“Malaysia Truly Asia” is a tourism campaign we all remember. Although Malaysia has always been a favored travel destination for years, somehow the country was over-shadowed by the likes of other South East Asian neighbors like Thailand and Singapore when it came to tourism. Although it took some time for travelers to know and explore the diverse tapestry Malaysia’s lush rain-forests, it’s mouthwatering cuisines and different cultural influences, today Malaysia stands out as a lucrative option from the rest when it comes to taking a vacation in Malaysia.
The country’s diversity, culture and beauty is really unparalleled and the infrastructure really makes exploring these quite painless.
So, let us explore the beauty of Malaysia to know a little about where to go in Malaysia, best places to visit in Malaysia along with the food in Malaysia so that you can have a complete perspective of the country.
Malaysia has a long peninsular coastline with Straits of Malacca to the west and to the east with the South China Sea. This gives Malaysia good choice of beaches and islands for a vacation to Malaysia. Some of the islands worth mentioning here are the Pangkor Island, Redang Island, and the Tioman Island. The Langkawi Island is a duty free island and is comparatively more developed than the other islands of Peninsular Malaysia. you can also go and see the Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition (LIMA) here. The Sipadan Islands is a haven for divers. If you want to stay in some of the beautiful wooden chalets, the Lankayan Islands is the place to be. It is a good place for a family vacation in Malaysia. You can savour the natural beauty of the island with some snorkeling and diving, if your heart so desires. There is also the Selingan Turtle Island if you fancy seeing some turtles swimming around.
Port Dickson is another beautiful place for a vacation in Malaysia for a beach resort getaway. And while you are there, don’t miss the Cape Rachado Lighthouse, and the Army Museum.
Ipoh has been underrated as one of the spots for vacation in Malaysia, but this is a place for delectable food and natural scenic beauty. The Lost World of Tambun, a water themed park here, is a Malaysian favorite and is perfect for a weekend getaway. There’s also the Kek Long Tong Cave Temple Gardens and the Gunung Lang Recreational Park, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is popular for its ancient karst cliffs. For those rock and mountain climbers, this place is worth a visit. You can challenge those mountains and explore some of the most jaw-dropping caves. For a more cultural tour, you could visit the Ho Yan Hor Museum and Ipoh World, which houses some of the most important historical roots of the Hakka community in the city. There is also the Mulu national park which will simply enthrall you.
From one UNESCO World Heritage Site to another, Melaka is a very famous and one of most visited Malaysian tourist places in its own right. It is home to some of the famous historical landmarks such as the Famosa Fort and Christ Church. It is also one of the go-to place for delicious Malaysian delicacies such as chicken rice balls, satay celup, and the Nyonya cuisine. You can also witness the remnants of the colonial era, like the Portuguese Settlement and the Dutch Heritage Trail. And if you are shopper, you wouldn’t want to miss the Jonker Street Night Market.
For those who do not want to get away from the hustle of the urban life while on a vacation in Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur serves it to you on a silver platter. The Central Market is a bustling town center with vendors peddling their sale-ables, which ranges from traditional handicraft to hip and trending apparel. And then there is the delicious local street food. Within the market, there is the “Annexe” where local artists hold galleries showcasing their work of art from time to time. You can visit Bukit Bintang for a fun night-out, as this is the main pubbing district of the city. Last, but not the least there are the iconic Petronas Twin Towers, standing tall for you to gaze and admire.
Kuching is the capital city if Sarawak, offering delicious food and heritage locations like the Chinese Museum and the Sarawak Museum. You could also go visit the Bidayuh tribe village and go on a relaxing cruise on the Santubong River. The Rainforest World Music Festival, which is one of Malaysia’s biggest celebrations of music all year round is a great place to be for music lovers.
George Town in Penang is an open museum. This colonial district takes pride in its wide selection of British buildings, churches and Fort Cornwallis. You will see traditional shophouses by the street, one very different from the other in style and design. The walls are decorated with street art and murals and when you combine this with temples like the Kek Lok Si, and food courts selling delectable cuisine, it’s a treat you wouldn’t want to miss. The country’s longest coffee shop is here too.
Legoland Johor is the only one of its kind theme park in whole of South East and East Asia. As the name suggests, the theme park is a celebration of those beloved (sometimes painful!) building blocks. It’s a fun place to be in for a family vacation in Malaysia, as you can see Mini Land, which houses miniature Lego versions of iconic monuments like the Taj Mahal and Angkor Wat. There are a ton of interactive rides and activities which the entire family can enjoy, especially kids. There is also a Water Park and Lego City, where children engage in role plays and where they can learn to fly a plane among other things.
