One of the most iconic tourist hotspots in Kuala Lumpur is undoubtedly Petaling Street. It’s a must-visit for tourists because of the variety of offerings found on this single street but what exactly makes it such a special place?
In this in-depth guide, let’s take a deeper look at the reasons why this place is such a hit for locals and tourists alike. Make sure to stick until the end where we’ll show you how to get to this bustling street from different points in KL and LRT stations.
Malaysia Time (GMT+8)
Best Time to Go
You can freely go to Petaling Street at any time of the day but we recommend visiting in the late afternoon. This is because this is when most street vendors and local establishments will start opening their doors, making the street extra lively.
Things to Know
Currency: Malaysian Ringgit
(Check the current exchange rate)
Language: Malaysian, English
Calling Code: +60
How to Get to Petaling Street
Petaling Street is sandwiched between Jalan Hang Lekir and Jalan Sultan. It’s a relatively easy spot to visit, as it’s a short walk from the KL Central Market, another famous tourist spot in the city.
However, if you’re not familiar with the area or if it’s your first time visiting, don’t worry because we’ve got you covered! Listed below are some of the different ways to get to Petaling Street.
- Via Kelana Jaya Line LRT: Simply drop off at the Pasar Seni LRT station. Petaling Street should be around 1 km away from you, which will take about 5 minutes to reach by walking.
- Via Ampang Line LRT: Drop off at Plaza Rakyat LRT station, pass through the Pudu Sentral bus terminal and you’ll have arrived at Petaling Street.
- Via KL Monorail: Drop off at the Maharajalela Monorail station and walk toward the Bulatan Merdeka Garden where you’ll find one end of Petaling Street.
The best way to get to Petaling Street by bus is by riding the Go KL City Bus, as its route is composed of different tourist hotspots. Furthermore, the fare is completely free!
To head to Petaling Street via this bus, all you have to do is get dropped off at the bus terminal near the Pasar Seni LRT station. From there, you’ll have to walk along Sultan Street due west, and in around 4 minutes, you’ll arrive at Petaling Street.
Where to Stay on Petaling Street
Tian Jing Hotel
Address: 66-68, Jalan Sultan, City Centre, 50000 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Phone: +60 3-2022 1131
Located in the middle of the bustling district of Chinatown in Kuala Lumpur is this zen lodging called Tian Jing Hotel. This place sticks out like a sore thumb but in the best way possible.
It immediately stands out because of its two-tone exterior. This kind of design is further explored once you head inside, where you’ll find a nice and cosy establishment that’s inspired by Chinese architecture.
Each room here is equipped with tasteful furniture and designs, which isn’t a coincidence at all. The elegance that each room featured in this boutique hotel is thanks to the handpicked pieces of furniture placed inside them.
The establishment also features an in-house cafe where you can start your day with a cup of joe. They also serve a bunch of brunch items that are to die for so check them out.
Else Kuala Lumpur
Address: 145, Jalan Tun H S Lee, City Centre, 50000 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Phone: +33 1 42 78 47 39
One famous hotel allocated in the heart of Kuala Lumpur is this place called “Else”. This establishment takes a more modern approach when providing lodgings for their guests, and you’ll see this in the designs alone.
Aside from the modernistic design they got going on, they also offer tons of amenities, all of which are essential to a pleasant stay. Furthermore, they feature two amazing in-house restaurants, namely the Raw Kitchen Hall and Yellow Fin Horse.
All in all, Else provides an excellent stay thanks to its world-class amenities, spacious and comfortable rooms and abundance of restaurants. It does require a hefty price but it’s all worth it once you experience it first-hand.
Four Points By Sheraton
Address: 2, Jalan Balai Polis, City Centre, 50000 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Phone: +60 03-20357333
Towering high in the middle of Chinatown is arguably the classiest hotel near Petaling Street, Four Points By Sheraton. This lodging option should be at the top of your list if you value room quality the most out of all.
