Journey of rediscovery


  • Metro News
  • Monday, 15 Jun 2020

Muzium Negara (above) will be reopening tomorrow while more Malaysians are expected to visit landmarks like Dataran Merdeka (below) during the recovery movement control order. — P. NATHAN/The Star

KLANG Valley residents are eager to get out and about ever since the government eased restrictions and announced the recovery movement control order (MCO).

The relaxation spells good news for the domestic tourism sector.

IT specialist Eswaran Kumar has been waiting for months to end his “hibernation mode” under the MCO.

He can’t wait to enjoy the sights and sounds of Kuala Lumpur once again with his girlfriend.

On his to-do list is walking tours around the city and visiting some attractions, which he claimed to have taken for granted all this while.

“I have been itching to go on a walking tour around KL city centre since January. It was on my top 10 list of things to do once the MCO was eased, ’’ said Eswaran from Cheras.

He and his girlfriend have listed down all the places they want to visit such as old temples and colonial buildings as well as the hibiscus garden, among others.

“We lead very hectic lives and are always glued to the computer.

Visitors have been flocking to Zoo Negara since it reopened  last Wednesday but only 500 people are allowed at a time.   — RAJA FAISAL HISHAN/The StarVisitors have been flocking to Zoo Negara since it reopened last Wednesday but only 500 people are allowed at a time. — RAJA FAISAL HISHAN/The Star

“But this pandemic has taught us that life is precious and that it is time to stop and smell the roses, ’’ said Eswaran. It has always been Lilian Teh’s intention to go around the city on a KL Hop-On Hop-Off bus and take in the sights.

Teh, a web designer who resides in Overseas Union Garden, said this was all she could think about while being stuck indoors for three months.

“I know it’s a very touristy thing to do but I want to take the opportunity to do it now, ” she added.

Professional tour guide Jane Rai said they had received calls and messages on their Free Walk Kuala Lumpur Unscripted social media page since last week from people asking when they would be restarting their guided walks.

“There was already a long list from May, ’’ she said.

Kuala Lumpur Butterfly Park remains closed as the operator finalises the SOP for the reopening.Kuala Lumpur Butterfly Park remains closed as the operator finalises the SOP for the reopening.

Jane attributed the demand to people wanting to take the opportunity to get out and about after being cooped indoors for a long period.

“But we are careful not to rush into things. We will give it until the end of the month to see how things go, ’’ she added.

Asian Overland Services and Travel founder and group managing director Anthony Wong said although they had received requests for tours, they are being cautious for the time-being.

“We will be extra careful, although the government is allowing it during the recovery MCO.

“Everyone knows that a second coronavirus wave, if there is one, could be more serious if we let our guard down.

Visitors are slowly returning to some sites which have reopened like Kuala Lumpur Bird Park.  — Photos:  P. NATHAN/The StarVisitors are slowly returning to some sites which have reopened like Kuala Lumpur Bird Park. — Photos: P. NATHAN/The Star

“We will not rush into things, ” Wong said, adding he would give it two or three months.

“There is no magic bullet that will solve things, so we just have to wait, ’’ he added.

Eye M Hear Holidays Sdn Bhd Azlinda Shaharuddin owner said that her company had received enquiries on domestic tourism.

“The government is encouraging us to promote domestic tourism. For those who want to travel, I suggest doing it with a loved one or close family members, ’’ she said.

Jane (right) explaining to tourists about the history of Kelab Sultan Sulaiman gallery during the Jalan Jalan @ Kampung Bharu ‘Cultural Guided Walk’. — FilepicJane (right) explaining to tourists about the history of Kelab Sultan Sulaiman gallery during the Jalan Jalan @ Kampung Bharu ‘Cultural Guided Walk’. — Filepic

An employee of D Asia Travels Sdn Bhd said although they were open for business, things were slow.

“People are being careful and there are also many restrictions.

“Most travel industry players prefer to take a wait-and-see approach, ” she said.

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COVID-19 , VIRUS , KL , LOCKDOWN , MCO

   

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