If luxury shopping and brand names are what you’re looking for in your best country to retire cheap checklist then Bukit Bintang in Kuala Lumpur is your place. 

Easy to get to by LRT, it’s a shopping mecca. You can listen to the call to prayer, while sipping on a Starbucks and looking at the new Coach bags. I love how the different parts of the culture merge together.


Pretty, air conditioned and full of shops Bukit Bintang is a great place to kill a hot day. Right around the corner there is Alor street. It’s the place where you’ll find street food and restaurants. I got to try some Durian there. It was $3 (10 rm). Durian is a fruit so stinky that most hotels won’t let them in. I really had to try some. After one bite I definitely put it in my “nope” pile. Tasting like an unholy mix of garlic, blue cheese and mango I wondered who was the first person who tried this fruit and said “This is definitely worth cultivating .”

I had to quickly snuck a nip from my $4 (12 rm) whiskey flask to try to kill the taste of this putrid fruit monster (not legal to drink on the street in Kuala Lumpur). I checked out the western pubs and bars around the area, but stuck to my illegally smuggled whiskey because of the cost. During happy hour a beer at these bars were around $7(20 rm) each. That doesn’t sound like much to my readers back home, but remember a beer in Thailand is $2 (6rm). (I also had to be careful sneaking sips from my flask as they didn’t have people with open alcohol like like I’ve seen in the Philippines.) The bars themselves were more pubs than party places.  A great place to relax after a day of shopping.

If you’re in Kuala Lumpur and want to go treat yourself to some shopping this is the place to come. The prices are similar to what you would find at home, and there are no knock offs here. And if you wind up skipping the visit here but still in KL here’s a great tip Where to sleep in the airport