommend places to visit.

"In certain areas, we found the pedestrian pathways not well maintained," said Tubiana when met at the Bangunan Abdul Samad building.

Korean Hwang Yun Hee, who is on a six-month student exchange programme, proposed that shelters be built at pedestrian pathways at tourist attractions or wherever deemed suitable.

"Sometimes the weather gets too hot and it tends to rain a lot over here, too. So a sheltered walkway would protect us from the elements. I hope the relevant authorities will look into incorporating English translations on road signs or on signages at tourist attractions.

Most of them are in Bahasa Malaysia and I often get lost because of this," said the 23-year-old. Hwang, who was spotted walking around Dataran Merdeka with her parents and brother, also said there was a lack of tourist information booths and hope more will be set up.

Source: http://www.relax.com.sg/relax/news/5...friendly_.html

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Old 2nd March 2011, 11:31 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: KL not that tourist-friendly?

KL is good for certain shopping centres, a handful tourist attractions and especially food.

The rest of it are terrible - road, public transport, security, urban planning, convenience etc.


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Last edited by 2405; 2nd March 2011 at 11:33 AM.
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