For stopover holidays, many travelers choose to transit at the Kuala Lumpur International Airports (KLIA) for immediate connections to popular destinations like Langkawi, Penang, Kota Kinabalu and Kuching. Located at the crossroads of Asia, Malaysia is a convenient place for business meetings or conferences. Adding a few days before or after such activities enables visitors to gain a better appreciation of just what Malaysia offers. Many travelers on long-haul flights also choose to break their journey here. Alternatively, spend a few days in Kuala Lumpur to indulge in shopping, dining, partying and sightseeing. One of the best things about Malaysian stopover is that it gives a brief introduction to the country but just enough time for visitors to contemplate when to return.
Malaysia offers a wide range of exciting holiday options to cater to the special interests and needs of the traveler. Arrangements can be made with tour operators and agents for customized packages with the services of trained guides. The spectrum of specialized tour include nature adventures, golfing vacations, homestay programmed, deep-sea fishing, health and wellness package, romantic holidays or whatever the fascination.
As a choice holiday destination in the region, Malaysia has everything to offer. Its international class hotels in Malaysia rank among the best in the world, providing superb 5-star accommodation and hospitality services in luxurious ambience. Apart from a choice of star rated hotels and serviced apartments, the medical centre also offer excellent accommodation facilities. The enchanting islands of Langkawi, Penang, Pangkor, Tioman, Redang, Perhentian, Lang Tengah, Kapas and Tenggol island are popular holiday resorts with their golden sandy beaches and warm blue seas. The seas surrounding the country are endowed with some of the best diving spots in the world. These underwater paradises contain fascinating coral reefs with colourful marine life. Charming hill resorts such as the Cameron Highlands, Fraser’s Hill and the Kinabalu National Park – a world heritage site – are perfect retreats for relaxation and recreation amidst cool surrounding and the soothing profusion of greenery.
Among the oldest in the world, Malaysia’s magnificent rainforests and national parks are treasure troves of nature’s beauty. The Niah Caves, known as Borneo’s most important archaeological site, contain relics that point to the existence of human activity in the area almost 40,000 years ago. This beautiful country also features a variety of golf courses throughout Malaysia, equipped with the best facilities and features, for a complete and wonderful golfing experience. Among other tourist attractions in Malaysia are the famous theme parks at the Genting Highlands Resort, The Mines Wonderland and Sunway Lagoon near Kuala Lumpur. These team parks surely offer great fun and enjoyment for the whole family.
In the Malaysian Homestay programme, you will get to experience life in kampung or traditional village. With an open mind, you will be exposed to a fascinating culture rarely glimpsed in urban neighbourhoods. You will established a bond with your family foster family and get acquainted with the village elders. Be part of their family and experience traditional hospitality at its best. Homestay villages can be found around the country.
Malaysia is home to some of the top spas in the world, including the world-famous Spa Village at the Pangkor Laut Resort on Pangkor Laut Island. Most spa are located on beach resorts with a number also sprouting up in city centres. With trained masseuses and a menu of traditional herbs and fragrances, you are assured of being pampered like royalty, while your body and mind, relax and rejuvenate. Besides luxurious bath treatments, scrubs, massages, facials, manicures and pedicures, a whole host of relaxing facilities such as saunas, steam rooms and Jacuzzis await you!
HEALTH & MEDICAL TOURISM
Medical tourism offers competitive medical and hospital charges for top quality medical care. Foreign patients consider Malaysia a wise choice due to the state-of-the-art private medical centre in the country. These establishments are well equipped and staffed to served the healthcare needs of people from all over the world. After a surgery or treatment or during the recuperating period, the patients become tourists, enjoying a spot of sightseeing, playing a round of golf or two, or going for spa treatments.
From the country’s unique and fascinating attractions to its warm and friendly people, Malaysia is indeed a dream incentive holiday destination. Theme parties can be arranged in various settings creating a fun and entertaining atmosphere for incentive travelers. Come during one of the many festivals and events in the country to experience colourful Malaysia.
