Malaysia is the 3rd richest country in South-East Asia after Singapore and Brunei. With its investment in the high technology industries and medium oil wealth, it has become one of the richest nations in Southeast Asia. Malaysia offers a lot to tourists as well. 25.8 million tourists visited Malaysia in 2018, generating revenue of 84.1 billion Malaysian Ringgit, which is about 20,51,91,38,500 US$. Malaysia is the 2nd most visited country in SE Asia after Thailand.
The country offers a diverse landscape of beautiful beaches, stunning islands, mountains, green forests, lakes, and waterfalls. You will see rich cultures, big modern cities, and a happening food and night scene. There are old colonial towns with rich preserved architecture. The food and culture is influenced by Malay, Indian, Chinese and Europeans, making the society multi-ethnic.
It is an easy and safe country to visit for tourists. The infrastructure is modern. You will find high-end luxury hotels, cheap budget places, and hostels. The cost is reasonable. You can travel hassle free. Malaysia combines the modern and the traditional world.
Malaysia – Quick Facts
Location – Peninsula of the Asian mainland, and partly on the island of Borneo.
Capital – Kuala Lumpur, popularly referred to as KL.
Major Cities – Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Ipoh, Johor Bahru
Population – 29,628,392
Size – 329,847 square kilometers or 127,355 square miles
Currency – Ringgit (RM)
Official Language – Malaysian/Malay. Chinese and English also popular.
Major Religions – Islam, Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism
Time Zone – (UTC+8)
Malaysia has the tallest tropical tree. Tualang and Rafflesia arnoldii is the largest individual flower in the world.
Top Reasons For Visiting Malaysia
A tropical country with warm climate and miles of coastline. Excellent beaches and islands with corals - Langkawi beaches, Rawa Island, Penang, Redang, and Tioman are the best places for a relaxing beach vacation.
Malaysia has stunning natural landscapes. The Batu Cave, Cameron Highlands, Mount Kinabalu, Chiling Waterfall, and Telaga Tujuh Waterfalls are all very good.
Contemporary skyscrapers create one of Asia’s most iconic skylines in Kuala Lumpur. The Petronas Twin Towers, Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, and the Telekom Tower.
UNESCO World Heritage Sites
There are 4. The Gunung Mulu National Park, Kinabalu Park, Malacca and Georgetown.
You will find mammals, elephants, tigers, orangutans, wild boar, deer, monkey and many species of birds and marine life. Visit the Kuala Selangor Fireflies Resort Park, Pulau Payar Marine Park, Penang Butterfly Farm, and the Satang Turtle Island National Park.
A varied cuisine influenced by Malay, India, China, Thailand and European countries. Visit The Chinatowns of Kuala Lumpur, Penang to try dishes like Nasi lemak, Laksa, Satay, Nasi Kandar, and Rojak.
Many festivals, most of which are either religious or cultural, and are swathed in traditions and rituals. Most important festivals are Hari Raya Aidil Fitri, Chinese New Year, Deepavali, and Wesak.
Buildings don’t have a 4th floor in the country. Instead, there is ‘3A’ because the sound of 4 in Chinese is similar to the sound of death.
Malaysia Tourist Visa
For some countries, Malaysia allows visa on arrival. People from 28 countries can get an e- visa or paper from their consulate.
Visa Free – For people of 122 countries
Visa-On-Arrival – For tourists from 36 countries
ETIAS-Visa – For 28 countries
To apply online, you must do or have the following.
A valid passport
An email address
A credit or debit card for payment
Confirmed return flight booking ticket
Proof of booking accommodation
Personal front-facing photo
You may bring these items into Malaysia without paying customs duty:
200 cigarettes / 50 cigars / 225g of tobacco.
One litter of spirits / wine / malt liquor.
Cosmetics, perfume, soaps and toothpaste up to the value of RM200.
Gifts and souvenirs not exceeding a total value of RM200 (except for goods from Langkawi and Labuan, which are allowed up to a value of RM500).
A total of RM75 for dutiable food preparations.
A maximum three pieces of new wearing apparel, and one pair of new footwear.
One portable electrical or battery-operated appliance for personal care and hygiene.
You are not allowed to import any goods from Haiti.
Top Places To Visit In Malaysia
Petronas Twin Towers, Menara KL Tower: Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur was once the tallest buildings in the world. The Sky Bridge that connects the two towers is the world’s highest 2-story bridge. The steel and glass Twin Towers are very impressive. The Menara KL Tower is the 7th tallest telecommunications tower in the world with a height of 421 m. Its surveillance deck is at 276 m. It stands on top of a small hill, offering excellent views of Kuala Lumpur and the surrounding regions.
