Kuala Lumpur is a sprawling metropolis, home to over 5 million people. It was the heart of colonial Malaysia under British rule and has been the administrative and economic center since the country became independent in 1957. Home to a diverse and cosmopolitan population, this is where you’ll find some of Malaysia’s most important cultural, historical and religious sites. Visit Merdeka Square to see where Malaysia’s independence was declared. You’ll find the city gallery, museums and stunning old colonial buildings. Wander across the river to the Jamek Mosque (Masjid Jamek). This Moorish-style structure was built in the early 20th century and was the city’s main religious site until the modernist National Mosque was completed in 1965.Near to the National Mosque is the Lake Gardens, a great place to relax. You’ll find manicured lawns and a selection of trees, flowers and wildlife. Admire majestic peacocks and feed parrots in the adjacent Kuala Lumpur Bird Park. Another option is a trip to the National Zoo to see native elephants and tigers. There are also animals from as far away as South America and Australia. For a staggering panorama of the city, head up Kuala Lumpur Tower (Menara Kuala Lumpur). You’ll be able to spot all the major landmarks and get a great view of the PETRONAS Twin Towers. These skyscrapers that define the downtown skyline are among the world’s tallest buildings. A ticket buys you a stunning view from the 86th floor observation deck. You can also enjoy the Lake Symphony water and light show in KLCC Park at the Twin Towers’ base. Take a trip out to the Batu Caves and explore a site sacred to the city’s Hindu community. There are temples and statues inside a cave complex that rises nearly 330 feet (100 meters) above ground. Make your way back to town to pick up bargain watches and handbags, and enjoy a bowl of noodles on Petaling Street. Kuala Lumpur’s multicultural population and fascinating history give the city a distinct flare and colorful atmosphere. From mosques and temples to jaw-dropping skyscrapers and Chinese markets, its attractions are as intriguing as they are diverse.