One of KL’s best Malaysian restaurants, Bijan offers skilfully cooked traditional dishes in a sophisticated dining room that spills out into a tropical garden. Must-try dishes include rendang daging (dry beef curry with lemongrass), masak lemak ikan (Penang-style fish curry with turmeric) and ikan panggang (grilled skate with tamarind).
2. Jalan Alor
KL’s biggest collection of roadside restaurants sprawls along Jln Alor, just north of Jln Bukit Bintang. From around 5pm till late every evening, the street transforms into a continuous open-air restaurant, with hundreds of plastic tables and chairs and rival caterers shouting out to passers-by to drum up business.
3. Ikan Bakar Berempah
This excellent barbecued-fish stall sits within a hawker-stall market covered by a zinc roof and is one of the best places to eat in Kampung Baru. Pick your fish off the grill and add kampung-style side dishes to it off the long buffet.
4. Wong Ah Wah
At the southern end of the street, and justly famous for its seriously addictive chicken wings, this is an ideal spot for a late-night snack with a bottle of beer. A wide variety of other dishes is also served here.
5. Sri Nirwana Maju
There are far flashier Indian restaurants in Bangsar, but who cares about the decor when you can tuck into food this good and cheap? Serves it all from roti for breakfast to banana-leaf curries throughout the day.
6. Madras Lane Hawkers
Enter beside the Guandi Temple to find this alley of hawker stalls. It’s best visited for breakfast or lunch, with standout operators including the one offering 10 types of yong tau fu (vegetables stuffed with tofu and a fish and pork paste). The bah kuh teh (pork and medicinal herbs stew) and curry laksa stalls are also good.
7. Sek Yuen
Occupying the same beautiful, time-worn, art deco building for the past 60 years, Sek Yuen is a Pudu institution. Some of the aged chefs toiling in the wood-fired kitchen have served three generations the same old-school Cantonese dishes. The kau yoke (pork belly), village chicken and crispy-skin roast duck are all classics.
8. Glutton Street
Off the tourist radar but renowned locally, this hawker-stall alley near Pudu Market comes to life at night. Evening grazing could include addictive fried chicken, chai tow kway (radish cake stir-fried with soy sauce, bean sprouts and egg), prawn fritters and barbecued dried squid, all for bargain prices.
9. Kedai Makanan Dan Minuman TKS
On KL’s busiest food street is this nontouristy joint serving spicy Sichuan dishes. It’s all good, from the chilli oil fried fish to the gunpowder chicken buried in a pile of mouth-numbing fried chillies.
10. Acme Bar & Coffee
At just 2300 hectares, Penang National Park is the smallest in Malaysia; it’s also one of the newest, having attained national park status in 2003. It offers some interesting and challenging jungle trails, as well as some of the island’s finest and quietest beaches. Private guides and several boat operators can be found near the park entrance. Travel one way from Teluk Duyung (Monkey Beach) is RM50, from Pantai Kerachut is RM90 and from Teluk Kampi is RM100.