Melaka Historic City: Malacca, popularly known as the ‘Historical City of Malaysia’ is the 3rd smallest state in Malaysia after Perlis and Penang. An amazing city for nice daytime activities. Comparatively small in size, Malacca is a truly fascinating place, with a long history and a rich culture.
Georgetown Historic City, Penang: Georgetown old town is the capital of the Malaysian state of Penang in the north western corner of the country. Georgetown old town is on Penang Island. It has grown quickly to become an important part of trading routes that link China and India.
Redang Island: Pulau Redang is a small island group in the South Chinese Sea, on the east side of Peninsular Malaysia. Redang within protected marine waters is part of the Terengganu Marine Park.
The Perhentian Islands: Northeast of Peninsular Malaysia, near the city of Kota Bharu. The Perhentian Islands offer a genuine taste of paradise. Jungle side beaches combine with calm water and flawless diving conditions.
Langkawi: Langkawi is an archipelago of about 100 islands. It is a very popular resort destination in Malaysia’s west coast. Surrounded by turquoise sea and green hills, the beach has white soft sand. Coconut trees line the shore. It is a delight for tourists.
Kinabalu National Park: Established in 1964, this is one of the first national parks in the country. It is also Malaysia’s first World Heritage site. The main attraction of the park is the majestic Mount Kinabalu, one of the highest mountains in South East Asia standing at 4095.2 meters.
Cameron Highlands: A district in Pahang, almost 2000 meters at its highest point. Expect a peaceful community with a laid back outlook of life.
Sunway Lagoon Theme Park: A theme park in Bandar Sunway, Subang Jaya. More than 90 attractions in the 6 adventure zones offering something for everyone. It is Malaysia's first fully interactive, educational animal-themed attraction.
Batu Caves: A limestone hill with a series of caves and cave temples in Gombak, Selangor. The Hindu temple and shrine attracts thousands of believers and tourists, especially during the annual Hindu festival, Thaipusam.
Genting Highlights: Resorts of World Genting originally known as the Genting Highlands, offers hotels, shopping malls, theme parks and casinos.
The country has the most number of deadly King Cobras in the world. They are the world’s longest venomous snakes.
Malaysia – Attractions by Region
North – Langkawi, Penang, Perak
East Coast – Terengganu, Pahang
Central – Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya
South – Negeri Sembilan, Malacca, Johor
East – Sabah, Sarawak , Labuan, Borneo
Tourism Malaysia, Essence of Asia
Top Places to Visit in the North
Langkawi - Popular island resort.
Penang – Island in the northwest peninsular Malaysia.
Perak – Popular attractions are the Royal Belum State Park, Ipoh, Taiping and Pangkor Island.
Top Places to Visit in the East Coast
Terengganu – On the Terengganu River, and capital of the state of Terengganu.
Pahang – Sultanate and a federal state. Formally Pahang Darul Makmur.
Top Places to Visit in the Central Region
Selangor – Close to the equator. Large and beautiful mosque.
Kuala Lumpur – Capital city with gleaming skyscrapers, colonial architecture, modern malls, traditional markets, vibrant food and nightlife.
Putrajaya is Malaysia's third and latest Federal Territory. Built on an expansive marshland and a former oil palm estate in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur.
Top Places to Visit in the South
Negeri Sembilan – Beautiful beaches, nature parks and palaces.
Malacca – The oldest city of Malaysia. Very good daytime activities.
Johor Bahru – Capital of Johor at the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula.
Top Places to Visit in the East
Sabah – In north Borneo Island. Good beaches, rainforest, coral reefs and abundant wildlife, much of it within parks and reserves.
Sarawak – In Borneo. Many beaches on the South China Sea. It's known for the rough, dense rainforest of its interior, much of it protected parkland.
Labuan – The Labuan Island and 6 smaller islands.
Borneo – The world’s 3rd largest island and the largest in Asia.
Tips For A First Time Visitor
Time of Travel
March to early October is the best time to visit Malaysia. Most of the rain is over, and there is less humidity. The country receives a lot of rain in January and February.
The cities are well connected and easy to get around. You will find taxis, buses, and trains.
Where To Go
There are plenty of options for everyone. Big modern cities, beautiful beaches and islands, lush forests with wildlife, hills growing tea and coffee, old historic towns, colonial markets, architecture, temples, and Hindu shrines. The country has many good diving and snorkeling sites too.
Once again plenty of choices. High end luxury hotels, resorts, small and medium budget hotels, and hostels.
Try the authentic food, which is not as spicy. Street food is hugely popular because it’s cheap and delicious. You will get a HUGE portion for a small price.
Malaysia is a Muslim country. Drinking is frowned upon, but it does happen. To restrict this the authorities have made drinking very, very expensive.
Weather in Malaysia
Malaysia, just north of the equator, is a tropical climate country with 2 monsoon seasons – the Southwest monsoon from late May to September, and the Northeast monsoon from November to March.