Come and be part of the traditional Malay cooking experience! Join a culinary tour where you can be part of a cooking workshop conduced by local chefs in their homes. Brush up on your culinary skills as you learn the fine art of Malay cooking. Enjoy the sumptuous meal prepared afterward with your food expert. Visitors can also go on a market tour to shop for local ingredients upon request. Tour to factories to see how food is processed can also be arranged. Also, food lovers may want to stay on during the country’s annual food and fruits fiesta to learn more about Malaysia’s glorious fare.
Shopping is an increasingly exciting part of a Malaysian Holiday. Malls usually open from 10am to 10pm but boutiques may operate shorter hours. Prices are fixed in department stores but elsewhere bargaining is worth trying. Some of the city’s main shopping complexes with a wide range of goods are Lot 10, Suria KLCC, Star Hill, Sungai Wang Plaza, Berjaya Times Square, City Square, KL Plaza, The Mall and Sogo. In the suburbs, One Utama, Mid Valley Megamall, Subang Parade and Sunway Pyramid are popular. Central market is a good place to scout for souvenirs, handicrafts and antiques.
The Cultural Craft Complex in Jalan Conlay sells a comprehensive selection of handicrafts like batik, songket, pewter, baskets and beadwork. Chinatown is a shoppers paradise and bargaining is essential to secure bargains. Popular local shopping experiences include night markets or pasar malam where merchants set up temporary stalls to sell farm produce, snacks, clothing and household goods. Malaysia has a Mega Sale Carnival once a year where you can hunt for the best bargains available. Whether it’s east coast batik, carved mask from Borneo, Sarawakian cotton or a Kelantanese wayang kulit puppet, there’s a myriad of uniquely Malaysian products.
Malacca is an antique shoppers paradise with stores selling old wares from the region. Malacca’s shopping focus is in the antique shops along Jalan Hang Jebat (Jonker’s Street) and Jalan Tun Tan Cheng Lok. Duty-free destinations like airports as well as Langkawi and Labuan provide excellent bargains.
Today Malaysia is known all over the world as destination for a host of nature-base activities and eco-tourism. Be it from challenging rock climbing or cross-jungle trekking to wild rafting in frothing rivers, diving in calm seas to parasailing in the multi-hued skies – its all here. From the primordial rainforest in Taman Negara to the wildlife sanctuaries at Danum Valley and the Kinabatangan floodplains in Sabah, Malaysia’s ancient forests offer vast possibilities for trekking and camping. Mountain and rock climbing enthusiasts will enjoy conquering Malaysia’s steep mountains, rock faces and cliffs. The most popular rock climbing sites are near or around Kuala Lumpur and Selangor state, namely the famous Batu Caves and Bukit Takun to the city’s north. Caving enjoys a good following in Malaysia. The country is endowed with a vast number of limestone caves including the famous Deer, Land and Clear Water Caves in Mulu National Park, a World Heritage Site in Sarawak.
Those looking for thrills can try white-water rafting as Malaysia has its share good rafting sites. These include Sungai Sungkai in Perak and Sungai Selangor in Kuala Kubu Baru. Sungai Endau, Jeram Besu and Sungai Lipis in Pahang and Sungai Tembeling in Taman Negara are also popular rafting sites. Malaysia’s rugged undulating terrain, dense rainforests crossed by rapid rivers make it an irresistible destination for four wheel drive (4WD) expeditions. The heat, mud, rolling hills and rainstorms add to the challenge in the gruelling yet exhilarating sport of off-road driving. Another popular sport in Malaysia is mountain biking. Malaysia is also renowned for its popular birding sites. With over 600 species in the peninsula and about 580 species in Malaysian Borneo, Malaysia has emerged as a bird watching heaven. Several excellent bird watching sites including Fraser’s Hill, the Kuala Selangor Nature Park and Taman Negara. Over in Sabah, visit the Kota Kinabalu City Bird Sanctuary, a feeding ground for many species of resident birds and several migratory species from Northern Asia. Kinabalu Park, a World Heritage Site with its own endemics is just two hours away…
Malaysia is truly a unique golfing destination and the diversity of the courses is unrivalled in the world. Numbering about 200 throughout the country, they can be found high in the mountains, along the seashore, on tropical islands, amidst verdant rainforests and in the heart of the city. With the best facilities and amenities available right here, your golfing experience is bound to be an unforgettable one. A number of courses have been designed by some of golf’s top names such as Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer and Greg Norman. For a different and cooler experience, try night golfing. Tourism Malaysia organises the highly successful World Amateur Inter-Team Golf Championship. This annual tournament brings together amateur golfers from around the world to play in some of the best courses in Malaysia as well as to savour the sights and sounds of the country.
