Batu Caves and the Thaipusam Festival

March 08, 2014

I blabbed a lot of times about my first out of the country solo trip on my blog. Malaysia was the lucky pick. :P This was also the first time I went out of the country on my expense. My third out of the country after Singapore, and Australia, both business trips.

When I booked this trip, I only wanted to visit Legoland and the Hello Kitty Town. I booked another plane trip from Kuala Lumpur to Johor Bahru in Air Asia. I was supposed to stay for two days in Johor Bahru so I could have enough time to visit them both. But I found out that I could also visit Genting and ride in the cable car. I want the cable car ride, you know. :P I revised my itinerary, and squeezed in Genting, and removed the Hello Kitty Town. Such a heartbreak to remove the Hello Kitty Town. Good thing, Air Asia re-scheduled my flight, so I was given an option to move my flight. I moved the flight on the night of my second day in Malaysia. I bought my Legoland ticket online, booked my accommodation in First World Hotel at Genting and reserved my accommodation at Johor Bahru via Booking.

With my backpack in tow, I went to the airport on January 16, and waited for my flight. Believe me, I only have my backpack and a small bag with me for this 5-day trip. :P When I arrived at the airport, I paid RM 8 for a bus going to KL Sentral. I paid RM 4 and rode the KTM Commuter Train to Batu Caves.The Batu Caves was the first on my list on this trip. It was the day before the Thaipusam festival, a day of thanksgiving for the Hindu to Lord Murugan. There were lots of people trooping the Batu Caves. A 140-ft high statue of Murugan is standing prominently outside the Batu Caves. I debated on going to the 272 steps, but decided to go for it nonetheless. 
Batu Caves
272 steps
Imagine my dismay when I realized there are few more steps to reach the worship area. Kaya paaa!
inside the Batu Caves
There were lots of people attracted to the monkeys. Oh yeah, did I say there were monkeys too? :P

I went to the have a look on the worship site, and a man put an ash on my forehead.This was the closest I've ever been into different culture.
I decided to leave; and took this photo from atop.
Aside from the monkeys, there were lots of birds in Batu Caves; and one could see the locals feed them. Do tell me this one's an awesome photo. :P
I was lucky to visit the Batu Caves the day before the Thaipusam festival, I got a glimpse of their culture. On the train back to KL Sentral, I had a chat with a woman, who works in Motorola, and told me that their family walked the night before from KL Sentral to Batu Caves for this Thaipusam. Batu Caves is 14km from KL Sentral (according to Google). I am wowed by their devotion.

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