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Buildings, temples and eateries not cutting it for the kids? KL has plenty to keep the young ones entertained – and most activities are great for adults too.
Located on the top floor of the Suria KLCC mall (the shopping centre that sits at the base of the Petronas Twin Towers), Petrosains science museum is a great hands-on experience for children and adults. Covering areas such as oil (Petrosains is part of Malaysia's Petronas oil conglomerate), technology, geology, chemistry and sport, the interactive museum has exhibits for everyone. Kids can explore the petroleum industry, come face-to-face with a dinosaur, become an inventor, and even try their hands at driving a Formula 1 car.
KL Bird Park
Home to over 3,000 birds, the KL Bird Park combines education with fun. Located in the Lake Gardens, the park's four zones let visitors get up close and personal with all 200 species of tropical bird. Huge walk-in, free-flight aviaries make up Zones 1 and 2 where children and adults can see twice-daily feeding of the birds (including an impressive eagle feeding display at 2:30pm each day), while Zones 3 (Hornbill Park) and 4 contain birds in smaller, more protective aviaries. Just 10 minutes outside the Golden Triangle, the KL Bird Park is more than a animal-friendly activity – it's a refreshing family break from the centre of the city.
A little further outside the city, hidden among the treetops of Taman Pertanian, Shah Alam, is SkyTrex Adventure – perhaps the ultimate children's playground. SkyTrex calls its equipment 'aerial obstacles'. In reality, it's a series of linked rope bridges, swings, flying foxes and treetop challenges, ranging from three to 22 metres off the ground. Trips begin with a safety briefing and information on how to use the harnesses, carabiners and ropes before moving to the test track and eventually onto the real course. Choose from Little Adventure, Big Thrill and Extreme Challenge for a 30 minute to three hour test of varying difficulty and height.
Sharks, piranhas, electric eels, turtles, giant garoupa – Aquaria KLCC's list of attractions reads like the cast of a children's cartoon. And a trip to the city-centre aquarium has all the adventure you'd expect of a top family destination. With touch pools, talks and tours for learning, Aquaria KLCC ticks the education boxes, while a huge variety of sealife and activities – including shark feeding at 3pm on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays – ensure the kids have a whale of a time.
With a steamy tropical climate, Kuala Lumpur is loaded with indoor attractions that will appeal to children. Your best bet is to head indoors to perk up your kids with cool activities. Here is Forbes Travel Guide’s editors’ list of the best things to do with kids in Kuala Lumpur.
1. Visit Kuala Lumpur Bird Park. A short cab ride from the city center, kids will love the park’s free-flight, walk-in aviary which is the world’s largest. There are 3,000 birds here, including peacocks. For a break from the heat, stop by the taxidermy building.
2. Go to the aquarium. Kuala Lumpur’s aquarium, Aquaria KLCC, is perpetually packed with families taking in the sharks and stingrays. It’s nice and cool indoors and it’s an especially good way to while away a rainy afternoon.
3. Visit the butterfly park. This is a good, short activity for younger kids, who will be stimulated by all the colors, and a longer one for older kids who dig nature. The grounds are lush and house more than 6,000 butterflies from more than 120 species.
4.Walk through a market. Central Market is packed with stalls selling all sorts of jewelry, small toys, and snacks. If you’re looking for souvenirs or gifts, this is where to come.
5. Take a dip. Beautiful KLCC Park offers plenty of shade and has an immaculate playground and children’s pool, deep enough for adults to cool off, too.