We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Don't bother”
Review of Petaling Street

Petaling Street
Book In Advance
More Info
and up
Malaysian Cultural Night in Kuala Lumpur
More Info
and up
Private Kuala Lumpur Night Market Tour Including Buffet Dinner
More Info
and up
Private Half-Day Tour: The Best of Kuala Lumpur
Ranked #49 of 286 things to do in Kuala Lumpur
Attraction details
Perth, Australia
Level 5 Contributor
52 reviews
30 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
“Don't bother”
Reviewed April 29, 2013 via mobile

Call it Petaling Street or China Town, but this part of KL is not worth visiting unless you feel like walking past stall after stall offering knock-off hand bags, cheap clothes and getting harassed.

Getting here was easy enough on the monorail (Maharajalala is the stop) and the approach to the really touristy bit is quite pleasant. In fact it had a feeling of earnest and respectable commerce. However, one you walk through the dragon bedecked arches, this rapidly disappears.

We thought we would check out one vendor's wares and so entered his little emporium crammed with knock-off handbags. Naturally it is mutually understood that the wares are knock-offs, but it seems that it is a matter of pride that not all knock-off handbags are created equal. My wife was actually in the market for a handbag (she later bought a genuine one from a department store) so she picked out a couple.

These, we were assured, were real leather. These were good knock-offs. I'll grant that they looked quite nice and only RM 300 for two. Thinking that our reticence to purchase was because we doubted the quality of the workmanship, the proprietor, pulled out his lighter, held it close the bags and wave the flame along them to prove they were leather.

Now, I am not an industrial chemist, but assume that the flashpoint of PVC is not that low. The way he held the lighter meant that little heat actually concentrated on the bag. Later I tried the same technique on my hand and found that my hand must be genuine leather, as must the piece of paper I also tried it on. In other words it was a scam. As was the line that we were his first customers of the day.

Leaving that aside we then walked past at least 30 similar stalls. Each with a salesman more aggressive than the last. We have travelled a fair bit and it doesn't really bother you a great deal, after all these people are just trying to make a living, but it isn't fun.

Add to these they guys flogging dodgy DVDs from wallets in the middle of the street and the souvenir shops selling wonky Petronas towers and we couldn't get out of their fast enough. I feel sorry for the DVD guys. Previously people would have bought their wares since they couldn't get movies as cheaply anywhere else. I assume that the type of person who used to patronise these vendors now just downloads it for free. And to think that the movie companies complain. They don't have a wife and 11 kids to feed.

One highlight was the restaurant we found when we were looking for lunch that made the trip almost worthwhile. Look for the Old China Cafe - great food and ambience.

Visited April 2013
1 Thank Andrew U
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

1,376 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • Arabic first
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Czech first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Greek first
  • Hungarian first
  • Indonesian first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Norwegian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Thai first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia
Level 4 Contributor
20 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed April 13, 2013

my office just near this place i do sometime walk to get my favourite drinks. here.in here you can see stalls and variety of goods sell, do some bargaining when you shops here...i love this at night..and do check the closing time..do enjoy the food as well

Visited February 2013
Thank marlinamahdin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary, Alberta
Level 4 Contributor
23 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Imitation everywhere.”
Reviewed April 12, 2013

Me and may family were very enthusiastic to go here since it was recommended by some relatives. It's basically a narrow strip of street where we can find stalls of imitation of designer goods of bags, watches, shirts, colognes, etc. I've seen a lot of these in the Philippines so it was nothing new for me and my fam. The only thing is the price is a little bit cheaper compared to other immitation stores I've been in Asia.

However, the drawback is once you negotiated a price to the seller you are said to be "obliged" to buy the item(s) . My family and I have never heard of these (and I don't know if this is true) , so we visited every stall checking out some items, asking the price and trying to bargain a lower price and leave if we didn't agree or changed our minds. So the first few stalls we've been has become so rude to us, saying stuff behind our back and there's this guy that even followed us for about 15 minutes to see if we've bought anything from other stalls!

Despite this, we were able to buy some souvenirs such as key chains and shirts. Also, the street food there ar the best. Another drawback, street food owners will try to convince you to eat at their place..to the point that we found it annoying already. Why can't we choose where to eat? Sigh.

Visited July 2012
Thank chocoisce
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 6 Contributor
171 reviews
106 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 209 helpful votes
“test your bargainig power!!!”
Reviewed April 9, 2013

I have been to Petaling Strre many times as my wife is a shopaholic! Being an indian my wife is very expert in bargaining as the main fun in shopping,according to her, lies in bargainig and bringing down the price to inelastic lavel! It is indeed a good pleasure to roam around the maize of innumerable small shops and purcase attractive looking fake gucchi hand bags.or a rolex watch.Buying and roaming here is real fun provided you master the art of haggling or bargaining. you ncan safely start from 30% of asking price and finally strike a dealo at 40- 50% of the asking price however shops have lost the chinese touch as most of the shops are run by Bangladeshi imjmi8grants who are walways not polite to the customers.

Visited September 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Level 4 Contributor
47 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Be prepared to bargain”
Reviewed April 8, 2013

This is a great place to go to if you are looking for your imitation bags, sunglasses, watches, sneakers, clothing items etc. Make sure you bargain with them and they will often start at a price which is 2 to 3 times more than its worth. And don't be afraid to walk away if they don't want to give you your final place as you can probably guarantee once you start to walk away they will agree to your price or you will find many more stalls with the same item that you can try to get at the price you want.

Visited April 2013
Thank Mish013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Petaling Street also viewed

Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan
Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan
Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan
Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan

Been to Petaling Street? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing