Most Malaysians know that Downtown Kuala Lumpur (DTKL) is not deprived of things to see, places to go, and food to eat. But , truth be told, many of us have not actually visited some of the tourist hotspots this city offers. So, if you’re looking to spend a whole day exploring the city with family and friends, we’ve some suggestions.

Soak up DTKL’s charming places and faces (and food) with this little guide, and while you’re at it, be sure to snap some Instagram-worthy photos and videos for your Reels. That way, you can inspire others to explore too!

Here’s an AM to PM guide of things to do in DTKL.

1. 9am: Breakfast at Lim Kee Cafe

It is essential to fuel your body with a good breakfast, and where better to go than Lim Kee Cafe to start the day, right? At this friendly cafe, you can get a local breakfast such as soft-boiled eggs with toast and a good cup of coffee or tea. You can also start collecting photos of the day here, with the aesthetically pleasing décor of rattan chairs and old school furniture.

Address: 66-68 Jalan Sultan, City Centre, 50000 Kuala Lumpur
Contact: +603 2022 1131
Operation hours: Daily, 9:30 am 6 pm

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2. 10:30 am: Experience the hustle and bustle of Chow Kit Market

Okay, we know this is not for everyone, but a mere 15-minute car ride will take you to the famous Chow Kit Market. To some, Chow Kit Market can be intimidating due to how busy it gets; however, it is definitely worth the experience because you’ll never know what you can find here. Besides, Chow Kit Market is also the largest wet market in the country. The culture, history, and how everyone operates are what makes the market unique.

Operation hours: Tuesday to Sunday, 7am to 1pm; Closed on Monday

3. 11:30 am: Shopping at Central Market Kuala Lumpur

After visiting the wet market, why not cool off at Central Market, which is approximately 15 minutes by car and where you can also do some shopping. Having been around since 1888, Central Market is a one-stop-shop for quirky collectables, unique handicrafts, and of course, souvenirs. Cop yourself some cool things like batik pieces, the traditional Malay moon kite (wau bulan), and some fridge magnets, amongst other quirky finds.

Address: Jalan Hang Kasturi, 50050 Kuala Lumpur
Contact: +603 2031 0399
Operation hours: Daily, 10 am to 6 pm

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4. 12:30pm: Continue your shopping spree at Kasturi Walk

If you’re looking to continue shopping after a stop at Central Market, then make your way over to Kasturi Walk, which sits adjacent to the souvenir hotspot. This covered walkway will have you discovering clothing stalls, accessories, and food stalls. Be sure to grab a photo at the entrance, where a great signage of the traditional Malay kite awaits!

Address: Jalan Hang Kasturi, City Centre, 50050 Kuala Lumpur
Operation hours: Daily, 10 am to 9:30 pm

5. 1:30pm: Lunch at Mojo Restaurant & Bar

Wondering where to go for lunch? Asking your friends or family what they feel like eating but not getting a proper answer? Well, you can be that problem solver and bring everyone to Mojo Restaurant & Bar for a good meal before continuing your adventure of exploring DTKL.

At Mojo Restaurant & Bar, you can get different cuisines like American, Asian fusion, and Italian. The al fresco dining will allow you to chill with loved ones as you enjoy good food and drinks.

Address: Asian Heritage Row, 42 Jalan Doraisamy, Chow Kit, 50300 Kuala Lumpur
Contact: +603 2697 7999
Operation hours: Monday to Thursday, 11:45am to 10pm; Friday, 11:45am to 11:45 PM; Saturday, 2pm to 11:45pm; Closed on Sunday

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6. 3pm: Photography session at Kwai Chai Hong

The literal translation from Cantonese of the name of this place is ‘ghost lane’ or ‘little demon alley’, and though it sounds haunting, it isn’t. This alley is filled with murals that you can check out and get incredible pictures of.

Back in 2018, Kwai Chai Hong was a run-down and forgotten alley. However, a restoration by Bai Chuan Management that took over eight months has turned this place into a path filled with history and culture that locals and tourists can soak up in.

Address: Lorong Panggung, City Centre, 50000 Kuala Lumpur
Contact: +6012 316 6212
Operation hours: Daily, 9am to 10pm

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7. 4pm: Tea at Niko Neko Matcha, Chinatown

If you’ve heard of Niko Neko Matcha, but never tried it, now is your chance to do so because only then you’ll understand what the hype is all about. Niko Neko Matcha will change how you view matcha and understand how smooth the drink is supposed to be.

Moreover, this will also allow you to learn about the different flavour profilings of matcha. Not forgetting the fact that you can get some Instagram shots with the minimalist decor while waiting for your drink to be prepared.

Address: 181 Jalan Tun H S Lee, City Centre, 50000 Kuala Lumpur
Contact: +6011 5649 8230
Operation hours: Tuesday to Sunday, 11am to 5:30pm; Closed on Monday

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8. 5:30pm: Check out Pulpy Garden

If you’re a plant parent or a plant lover, Pulpy Garden is the ultimate haven for you to visit in the heart of Downtown KL. Besides being able to purchase plants to beautify your living (or working) space with, you can also get valuable advice from plant experts on ways to care for your plant babies because we know how challenging it can be to keep a plant healthy and alive.

Address: Slate @ The Row, 48, Jalan Doraisamy, Chow Kit, 50300 KL.
Operation hours: Monday to Saturday, 10:30 am to 6 pm; Closed on Sunday

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9. 6:30pm: Spend the evening at REXKL

There is a long history to the building of REXKL as it has miraculously survived three fires and was once Rex Cinema. Fast forward a few decades and this cultural hub now houses a few cafes, restaurants, and small businesses. REXKL is also quite active with holding events, so before you plan your day to explore DTKL, check their social media to see what’s going on the day of your visit!

Address: 80 Jalan Sultan 50000 Kuala Lumpur
Contact: +6011 2600 4808
Operation hours: Tuesday to Thursday & Sunday, 10 am to 10 pm; Friday to Saturday, 10 am to 12 am; Closed on Monday

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10. 8pm: Dinner at Merchant’s Lane

End the night with a delicious dinner at Merchant’s Lane, where their menu consists of interesting Asian fusion cuisine. The relaxing atmosphere and decor that highlights old local charm makes it a welcome respite to end a full day of exciting activities and exploration of DTKL.

Address: 150 Jalan Petaling, City Centre, 50000 Kuala Lumpur
Contact: +603 2022 1736
Operation hours: Monday, 11:30am to 10pm; Wednesday, 10:30am to 5pm; Thursday, 10:30am to 9pm, Friday, 11:30 am to 9 pm; Saturday and Sunday, 10:30am to 9pm; Closed on Tuesday

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Editor’s note: All opening hours are accurate at the time of writing and subject to change. We encourage readers to call or check each venue’s social media before visiting.