Home to a 154-foot (47-meter) statue of the resplendent gold Lord Murugan, the Batu Caves are a must-see for anyone visiting Kuala Lumpur for the first-time. The UNESCO World Heritage Site consists of four limestone caves—Temple Cave, Dark Cave, Cave Villa, and Ramayana Cave—which are famously frequented by long-tailed gray macaques.
Due to their location just 8 miles (13 kilometers) outside downtown Kuala Lumpur, the Batu Caves are an integral part of most city sightseeing tours. And, with the 272 steps leading up to Temple Cave recently painted in vibrant colors, the scene is now even more impressive for photos. Tours that combine a visit to the Batu Caves with an evening boat ride to see the Kuala Selangor fireflies are a popular choice with nature lovers, while activity-packed city tours, some of which include skip-the-line entry to the Petronas Towers, are ideal if you’re on a time budget.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Be mindful that the Batu Caves are a sacred site so be sure to dress modestly.
- Avoid feeding the monkeys as they can behave unpredictably.
- Make sure you stop at the easy-to-miss Cave Villa, located halfway up the steps.
- If you want to explore the Dark Cave, make sure you book a tour in advance.
How to Get There
From downtown Kuala Lumpur, you can either take the bus or train, or opt for a cheap private car using a taxi app. If you want to combine multiple attractions while avoiding the hassle of car hire, a sightseeing tour is the most convenient option.
When to Get There
In the early morning, the Batu Caves are far less crowded and much cooler, making for a much easier climb to the top. Plus, less people means better photos on the brightly colored steps. During the Hindu festival of Thaipusam, which generally occurs in January, millions of devotees flock to the caves.
How to Tour the Dark Caves
If you’ve got an appetite for adventure, don’t miss out on a caving tour of the Dark Cave, during which you’ll crawl through narrow tunnels and admire its most spectacular stalactites and rock formations.