Time difference: GMT +7 hours
Capital: Kuala Lumpur
Currency: Malaysian Ringgit
Flight time: 12-15 hours
Malaysia is a country of two very different contrasts, a country with so much to see and do, with unusual architecture and stacks of history. In the west, the Malaysian peninsula is home to glittering cities with soaring skyscrapers, colourful colonial quarters and relaxing islands blanketed in tea plantations. In the east, separated by the South China Sea, Malaysian Borneo is the wild, untamed side of the country, where orangutans swing through the trees, granite scenery provides a striking backdrop and remote tribes still inhabit the dense jungle. Whether you’d like to explore the blissed-out islands of Langkawi, the space-age towers of Kuala Lumpur or the longhouses of Sarawak, you’ll find nirvana in the green hills and pastel-painted towns of old and new Malaysia.
Whether you try freshly-caught seafood on the beach or jostle for elbow space in a street food market, don’t leave Malaysia without trying some of its delicious cuisine combining a mix of Asian culinary traditions. Snack on roti, have a breakfast of congee (rice porridge – trust us here) and order up a towering plate of spicy chicken curry at a street food stall for lunch. Afternoon tea is a colonial throwback that has endured, with fancy finger sandwiches and dainty patisserie, but at night you’ll want to try a bowl of fiery asam laksa, a hot and sour soup swirling with noodles.