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The 20 most beautiful places to see in Malaysia

Malaysia is one of the most fascinating countries in Southeast Asia. A country full of culture, traditions, incredible places to visit, paradisiacal beaches...

If you intend to tour the country and get to know its most important cities, the Cameron Highlands and some of its islands, I recommend that you plan an itinerary of about 15 days. If you want to include Singapore, even up to 20 days. Don't worry though, if you don't have so much time on this list of the 20 most beautiful places to see in Malaysia, you can plan your itinerary to measure. Also, at the end of the post I add some itinerary ideas and tips for traveling to Malaysia.

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1. Kuala Lumpur, the first stop to see and do in Malaysia

Kuala Lumpur is a city full of contrasts. There are people who fall in love with it and others on the contrary, it horrifies them. And it is that you can find a beautiful temple full of red and orange lights, next to a monstrously large skyscraper. This is Kuala Kumpur.

As it is the capital of the country, it is usually the entry point for many travelers and it is mandatory to make a stop of at least 3 nights.

It is advisable to hire a guided tour of Kuala Lumpur. The visit lasts about 3 hours, it is with an English-speaking guide and during the journey the most important places in the city will be visited by bus. It is a good option to have a first contact with Kuala Lumpur.

In Kuala Lumpur you have a lot of things to see and do. Start by getting lost in its neighborhoods; Little India, Chinatown... are the most charming places in the city. You also can't miss the famous Petronas Towers, the Central Market, the Kuala Lumpur Mosque, the Lake Garden and Merdeka Square.

Posts from Kuala Lumpur that may interest you

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2. Kuala Selangor, a very magical place to see in Malaysia

Kuala Selangor is a small seaside town famous for its incredible scenery and fireflies. It is a visit that you can do without having to move and stay in the area. You can take a tour from Kuala Lumpur.

It is an excursion of about 8 hours where you will visit the Bukit Melawti hill where there are the remains of an old 18th century fortress very well preserved, where some cannons can still be seen. You will also visit Kampung Kuantan where the famous fireflies are found and you will take a boat trip at dusk to appreciate them better and finally the excursion ends with a delicious seafood dinner at a local restaurant.

3. Batu Caves, one of the most essential places to see in Malaysia

It is one of the essential visits to do in Malaysia. These caves are located about 45 minutes from the city.

To get inside the caves you will have to walk up 272 steps. Worth the effort! Inside the caverns are sculptures of Hindu gods and goddesses. And in itself, the beauty of the place is incredible.

You have several options to visit the Batu Caves. You can hire private transport or a taxi (since it is relatively close) and once you arrive pay the entrance fee. The cost of the taxi is not very high, but I advise you to agree on a price and haggle before getting into the taxi. They will give you a better price if you ask them to wait for you to make the return. If not, don't worry, at the exit of the caves there are many taxis waiting for travelers.

The other option is with an organized and guided excursion. This option is what we did. The excursion only lasts about 3 hours and you go with a local English-speaking guide who will explain a lot of anecdotes, the history of the place...

4. The Perenthian Islands and their paradisiacal beaches

I must admit that Malaysian beaches are not my favorite beaches in Southeast Asia. If your intention is to find those beaches with crystal clear water, fine white sand, surrounded by vegetation, in Malaysia you have options, but nothing to do with its neighboring countries such as Thailand or Indonesia. Still, Malaysia has incredible beaches and islands to discover. A good option is the Perenthian Islands.

It is a small archipelago where you can enjoy the sea, the sun and disconnect from everything. If you travel to Malaysia between April and October, remember that it is the monsoon season, and although you can find an incredible sunny season, you must take it into account.

5. Langkawi, one of the most luxurious islands to stay in Malaysia

Unlike the Perenthians, Langkawi is one of the most luxurious islands to stay in Malaysia. In addition to enjoying an incredible natural setting, you can find accommodation where you are pampered in every detail. It is usually one of the most touristic islands and you can do water activities, a relaxing massage, boat trips...

One of its main attractions is its cable car. During your journey, about 20 minutes, you will have spectacular views of waterfalls and forests.

