Malaysia has a unique fusion of Chinese, Indian, Islamic and Malay cultures, and the country has much to offer from head to toe. European traders – mainly from England, the Netherlands and Portugal – have also helped shaped the architecture and culture of the country.
As well as the sights of Kuala Lumpur, including the Petronas Towers and the Batu Caves, there's plenty to see and do in the country, so be sure to spend time away from the capital.
Where to go in Malaysia
Three hours south of Kuala Lumpur by bus, Malacca– sometimes spelt as Melaka – is the perfect spot for a relaxing holiday. One of the most important cities in SE Asia in the 15th century, the city grew rich but was left by traders in favour of Singapore, meaning much of its old architecture stands unaffected by modernisation. Book a hotel on the river and make sure you stay for the bustling weekend market.
Used as a summer retreat by Europeans, the altitude of the Cameron Highlands is a welcome relief when the temperatures rise in the rest of the country. The area is used enthusiastically by tea growers, and other fresh produce such as strawberries are also found in abundance.
George Town is perhaps the multicultural epicentre of Malaysia, with its Chinatown and Little India areas booming. The city was a stronghold for the British Empire, and is also a great place to explore the other areas of Penang from, including the beaches at Batu Ferringhi.
Where to go after Malaysia
Malaysia is a conservative country, with few bars to explore and clothing encouraged on the beaches. For a completely different style of holiday, fly to Bali and enjoy the vibrant nightlife and the coastal areas that are visited by a high number of Western tourists.
Direct flights link the capitals of Malaysia and Japan on a regular basis, giving you an easy way to explore two very different Asian countries. Tokyo is home to the weird and the wonderful, with the kawaii-obsessed walking side-by-side with the businesspeople in the city. Tokyo also has the bullet train, letting you quickly get to other areas of the country.
Dubai is a city that's been building like there's no tomorrow. The oil-rich area is home to some of the most extravagant construction projects in the world, including the Global Village, the planet's most luxurious hotel and an indoor ski centre.
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Please note: all information is correct as of November, 2016.
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