Day 2: Petronas Towers Tour Review

Petronas Towers Tour (Finally)

Since 2012 I’ve made a few journeys to Kuala Lumpur and on every occasion I’ve completely failed at making my way to Petronas Towers and joining one of the tours to the top.  For my 2015 Formula 1 trip I decided I was going to book ahead and make sure I got to finally tick off the experience.

What’s the big deal?

Petronas Towers are the icon of the Kuala Lumpur skyline, probably the architectural feature of the city that will be remembered most frequently and the least likely to be “just like the one in xxxx”.

Unlike the KL Tower a short distance away the tours of Petronas Towers need to be booked in advance as there’s almost no chance of walking into the visitor centre and getting on the next tour.

The Tour

Starting in the visitor centre below the Twin Towers you collect your ticket and await the set meeting time.  There’s some displays and a gift-shop to browse before you pass through a basic security check (x-ray and metal detection) passing into a lobby where you’re given a safety briefing.  The briefings are offered in a couple of languages – but are also visually self explanatory, in short they amount to “Follow Instructions”, “Don’t be stupid”, “It’s really high, don’t look down if you don’t like heights”.

From the briefing we’re loaded into the elevator to ride up to the SkyBridge, be warned the elevators are loaded to capacity so it can be a little cozy, however a smile and a joke with my fellow riders broke some of the awkwardness.

At the Skybridge you’re given a quick introduction to the area and left to wander the bridge taking photos.

Petronas Towers SkyBridge
Petronas Towers SkyBridge

Thanks to the small group sizes and well managed timings it never feels crowded and there’s more than adequate time to take photos.

On the day of my visit (19th March 2015) there was a heavy haze – while it detracts from the view it’s a very real aspect of Kuala Lumpur and a good reason to come back again in the hope of a different weather condition!

After you’re shepherded off the SkyBridge (you are given a coloured lanyard so the staff can identify you as part of the group) it’s onwards and upwards.

Effectively at the peak of Tower 2 there’s a few models of Kuala Lumpur, videos and that stunning view.

As your time on the tour winds down the guides gently advise it’s time to return to ground level.

The courtesy and competence of the staff need to be commended, with multiple tours overlapping slightly as a visitor I never felt rushed.  There’s no calling out for groups to reassemble, just a personal approach, almost apologetically, that it’s time to move on.

The Petronas Towers tour isn’t the cheapest attraction in Kuala Lumpur, but it’s good value with limited numbers ensuring that there’s no crowding for photo opportunities.  It offers a view that is both spectacular and ever changing.

I can see this visit being the first of many.

Petronas Towers Tour eBooking

It seems I wrote too soon about the Petronas Towers eBookings not being available due to the upcoming (1st April 2015) GST implementation.

Booking a Petronas Towers Tour

I jumped onto the Petronas Towers website a couple of days ago and tried a date in March 2015 and “bam” it worked.

So I’ve made a booking!

Petronas Towers eTicket
Petronas Towers eTicket

Here’s hoping for good weather on Thursday the 19th of March!  Why not watch the official Petronas Towers Milestones video for some information about this feat of engineering!

Some extra background:

It turns out that while you can book the Tours online, they’re not really set up for booking the same time as you’d normally book your holiday. The best you’re probably going to manage is 28-45 days in advance – although this does seem to vary at some parts of the year.

I would say popping a diary entry in to do a weekly check in the lead up to your visit would be wisest.  In some 4 years of looking at these tours they’re still as “in demand” as ever!

About the Tour!

Around 8am on the 19th of March I shook off the lack of sleep from my late arrival in Kuala Lumpur and walked from the Sky Hotel Bukit Bintang to the Pavillion Mall and onto the covered walkway to KLCC.  By the time I’d enjoyed a coffee in the Suria KLCC mall I was still comfortably early for my tour.

Making my way through the mall to the