Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) – Malaysia Family Travel

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Things to do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids…or without them! Over the last few years, we’ve spent lots of time exploring things to do in KL with kids. And you know what? We still have more to discover. Here’s our guide to one of Southeast Asia’s most dynamic cities.

Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids

Anyone familiar with this blog knows that we’ve spent lots of time traveling in Southeast Asia. One thing we can tell you is that Malaysia is great for family travel.

We’ve spent nearly 16 months in and out of the country, and during that time, we’ve been to Kuala Lumpur — aka KL — multiple times. Each time we return, we find more fun things to do in KL with kids, and great things to eat!

This guide is designed to help you discover some of the same fun things to do in Kuala Lumpur with kids that we enjoyed. If you know of other great things to do in KL — with or without kids — let us know! We update our posts as often as we can.

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Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids: Malaysia Family Travel

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Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

Mangosteen and dragon fruit: Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

KL Shopping Malls. Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids

Whether it’s for a 24-hour layover, a month of slow travel or more, you’ll find plenty of things to do in KL. But keep in mind that Kuala Lumpur is a fantastic jumping-off point for many amazing places in Southeast Asia. In fact, that’s how we got to know KL so well. Using airlines like Air Asia, we often scheduled stops in KL between flights to Indonesia, Thailand, and Vietnam.

But don’t forget about other Malaysian destinations. KL is a great stopover point to other places in the country.

Related Posts:

Kuala Lumpur Attractions: Places to Visit in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia

Here’s a list of some of our favorite things to do in Kuala Lumpur with kids — or without them.  Check out these Kuala Lumpur attractions before you visit KL.

Petronas Towers: Kuala Lumpur Attractions

Petronas Towers. Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

Everyone visiting Kuala Lumpur with kids seems to take their picture in front of these iconic spires. Fewer people venture to the top of them, but if you do, you’re in for an amazing view!

KL National Planetarium: Kuala Lumpur Attractions

While the domed theater is the star here (shows every hour), the exhibit halls are worth checking out as well. For one, they’re free. They also provide a lot more educational fun for curious, science-minded kids. Adults too.

Exhibits on anti-gravity and space toilets will certainly interest the kids. Then the movies in the planetarium range from National Geographic productions to locally produced shows. Closed on Mondays.

Menara Tower & FRIM Canopy Walk: Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur

Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

Consider this the cheaper (and shorter) alternative to the Petronas Towers. The Menara Tower gives you 360º views of the city. While not as spectacular as what you see at KL’s most famous landmark, the view is still pretty amazing.

What we enjoyed most, however, is the Forest Research Institute Malaysia (FRIM) canopy walk just below the tower. Like an elaborate treehouse in the city, this series of elevated walking paths take only about half an hour to walk.

[UPDATE] It was such a nice walk in the middle of the city. However, it’s closed as of June 2017 for good.

Sunway Lagoon: Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur

If you’re in Malaysia with kids, then you have a few great options for amusement parks. This is one of them. Sunway Lagoon is actually several parks in one: a water park with waterslides, an amusement park with rides, and “extreme” park with bungee jumping and go-carts, and more. One day may not be enough here.

KLCC Waterpark/Playground: Kuala Lumpur Attractions

KLCC Park. Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

While not as dazzling as Sunway Lagoon, the park and water play areas in KLCC park are free. Moreover, they are more than enough to keep little ones occupied for hours on a hot afternoon. If you have toddlers to pre-K kids, this would be great fun.

Kuala Lumpur Bird Park: Kuala Lumpur Attractions

This massive aviary is impressive in its size and breadth of species. Our experience here was probably not ideal, as we were there while drizzling and were pooped on by several large birds. In general, we’re not zoo fans, to begin with.

I still include this bird park as one of the things to do in Kuala Lumpur with kids. It’s because as zoos go, it’s still on the better side, and I know that a lot of families enjoy it.

The Batu Caves: Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur

Batu Caves. Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

 

Located just north of the city, this should be one of your top things to do in Kuala Lumpur with kids. This limestone monolith is one of the biggest Hindu holy sites outside of India. Walking the steps into the cave can be a true spectacle.

Butterfly Park: Kuala Lumpur Attractions

At over 80,000 square feet, this is one of the largest butterfly parks in the world. That can mean that the butterflies are a little more spread out than elsewhere.

If you have kids who want to see a little color fluttering around, you can’t go wrong. Give yourselves at least 15-30 minutes here.

The Islamic Arts Museum: Best Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur

Islamic Arts Museum. Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

Gold-inlaid books. Bejeweled daggers. Intricate ceramics. These are just a few things we saw at the Islamic Arts Museum Malaysia. This is easily one of the best things to do in Kuala Lumpur. The history and incredibly-crafted items in its collection are spellbinding for people of any age or religion.

