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Travel bloggers choose their top 6 places to visit in Malaysia

Travel bloggers choose their top 6 places to visit in Malaysia

Having recently visited Malaysia and fallen head over heels with the country I asked top travel bloggers to share the places they love to visit in this beautiful South- East Asian country. Read on to discover the top 6 places to visit in Malaysia chosen by travel bloggers and prepare for some serious wanderlust!

PENANG by tracystravelsintime.com

I’m going to start off this post about the top 6 places to visit in Malaysia with a little bit about our recent visit to Penang! We added Penang into our itinerary mainly due to the fact it was geographically between two destinations we had definitely wanted to add to our itinerary – Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur. We had initially planned to take the overnight train between these two cities and as the train passed by Butterworth in Penang it seemed an ideal place to stop off for a few days. After a bad bought of food poisoning in Bangkok we decided to skip the train and fly to Penang a day early and I am so glad we did. Penang turned out to be the highlight of our holiday.

We stayed in Georgetown on the island and fell in love with the place – the people, the food, the street-art and the general relaxed multi-cultural atmosphere makes for a destination with a difference.

top 6 places to visit in Malaysia

Your need to know guide to the street art in Penang

MALACCA by David from Travelsewhere

Visiting Malaysia, you can expect to find a mesh of cultures and influences. Two influences I hadn’t expected to find however were the colonial Dutch and Portuguese influences in the coastal city of Malacca. Known as either Melaka or Malacca, the city roughly halfway between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore, centres on an incredibly quaint old town and riverfront. The old town is such a unique blend of Malay, Chinese, Dutch and Portuguese history and architecture that it is actually a UNESCO world heritage site.

Can’t miss spots in Malacca include the street art that pops up along the riverfront of Malacca River, the hilltop ruins of St Paul’s Church and the scattered remains of the old Portuguese fortifications. Of course there’s also the beating heart of the city in Jonker Street, which features a night market every Friday and Saturday. As you move between these sights you’ll come to realize how atypically calm and quiet Malacca is compared to nearly any other city in Malaysia.

Malacca definitely is a unique spot and one well worth making when travelling through Malaysia.

Catch up with David from Travelsewhere on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter!

KUALA LUMPUR by Kreete from adventuroustrails

Kuala Lumpur, the last stop on our two months Asian adventure. Coming from Sri Lanka, I didn’t think things could get any better. I was wrong! Kuala Lumpur was the first clean and modern city we had the pleasure to explore. It could be different for someone coming to Malaysia from a first world country, but having spent the last months in third world countries like Nepal and India, I was blown away. No tuk tuks! No one is trying to run you over when you cross the road! And no diarrhoea from street food! And how cheap was it to party! Even the advances from strange local men didn’t seem too apparent compared to being scared to leave my hotel room alone in New Delhi.

I would strongly recommend seeing the views from KL tower rather than from the viewing platform in the famous Petronas towers. It’s cheaper and you will get amazing photos from the towers itself. Then, head for a dose of shopping therapy in the many shopping centres, followed by a relaxing visit to the cinema for the latest block buster for less than $7 AUD!

Do not skip the Jalan Alor street food market at night and if you still have the energy, partying on the rooftops. Kuala Lumpur was everything we dreamed of to end our holiday with a bang. Next time, when you are booking connecting flights though KL, make sure you take a day or two in town-you will not regret it!

Catch up with Kreete on her blog adventuroustrails, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter!

BORNEO by Angie and Simon of FeetDoTravel

Malaysia doesn’t just cover the mainland and its small islands, let us not forget the world’s third largest island … Borneo! Divided into three countries, Malaysia occupies two awesome states, Sarawak and Sabah. Where else in the world can you see proboscis monkeys in the wild? Nowhere is the answer, and it’s one of the few places in the world to watch our furry orange cousins the orang-utans; Sepilok Orang-utan Rehabilitation Centre in Sabah and Semenggoh Nature Reserve in Sarawak. Believe me when I tell you, spending time observing orang-utans is humbling. I could wax-lyrical about Borneo and the amazing adventures we had all day … and I often do!