One of the best highlights of the rooms here in Four Points By Sheraton is the massive windows. These offer the guests an unmatched view of the beautiful KL skyline while being in the comfort of their beds.
Of course, an establishment of this level wouldn’t come cheap, but that’s okay! Everything penny is worth spending on a place like this, from the amenities to the customer service, facilities and more.
1,000 Miles Hotel
Address: 17 & 19, Jalan Tun H S Lee, City Centre, 50000 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Phone: +60 3-2022 3333
If you’re looking for a more budget-friendly accommodation around Petaling Street, we recommend checking out 1,000 Miles Hotel. This boutique hotel may charge affordable prices, but the rooms and service that you’ll be getting are nowhere near cheap.
They offer a myriad of rooms, all of which can accommodate multiple people and won’t break the bank. Also, although the designs for these rooms aren’t anything fancy, they’re charming in their own right.
Lastly, we recommend staying here because this is where most backpackers stay. The place has an open lounge where guests can mingle with each other and share experiences about their time in Malaysia so far.
Address: No 5, Jalan Petaling, City Centre, 50000 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Phone: +60 3-2022 3330
Another budget hotel that’s more geared towards backpackers is the Space Hotel in Chinatown. This place is famous for its capsule rooms wherein guests can stay inside a pod that only contains a bed, mirror, 2 USB ports and other basic necessities.
If you’re a bit scared of cramped spaces, you may want to find another option. However, if you’re looking for a more adventurous lodging option, this is a thrilling choice we highly recommend!
What to Do on Petaling Street
Score great deals on the street market
One of the highlights of Petaling Street is its market, which becomes even livelier once the sun sets. This street market is where you’ll find a boatload of products ranging from local goods to imitation products that go far cheaper than what you’d typically pay.
Whether you’re staying for a week or three days, we recommend visiting this street, as it’s a great place to buy souvenirs that you’ll only find in Malaysia. You’ll find everything you need here that can serve as a piece of memorabilia for your trip in Malaysia, from keychains to magnets, t-shirts and more.
As for the imitation products, the ones you’ll find here include clothing and accessories. One of the most famous items being sold here is football jerseys, which feature different famous Football Clubs such as Manchester United, Real Madrid and Juventus.
They also have a wide selection of designer bags such as Prada, Gucci and Louis Vuitton. Although they’re fake, they still feature good qualities which is why tourists and locals are willing to spend money on them.
Lastly, we want to leave you with one tip before you go splurging on these products and that is to practice your bargaining skills. This is because the first price that the vendors will offer is most likely higher than what it really should be, especially if you’re a tourist.
Sample different street foods
If you truly want to be like a local in Petaling Street, one of the things that Malaysians do for fun is eat street food. You’ll find numerous spots in KL that offer these delicious delicacies but one place that’s arguably the best place to try them is in Petaling Street.
Some of the best street foods we recommend include the following:
- Muah Chee
- Tau Fu Fa
- Apam Balik
What we love about this activity is that it’s not expensive to do but you’ll still end up with a full stomach. Not to mention that you’ll also get to enjoy the flavourful dishes that the streets of KL have to offer.
Where to Eat on Petaling Street
Aside from hawker stalls and hole-in-the-wall eateries, you’ll also find many cafes and restaurants scattered across Petaling Street. These establishments open their doors during the day and some stay open until dark.
They’re great places to dine in if you’re looking for things to do with your family and friends while being in the heart of KL. Check out some of our favourite restaurants and cafes below:
Address: 150, Jalan Petaling, City Centre, 50000 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Phone: +60 3-2022 1736
One of the most famous breakfast spots on Petaling Street is Merchant’s Lane. It features a cool and hip ambience, and of course, a variety of brunch meals and coffee drinks that are great to eat all day long.
This kind of creative interior decor makes it a perfect place to take Instagram-worthy photos that you can share with your friends. Furthermore, the dishes themselves aren’t too shabby, as they taste great and can fill your tummies in an instant.
