This time we learned the lesson, we booked a nice night bus by ourself and we reached Yangon. After a short rest we reached the airport for the second part of the trip. Around midnight we arrived in Kuala Lumpur. Remember that the fixed price to reach the city with a taxi is 60MYR (12€). Don't take the train, faster but way more expensive! In fact after the train we have been forced to take a taxi to the hotel. Arriving I forgot about everything else and looking up I realized that I was finally going to enjoy KL and its architecture.
After an amazing breakfast at the Concorde hotel we started to explore the city. It was my first time in KL and I wanted to stop there before going to the Philippines. I'm super happy about my decision because the city gave me a new energy that Burma drained completely.
It's clear that it's not a regular city in south east Asia. It's modern, functional, extremely clean. Like a friend said, it's a midway between Bangkok and Singapore.
After an amazing breakfast at the Concorde hotel we started to explore the city. As I said it's super clean, ordered and organized, not everywhere obviously. A multicultural city with three communities. Founded by the Chinese, that were representing the biggest part of the population till few years ago. The biggest community nowadays, the Malaysian one and the one represented by Indians. Kuala Lumpur means "muddy confluence" because it has been build as a village in the beginning on the confluence of the two rivers Gombak and Kelang.
Now it's a modern cosmopolitan metropolis, evolving continuously, among the jungle. Obviously there's also the battered a shabbiness of the huge cities in this part of the world. Sad public buildings, electrical cables everywhere, bad condos. So there's the old typical KL with its markets and the ultramodern one.
Finally, after a long walk we arrived where I enjoyed KL and its architecture at its best. The Petronas Twin Towers. I've always dreamed to see them in real life. I've always been amazed by architecture in general but those tower fascinated me since I was a kid. First watching "Entrapment", then when Sepang became the new circuit of Formula 1 and Moto gp races.
The Petronas Twin Towers are impressive. I have never seen the Twin Towers in NYC unfortunately, but even after my trip in NY, couple of months before, I've to say that they are better than any other building, speaking about skyscrapers.
Inside there are offices and a huge mall, but most of all a lot of air-conditioning. The most useful thing to enjoy a long wait. Before to reach a friend we also took a walk around KLCC Park. Then we had a drink in the most underrated place in the area, the Traders hotel. As I always say, there's nothing better than to explore a place with a local! It changes your stay, entirely!
The bar with the pool on the top was unexpectedly empty and quiet. Perfect chance to talk, relax and taking pictures of the Twin Towers with the beautiful sunset lights!
Then our friend Ong brought us at Lot 10, an amazing place where to enjoy Chinese/Malaysian street food. A huge variety of choices of amazing food. It would have been impossible to find it by ourself. Then our other friend Saran took us for a nice night walk though the authentic city and gave us some nice tips! It's amazing meeting great people around the world!
If you are in KL Batu Caves are a must do in the city. Take a Grab (extremely cheap here) and enjoy the famous colored staircase. I have to admit that I thought it was way more steep than I experienced. The climb was super fast and easy but the perk was not as good as I imagined. I mean I thought it was less touristy but anyway nice and worth it. Anyway once there there's a nice view and the funniest animal ever, a lot of monkeys. I could stay hours staring at them.
Once back I took a walk around to discover a bit more about Kuala Lumpur. I didn't have precise stop or aim, just a random walk wandering around. Getting a bit lost you always have the best chance to find some nice spot or interesting glimpse of urban life.
Then it was absolutely necessary to take advantage of the amazing and cheap hotel we have been able to find and chilling at the pool with a great Petronas view. The best way to forget for a while about our flight back to Italy cancelled due to the Covid_19.
The last night we met our amazing Japanese friend Natzukioro after meeting in Tokyo a month earlier. I saw more often her than most of my friends in Venice in the last four months! Then I wanted absolutely to take some pictures of the Petronas Towers. Since I decided to travel with a super light luggage I didn't have a tripod but my Canon EOS R and my steady arm helped me a lot. Even with high ISO the result was great to me. Finally I had the picture of my favorite architecture ever.
In the morning, learning from our mistakes, we booked a Grab for the really long way to the airport. I spent just couple of days here but I've been positively impressed by this city. KL and its architecture are what I've always dreamt to see, but I loved the city in general. Its life, the energy, many different people, cultures and food. I am sure I will come back here sooner or later. However now it's time for Philippines.
After we changed our plans deciding to skip Hsipaw we made another big mistake, we trusted in the staff of the reception and we booked a van that should have brought us from the hotel in Mandalay to the new one. We were definitely looking forward for a beautiful Inle break before a different Asia. Well the van cost 8,5€ and we stayed on board almost 7 hours. We stopped several times because the driver needed also to deliver packages. The road was crazy while climbing the mountain and 3 burmese ladies vomited all the time due to that situation. But ok, no bid deal, we were just thinking about our new accommodation dreaming about a nice rest.
Once we arrived about 20km far from the new place the driver stopped and left us on the side of a big road, telling us that he was going to the city center not to ur resort and consequently we should have taken a taxi. Coincidentally along that road there were 5 taxi drivers (all his friends) asking us if by chance we needed a ride.
After paying 30€ for a 15 minutes taxi ride (twice as much as the 7 hours trip) we finally arrived at the Inle Resort & Spa and we spent the 4 more relaxing days in a paradise for a super convenient price. The better spent money of the whole trip! The place is huge and immerse between trees and palms. There’s an amazing silence and simply beautiful quiet atmosphere, here you can do nothing but relax. Above all the place is on the lake and the best thing to do is to lay on a bench chair and enjoy the sunset on the dock on the lake. I just wanna cry thinking about that.
Once there I thought that I wouldn’t have used my camera at all but the spot is too pretty and I didn't resist, so I took some pictures with my Canon EOS R and the Canon 24-70mm f/2.8 and thanking to that I was able to achieve pretty nice pictures even without a tripod since that camera has a great noise management at high ISO.
We spent our days between the swimming pool, the restaurant and the pier on the lake simply enjoying the sweet doing nothing, recharging batteries after the previous days that we spent mostly on transportations.
We decided also to take a bicycle ride to the city center to explore a bit but it was an exception! A lucky one anyway because since we stopped for a massage we found also an organized boat tour of the lake the day after. Certainly the best chance to discover the beauties of Inle Lake!
Early in the morning of the third day we had the pick up and we were just 3 people on the boat. The trip is noisy but relaxing and along the way there are beautiful landscaped and scenarios with the local’s daily life
Along the way we stopped several time to appreciate local markets and amazing locals handcrafted activities, first of all we enjoyed the silver manufacturing
another stop was dedicated to the textile manufacturing of the precious silk extracted from the lotus flower
furthermore we appreciated the ability of those ladies at the loom,
and finally we saw the tobacco manufacturing, also the flavored one
We also stopped to see some pagodas and local life around them. Even more the trip on the way back gave us the chance to appreciate beautiful glimpses of Inle's life on the lake. That one was a thing that I liked a lot considering the amazing scenarios with houses on the water and the quiet around.
Finally, back at the resort we used the time simple being lazy to continue the beautiful Inle break . We also to book the night bus back to Yangon. I took some time to enjoy the last sunset in one of the best places I’ve been during the trip. I seriously was almost going to cry thinking about leaving the day after. I seriously had a beautiful Inle break before a different Asia
The last day we enjoyed every second after the check out. We stayed at the pool simple waiting to leave and reach the bus on our road to Yangon. This time bit more afraid (without a real reason actually, just bit psychotic) about corona virus, to enjoy the turning point of the trip.