If you love trekking, the jungles of Borneo are actually older than the amazon so if you are looking for pristine rainforest and that “Me Tarzan, you Jane” feeling, head to Mulu National Park, Sepilok, or Bako National Park where you can also stay in a nearby tree-house at the highly recommended Permai Rainforest Lodge.

But there is still more to Borneo … do you love adventure? Take a two day trip to climb Mount Kinabalu, cruise along the Kinabatangan river and, if you love cycling, hire a bike or book a tour and cycle around Kuching. Are you a scuba diver? Sipadan, the world’s number one dive site is off the east coast. Surely this must whet your appetite?

A year-round destination with delicious food, honest and friendly locals and, if you want a 2-centre holiday to make the most out of your trip, it’s an easy destination to travel around … Malaysian Borneo should surely now be on your radar! If you can’t already tell, we absolutely love Borneo.

Catch up with Angie and Simon on their blog FeetDoTravel, and on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

GUNUNG MULU NATIONAL PARK by Alexei of travelexx.com

“All roads lead to Rome”, as the saying goes, right? Except if you quote this famous line to someone in Gunung Mulu National Park, you’re likely to be met by blank stares. Because…well…there are no roads here! The only way to currently reach this remote corner of Malaysian Borneo is via a short flight from Miri or a long and arduous series of boat trips.

Those that do make an effort to reach the park, however, will be treated to some of the most spectacular natural wonders that Asia has to offer. The iconic Pinnacles karsts that tower above the rainforest are one of the main draws, with three day hikes along the ominous-sounding Headhunter’s Trail available.

Mulu boasts some of the most impressive caves in the world and visitors can explore many of them on tours and self-guides walks. The enormous Sarawak Chamber is still the largest known cave chamber in the world by area.

top 5 places to visit in Malaysia

Don’t miss the incredible bat exodus outside Deer Cave which sees millions of wrinkle-lipped bats leave the cave on their daily hunt. Longboat trips, wildlife spotting night walks and spectacular waterfalls are just some of the activities available to visitors.

However, a planned road linking Miri to Mulu is in the pipeline – go now before this gem of a national park becomes overrun with tourists.

Gunung Mulu National Park is accessible by a 30 minute flight from Miri with MASwings. AirAsia flies from Kuala Lumpur to Miri daily (2 hours).  For more information on accommodation and activities, visit the park’s official website.

Catch up with Alexei on his blog travelexx and on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

KUCHING – BORNEO by Kelly of trippinturpins

Our time in Kuching was short but very sweet! The city of Kuching is located in the state of Sarawak, on the island of Borneo. It holds the record for the cleanest city in Malaysia and is in fact, one of the cleanest cities in Asia. This was evident on the trip from the airport to our hotel and I think that was when we fell in love with Kuching.

Kuching is rich in history and culture. Contemporary Kuching is an impressive combination of modern structures and old-world charm. With bustling weekend markets, copious museums, modern shopping malls and old 1864 Chinese shophouses selling crafts and souvenirs, this unique city does have a little for everyone.

Kuching is the perfect city to explore on foot. The landscaped waterfront esplanade is a hub of activity at night with restaurants and market stalls selling delicious foods. During the day it is the perfect place to view Astana (palace), Fort Margherita (constructed in 1879) and the New Sarawak State Legislative Assembly Building (iconic landmark).

But back to food! It was in Kuching we first tasted Sarawak laksa and I have to say we once again fell in love. This laksa is neither a curry laksa nor the sour asam laksa. I’m not sure how to describe it, but do not go to Kuching without trying a bowl of this delicious noodle soup!

Kuching is also an ideal destination for nature lovers. Nearby national parks include Bako National Park the oldest in sarawak. Although it is also one of Sarawak’s smallest National parks, it includes various biomes including rainforest, jungle, streams, waterfalls, secluded beaches and an abundance of wildlife. Moreover there is Gunung Gading National Park which is home to the world’s largest flower; the giant rafflesia can grow up to a diameter of one metre, and Semenggoh Wildlife Centre  which operates an orang-utan orphanage and rehabilitation program.

