The Tun Abdul Razak Heritage Park or more popularly known as Lake Gardens is one of Kuala Lumpur’s lushest green lungs and one of our favourite places to visit in KL. The Gardens is not only a serene breathing space from the hustle and bustle of the city, but is also alive with plenty of fun attractions for families.
These are the top attractions worth exploring with your young ones in tow!
1. Perdana Botanical Gardens
This sprawling Lake Gardens park offers plenty to keep your tots entertained. From manicured gardens to rugged paths, there are also beautifully designed bamboo playhouses by the lake that make the perfect setting for a picnic. There is a deer park within the vicinity and several chicken coops nearby with chickens roaming freely (be informed that this particular area is not stroller friendly.) If all that is not enough, there are two large playgrounds for children to explore.
2. Royal Malaysian Police Museum
There’s so much to learn about our police force here – from the history of its formation to the evolution of its uniforms and the medals conferred. My children’s favourite were the modes of transportation displayed within the museum and around the compound. My husband, on the other hand, was fascinated by the collection of weapons exhibited. All in all, this is a real gem of a museum and the best part is it’s free!
Opening hours: 10.00am – 6.00pm (Tuesday – Thursday), 10.00am – 12.30pm, 2.30pm – 6.00pm (Friday). Closed on Monday.
Address: 5, Jalan Perdana, Tasik Perdana, 50480, Kuala Lumpur.
Phone: 03-2272 5689
3. Islamic Arts Museum
This museum houses an impressive collection of Islamic art pieces and artifacts from around the world. A popular exhibit is the cloth that was hung over the door of the Ka’aba in 1965, which is the holiest site in Islam. It was a gift from the King of Saudi and is beautifully embroidered with gold and silver calligraphic inscriptions. There are 12 galleries altogether so you will need to time yourself if you wish to explore the entire museum. The exhibitions were too mature for my young children to appreciate; however, there is a children’s library on the ground floor which has an excellent range of English books. They also have simple arts and crafts daily for children below 12 to enjoy. Fun weekend workshops are available too. Check out their website or Facebook page for details.
4. Kuala Lumpur Butterfly Park
It is a magical experience to see so many colourful butterflies fluttering around you. The Butterfly Park is a beautiful tropical garden, which unfortunately is not stroller friendly; however, its modest size makes it manageable for my 4- and 2-year-olds to explore. The facilities in the park look like it could do with some restoration, but that didn’t dampen my kids’ excitement, they absolutely loved it! The indoor exhibition of bugs from around the world was equally exciting so make sure you allocate time for it.
Opening Hours: 9.00am – 6.00pm daily
Address: Jalan Cenderasari, Taman Botani Perdana, 50480 Kuala Lumpur
5. Kuala Lumpur Bird Park
The Kuala Lumpur Bird Park is a large, open space with an abundance of foliage and water features. Its free-flight walk-in aviary is reputed to be one of the largest in the world. Getting up close with birds like peacocks, ibis, and pelicans was indeed a surreal experience for the kids, they weren’t sure if the birds were real! Time your visit to catch the bird show and the feeding sessions and don’t miss out on the chance to take pictures with colorful macaws – it would make a lovely memento of your visit. The Hornbill Restaurant is a good place for a lunch or a snack!
One of my space-obsessed son’s favourite attractions, the planetarium covers everything about our planet and the universe. Some of the interactive displays popular with the kids are the Anti-Gravity Room, the Space Lab and a replica of the rover on Mars. There is a section dedicated to Dato Dr. Sheikh Muszaphar, Malaysia’s first astronaut, and his journey to outer space. The planetarium is free to visit, however, if you wish to catch a movie at the Space Theatre, a minimal fee will be charged. Read our review of the planetarium here.
6. National Museum
The museum provides an overview of Malaysia’s history, its people and their cultures. It has four galleries which cover Pre-History, Malay Kingdoms, Colonial Era and Malaysia Today. One of the highlights is the Perak Man, the near-intact human skeleton discovered in Malaysia that is said to be approximately 11,000 years old. Don’t miss several Malaysian modes of transportation exhibited outdoors. Free guided tours by museum volunteers are available at 10am, daily. We haven’t had the opportunity to join the tour but have heard many good reviews about it. Read more about our earlier visit to the National Museum here.
7. Taman Tugu Park
Unlike its manicured neighbour, the Perdana Botanical Gardens, the newly opened Taman Tugu Park is more rustic and natural. It is an urban forest, which is home to a 90-year-old Pulai Tree that is indigenous to Malaysia. This is just one out of a 1,000 trees that have been identified and tagged for preservation. Ongoing regeneration works will see more indigenous Malaysian rainforest trees being planted – including species that are currently endemic.
Currently, the trail that is open to public is about 1km long which was manageable for my kids to explore. You can enter from the nursery entrance and exit at the campsite or vice versa, or you can choose to make a loop.
By mid next year, the trail will be 4km long and the campsite spots will be open to public. In the pipeline are children’s water play area, canopy walk, and event space as well as pedestrian walkways to connect the park to other tourist spots in KL.
Looks like Lake Gardens’ latest attraction will soon be its most popular destination!
Opening Hours: 7.00am – 6.30pm daily
Address: There are two entrances to the forest park along Persiaran Sultan Salahuddin, 50480, Kuala Lumpur – the Taman Tugu Campsite Entrance and the Taman Tugu Nursery Entrance. Parking is available at the PPTD Clubhouse near the Nursery Entrance.