6. Cameron Highlands, one of the most incredible places to see in Malaysia

The Cameron Highlands were discovered not long ago, at the end of the 19th century, it was a person from the government on an expedition that found this magical place. At that time, Malaysia had been declared under British protection, which formally lasted until the Japanese invasion during World War II, triggering Malaysia's independence in 1957. The mix of low temperatures, its 1,500 meters above sea level sea ​​and its fertile lands, made it an ideal place for agriculture.

You will find tea plantations, fruit plantations, waterfalls, areas full of jungles, the largest flower in the world, the Rafflesia and much more.

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7. Malacca, the most romantic city to visit in Malaysia

The colonial city of Malacca is a historical and cultural gem. It was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2008 and is one of the most essential places to see in Malaysia.

Malacca City was colonized by the Portuguese, Dutch and British. And the imprint of all these cultures can be seen walking through the streets of the city: both in its buildings and in the food. Many say that Malacca is the most romantic city in Malaysia, and they are right, it is a beautiful city and very different from the other cities that you can visit in the country.

If you do not have much time and your itinerary does not allow you to stay at least one night in Malacca, you can also take a day trip to Malacca:

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8. The Kek Lok Si Temple on the island of Penang

Penang is a very touristy island linked to Peninsular Malaysia by a bridge. The ideal is to travel from Kuala Lumpur by plane, the cost is very low and you save time since the road trip is heavy and long.

It does not stand out for being an island with paradisiacal beaches, but it is worth visiting (at least 3 days) to see some of the most incredible places in Malaysia.

In Penang is the largest Buddhist temple in Southeast Asia, the Kek Lok Si Temple. Is incredible! It was built in the 19th century on top of one of the hills on the island of Penang. The views from above are beautiful and you can visit many temples, gardens... It is a huge complex, keep in mind that you will need about three hours to visit it.

9. Georgetown, the most interesting city to see in Penang

Georgetown is the main city that you must visit in Penang. Its great attraction lies in the buildings from the colonial era, its graffiti on each street representing moments of the daily life of the Malaysian population and its colorful temples.

10. Pulau Kapas, the perfect island to enjoy snorkeling and diving

Malaysia does not have great beaches and paradisiacal islands like Indonesia, the Philippines or Thailand... but, even so, it has beautiful beaches where you can disconnect for a few days and enjoy the natural environment.

Kapas is a paradise for scuba divers and the best coral is found on the less accessible beaches, in the northern part of the island and around Pulau Gemia. The easiest way to reach the most impressive enclaves is by boat. North of Gemia, a Japanese landing craft sunk during World War II, already carpeted with coral, is popular with divers. There are several companies that offer the possibility of getting closer to the area by boat, they include a diving guide, equipment...

11. Taman Negara National Park

Generally, all Malaysia itineraries do not include National parks. They are somewhat remote and difficult to access (or at least it takes time to get there). However, if you are a lover of nature and adventure, it is advisable to include one of them on your trip to the country. After having traveled to Malaysia twice and having toured the country, without a doubt I would add one of the national parks if I were you (I'll add more to this list) to complete the trip.

Taman Negara National Park is one of the most beautiful places to see in Malaysia. One of the best things to do in the park is to enjoy the Canopy Walk. It is a suspension bridge located over the treetops. Incredible!

You will also be able to navigate the rapids or do some of the marked hiking trails that will take you to incredible waterfalls and movie landscapes.

Of all the National Parks in Malaysia, this is one of the most accessible and you can take an excursion from Kuala Lumpur. It is a somewhat long excursion, about 12 hours, but it is recommended because it includes transportation, a guide, entrance to the park, visits to other places in the area, the activity of the rapids, and food.

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12. Visit Putrajaya and its beautiful pink Mosque

The Putrajaya tour from Kuala Lumpur is one of the most popular. Putrajaya is a governmental and administrative city, so it is not very attractive for tourists, although it has many places to see and the main one is the Putra Mosque, a beautiful and huge pink mosque. The city surrounds the beautiful lake and green areas.

I do not recommend that you include Putrajaya to stay in it. Mid-morning is enough to meet her. You can get there by taxi (although first agree on the cost with the taxi driver), by bus or you can book an excursion of about 4 or 5 hours that includes transportation with hotel pick-up and guide.

