The magic of Malaysia is shared equally between its sophisticated mainland and the raw beauty of the East Malaysia territory of Borneo.
On the mainland, step out of your luxurious hotel to find colorful Colonial towns and modern cities and to lose yourself in the mist-shrouded tea plantations. Glide by monorail above the rooftops of Kuala Lumpur to view the iconic, 88-floor Petronas Towers, or stroll amongst the birds within leafy Lake Gardens. Listed as UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Melaka (in the South) and George Town (in the northwest province of Penang) display distinctive architectural and cultural townscapes, developed over a half a millennium of Southeast Asian cultural and trade exchange. Travel north to the incredible temples within the Batu Caves or rent a bike in Sarawak and pedal past wooden longhouses in traditional villages.
Cross the South China Sea to Borneo, where secluded tribes and exotic wildlife hide in the equatorial rainforest and explore the islands’ beautiful beaches. For a one-of-a-kind experience, take the steam train journey past paddy fields, coffee plantations and spectacular coastal landscapes; hike to the top of Mount Kinabalu, Malaysia’s highest peak; or volunteer at the world famous Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre.
Whether it is from a gourmet restaurant in the capital Kuala Lumpur or a lively Penang street stall, also make sure you try Malaysia’s out-of-this-world cuisine: Malaysia’s tradition as a melting pot of Asian cultures reveals itself here and you have not experienced the full flavor of this region until you have tasted its famous coconut-infused creations, like Ayam Percik (spicy barbecued chicken), or sweet Kuih pastries.