Monkey Mischief in Malaysia at the Batu Caves

By Abi King | Asia

Sep 14
Monkey at the Batu Caves

A Monkey at the Batu Caves

The Batu Caves, Malaysia

Less than ten miles from Kuala Lumpur, the Batu Caves house one of the most popular Hindu shrines in the region. When I first caught the expression of this monkey, poised and watchful, I imagined to myself he might be wearing an expression of prayer, of solemnity, of reverence.

How wrong I was.

The Backdrop

Entrance to the Batu caves

Entrance to the Batu Caves (Check out the people on the staircase…)

The Staircase

Staircase to the Batu Caves

Monkey At the Ready

Monkey hands at the Batu caves

The Monkey Attacks…

Monkey attacks girl at Batu caves

The Monkey Knows What He Wants…

The Monkey Wins…

Batu Monkey with water bottle

The Spoils of Victory

Batu monkey licking water off steps

Victory never tasted this good…

A Final Glimpse

Batu cave monkey


About the Author

Abigail King is a writer and photographer who swapped a career as a doctor for a life on the road. Now published by Lonely Planet, the BBC, CNN, National Geographic Traveler & more, she feels most at home experimenting here: covering unusual journeys, thoughtful travel and luxury on

Angela September 15, 2011

LOL! Well done you caught all the steps of the attack! When I was in India I loved seeing monkeys and I remember my friend was terrified at the idea I could leave my window of the car open and let the monkeys come in, he kept saying monkeys are naughty and beat people up! I never got to the point of letting a monkey beat me but it would have been pretty funny!

    Abi King September 15, 2011

    It was very funny sitting on the steps with the camera, watching people file past. Reminded me of one of those spoof TV shows that deliberately try to trick people…I find monkeys fascinating from afar but they’re too quick and clever for my liking. I am afraid they’ll win!

David @ MalaysiaAsia September 15, 2011

Well captured Abi. Love the shots. Sadly I have visited the place so many times and photographed it, I am yet to make a post about this. Did you hear stores about how the monkeys grab cameras and handbags then run off?

    Abi King September 15, 2011

    Ah, that’s often the way when you live near somewhere. I’ve hardly written anything about Brighton, Cardiff and London!

    I hadn’t heard those specific stories, but I can’t say I’m surprised. I’ve seen monkeys grab food from people’s hands before…they make me nervous!

Dalene September 15, 2011

Ha – this is awesome! I love the shot of his hands and then the scared little girl after. A story well told! :)

    Abi King September 25, 2011

    Cheers! A story played out several times an hour on those steps to the Batu Caves!

Juno December 21, 2011

I loved Batu Cave. It was a very interesting place to be. All the monkeys were great as well :)

    Abi King January 6, 2012

    The monkeys set me on edge a little…Glad you enjoyed them!

Lovely photos :) Very nice story :)

Elly Earls February 23, 2012

Gorgeous pics. I’m off to KL next month (visa run from Thailand) and it’s great to know that there are sights like this so close to the city. I’ll definitely be keeping a close eye on my camera though!

    Abi King October 13, 2012

    There’s also a short rainforest canpoy walk you can do if you don’t have time to make it to TN. Enjoy!

We visited Batu Caves 7 months ago. It feels like a life time as we’ve been on the move every since. Anyway, watch out for those monkeys! They’re hungry little critters. Cute from a distance but not so friendly up close. For anyone visiting anywhere with monkeys, avoid carrying food or drink or you may get to see them closer that you would like.

    Abi King October 13, 2012

    Yep, even empty water bottles. (Shivers a little at the memory of it…)

Lilian August 27, 2012

Awesome introduction to batu Caves :)

Matt December 30, 2012

Excellent photos, I really like them. They remind me of my own visit to Batu Caves and taking the stairs with chickens there.

    Abi King January 11, 2013

    Chickens?! I could barely handle the monkeys…

      lester bryangato March 24, 2013

      i bielive the of batu cave &all people visits o batu caves ands tiking the stirs withs monkeys there.

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