Kuching is the perfect destination for city dweller and nature lover!

Catch up with Kelly on her blog  trippinturpins, Facebook, Instagram






So those are 6 of mine and some of my fellow travel bloggers favourite places to visit in Malaysia! For more about Borneo you can read a review of Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre.

I still have 4 of these amazing places to visit and I can tell you I can’t wait! Borneo in particular has just moved to a much higher position on my wish list! I hope you enjoyed “Top 6 places to visit in Malaysia” – Have you been to any of these and are there other places you would add to my post!



Top 6 places to visit in Malaysia

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Author: Tracy

Working my way around the globe for 30 years – teacher, traveller, and train lover. Sharing authentic experiences from my travels and life as an expat in Australia.



  1. Linda Tallett
    October 27, 2017 / 6:20 am

    Great post Tracy and I agree Borneo looks amazing and is definitely on our list for the future! Looks like Malaysia holds lots of exciting areas to visit and great to have tips from other bloggers too!

    • TracyJane
      October 28, 2017 / 12:35 am

      Thanks Linda! We need to plan a trip to Borneo I think!

  2. Jenny Guest
    October 27, 2017 / 7:50 am

    Malaysia sounds amazing – These blogs bring wonderful destinations to my doorstep! Wonderful for the armchair traveller! Thank you ❤️

    • TracyJane
      October 28, 2017 / 12:35 am

      Thanks Jenny so glad you are enjoying them!

  3. Jurga
    October 27, 2017 / 7:58 am

    Borneo has been our list forever, but this post put the rest of Malaysia on my radar too. Hope we can visit one day, the culture, the street art, the wildlife – it all looks amazing.

    • TracyJane
      October 28, 2017 / 12:34 am

      Definitely somewhere plan to see a lot more of! Amazing country!

  4. October 27, 2017 / 8:50 am

    Malaysia isn’t somewhere in Asia we’ve been yet but I keep seeing more and more about it online. Thanks for bringing together all these useful resources. I’ve now got my reading sorted for the day 🙂
    Michael – The Boys Abroad recently posted…How to Travel with a Full Time JobMy Profile

    • TracyJane
      October 28, 2017 / 12:34 am

      I agree David! Looks amazing!

    • TracyJane
      October 28, 2017 / 12:33 am

      Definitely worth exploring more – we can’t wait to visit Borneo!

  5. October 27, 2017 / 7:05 pm

    So interesting to get so many different perspectives on one country of the best places! Malaysia is definitely climbing my Bucket List!! #feetdotravel
    Lolo recently posted…The Weekly PostcardMy Profile

    • TracyJane
      October 28, 2017 / 12:33 am

      We definitely want to see more! Borneo is heading to the top of my list!

  6. October 28, 2017 / 10:50 am

    I loved travelling around Malaysia and have been there a few times so yes, I agree with all the top places here to visit! Thank you for allowing me to contribute to help show people how amazing Malaysia and Borneo are – so glad Borneo heading to the top of your bucket list and that you enjoyed Malaysia as much as I thought you would. Pinned. #feetdotravel

    • TracyJane
      October 29, 2017 / 2:38 am

      Can’t wait to explore Borneo Angie!

  7. October 29, 2017 / 12:02 am

    I would love to visit Malaysia and all these places sound great. I think I would start with KL though and then Borneo. Thanks for sharing on #TheWeeklyPostcard.

    • TracyJane
      October 29, 2017 / 2:38 am

      I wouldn’t miss Penang though it is amazing!!

  8. October 29, 2017 / 1:20 am

    Great Article! We are headed to Indonesia in March so loved to hear about some of the must see places that I will have to go see on our next trip!

    • TracyJane
      October 29, 2017 / 2:39 am

      Are you heading to Malaysia after Indonesia? Sounds like a great trip!