Malaysia is one of the best dive destinations in the world with the richest marine environment in the Indo-Pacific Basin. From schooling hammerhead sharks, huge schools of barracudas and various turtles to the bizarre frogfish or ghost pipefish, there is always something to fascinate the diver. Along the eastern coast of Peninsular Malaysia, the islands of Perhentian, Lang Tengah, Redang, Kapas, Tenggol and Tioman feature good coral growth and abundant fish life. For a spectacular diving experience, head to Sipadan, lying just off the north east of Borneo. Only day trips are allowed to this island and accommodation is available on neighbouring islands. Labuan, an off-shore financial centre in the East Malaysia is great for wreck diving…
SAILING & CRUISES
Yachters are always welcome in Malaysian waters, marinas and clubs. Langkawi is a great place to start a sailing holiday as the waters of the Andaman Sea are superb, the sailing infrastructure is excellent and it is a resort island with abundant attractions. Alternatively, there are many east coast islands were safe anchorages are assured and along the busier west coast the main ports of call include Port Dickson, Port Klang, Lumut and Penang. East Malaysia offers more adventurous sailing with excellent marina facilities at Kota Kinabalu’s Sutera Harbour…
Malaysia is a prime tropical paradise that presents the angler with an opportunity to discover one of the world’s top game fishing destinations. Endowed with a wide variety of marine and inland angling destinations, Malaysia host a plethora of fish species in both environments. The west coast of Peninsular Malaysia bordering the Andaman Sea and Straits of Malacca, with water rarely exceeding 100m in depth, produces quality table fish such as groupers, snappers and threadfins, to name a few. In contrast, the east coast of the peninsula is the home of many big game fish, the Black Marlin being the most famous. Other renowned fighting fish include the Giant Trevally, Sailfish, Dolphin fish, Cobia, Barracuda and Narrow barred Mackerel. The Borneo coasts of Sabah and Sarawak bordering the South China Sea are home to some of Malaysia’s finest blue water fishing, with the island of Labuan centrally located close to the prime fishing areas.
|Holidays In The West Coast|
Peninsular Malaysia’s west coast is where most people live and work. A fly and drive holiday is the best option to explore the west coast as it is well-serviced by the North-South Expressway extending from Johor Bahru in the south to the border of Thailand in the north. The highlights include cities like Kuala Lumpur, Shah Alam, Georgetown, Malacca, Johor Bahru and Ipoh. There are cool hill stations such as Cameron Highlands, Fraser’s Hill, Bukit Tinggi and Genting Highlands. The tranquil islands of Langkawi and Pangkor offer relaxing retreats with their scenic beaches, deluxe hotels and water sports. Kuala Lumpur is unique for its contrasting architectural styles from Moorish, Tudor to contemporary. Other interesting spots are the old Kuala Lumpur Railway Station and National Museum.
Visit the Central Market for souvenirs and hunt for bargains in Petaling Street. A half-day tour of Putrajaya with its beautifully landscaped roads and parks as well as innovative modern buildings will delight the senses. The historic trading of Malacca and Georgetown in Penang are eclectic in character having been shaped by settlers from many lands. Penang is known for its balmy beaches, tasty food, colourful festivals and the historic Eastern and Oriental Hotel. On the overland route to Penang, visit Kellie’s Castle, cave temples in Ipoh, the royal town of Kuala Kangsar and colonial Taiping, Perak. The natural attractions here include Kuala Selangor’s fireflies, Perlis State Park, eagle feeding in Langkawi, bird watching in Fraser’s Hill and diving in Pulau Payar Marine Park.
|Holidays In The East Coast|
The east coat of the peninsula includes Kelantan, Terengganu and Pahang. It is usually referred to as the heartland of Malaysia culture where traditions are still preserved amidst a rustic lifestyle. Visitors will quickly notice how different it is to the west coast – less people, smaller settlements and a slower, more relaxed predominantly agrarian lifestyle. Take in one of many pastimes here such as top-spinning or kit-flying and simply watch craftsmen at work at the cottage industries nearby. The lively markets in Kota Bharu and Kuala Terengganu should not be missed.