Da Bao 打包
Address: 145, Jalan Petaling, City Centre, 50000 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Phone: +60 12-602 2680
A great bar to visit when you want o hang out with your friends over some delicious food is Da Bao. From the name itself, this place’s specialty is da bao, which is like a Chinese steamed bun, but twice the size.
What makes their da bao different, however, isn’t just the size but the ingredients they use as well. One of the most famous items here is the soft-shell crab which is seasoned nicely and pairs perfectly with the steaming da bao.
Address: 153, Jalan Petaling, City Centre, 50000 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Phone: +60 3-2022 3557
If you and your friends are looking for a great nightlife spot in Petaling Street, we recommend checking out Wildflowers. This place not only serves delicious dishes but they also serve an impressive selection of cocktails and non-alcoholic drinks.
Not only that but you and your friends will also be spoiled by the elegant interior design that it features. Featuring high ceilings, low-hanging lights, huge windows and more, this place screams classiness.
Gui Gui Korean BBQ
Address: 143, Jalan Petaling, City Centre, 50000 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Phone: +60 11-1155 2608
If you’re looking for a great Korean Barbeque joint in the area, don’t worry! You won’t have to go far, as Petaling Street is the home of Gui Gui Korean BBQ.
This restaurant ticks all the boxes of a great Korean BBQ spot, from the quality and serving size of the meat to the excellent customer service and more. Plus, it’s nice that the place is well-ventilated so that smoke doesn’t accumulate on their premises.
The reason why this place is a hit among locals and tourists is its affordability. Also, it’s located on Petaling Street, one of the most iconic spots in Kuala Lumpur!
What to Eat on Petaling Street
If you do eventually decide to check out the street food scene in Petaling Street (which we highly recommend), here are ten of the best offerings you’ll find on this street:
If you’re looking for a quick bite that doesn’t disappoint in flavour and texture, we recommend trying muah chee. This dish is made out of glutinous rice, rolled into bite-sized balls and coated with crushed roasted peanuts.
This is a safe option if you’re new to the flavours of Malaysian street food, as it isn’t too “out there” in terms of taste. This is thanks to its use of simple and familiar ingredients that make up its great flavour combination.
Where to Try Muah Chee on Petaling Street
The best stall that offers muah chee in Petaling Street is without a doubt, Madam Tang Machi Popo. This stall is so legendary that Madam Tang is dubbed “The Queen of Muah Chee”, and we’re not mad at that claim at all.
The muah chee served here is a result of years of experience, as this humble establishment has been around for well over 50 years. This type of experience translates to the quality of their muah chee, which comes in different flavours such as pandan, green tea and mango.
It also comes in this great to-go packaging that’s highly convenient, as it can easily fit in one hand. This way, you can keep on eating these delicious glutinous rice balls, as you browse the different items offered at the night market.
Operating hours: Every day from 8:00 AM to 3:00 PM
Tau Fu Fa
Another sweet treat that you must try on the streets of Petaling Jaya is tau fu fa, which is of Chinese descent. This delicious dessert is composed of soft and silky melt-in-your-mouth tofu that’s bathed in some kind of sweet syrup.
We recommend trying this after eating savoury, as it washes away any flavour lingering in your mouth and replaces it with this decadent sweet taste.
Where to Try Tau Fu Fa on Petaling Street
If you’re looking for the best tau fu fa on Petaling Street, we recommend visiting the Kim Soya Bean Stall. It’s impossible to miss this spot, as it’s always surrounded by a crowd, but don’t worry because the wait will be well worth every second!
It’s no surprise how good the quality of their offerings is, as this business has been around for half a century. From the silky texture of the tofu to the balanced taste of their syrup, everything about the tau fu fa of this place screams perfection.
Furthermore, you can also choose from two types of syrups: white or brown. Both kinds feature a sweet flavour with a hint of ginger.
Operating hours: Weekdays from 11:00 AM to 10:00 PM
Petaling Street is filled with dishes that will instantly make you feel full after eating, but what about those times when you just want to eat something light? For this need, look no further than apam balik!
