Kuala Lumpar is Wonderful.

Trip Start Dec 12, 2013
Trip End Jan 07, 2014

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Where I stayed
JW Marriott Hotel Kuala Lumpur
Read my review - 5/5 stars
What I did
Kuala Gandah Elephant Sanctuary Pahang
Read my review - 5/5 stars

Flag of Malaysia  , Wilayah Persekutuan,
Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Taxis in Kuala Lumpur for a family of 5 are not cheap! We arrived at the airport and you buy a voucher for a taxi, 189 ringgits. (~$65.00) It is about an hour into town. (we have been spoiled in Thailand and Laos!)
We stayed at the Marriott on reward points and it was so great to have a night in a really nice hotel. The staff are so kind and helpful. The room was really nice and the bathtub was heavenly.
I had hoped to go out around the city a bit but everyone was tired so we had a relaxing evening. 

We had the best Christmas Day ever! Our driver picked us up at 10 am and we headed to the Elephant Sanctuary about 2 hours out of town. The drive alone is beautiful, so green and lush, it reminds me of Costa Rica. And I already want to come back! We watched a video on the elephant rescue on the drive, wow, that is a scary job. People try to trap the elephants for the tusks and so they can damage their legs with the snares or because of the plantations there isn't enough land for the elephants to roam around so they end up in the plantations and destroy crops.

After we checked in at the Sanctuary, Jade, Mya and I got to bottle feed 2 baby elephants!!!! So neat! I can hardly explain what it felt like to rub their heads and listen to the noises they made. Jade and Mya got to put their thumb in the elephants mouth after so they could suck their thumb. Richard and Hunter got to go help prepare some food.
Next we cut up a bunch of papaya with machetes. This was for everyone to feed the elephants later on.
Zali (our guide) got us some pieces of sugar cane and showed us how to feed the big elephants. So amazing to feel them take it out of your hand or get them to open their mouths and throw pieces right in. We spent quite a long time doing this.
Next we watched as the trainers took the elephants down to the river for a bath. Wow this is so cool. I hope my video will load so you can see how they lay down in the water and the trainers have to try to stay on! We were supposed to do this as well but the river was too high from the rains. :-(
The village ladies prepared a lunch for us to eat of rice, vegetables and meat. It is a way for them to make some extra money.
We prepared the food for the big elephants by reaching our hand into a pail of water, milk, bread, cookies and molasses and squished it around until it was small. Then Zali let us take small dishes and feed the elephants. Sometimes they sprayed it out on us while they ate! We felt so lucky to get to do all of this while the other tourists watched. I know we paid a whole lot more to go on this private tour but it was worth every cent! (this is what we used our Christmas money for)
I had booked a flight up to Penang for 8 pm so we had to leave a bit early, too bad. Otherwise we could have spent a bit more time with the elephants after most of the other tourists had left.

Off we flew to Penang, now I have been fired as the family travel agent. Our room was about $40 US a night and located in China town. It was interesting the looks and comments as we pulled up in front of the building! The room itself wasn't too bad but to go outside the room and look around! Right outside the room was a cement wall that when we looked over we saw a type of garage below?? It would have been entertaining to watch us, Richard with his flashlight looking under the beds, me putting my suitcase up off the floor and the kids feeling hungry but having no desire to eat from the Chinese street vendors. It was an evening of a lot of nervous laughing. We put Hunters shoe over the drain in the washroom and decided if it moved on it's own during the night we were out of there! I must say the staff and people were so friendly. We have stretched ourselves again as tourists! We are getting braver.
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