Malaysia is considered a modern and largely safe travel destination. It borders Brunei, Indonesia and Thailand and consists of two parts – the island of Borneo and the Malay Peninsula. See andyeducation.com for education in Malaysia.
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Fast facts to know
- Malaysia consists of two separate parts, the Malay Peninsula in the west and the island of Borneo in the east.
- No visa required for stays of up to 3 months, passport must be valid for 6 months.
- Malaysia is one of the richest countries in Southeast Asia.
- Tipping is not customary in Malaysia.
- Malaysia is considered one of the safest countries in Southeast Asia and has a very well developed infrastructure.
- Travel to eastern Sabah state and adjacent islands is not advised. There is a real risk of terrorist attacks in Malaysia. Information from the Foreign Office
- The highest mountain is Gunung Kinabalu at 4,095 meters.
- Buses in Malaysia are modern, punctual and inexpensive.
- The largest population groups are Malays and Chinese.
- In many accommodations, shops and restaurants it is customary to take off your shoes before entering.
- English as a language is widespread.
- As Malaysia is a Muslim country, alcohol is mostly forbidden.
- Malaysia is the second largest producer of palm oil after Indonesia.
- The most recognizable symbol of Malaysia is the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur.
- Malaysia is a very modern country.
- The people of Malaysia are very nice and helpful.
- Gasoline is quite cheap in Malaysia, you pay before filling up.
- Tap water is heavily chlorinated and should therefore not be drunk.
- Malays like to bargain, try to get the price down to two-thirds of the starting price.
- Snot and belch is part of everyday life in Malaysia.
Exciting cities in Malaysia
- Kuala Lumpur
- George Town
- Kota Kinabalu
- Tioman Island
History of Malaysia
- Around 800, Buddhism and Hinduism spread to the Malay Peninsula.
- 1400 the first Malay kingdom of Malacca arises,
- 15th century: Arab, Persian and Indian traders introduce Islam to the Malay Peninsula in 1414.
- Conquest first by the Portuguese, then by the Dutch before Malaysia finally becomes a British colony.
- After World War II, initially under Japanese rule, the Federation of Malaya was founded in 1948.
- 1957 Introduction of women’s suffrage.
- 1963 Formation of a new federation under the name of Malaysia.
- 1986 Religious riots between Muslims and Christians in the state of Sabah.
Climate & travel weather in Malaysia
- Temperatures & precipitation constant all year round.
- Always humid, tropical rainforest climate.
- Very high humidity.
- Frequent rainfall all year round.
- Dry and rainy seasons determined by monsoons.
- Traveling difficult in the rainy season:
- Westküste: Sep-Dec.
- East: Oct-Jan.
- Northeast Borneo: Oct-Feb.
- Northwest Borneo: June-Nov.
- Recommended travel time:
- West of the Malay Peninsula: accessible all year round.
- East Peninsular Malaysia: June – Aug.
- Borneo: April – August.
Ideas for trips in Malaysia
- Orangutans visit Borneo.
- Overnight in the jungle.
- Festungsanlage Netherlands City.
- Kek Lok Si Tempel.
- Snorkeling on the Perhentian Kecil
- Penang Insel.
- Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur.
- Diving & Snorkeling.
- Take a street food tour.
- Perhentian Islands.
- Discover the wonderful wildlife of Malaysia.
- Take the cable car up Gunung Mat Cincang.
Food & Drink in Malaysia
- Food plays an important role in Malaysia.
- Chinese and Indian influences clearly noticeable.
- Paradise for gourmets: there are restaurants on every street corner where you can get a wholesome, delicious lunch or dinner for the equivalent of 1 euro.
- Malays traditionally eat with their right hand.
- Rice and noodles are the basis of the diet.
- Sambal (spicy) is part of every meal.
- Dishes are usually well seasoned, e.g. with ginger, chili, garlic, turmeric.
- Beef, chicken, goat, lamb and fish are often used in curries.
- Diverse and varied regional cuisine:
- Cantonese (dim sum, spring rolls, appetizers.
- Szechuan (Chili, Knoblauch).
- Shanghai cuisine (stews).
- Beijing cuisine (noodle dishes).
- Mrs (Exotische Salat, Laksa).
- Tamil cuisine (great vegetarian dishes).
- North Indian cuisine (flatbread, meat skewers).
- Rich selection of seafood: fish, mussels, shrimp, crayfish and squid.
- Wonderful selection of fresh fruits: watermelon, starfruit, pineapple, banana, papaya, apple, orange, mango, guava, pomelo, rambutan, lychee.
- Coconut juice is often drunk as a thirst quencher.
- Coffee and tea are popular, alcohol is almost only available in western restaurants.
- Typical dishes:
- Ikan panggang (river fish wrapped in banana leaves and grilled over charcoal).
- Nasi Goreng (Fried Rice).
- Char Kuey Teow (flat rice noodles, soy sauce, sprouts, vegetables, meat).
- Rendang daging (beef cooked in coconut cream).
- Samosa (pastry filled with vegetables or meat).
- Pau (steamed yeast dumplings with various fillings).
- Mee Goreng (fried noodles with vegetables and meat).
- Curry Mee (hot curry soup with Mee noodles, shrimp, tofu, sambal, fresh mint leaves).
- Korma (meat or vegetables in a mild, extremely aromatic curry sauce).
- Satay (grilled meat skewers served with a peanut sauce and sweet and sour pickled cucumber, onion and chili wedges).
- Laksa (soup made sour or with coconut milk, meat or fish and noodles).
- Nasi lemak (rice cooked in coconut milk and served with fried anchovies, curried squid, hard boiled egg, cucumber slices and sambal).
- Bak kut teh (clear soup with lots of herbs and pork ribs).
- Ikan Bakar (Grilled Fish).
- Hainan chicken rice (tender chicken on rice, garnished with spring onions, coriander, cucumber slices).
- Nasi biryani (long grain rice with almond slivers, raisins, cinnamon sticks, turmeric, cardamom).
- Ice kacang (freshly shaved ice cream with sweet syrup and marinated fruits).
- Cameron Highlands.
- Telaga Tujug waterfall.
- Batu Caves.
- Discover Malaysia’s dream beaches:
- Pantai Cenang Strand
- Ayer Batang Beach
- Strand Salang
- Pauh Bay
- Turtel Sanctuary Beach
- Explore beautiful national parks:
- National Park
- Gunung Stone State Park
- Semenggoh Naturreservat
- Bako National Park
- Lambir Hill Nationalpark
- Niah Nationalpark