This dish is also known as martabak manis and it originated from the Fujian cuisine. It looks like a regular pancake at first but what sets it apart is its peanut filling, which perfectly blends in with the spongy cake.
Aside from peanuts, these pancakes are filled with other ingredients such as creamy corn, sugar and butter. This combination of flavours and ingredients makes this dish a perfect breakfast meal.
Where to Apam Balik on Petaling Street
One of, if not the best places to get asam balik is Uncle Loh’s stall. He’s been serving this local Malaysian favourite for quite some time now and has never missed a step ever since.
We don’t know if it’s a placebo effect but there’s just something special about Uncle Loh’s apam balik, from its texture down to its taste. One thing’s for sure, however, and that is the quality of his offerings are testament to his skill and experience in creating this dish.
Seeing Uncle Loh at work is an experience in itself. The way he cooks and slices these pancake-like dishes with pure precision is super satisfying to watch.
Operating hours: Weekdays from 11:30 AM to 4:30 PM
Moving over to something more savoury, the famous roasted duck in Petaling Street is a must-try delicacy, especially for first-timers. These delicious birds have been slowly roasting over the right temperature and have developed a perfectly charred texture.
This texture paired with the smoky flavour of the skin as well as the meat itself, makes for a delicious delicacy. Plus, the best part is that you won’t have to spend too much to try it for yourself!
Where to Try Roasted Duck on Petaling Street
What started out as a cart is now a fully-fledged restaurant. The cart was run by two sisters, both of whom inherited the business from their father, and the family has been serving their famous roast duck for over 70 years.
Their roast duck is cheap but the quality feels and tastes expensive, which explains why it’s always sold out by the time noon comes. Also, we like this particular stall because they give their customers a choice between ordering a full or half portion.
Operating hours: Tuesday to Sunday from 6:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Rates: RM34 (half duck), RM68 (whole duck)
Hokkien mee is one of the most famous street foods in Kuala Lumpur, which is why you’ll find countless stalls and small-time eateries serving it. We’re not surprised though as this is quite a tasty dish that’s great for any time of the day.
This stir-fried noodle has become a favourite comfort food here in Malaysia ever since it was introduced many years ago. It’s beloved because of its cheap price and of course delicious taste.
The taste can be attributed to the combination of flavours brought by ingredients such as soy sauce, gravy, pork, prawns and many more.
Where to Try Hokkien Mee in Petaling Street
If you want the best version of the hokkien mee in Petaling Street, we suggest heading to Kim Lian Kee. This place is believed to be the birthplace of this dish here in Kuala Lumpur, and we couldn’t agree more.
You’ll immediately stand by this claim once you try their hokkien mee for yourself. Their version features the perfect balance of flavours courtesy of the ingredients that they’ve been using for over 70 years.
Plus, the noodles themselves feature a nice consistency that is often done wrong by other restaurants.
Operating hours: Every day except Wednesdays from 11:00 AM to 11:00 PM
Sweet Potato Balls
As you walk through Petaling Street, your attention may be grabbed by the amazing aroma of deep-fried sweet potato balls. This street food is exactly what it sounds like–mashed sweet potatoes that have been rolled into balls and deep-fried until golden brown.
Their bite-sized nature makes them the perfect finger food to munch on as you’re walking through the streets. Plus, it also helps that they taste amazing as well!
Where to Try Sweet Potato Balls on Petaling Street
The best place to try this sweet treat is in this stall aptly named Sweet Potato Balls Petaling Street. It’s something that you’ll walk past through during your trip to Petaling Street and you’ll immediately notice it thanks to the huge black cauldron.
This cauldron is where the mushy sweet potatoes develop their crispy exterior, creating the dish that many people, including us, love today.
Operating hours: Every day from 8:00 AM to 2:00 PM
A few things in life go together perfectly. You’ve got your peanut butter and jelly, socks and shoes, burger and fries, the list goes on!
During one of our visits to Petaling Street, we discovered something that we can add to this list and that is a bowl of porridge and a rainy day. This pair is a match made in heaven thanks to the porridge’s warm temperature and delicious fix-ins such as beef and fish.
