Malaysia is one of the unsung heroes of South-East Asia. The country brims with a rich and diverse culture, and is home to some of the most beautiful vistas on the entire planet.
From the vibrant and buzzing Kuala Lumpur capital to architectural wonders of Malacca, each city, beach, forest and town has its own personality, atmosphere and draw that promise to give you an adventure that you’ll never forget.
First time in Malaysia and not sure where the best places are for you to visit? Here’s a list of some of the 8 iconic places in Malaysia to get you started!
As you would expect from such a bustling capital, Kuala Lumpur is home to an exciting shopping experience that even the most experienced travelers will find themselves lost in. Central Market has a collection of Malay, Indian and Chinese shops, each selling homemade crafts, fabrics and, of course, an expansive collection of food outlets.
Petronas Twin Towers
Not as common for a country with such a rich natural wonderland, Malaysia’s urban scene is just as compelling and engaging. In particular, turn your eyes towards the Petronas Twin Towers, located in the heart of the buzzing Kuala Lumpur.
Way back in 2004, these towers were renowned as being the tallest buildings in the world. Travel up to the 41st floor, and you’ll be able to cross the bridge between the two towers, making for some of the most beautiful views of the entire city.
Known as the capital city of the Penang region and is home to the largest percentage of Chinese migrants in the country, making this city a rich and diverse cultural pot. Back in the day, George Town played an extremely important role when it came to Britain trading in the South-East regions. As a result, the city has a tasteful blend of Asian and European cultures, something that’s evident from the food to the architecture.
If you’re looking to get out of the city and want to try getting a bit more fresh air, why not head up the Cameron Highlands? Located a whopping 1,500 metres above sea level, these are visually stunning hills that were discovered by a British surveyor in 1885. Due to the geographical location of this region, the temperature varies around 10-21°C, never any different, so it is no wonder this has become an ideal escape from the muggy, hot climate elsewhere.
Although slightly off the typical tourist trail, Batu Caves is still just a stone’s throw from Kuala Lumpur and is well worth the visit. Once inside, you’ll be able to discover a realm consisting of three caves that have attracted thousands of worshippers during the annual Hindu festival that takes place here. Even just walking up the 272 steps to get to the first Cathedral Cave is an experience in itself.
Taman Negara National Park is one of the largest in the country and spans over three Malaysian states and is overwhelming with tons of wildlife. The park is also a refuge for endangered animals, including the Malaysian Tiger, a collection of macaques and the Asian Elephant.
Unfortunately, since the park spans three states, chances that you’ll see some of these animals is slim, but there are still many beautiful animals to discover, along with some of the most amazing views in Malaysia.
If you’re looking for something a bit more adventurous where you can soak up some sun, sea and sand, why not head over to Manukan Island for the perfect getaway? This is the place to go when it comes to a sun-soaked journey away from the city, as it is renowned for some of the best beaches in the country. The island is also home to the gorgeous Tunku Abdul National Park, the country’s first marine park.
Kek Lok Si Temple
Usually, temples date back over hundreds, if not, thousands of years and lay near ruin but this is not the case for Kek Lok Si Temple. Inaugurated in only 1891, this temple is one of the most important Chinese-Buddhist temples in all of Southeast Asia.
By day, the temple is still an impressive feat but come night the temple lights up the night sky with thousands of lights which make it beam for miles around. Feel free to explore the interior during set hours where you’ll find countless pictures of Buddha and over 10,000 carvings.
After seeing these key landmarks in Malaysia, why not look out for her hidden gems and unique local experiences? Look for a memorable experience at LokaLocal.
This post is contributed by Rachel Summers from The Writing Populist.