Kampung Baru is the last hold-out against Kuala Lumpur’s enveloping concrete jungle. Truly a village within a city, Kampung Baru now stands bravely under the long shadows of skyscrapers and elevated highways.
In spite of its urban location, the Malay village seems to have preserved most of its traditional lifestyle and simple village charm. In the middle of Kuala Lumpur it is a maze of roads that interconnect many old houses that have retained most of their architectural styling and features.
Notable landmarks of the area include the 51-year-old Masjid Jamek Kampung Baru and the largest Sikh temple in Southeast Asia, the Gurdwara Tatt Khalsa Sikh Temple in the overlapping Chow Kit area. Another noteworthy and historic landmark is the Kelab Sukan Sultan Sulaiman nearby.
Long standing plans for re-development of the area were proposed several times but nothing concrete has materialised so far. From the colourful bazaars along Jalan Raja Alang to the food stalls of Jalan Raja Musa Muda, Kampung Baru offers many unique attractions that may soon change.
Of course any trip to Kampung Baru must take in the nearby Chow Kit Market. This is one of Kerrie’s favourite places for taking western visitors due to the shock and awe of the produce and live stock.
We still have not managed to get Molly and Emily to visit Chow Kit – although it is an every day market it is a lot for the senses to take in.