Although nothing beats eating a nice hearty dish like this on the streets while raining, we recommend it regardless of the weather. That’s because it’s delicious to enjoy on its own.
Where to Try Porridge on Petaling Street
The most famous place to get porridge on Petaling Street is Hon Kee. This establishment has been around since the 1940s and today, it’s still flocked to by several people to try their world-famous bowls of porridge and congee.
They offer many variations of this dish but the one we recommend the most is the fresh raw fish porridge. On paper, it may not seem appetising but trust us, your perspective will shift once you get a taste of this hearty goodness.
Operating hours: Every day from 4:00 AM to 2:30 PM
Flavourful tender meat, skewered and slowly grilled until charred, this is Malaysia’s classic street food, satay. Whenever you roam Petaling Street it’s impossible not to see these delicious chunks of meat being seared on a makeshift grill.
What makes this street food more special than any other grilled meat is its sauce. It’s a special concoction that vendors use that leaves a spicy and slightly tangy taste, which perfectly blends in with the flavour of charred meat.
The types of meat used to create this mouth-watering dish are beef, mutton, lamb and chicken, each of which provides a distinct flavour. Regardless of which one you choose, however, it’s certain that you’ll be delighted with the taste of this street food.
Where to Try Satay on Petaling Street
For us, this is the epitome of Malaysian street food. It’s simple, flavourful, addicting to eat and best of all, highly affordable. If you’re looking for the best spot that offers this iconic dish, we recommend heading to Sarah Satay.
As soon as you arrive, you’ll immediately find the rows of skewered meat being barbequed on their grill. The vendor will then occasionally brush both sides of the skewers with their special sauce that makes the dish extra flavourful.
You can easily eat your way through their satays because of their small size. However, what they lack in size is made up for by the rich flavour and cheap price.
Operating hours: Every day from 5:00 AM to 10:00 PM
Chee Cheong Fun
Chee Cheong Fun is a colourful and flavourful dish that stems from Chinese-Malaysian cuisine. It’s easily recognisable thanks to its bright red sauce but what’s more important is the chewy rice noodles that it covers.
The combination of these two ingredients makes for an amazing comfort food that features a slightly spicy and peanut-y flavour. Its taste is elevated even further with the use of sambal, something that Malaysians love to incorporate into their dishes.
Where to Try Chee Cheong Fun on Petaling Street
The best spot to get this iconic street food is in this spot called Yooi Kee Chee Cheong Fun. It has become associated with the dish for the longest time, and today, it’s impossible not to mention them in the same sentence.
What we love the most about this stall is that it’s an experience in itself. After ordering one of their Chee Cheong Fun, you’ll get to watch how their expert cook chops the freshly cooked noodles before being drenched with their special red sauce.
Operating hours: Every day except Wednesday from 6:30 AM to 3:00 PM
There are some days when you can’t decide whether you want to eat something savoury or sweet. Fortunately, there is a classic street food that tastes great either way, and that is the beloved joong.
In a nutshell, joong is a rice dumpling that’s filled with different kinds of fillings that are either sweet or savoury. For instance, if you’re looking for a sweet treat, you can choose the rice dumpling that’s filled with pork and salted egg.
On the other hand, you can order sweeter ingredients such as red beans and dates to turn this dish into a sweet dessert.
Where to Try Joong on Petaling Street
The number one spot to try joong on this street is Ho Yoke Kee. This little stall has been around since we can remember and has always been our go-to spot for joon because of their cheap prices and delicious offerings.
Receiving their joong is like getting a nicely-wrapped present, as the rice dumpling itself is covered in fragrant bamboo leaf. Upon opening it, you’ll get a nice whiff of the aroma that’s a result of their meticulous steaming process.
Contact number: +60 16-695 7071
Operating hours: Every day from 7:00 AM to 5:00 PM
Apps to Download for a Trip to Petaling Street
CatchThatBus: Advance bus ticket booking app