Trip To Malaysia
Malaysia is a country in Southeast Asia, located partly on a peninsula of the Asian mainland and partly on the northern third of the island of Borneo.
West Malaysia shares a border with Thailand, is connected by a causeway and a bridge to the island state of Singapore, and has coastlines on the South China Sea and the Straits of Malacca.East Malaysia shares borders with Brunei and Indonesia.
Malaysia is a mix of the modern world and a developing nation. With its investment in the high technology industries and moderate oil wealth, it has become one of the richer nations in Southeast Asia. Malaysia, for most visitors, presents a happy mix: there is high-tech infrastructure and things generally work well and more or less on schedule, but prices remain more reasonable than, say, Singapore.
Multicultural Malaysia celebrates a vast range of festivals, but the ones to look out for nationwide are Islamic holidays, most notably the fasting month of Ramadan.Not all Muslims follow the tradition, or sustain the full period or Ramadan fasting but most do make a very serious effort.
At the end of the month is the festival of Eid ul-Fitr, known locally as Hari Raya Puasa or Aidilfitri, when many locals take one to two weeks off to 'balik kampung' or return to their home towns to meet family and friends.
Other major holidays include Chinese New Year, Deepavali or Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights, the Buddhist holiday of Wesak, and Christmas.
Some uniquely Malaysian festivals of note include the Harvest Festival at the end of May each year and the 'Pesta Gawai' in early June, both thanksgiving celebrations held in East Malaysia.
Thaipusam is a Hindu festival that falls in January or February and is one of the must-see events. The largest procession in the country takes place at Batu Caves, north of Kuala Lumpur.
The climate in Malaysia is tropical. The north-east monsoon deluges Borneo and the east coast in rain and often causes flooding, while the west coast escape unscathed. The milder south-west monsoon reverses the pattern. The southern parts of peninsular Malaysia, including perennially soggy Kuala Lumpur, are exposed to both but even during the rainy season, the showers tend to be intense but brief.
English is compulsory in all schools and widely spoken in the larger cities, as well as around the main tourist attractions, although in rural areas a little Malay will come in handy. There is also a colloquial form of English spoken among Malaysians in urban areas, not inappropriately known as Manglish, which involves code switching between English, Malay and/or other languages, and takes a bit of getting used to if you intend to join in the conversation on local topics. Malaysians will almost always try to speak 'standardized English' when approached by Western travellers. In general, police stations and government offices will have English-speaking staff on duty.
Places to see ----
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There are various beautiful national parks in Malaysia. There are many different types of expeditions available, ranging from those where you hardly lose sight of the hotel to those where you are fully immersed in the jungle with only the guide and yourself if you are willing to pay the money! Tours vary from about 4 days to 2 weeks or more.
To escape from the muggy tropics, do as the English did and head up to the cooler highlands of West Malaysia or climb Mount Kinabalu in Sabah.
Malaysia is also well-known for some pristine beaches with great diving opportunities, such as Sipadan off the coast of Sabah and the Perhentian Islands, which are off the coast of northern Terengganu. Coastlines in the less industrialized parts of the country, in general, are well worth driving through for their natural beauty and relaxing seaside kampung, though beware not to swim at any beach which is not protected by capes, lest you be swept away by a powerful undertow.
If zoological exhibits are more your thing or you are visiting with children, there are several well-maintained zoos all over Malaysia that are worth a visit or two, most notably Taiping Zoo, Kuala Lumpur 's Zoo Negara and Malacca's Zoo.
If you are most interested in taking the pulse of a city, Kuala Lumpur's crazy quilt ultra-modern skyline, including the famous Petronas Twin Towers, is worth visiting. Ipoh may be of more interest if you prefer a somewhat slower paced city that features elegant colonial-era buildings from about 100 years ago, and Malacca is for those who want to trace the colonial and imperial history of Malaysia several hundred years further back. Penang is known for its great food and relatively long-standing and institutionalized Chinese and Indian communities, who share the city with Malay and Thai communities. For a completely different experience, consider going to Kota Bharu to discover a unique conservative Islamic regional culture influenced by Thailand, only a few kilometres away, or visit the diverse cities of East Malaysia, like Kuching and Kota Kinabalu.
You Doing ---
Malaysia has excellent scuba diving. The most popular spots are the islands off the East Coast of peninsular Malaysia, although the dive season is limited to April to September. However, the most famous dive site — often ranked among the best in the world — is Sipadan, off the easternmost tip of Malaysian Borneo. There are many other less well known sites, like Layang Layang.
Malaysia has an abundant supply of world class golf courses such as the Mines Resort and Golf Club and Kuala Lumpur Golf & Country Club, both which hosted the annual PGA sanctioned CIMB Classic. Other notable courses include Saujana Golf & Country Club, Clearwater Sanctuary, The Legends and many more.
Kuala Lumpur is a shopping mecca for clothes, electronics, watches, computer goods and much more, with very competitive prices by any standard. Local Malaysian brands include Royal Selangor and BritishIndia. Traditional Malaysian fabrics are a popular souvenir. The cheapest place to easily buy ethnic souvenirs is in Kuching, East Malaysia, and the most expensive place is in the major, posh Kuala Lumpur shopping centres.
The crossroads of Malay, Chinese and Indian cuisine, Malaysia is an excellent place to makan. Look out for regional specialities and Nyonya cuisine, the fusion between Malay and Chinese cooking. There is even unique Eurasian cooking to be found in the Portuguese Settlement in Malacca, the heartland of the Eurasian community of Portuguese descent.
Malaysians are very proud of their cooking and most towns or even villages have their own delicious specialities such as Penang char kway teow, Kajang satay, Ipoh bean sprout chicken, Sarawak laksa, Kelantanese nasi dagang, Sabahan hinava, and many, many more. Most of them rely on word of mouth for advertising and are frequently located in the most inconvenient, out-of-the-way places so you might want to try asking the locals for their personal recommendations.