You could spend an hour or a day in here and be glad you did. The building itself is stunning, and the artifacts and other exhibits that fill it span the Islamic world.

KLCC Lake Symphony: Kuala Lumpur Attractions

Every evening after dark, the fountains outside the KLCC center come alive! Ok well not really “alive” but they do put on an interesting show.

Synchronized to music, the fountains use light and water to create a spectacle. Can be a great way to end an evening with young ones.

Petrosains Science Discovery Centre: Kuala Lumpur Attractions

Petrosains Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

This hands-on science museum has enough exhibits to keep curious kids occupied for days. We thought we’d hang out there for just a couple of hours, but ended up staying there much longer than planned.

Sure, it’s far too in love with the petroleum industry. If you don’t believe me, look at the name and guess who owns it! That said, there is plenty to learn in here. It’s also located in the KLCC center, so you can find many things to eat in the same building.

Movie Theaters: Things to Do in KL

Sometimes, kids just want to take it easy. In other words, they might want to escape the heat and do something familiar. Parents too.

On days like this, consider going to one of KL’s many top-notch movie theaters. Most Malaysian movie theaters are cheap and super modern. Stick to the theaters in the shopping centers to be sure.

Two warnings before you go. Firstly, understand that the air conditioning is cranked in theaters. We bring jackets. I’m not kidding.

Another thing worth mentioning is that the movie titles change all the time. Malaysian theaters cater to multiple markets: Hollywood films compete with Bollywood. Then there are movies in Mandarin, Cantonese, and occasionally Bahasa or Thai. With this in mind, turnover is quick. Some movies stay a week or less.

Galeri Petronas: Things to Do in KL

Art Galleries in KL. Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

We love contemporary art, and this is a great place to see some. It’s in the KLCC center, which means that you may be passing by anyway if you’re in the area.

What we saw here was vibrant, colorful and engaging. However, it wasn’t hands-on, so consider the age and impulsivity of the kiddos before entering.

Aquaria KLCC: Things to Di in Kuala Lumpur

Sharks, jellyfish, stingrays and more. This one of the most popular Kuala Lumpur attractions for a reason. The Aquaria KLCC is a large and modern aquarium with plenty to see. There is an aqua tunnel, as well as tanks with countless sea creatures, as well as additional exhibits of spiders and frogs.

If possible, arrive when they open as it can get crowded later in the day. Also worth noting is that they charge you for using your camera. But they also, take your picture in the aquarium and then they try to sell you the pics later.

Sri Mahamariamman Temple: Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur

Hindu Temple. Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

This is the oldest Hindu temple in Kuala Lumpur and a beautiful place to visit and photograph. Colorful deities adorn the walls and locals come in and out to pray.

Remember: Shoes off and you must cover your legs. Right next to the entrance there is a place to store your shoes and borrow sarongs to wrap over your lower half (for a small fee).

Stars Archery at Berjaya Times Square: KL Attractions

Stars Archery Berjaya Square. Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

I know what you’re thinking “Hmmm….indoor archery for children?” While not your ordinary way to spend a Tuesday afternoon, Stars Archery is a lot of fun. And (relatively) safe, too.

KidZania: Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids

This job-themed amusement park chain has taken the world by storm in the last decade (there was one near our old Tokyo neighborhood, as well). KidZania takes the question “what do you want to be when you grow up?” and turns it into the biggest game of “pretend” in town.

Kids act out being firemen, gas station attendants, and assembly line workers at a Coca-Cola factory. If you have one in your hometown, you may not be interested, but if not, it could be one of the most fun things to do in Kuala Lumpur with your kids.

Royal Selangor Visitor Center: KL Attractions

Royal Selangor: Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

Any list of things to do in Malaysia with children includes a visit to Royal Selangor. That said, we spent over a year in and out of Penang and never visited.

That changed during our last visit to Kuala Lumpur with kids. We went to their main facility and it was fascinating.

The kids loved watching things being made on the factory floor and then going to a workshop to do it themselves.

Our girl banged out a bowl from a flat disc of the metal. Meanwhile, our son was able to mold, grind and shape a number of objects from actual molten pewter. Easily one of their favorite things to do in Kuala Lumpur.

If you’re in KL with kids, make time to do this. Just understand that working with molten metal is reserved for older kids.

ASEAN Sculpture Garden & Perdana Botanical Garden

If you’re looking for a large green space for the kids to run around, then consider ASEAN Sculpture Garden and Perdana Botanical Garden. There are playgrounds and other great things to walk and climb over. On the weekend, you’ll see many locals enjoying a day out with their families.

And it can be nice for a stroll and a few pics if you’re in the area for the bird park or butterfly park.

Jump Street: KL with Kids

Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

You probably didn’t fly all the way to KL with kids to go to a trampoline park. That said, I mention it because we like these kinds of places and had a great time here.

