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Cameron Highlands, Malaysia
Cameron Highlands, Malaysia

Malaysia Travel Fast Facts

Getting there: regular flights from major world cities to Kuala Lumpur International Airport

What to see:
Kuala Lumpu, Petronas Twin Towwers, Batu Caves, Taman Negara National Park, Tioman Island

Currency: Malaysian ringgit

Official language(s):
Malay, English

Malaysia, known as one of the most mellow, laid back countries in all of Southeast Asia, is also one of the most fascinating for travelers.

Dynamic and wealthy, yet friendly and welcoming, it is an admirable melting pot of Malay, Chinese and Indian flavors and cultures - amid the stunning natural beauty of its island beaches, mountains and national parks.

Nowhere is Malaysia's contrast of modern and traditional more evident than in its capital, Kuala Lumpur, where the skyline is dominated by the soaring Petronas Twin Towers (currently the second tallest skyscraper after Taipei). Perhaps more dramatically, these cosmopolitan towers overlook a bustling city that remains home to a colorful mix of ages-old architectural styles and thriving ethnic markets.

Kuala Lumpur, or "KL" as it is known by the locals, is also a good jumping-off point for exploring the rest of the country, made up of a string of islands in 11 states in the Malaysia peninsula and two states in northern Borneo.

For a taste of mystery and natural beauty, the nearby Batu Caves is a good day trip from the capital. Other must-sees include Penang Island and its capital city, Georgetown, offering an impressive mix of culinary delights and fabulous beaches.

Kuala Lumpur skyline
At left, the Petronas Twin Towers dominate
the Kuala Lumpur skyline at dusk.

Among Malaysia's handful of protected preserves, Taman Negara National Park
northeast of Kuala Lumpur offers a complete adventure including riverboat trips and jungle safaris for watching gibbons, peacocks and elephants frolicking in their natural habitat.

Heading south, also don't miss Tioman Island, (the fabled "Bali Hai" in the 1958 film version of South Pacific), which remains a beautiful mix of mountains, dense rain forest, and gorgeous tropical beaches.

DID YOU KNOW? Malaysia Travel Fun Facts

Warning: elephant crossing

• There are signs warning motorists to watch out for elephant herds that cross the scenic East-West Highway.

Sunway Mall in Kuala Lumpur is distinguished by its Egyptian-inspired architecture and a 2-story high sphinx that guards its entrance.

• In Sabah on Borneo Island, the Gomantong Caves is where swiftlets make their famous nests, which are the main ingredient in Bird's Nest Soup.

• You can visit a rainforest without ever leaving Kuala Lumpur. Bukit Nanas Rainforest Reserve is among the smallest rainforest patches in the world.

• Malaysia has its own Loch Ness monster. Locals believe that a dragon called the Naga Seri Gumum inhabits Chini Lake (visit if you dare).

also see -> Top Beaches in Cambodia, Malaysia and Vietnam

Five Affordable World Destinations


More about Malaysia travel & tourism around the Web:

Elsewhere on the Web, find out more at top travel sites featuring how to's on getting around including plane and ferry schedules, packaged tours, hotel and restaurant recommendations plus related help with tailoring your own tropical island-hopping adventure ....

Tourism Malaysia - Stunning, colorful and interactive guide with focus on Malaysia's cultural diversity with restaurant information & contact details, Malaysian recipes, top destinations by state, city, or special interest, searchable database of hotels & resorts, fast facts and travel tips, event calendar.

Malaysia Travel Guide - Wikitravel entry with an extensive look at major destinations, national parks, a guide to the islands plus more on the country's history and culture, tips on getting there and getting around by plane, train, ferry, bus or car, food recommendations, health & safety tips, related resources.

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