Mount Kinabalu, Sabah
Mount Kinabalu along with its surrounding terrain is filled with bio-diversity. The area has over 600 species of flora and fauna and a breathtaking landscape. The mountain has a summit height of more 4,000 meters, and is the tallest mountain within the Malay Archipelago. Hiking to the summit is no simple task but it’s not considered a herculean feat either. You should however have a tourist guide with you while visiting this region. Once you get to the top of the mountain, the view from the top is nothing but surreal.
Batu Caves is one of the most important religious sites in Malaysia. During the Hindu festival of Thaipusam, several thousand followers visit this location and climb up to the temple cave and shrine dedicated to the Hindu deity Lord Murugan. At other times, Batu Caves is an ideal site for rock climbing and cave explorations, housing different species of plants and cave animals in there.
The Sky Bridge on Machinchang
At 2,170 feet on top of the Machinchang Mountain, this Sky Bridge is one of the most popular tourist attractions on the archipelago of Langkawi. The curved walkway stretches for 410 feet from the Langkawi Cable Car to a neighboring hilltop, and will give you an exhilarating experience. There are some portions of the bridge where the floor is made of glass, allowing you to see the view of the greenery all the way down.
Sarawak Cultural Village
The Sarawak Cultural Village or the “Living Museum” as it is fondly called is one place you should visit while on a vacation in Malaysia. there are seven different longhouses belonging to the different aboriginal tribes, and travelers are able to get a glimpse of the local customs and traditions of Sarawak’s rich native history in this cultural village. You will be able to interact with the natives, learn their dances and music, and get a feel of their lifestyles. And when you are there, hike through the Penan Trail towards the Santubong River to enjoy some of the best meal made up of traditional ingredients before you call it a day.
What to eat while on a vacation in Malaysia
Malaysia is well-known for its diverse food, offering a combination of traditional Malay, Chinese and other regional cuisines. Having emerged as one of the popular destinations for higher education, a varied selection of street food joints offering delicious food can be seen on the streets of Malaysia. For instance, ‘Ramly Burger’ is Malaysia’s version of a Sloppy Joe. The roadside stalls sell this buttery, soft, extremely messy to handle but very tasty burger with original Ramly brand beef patties. Chilli Pan Mee is another Malaysian Hakka dish which sets your taste buds off. These thick flat or hand-torn noodles are served to you dry in a bowl with a soft-poached egg, minced pork and fried anchovies with a jar filled with a dried chili paste. You add that according to your taste in your bowl and enjoy.
The claypot chicken rice is a specialty of Kampar in the northern peninsular state of Perak, although you can find a version of this on almost every non-halal hawker food court in Malaysia. Rice and chicken are cooked in a sticky, sweet dark sauce over charcoal fire in a claypot, until they become beautifully caramelized and gives out a smoky flavor.
Manok Pansoh is an interesting chicken dish which is cooked inside a piece of bamboo. The chicken is first marinated in flavorful spices like ginger, tapioca leaf and lemon grass and then stuffed inside a bamboo to be cooked.
Similarly, there are plenty of regional food for every palette. You just need to learn to explore.
Some beautiful University Campus in Malaysia
University campus in Malaysia are some of the best in the world. Apart from imparting state of the world education, the scenic beauty of some of the campuses are a true treat to your eyes, if not a beauty therapy in themselves.
The Universiti Teknologi Petronas, Malaysia
About 300 kms from Kuala Lumpur, and set in the recently developed township of Seri Iskandar, the UTM is surrounded by dense forests of lush greenery and tropical rainforests, and it flows in on the campus. The campus has vast open green open spaces, lakes, and the buildings are arranged in a star shape when seen from above.
Taylors is one other beautiful campus which is a combination state-of-the-art buildings and natural beauty. The ambience is vibrant, contemporary and provides the best educational environment that a student can get. The Lakeside Campus is surrounded by a 5.5-acre man-made lake, and is set on 27 acres of tropical greenery.
Asia Pacific University (APU)
The APU has an ultra-modern campus with all the basic amenities for students and is located in a vast expanse of green land. Nurturing global careers alongside providing its students a comfortable and luxurious living is what APU abides by.
University College of Technology Sarawak (UCTS)
The UCTS has one of the most beautiful, breathtaking campuses that one can imagine. The design and “green” architecture is innovative and stylish and the university has now become the very first in Malaysia to achieve a “Platinum Index” rating in the Green Building Index (GBI).
So, what are you waiting. Plan your vacation in Malaysia and head to this diversely beautiful country. It will welcome you with open arms.
Study2malaysia.com also known as Malaysian Universities information center (MUIC) was set up with the sole intention of providing valuable information to those students and aspirants who want to pursue their higher education in Malaysia. We are one of the leading and specialized teams who have been associated with assisting students from across the world to move to Malaysia for higher education for more than a decade now. We have, till now, successfully sent around 5000 students (including medical students) to Malaysia, most of who are now successfully placed in different professional careers.