Jump Street is a little removed from downtown but easily reached using a taxi. Warning: the place is too big to be cooled by ac, but there are massive fans keeping a breeze going. Bring plenty of water, or buy it there.

Central Market: Kuala Lumpur Attractions

Central Market shopping in KL.Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

Located near Chinatown & Jalan Petaling Flea Market, Central Market is basically an air-conditioned shopping space for local handicrafts. There are some interesting things here, and we enjoyed perusing the shops in a concentrated space.

Our girl also got a henna hand tattoo here. If you get a henna tattoo, make sure it’s natural henna. Ask to make sure they don’t add anything to it. We’ve read about kids having an allergic reaction to artificial henna elsewhere in Southeast Asia (no in KL), so we always ask.

Is it worth a special trip? Perhaps not. But when you’re in Chinatown, it’s certainly worth stopping by.

Jalan Alor (Restaurant Street): KL Attractions

Jalan Alore. Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

Come here for street food. One restaurant blends into another as the plastic tables and chairs spill into the street.

This street is crowded and full of tourists and locals alike. Because of this, the quality of food varies. We love eating here, however, both at the restaurants themselves and the small stalls along the street.

Dim Sum. Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

Good fruit stalls, as well, but priced higher than more local markets, naturally. We tried dragon’s breath (ice cream balls made with liquid nitrogen), chicken BBQ, Kuih Ketayap (a crepe with sweet grated coconut inside) and lots of fruit, including our local favorite: red dragon fruit.

Keep an eye on little ones, here. There are smokers walking along waving their cigarette as they walk. Also, this street is cut off to most traffic, but the occasional car rolls through.

Did You Read? Our List of Best Malaysian Foods to Try!

Where to Stay in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without)

Lanson Place: Amazing Luxury Family Accommodation in KL Lanson Place living room sofa

There are lots of accommodation options in KL. From family-run hostels to luxury serviced apartments, Kl has it all. There are also a wide variety of Airbnb rentals as well.

We have stayed at Lanson Place Bukit Ceylon Serviced Residences and PARKROYAL Serviced Suites Kuala Lumpur when we were traveling in Kuala Lumpur with kids. Both were great in its’ own way, and we will most certainly go back to either.

Check: Our List of The Best Family Hotels in Kuala Lumpur

Getting Around Kuala Lumpur Malaysia

Getting around KL. Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

Between trains, taxis, walkways, and the monorail, it’s quite easy to navigate Kuala Lumpur with kids. KL is a big, modern city with lots of transportation options.

The monorail is cheap, safe, and easy to use. There are hop-on, hop-off buses called GoKL that are free of charge. In certain parts of town, there are raised walkways that connect some of the most interesting parts of town.

Download Taxi Apps for Your Device

Don’t forget Uber, Grab, and other tax-related apps. They work great for getting around KL with children. Make sure you have the apps up and running on your device before you arrive. That way you don’t have to flag down a cab, haggle over the price or double check that the meter is running. With Uber and Grab, the price is fixed before you get in the car.

Get App Now: Having Both Uber and Grab will Help You Navigate KL

Walking in KL

Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

You can navigate a lot of KL with kids on foot. That said, streets and sidewalks aren’t always as pedestrian-friendly as they could be. Surprisingly, sometimes sidewalks frequently just stop. At other times, there isn’t an elegant way to cross the street other than wait for a free moment between cars and go for it.

Most of KL is great for walking. However, be prepared for the moments where it isn’t. Sometimes there are elevators, but other times you may have to carry that stroller up some stairs. That could be tiring, especially in the heat and humidity of Malaysia if you are not used to it.

If you plan your days out and batch your activities by area, you can easily navigate KL with kids.

Group Your Activities by Location

Want to get the most out of Kuala Lumpur with kids? Then plan your days well and group your activities by their proximity to each other. KL is a hot and humid place. So instead of slogging down sidewalks from one area to another, it’s quite easy to partition your days into particular areas.

The Best Time to Visit Kuala Lumpur Malaysia

Kuala Lumpur weather. Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

Malaysia experiences two monsoon seasons: May to September and October to March. Rain is predictable but its length is inconsistent. Some days are torrential for a few hours and then clear skies again. Other times it may be gray and drizzly for several days.

The good news is that KL is warm enough that the rain can almost feel like a relief from the heat. The bad news is that restaurants, shopping centers and movie theaters in the city crank their air conditioning. If you walk in wet, you’ll get cold fast.

Read: Our Other Malaysia Related Posts

Where to Go After Kuala Lumpur Malaysia

Exploring Kuala Lumpur with kids is great, but there is so much more to Malaysia than its capital city. We’ve spent a lot of time in Malaysia with our children and we can tell you: there are so many things to do and places to go! Thanks to budget airlines like Air Asia, it’s easier (and cheaper) than ever to visit more of Malaysia and neighboring countries.