  9. October 29, 2017 / 11:28 am

    This is a brilliant round up! I’ve only been to Kuala Lumpur from this list – I say only, but I absolutely loved the city! As Kreete says, it feels like such a breath of fresh air compared to some of the other places we visited.

    The rest of the list is basically my SE Asia bucket list, so thank you for the inspo!

    And sorry to hear about the Bangkok incident… Never fun. I’ve had my eye on that train journey, but it would definitely NOT be enjoyable with an upset stomach.

    • TracyJane
      November 5, 2017 / 4:53 am

      It really was! We loved Penang and KL so can’t wait to see more!

  10. October 30, 2017 / 7:21 pm

    Great post from the #feetdotravel group! Malaysia is somewhere we need to explore more. Loved Borneo and KL, Malacca not so much, but that might be a bad experience in a hotel which was next door to a building site and was really hot! Perhaps we should give it another try!
    Kate and Kris recently posted…Zoloti Vorota Metro – the most beautiful metro in KyivMy Profile

    • TracyJane
      November 5, 2017 / 4:53 am

      I really can’t wait to see more of Malaysia!

  11. November 1, 2017 / 12:21 am

    Great collaborative post! I love reading about the different perspectives. I’ve never been to SW Asia, but we’re hoping to plan a big trip in 2 years. Pinned this for (hopefully) later!

    • TracyJane
      November 5, 2017 / 4:53 am

      Have a great time planning it!

  12. November 1, 2017 / 2:31 am

    You had an excellent idea to put this post together, Tracy! I’m bookmarking it because we are planning to visit Malaysia in the near future. I knew about some of these places, but there seems to be so much more to this country than just Penang and Kuala Lumpur. Does Borneo belong to Malaysia? I thought it belonged to Indonesia…. Well, maybe I’m wrong. #TheWeeklyPostcard

    • TracyJane
      November 5, 2017 / 4:54 am

      It belongs to both Anda! Some bits are Malaysian some Indonesian!

  13. November 3, 2017 / 9:16 am

    I haven’t spent much time on the island of Borneo. All the wildlife out there and difficult traveling conditions real appeal to me. I’d love to visit both the Malaysian and Indonesian part of the Island.

  14. November 7, 2017 / 9:44 am

    I have known and wanted to go to Bormeo for forever but really didn’t know much else about it… I love this list! great ideas

  15. November 8, 2017 / 8:35 am

    Amazing post…! really enjoyed reading this, thanks for sharing. The pictures are amazing, my favorite place in Malaysia is Batu caves and the Lord Murugan Temple, also i like to explore KL town on foot, by tasting the Malaysian street foods, The view of the twin petronas towers you included here is stunning.

  16. November 12, 2017 / 6:15 am

    Brilliant round up! Made me want to go back to explore more what Malaysia has to offer! Penang and Borneo are on top of the list now! I had’t even heard of Malacca before, so thanks David for putting that on my radar! Thanks for including me in this, Tracy!

    • TracyJane
      November 14, 2017 / 9:36 am

      Me neither so can’t wait to visit now!

  17. June 27, 2018 / 12:10 pm

    I’d like to add Ipoh to that list. We recently included it on a Chiang to Singapore overland trip and it ended up being our highlight in Malaysia. Pretty town, clean, street art…and surounded by limestone karst outcrops in a green valley. Doted throughout the valley are some remarkable Cave Temples.
    It’s not well known compared to the other destinations but it was our hightlight.
    Frank (bbqboy)

    • June 27, 2018 / 12:11 pm

      Omission: I meant “Chiang Mai”…

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Hello from Australia

Traveller, teacher, train lover, and milkshake connoisseur.Now living and working in my 7th country and experiencing life as an expat in Queensland, Australia.

I write to inspire others whatever their age to explore the world - near and far!

I have travelled for over 30 years including solo in my 20's , as a single parent in my 30's and now in my 40's and beyond with my husband. House sitter and aspiring grey nomad a life of location independence is my goal.

Over 40 years ago I dreamt of a life well travelled and that is the life I live!

Dream it, plan it, do it!!


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