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13. Genting Highlands, a somewhat surreal place to see in Malaysia

Genting Highlands is one of the most curious places to see in Malaysia, without a doubt. It is a huge resort (a somewhat surreal amusement park) full of activities to do. There is a 20th Century Fox theme park, cave temples, several cable cars and casinos. Many say that it is about Las Vegas in Malaysia, and if it could be said that it is something similar.

Honestly, I don't think it's an essential place or one of the most beautiful places to see in Malaysia. But if it is something fun to do in the country if you like these types of activities.

What I liked the most about the place are the temples that have been built in it, although they don't seem very authentic or traditional to me, since they were built in the complex basically for tourists to take photos…

14. Borneo, if you want to know the wildest Malaysia

The island of Borneo is huge and belongs in one part to Malaysia, another to Indonesia and finally a small piece to Brunei.

To get to know Borneo, I recommend you only take a trip to Borneo and Brunei and you will need at least two weeks. It has a lot to see!

We have traveled to Malaysia twice, one to get to know "peninsular" Malaysia, we could call it, where the capital is located, Kuala Lumpur, and we took a tour including National parks and islands. And on another occasion only to travel to Borneo (Malaysia and Brunei). If you don't even know where to start, but you want to get to know Borneo, here is a complete guide with the most incredible places and itineraries: What to see in Borneo Malaysia and Brunei in 16 days!

15. The Semporna Archipelago, an essential thing to see in Malaysian Borneo

The Semporna archipelago, led by Sipadan, is one of the best places in the world to enjoy underwater nature. If you don't dive, don't worry, snorkeling there is more than enough reason to get to these islands.

You can make routes by boat, or speedboat and get to know the natural islands near the coast of Borneo. Cool islands to visit: Pulau Timbun Mata, Pulau Bodgaya, Pulau Bohidulong and Pulau BumBum.

16. The Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Center

In Malaysian Borneo there is also the orangutan rehabilitation center in Sepilok. They do an incredible job of rescuing orphaned orangutans and raising them so they can be reintroduced into a natural environment.

The center opened its doors in 1964 and allows walks through its facilities in the middle of the jungle. You can even watch as they are fed twice a day. It is not a simple tourist attraction, the priority of the center is the well-being of the orangutans and not the satisfaction of the visitors.

17. Mount Santubong

Mount Santubong is a very popular trek on the Santubong Peninsula (Malay Borneo).

It is a place of pilgrimage, and it is not an easy trekking, you have to be in a certain physical condition. But it consists of two treks, one simple and one more difficult. So you can decide which one to do.

Throughout the trekking you cross jungle trails, you reach spectacular viewpoints and of course the views from above make the climb worthwhile.

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18. Bako National Park in Malaysian Borneo

Bako National Park is one of the essential stops to make in Sarawak, and one of the most visited places in this Malaysian region of Borneo.

In this park you will see the proboscis monkeys.

In this park there are many treks to do of different difficulties. Some of which end up on idyllic beaches, yes, bathing is prohibited due to the presence of crocodiles. Even so, the place is spectacular and it is worth dedicating a day to this Park.

You can go from beach to beach using the boats of the local boatmen. The tours are very cheap and it is a way to get to know the different places in the park through the sea.

In this area there are few accommodation options, and if you go in high season you will have to book well in advance. Although it is not very far from Kunching, so you can go there from the city.

19. Gunung Mulu National Park

Gunung Mulu National Park is one of the coolest in Borneo. Apart from the fauna and vegetation that it has, similar to the other National parks in Malaysia, this park is famous for its caves. Immense caves, full of stalactites and where you can take various excursions through underground tunnels.

20. Redang Island

Redang has an amazing seabed. In addition, it is an island full of vegetation perfect for lovers of hiking. You can enter the leafy paths or walk along the paths that take you to paradisiacal beaches. It is one of the islands that I liked the most in Malaysia and I will tell you all about Redang here:

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I hope you enjoy your trip to Malaysia a lot and that this article has been useful to you. You can continue reading many more related articles on the blog.

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A hug and see you soon!


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