KL is a huge hub for Southeast Asia and we’ve flown from here to many of the place listed below. Here are a few suggestions of where to go after Kuala Lumpur with kids. Suggestions are listed in north-to-south order by section.

Peninsular Malaysia

Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

Langkawi

This tropical island is close to the Thai border. Langkawi shares a lot of its neighbor’s characteristics, as well. Wildlife, watersports and more.

Penang

Wow. Penang is so great that we’ve spent most of our 16 months in Malaysia based there. Great food. Great people. Fascinating history. Also UNESCO heritage and one of the smallest national parks in the world.

Ipoh

Like Penang, you get history and great food, but also caving and a waterpark.

Cameron Highlands

Need some cooler weather? Visit the Cameron Highlands for lower temperatures, tea plantations and more.

Malacca

Imagine a time of pirates, spices, and sultanates. That’s the history of Malacca. Fast forward to today and you also get garishly decorated neon trishaws as well.

Legoland Johor Bahru

One of the best waterparks in Southeast Asia. Located near the border of Singapore, you really need to stay overnight in the area to make the most of this place.

Borneo

Borneo. Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel

Kota Kinabalu

Scuba diving, snorkeling, whitewater rafting and some of the best seafood you’ll ever eat. That’s just a sample of what Kota Kinabalu has in store for adventurous families.

Kuching

The Sarawak region doesn’t get the same spotlight that its northern neighbors in Sabah. That’s ok. I think they prefer remaining a secret. Great food, rainforest kayaking, and a super mellow downtown promenade made me consider moving here for a spell.

Beyond Malaysia — Direct Flights from KL

Exceptional Family Accommodation in Senaru, Lombok: Rinjani Lodge Review fi on infnity pool

Bali

This magical island has experienced massive growth in tourism over the last few years. And all the baggage that comes with it. Despite this, we still think Bali is an amazing place to visit or to live.

Lombok

Located to the east of Bali, Lombok and its thousands of gilis (small islands) are full of fun for adventurous families. Our island guide to Lombok is here

Sumatra, Indonesia: Bukit Lawang, Berastagi, & Lake Toba

Air Asia and other low-cost carriers fly direct from Kuala Lumpur to Medan. This is the capital of the Indonesian island of Sumatra. We’re not recommending the city of Medan (we weren’t impressed). What we are recommending is that you fly to Medan and then ride a few hours into the jungle to Bukit lawing, or Berastagi.

Here we went jungle trekking to see wild orangutans. We loved it so much that we went twice.

Krabi, Thailand

This area of southern Thailand is famous for rock climbing and stunning beaches.

Chiang Mai, Thailand

The capital of northern Thailand is known to many as a digital nomad hub, but it’s much more than that. There are many great things to do in Chiang Mai with kids.

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Loud. Bustling. Chaotic. Delicious. These are the first four words that come to my mind about Ho Chi Minh City, HCMC, or Saigon if you like. We loved HCMC so much that we considered moving here as well. Central Vietnam, too.

Taipei, Taiwan

I moved to Taiwan in 1997, and it is still incredibly close to my heart. Taipei is an incredible place to begin exploring this amazing island.

Have you been to Kuala Lumpur Malaysia?

Do you know of any things to do in Kuala Lumpur not listed here? Where did you go? What did you do? Most importantly: where did you eat? We love exploring KL with kids, and on our own (it’s a great date-night city, as well). Tell us your tips for things to do in Kuala Lumpur in the comments! We’ll be updating this post as often as we can.

Further Reading:

PIN THIS FOR LATER!

Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids (or Without Them) - Malaysia Family Travel PIN 2

Awesome Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids — Malaysia Family Travel, Islamic Arts Museum, KL with Children, Art, History

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. This means, at no extra cost to you, we might receive a small commission if you make a purchase or book using those links. My opinions are my own and I only recommend places/services that I believe will genuinely help you find the best things to do in Kuala Lumpur with children! Or without? Almost all the Kuala Lumpur attractions listed above are great for any kind of traveler. Do you know of other fun things to do in KL? Let us know!

Comments

  1. Kathy Johnson says:

    HI ive gotten some great advice from your page, thankyou, heading over to KL in June/July with two teenage boys, should be fun, specially now Ive gotten some great ideas on what to do from you Jason. So again thankyou

  2. Looks like tons of fun Jason. We do so little in KL save going to the mall, movies and grabbing a bite to eat. We are always resting for a day before heading back to the US for the super long flight. Maybe we can spend a few more days there when we swing through the next time. Thanks for the rocking share.

    Ryan

  3. Hi guys!

    As a local, I say you have pretty much covered everything you can do with kids in KL. I really hope you enjoyed your stay in Malaysia 🙂

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