There are stretches of beautiful beaches and charming fishing villages along the east coast. The offshore islands are particularly appealing providing simple chalets and up market resorts. There are several resorts around Kuantan and mostly village style chalets in Cherating. Turtles lay eggs along some sandy beaches. Beserah beach near Kuantan is where buffaloes pull in the fishing catch at certain times of the year. Diving and snorkeling is excellent off islands like Perhentian, Redang (well-known worldwide), Lang Tengah, Kapas, Tenggol and Tioman Island. The inland Tasik Kenyir is the largest man-made Lake in the region, a very popular spot for angling and nature lovers.
Taman Negara, the country’s premier national park can be accessed from any of the three states on the east coast. For easy accessibility to these states, visitor can fly directly to Kota Bharu, Kuala Terengganu, Redang Island, Tioman and Kuantan from Kuala Lumpur. To enjoy the coastal scenery one can drive via the East-West Highway in the north or Karak Highway in the central peninsula.
|Holidays In Sabah|
Sabah in Malaysian Borneo is similar to neighbouring Sarawak as they both highlight eco-adventure holidays amongst various cultural communities. Activities include trekking, rafting, diving, mountain climbing and there are superb coastal resorts to relax in afterwards. Shop in at ‘tamu’ or local markets in Kota Belud, Kota Kinabalu’s Gaya Street or near Mount Kinabalu. Kota Kinabalu is a cosmopolitan city with several islands just off the coast. Kinabalu National Park is Malaysia’s first World Heritage Site and its jewel is Mount Kinabalu at 4,095m. The adventurous will attempt a two-day challenging trek to the summit or enjoy leisurely walks at the park headquarters. Orang Utans are one of the state’s great icons and the Sepilok Orang Utan Sanctuary outside Sandakan is the best place to see them.
Further a field, the Lower Kinabatangan River, Gomantong Caves, and Danum Valley are other destinations to explore the state’s exotic flora and fauna. Diving sites such as Mabul, Langkayan, Layang Layang and Mantanani offer superb marine life and comfortable accommodation. Only day trips are allowed to Sipadan, one of the best diving spots in the world. Borneo’s antique train operates from Kota Kinabalu to Tenom while tourist steam trains operate to Papar and back, offering views of the scenic countryside and lifestyle. International and domestic flights service Kota Kinabalu and from here, there are flights to other destinations in Sabah. Flying is an economical way of discovering the state although there’s a good public bus system.
|Holidays In Sarawak|
Also know as the ‘Land of the Hornbills’, intricate rivers and pepper, Sarawak beckons with verdant rainforests and the diverse lifestyles of its indigenous people. Travellers here need to factor in the remoteness of some locations especially those ‘upriver’ where boats are still the only form of communication. This remoteness is what makes Sarawak so appealing. It’s unlike Peninsular Malaysia and appeals to the adventurous. Rivers like the Skrang, Belaga, Batang Ai, Rejang and Baram with their remote tribal longhouses provide access to the state’s magnificent natural and cultural heritage. Explore ancient rainforests by boat or head cross-country for trekking, rafting and climbing adventures. Many longhouses appear stuck in a time warp.
Handicrafts like wood carvings, beadwork, pua weavings and basketry are still made along communal verandas. Visit natural treasures like Gunung Mulu National Park and the archaeologically significant Niah Caves. Many of the state’s tourist attractions are its national parks protecting natural features like caves, the exotic Rafflesia flower, endangered wildlife, beaches, rivers and various plant communities. Get to know the people of Sarawak and their lifestyles at the Sarawak Cultural Village. Set within 15 acres of natural jungle, the traditional longhouse dwelling of each ethnic group, arts and crafts demonstrations and dance presentations can be seen here.
The state has a coastline that runs 700km along the southern side of Borneo where good place to begin discovering its beauty is Damai Beach in Santubong. Kuching, the state capital is the main international gateway and together with Miri to the north, operate as regional hubs for air services to remote parts of the state.