As evidenced by its large population of expatriate workers, Malaysia is an extremely popular Southeast Asian travel destination. A foreigner-friendly, culturally interesting place, Malaysia also boasts great weather, white-sand beaches, snorkelling and diving opportunities, top-class shopping and dining options, and a wealth of unmissable sights and attractions.
The West Coast of Malaysia is home to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia’s glittering, cosmopolitan capital city. The city abounds with excellent sights and activities for tourists, from the Petronas Towers (the world’s tallest twin skyscrapers), to the nearby Batu Caves. Kuala Lumpur is also a world-famous shopping destination and a gastronomic delight, as various national cuisines combine to offer a wealth of options to the adventurous palate.
The East Coast is predominately Muslim, and boasts several easy-to-reach tropical islands (such as Sibu, the Perhentian Islands), offering snorkelling and diving off white-sand beaches. In the north of Peninsula Malaysia several hill resorts offer a welcome respite from the heat and humidity of the coast. Hill resort holidays in Malaysia are becoming increasingly popular, and visitors have a good selection to choose from: The Cameron Highlands is the most refined, Fraser’s Hill the most tranquil, and the Genting Highlands the most developed of Malaysia’s hill resorts.
Nature-lovers will not want to miss East Malaysia, a rich and varied tropical island teeming with outdoor and water sport opportunities in the twin states of Sabah and Sarawak. Visit Kinabalu National Park, an area so full of biodiversity that it has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, or else head to Sipadan Island and experience what are widely considered to be the best diving and snorkelling sites in the world.
Attractions in Malaysia stand like giant beacons, drawing international visitors in droves. Modern, urban Malaysia, particularly the capital city of Kuala Lumpur, has lots to offer tourists and expats. The Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur are the second tallest buildings in the world and are beautifully designed. Both the National Mosque and Kuala Lumpur Railway Station are other great examples of the city’s architecture. The bright lights, sense of a bustling business world, and fun nightlife attract many.
However, things to see and do in Malaysia aren’t limited to modern landmarks, as the country’s natural attractions are even more beguiling. Mt Kinabalu towers over the Malay landscape, which includes the Sepilok Forest Reserve and the islands of the Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park. Other great island attractions are Tioman, Langkawi, Sipadan, and the Perhentian islands, all of which are nearly deserted by visitors over the monsoons season between November and January. One of the world’s largest limestone caves is visitable at Niah National Park. Unspoiled forests, incredible wildlife, lovely beaches, and some of the best scuba diving in the world are some of Malaysia’s greatest assets and make it an exciting travel destination for those seeking out adventurous, outdoor fun.