This Tropical country surely Rocks!! Having lived here for almost a year now, I have loads to share with my frenz who plan to have a vacation here. Believe me, its a great destination, spcially for “Resident” Indians – No scarcity of Indian Restaurants( Ranging from High end to “lowest end”), a short 5 hr flight from New Delhi( even lesser from Mumbai/Chennai) and Air Asia(http://www.airasia.com/my/) rightly says – Now everyone can fly, You get flying deals for lesser than u can imagine for an international destination here. Before getting a tourist VISA to Malaysia, pls visit http://www.2malaysia.com/visa.htm, to check if you really require one.
A little about Malaysia’s History, geography and civics[;)] : Malaysia indeed is truely asia, You can see it bubbling and bustling with almost all asian cultures. The main ethnic groups include the Malays, Chinese & Indians(Mainly Tamils and then Punjabis).This makes Malaysia home to many festivals and I guess Malaysians love celebrating all these festivals, throughout the year.It all starts with Christmas & New Year Celebrations, followed by Chinese New Year in Feb,Indian Holi in March, in June starts the celebrations for Malaysian festival Hari Raya for 3 months, Oct & Nov see Diwali decorations all through. The best feature of these festivals is the “SALE” which are genuine and make Malaysia a shopper’s paradise almost throughout the year.
Geographically, Malaysia is divided by the South China Sea in Peninsular Malaysia and East Malaysia(Sabah & Sarwak).The Peninsular Malaysia is sandwiched between Thailand in the North and Singapore in the south. The most famous tourist destinations in Malaysia are the capital, Kuala lumpur, Langkawi Island, Genting Highlands, Penang and Redang Island.
Culture & Ettiquitte note – Malays are quite warm n friendly. They speak Behasa Melayu and follow Islam. Lone Women travellers are quite safe. Although Malays are quite conservative about women’s attire. This isnt a concern in highly metro and tourist places like KL, Genting, Langkawi etc. But one must be carefule in areas like Penang. The main religion is Islam, but one can find churches and Indian temples too. There are signs outside many mosques indicating who may or may not enter, prohibited dresses etc. Please respect that. Its quite safe , but an extra precaution with your handpurse/gold chains etc is advised, specially when roaming in tourist spots in KL.
Weatherwise, Its quite hot & humid when it is not raining:). These are the only two kind here[:P]. Temp ranges from 21C to 34C.And it can rain without any warnings:). Please come prepared with loads of sunblocks, hats & umbrellas. The highlands can take you to a cool world as well. So if your itinary includes Genting or Cameroon Highlands, its not a bad idea to carry a light woolen as well.
And Most Imp(specially for my vegge Indian frenz):McD doesnt serve the McAllooTikki Burger[:D][:P], or any Veg Burger/wrap or roll for that matter
The buses/train/roads are quite good for interstate travel. KL Sentral is a good place(http://www.klsentral.com.my/), when in Kuala Lumpur to find the connectivities, schedules and prices.KLIA express is a good commute to KL International airport from KL. Buses and Trains are also connected comfortably to Singapore and Thailand.
Cruise is another option to travel from Singapore to Malaysia to Thailand,(Only if you have the time & Money), visit http://www.starcruises.com/newweb/homepage.aspx
The following info might help you plan your itenary for a vacation in Malaysia.
Places not to miss in Kuala Lumpur:
Petronas Twin Towers – This is like the most obvious place to be when in KL. The Suria KLCC mall below the twin towers hosts all the high end brands possible.(So if you dont want ur wife to shop here, just hold her hand[:D]). There is a little park outside with some fountains and water play etc. Indian Restaurant: Spice of India.
KL Tower – The 4th largest tower in the world.It boasts of a revolving restaurant with a 180 degree view of KL and it really has a spectacularly amazing view after the sun sets, though the food served isnt worth the price[:D]. The other option is to chose the observation deck only. Indian Restaurant: Tandoor
Bukit Bintang Walk – Now thats a happening place after the sun sets, lots of pubs/discs/cafe/massage places to hang out. This is where you can feel the famous KL night life. The Times Square Mall is a great place to shop and also has the largest indoor theme park in Malaysia. Then there is the Low Yat Plaza where you can find all electronics, at a better price.Indian Restaurants: There are many many here. Nawabs, Spice Garden, Passage thru India, to name a few.
Sunway – This is a place which would require all your day. There’s a water park, an extreme adventure park, wildlife park, amusement park and a shopping mall with an ice skating rink. Indian Restaurants:Sagar
Other places to Shop – Mid Valley Megamall, ChinaTown
Things to do in Langkawi:
Langkawi Cable Car & Hanging Bridge – To have the best view of the nearby small islands. This is simply a great experience.
Underwater World – Just another underwaterworld though.
Pantai Cenang Beach – A beautiful plus happening beach with water sports and many many Indian restaurants here.
Tanjung Rhu Beach – This is an untouched beauty. Most of the beach is private to the resorts like Four Seasons and tanjung Rhu Resort, and there is only a little place for the non -guests at those resorts. So carry a beach mat with you if you are not staying there.
Langkawi Eagle Square – Thats kind of a symbol of langkawi. Nothing much to do here apart from getting a pic clicked.
Island Hopping – Hiring a private yacht or booking on a group yacht is a must do when in langkawi. They serve you food and unlimited drinks on the yacht and you get to see some really beautiful wallpaper sceneries. A little bargain is ok. MYR 260 – 280 is a good price per head.
Other Points to Note – Langkawi is completely dutifree and shopping for your fav perfumes or liquor is completely guilt free. Most of the places in Langkawi efuse to accept cards, so its a good idea to carry the cash for the whole trip.
An Indoor theme park, Loads of Casinos, An Outdoor theme park, Shopping and Restaurants is all to be done at genting. It gets quite cold in here after the evenings. Indian Restaurants – Spice Garden
On the way to Genting Highlands from KL, comes the Batu Caves. This place has a huge statue of Lord Murugan and some270 odd steps to reach the main temple. Kind of an adventure but one must be careful about the monkeys.
I have not visited Penang, Redang & Cameroon Highlands yet. So you can find info on them at
Other helpful sites would be