What’s your ideal vacation – a friend recently asked me.
And I took a moment to think. It had been a trip to Israel until recently when I actually explored Israel. I also wanted to visit Phuket for the longest time (but I also went there twice in 2016!). It’s amazing how things change with time. My answer to that question last year would have been very different from say, five years back. And my answer to what would be an ideal vacation for me, is different today.
That’s the thing about travel, right? It changes you.
The more you travel, the more you change. Your mind opens up, your heart learns to love things and people that are different and challenging, and you grow as a person.
My answer to what is my ideal vacation will keep changing until my last breath, I am sure. And it excites me! But today, my answer is this:
My idea of an Ideal Yatra, or an ideal vacation is flying business class on an international flight to my current dream destination – Malaysia, with my daughter and husband. We really need a family vacation. I’ve been travelling so much lately, and the husband has been super busy with work so we haven’t taken a family vacation in a long time.
I have never travelled business class in any of the international flights. Domestic, yeah! But never international on business class. So that is one wish I hope to fulfill pretty soon with my family.
[You might like to read about my Air Asia Delhi to Goa Flight Review]
I have researched a lot about Malaysia and it is a destination that tempts me to no end. Food is a big attraction, of course. One can eat and drink her/his way through Malaysia because the choice of gastronomic offerings is legendary here.
The rich culture is another element that intrigues me about Malaysia. It is a good destination for kids as well, so I am sure my daughter will enjoy it. And oh, how can I forget Shopping in Malaysia? Did you know that Kuala Lumpur was voted as the fourth best shopping city in the world by CNN Travel? I definitely have to visit it soon.
And because I’ve researched it so obsessively, I already have a rough itinerary prepared for my dream trip to Malaysia.
My ideal vacation will be at least a week long, so that I can do all the mandatory touristy things, but also have enough time to mingle with the locals and experience the soul of Malaysia through the eyes of an explorer.
Also, I will make sure that this vacation to Malaysia is relaxed and has a big dose of local experiences, so that we enjoy it to the fullest. So, here’s the itinerary that I will follow:
Rough Itinerary for my Ideal Vacation to Malaysia:
- Day 1: New Delhi to Kuala Lumpur.
- On our first day, we will go to the shopping areas in Bukit Bintang.
- After lunch, we will head to Chinatown and check out the religious sites of Guan Di Temple and Sri Mahamariamman Temple.
- Visit the Kuala Lumpur Butterfly Park. This one is for my daughter because she loves butterflies a lot. It is like walking in a steamy rain forest environment and watching thousands of spectacular butterflies fluttering freely under cavernous netting
- Day 2: Kuala Lumpur.
- We will go to see the famous Petronas Towers which are the biggest attractions situated in the heart of the city. Being one of the world’s tallest buildings, it sure is going to be a good experience. I want to see the towers twice, during the day and then at night time because I’ve heard that it looks magnificent and grand at both times.
- Visit the theme park called Sunway Lagoon which I am sure my daughter will enjoy to the fullest. It is located towards the south of KL, and has a water-based section, an amusement park with thrill rides, an extreme park, scream park and wildlife park.
- Visit the local markets and try local delicacies.
- Day 3: A little outside KL.
- We will visit the popular Batu Caves.
- We will then visit the famous Merdeka Square, and other lovely pieces of architecture such as KTM Headquarters and Old KL Railway Station. These are spots that I have read about a lot and I’m excited to visit them in person.
- Day 4: Move to Putrajaya.
- We will take a day trip to Putrajaya, which is just south of Kuala Lumpur and I want to go to this quiet town to see the Pink Mosque. From Kuala Lumpur, the KLIA Express Train easily takes you to Putrajaya. Once there, you can take buses to various tourist spots of the city, or you can hire a cab.
- We will see the Putrajaya Lake and Seri Wawasan Bridge.
- We will then head to Penang in the late evening.
- Day 5: Penang days.
- After a night’s rest in Penang, we will go out for some sightseeing and indulging in Penang’s popular food culture. The rich and yummy food in Penang has been vetted by international food critic Anthony Bourdain himself!
- Visiting the UNESCO-listed George Town is also one of the reasons I want to see Penang.
- I have always been a fan of streets in different cities over the world, and I’ve read a lot about the Street Art scattered around Penang – so that is also on my list for Day 5.
- Day 6: Sight seeing.
- After breakfast, we will visit Kek Lok Si to see one of the largest Buddhist temple in South East Asia that is located on Penang Hill. This is a great spot to get a spectacular view of the city.
- We visit the Buddhist temple Wat Chayamangkalaram and Dhammikarama, a Burmese Buddhist temple.
- Day 7: Last day of my ideal vacation.
- We get an early start to the day and return to Kuala Lumpur to catch our flight back home.
So that is my ideal vacation to Malaysia. I sincerely can’t wait to explore it, and although this year I have travelled to Israel and Hong Kong already and my trip to Thailand is happening in October [Update as on 8 May 2017: I visited Thailand twice in 2016 and both trips were super good.] – I am still trying to visit Malaysia soon because I’m fascinated by it. Fingers crossed!
What’s your idea of an ideal vacation? Tell me in the comments.
PS: All images are from tourism.gov.my
Keep reading Aditi’s Monologue for more fun travel blog posts and stories from around the world.