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Exploring Malaysia

Getting Around Malaysia

Getting around Malaysia is fairly easy with affordable flights, safe roads, and a rail system. If you’re traveling to any of the islands, ferry and boat schedules need to be accounted for when selecting flights and other transport.

Within the country, Malaysia Airlines and its subsidiary, Firefly, offers reasonably priced flights with a checked baggage allowance of 20kg. Discount carrier AirAsia offers flights for as low as £10 but you’ll pay extra for baggage, seat assignments, and other extras. We’ll recommend flights that suit your itinerary and can book flights for you but we do charge a fee for this. Many people prefer to book directly and we’re easy going about that.

For short trips such as Kuala Lumpur to Melaka, we’ll arrange a private driver so that you can enjoy the ride although if you prefer, we can arrange car hire. If visiting the Cameron Highlands, we suggest a private driver or car hire between Kuala Lumpur and Penang. If you prefer to travel by rail, the luxurious Eastern & Oriental Express runs from Singapore to Bangkok and you can disembark for a night in the Highlands and a day in Penang. Alternatively, state-owned rail lines run the spine of the peninsula. With these, you can schedule longer stops in the Cameron Highlands and end in Penang. Reservations are required and we can assist with these.

Ferry service to Langkawi is available from Penang but we generally recommend the short flight to avoid the risk of rough seas. This can be a very unpleasant crossing if the wind is strong. Langkawi is best explored on your own with a bicycle, taxis, or by hiring a car for a day or two if you wish to explore the island beyond the area of your hotel.

For information about getting around Borneo, please see our Borneo resources.

Kuala Lumpur
Bustling, vibrant Kuala Lumpur is home to an incredible array of old and new. Colonial architecture and modern skyscrapers, gourmet restaurants and simple street food stalls, luxurious hotels and shops, beautiful parks, mosques, and temples fill the city. The city is truly a feast for all five senses. More
Melaka
The port town of Melaka (formerly spelled Malacca) has been influenced by Portuguese, Dutch, British, Chinese, Indian, and Malay settlers and rulers. The resulting mix of culture, food, and architecture makes Melaka an ideal spot to see, taste, and experience the diversity that makes Malaysia such a unique part of Asia. Although you can visit in a day from Kuala Lumpur, we think it's worth an overnight visit. More
George Town
On the island of Penang sits the UNESCO-designated cultural highlight of George Town. It's home to some of the best food in the country, street art fun for all ages to find and enjoy, Chinese and Indian temples, British colonial buildings, pleasant beaches, a hill with stunning views of the area, and delightful boutique hotels. George Town truly offers a wealth of options for every visitor. More
Langkawi
Formally known as Langkawi, the Jewel of Kedah, the island boasts beaches, rainforest, monkeys, mangroves, and views to Thailand from an incredible hanging bridge atop Mount Mat. More
Cameron Highlands
Once the favoured hill station of British expatriates in Malaysia, the Cameron Highlands is a cool respite from the tropical heat. Tea plantations, giant rafflesia blooms, and a mossy forest that feels straight out of a story book can all be found here. More
Tioman Island
Well known to divers, Tioman is home to incredibly rich waters teeming with life, making for great snorkelling and diving. With beautiful beaches and pleasant walking trails through the jungle, it's a beautiful place to relax. Best visited March through mid-October as we don't recommend trying to reach the island during monsoon season. More
Perhentian Islands
The clear aquamarine South China Sea meets white sand beaches on the Perhentian and Redang islands. There are no roads on these islands, only foot paths and water taxis. We only recommend visiting between April and mid-October to avoid rough crossings and restaurants and resorts closed for monsoon season. More

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