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Where to Stay in Malaysia: Areas & Hotels?

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When embarking on a journey to Malaysia, choosing the right area to stay in can greatly enhance your overall travel experience. Malaysia is a country of striking diversity, where you can explore bustling urban landscapes, relax on pristine beaches, delve into rich cultural heritage, or immerse yourself in the lush greenery of tropical jungles. Each region offers a unique blend of attractions and ambiance, making it essential to select the perfect places to stay in Malaysia to match your interests and preferences. In this guide, we’ll navigate through the distinct areas in Malaysia, providing insights into what each has to offer and helping you make an informed decision on where to stay in Malaysia for a memorable Malaysian adventure.

Kuala Lumpur

As the capital and largest city, Kuala Lumpur offers a wide range of attractions, from the iconic Petronas Twin Towers to vibrant cultural neighborhoods, beautiful parks, and excellent shopping options. The city also boasts a lively nightlife scene with numerous bars and restaurants.

Kuala Lumpur also serves as a convenient base for exploring other parts of Malaysia and neighboring countries. With its efficient public transportation system, you can easily access suburbs, airports, and other cities within the country. Additionally, the Kuala Lumpur International Airport provides connectivity to popular destinations such as Penang, Malacca, Cameron Highlands, and even neighboring countries like Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, and Vietnam.

Recommended Hotels in Kuala Lumpur:

  • Mandarin Oriental – KLCC: A spacious hotel that boasts a stunning view of the Petronas Twin Towers and other landmarks in the KLCC area.
  • Ritz-Carlton – Bukit Bintang: An elegant hotel that features a prime location in the shopping and entertainment district of Bukit Bintang.
  • The Majestic – Sentral: A classic hotel that showcases the colonial heritage of Malaysia with its rooms and suites near the KL Sentral station.
  • E&O Residences – Golden Triangle: A modern hotel that provides apartments with kitchenettes, living rooms, and balconies in a quieter neighborhood in the Golden Triangle area.
  • Renaissance – Golden Triangle: A cozy hotel that features a convenient location on the opposite side of the Shangri-La Hotel in the Golden Triangle area.
Malaysia Kuala Lumpur Ritz-Carlton
Ritz-Carlton in Kuala Lumpur

George Town

George Town in Malaysia is a captivating UNESCO World Heritage Site that showcases the country’s vibrant cultural and historical heritage. With its stunning colonial buildings, mosques, temples, churches, and captivating street art, the city offers a visual feast. Additionally, George Town is renowned as a food paradise, where you can savor a diverse range of cuisines reflecting Malaysia’s multicultural influences. From tantalizing street food like char kway teow, laksa, rojak, nasi kandar, and cendol to exquisite dining experiences at top-notch restaurants, George Town offers a remarkable blend of cultural exploration and culinary delights.

Recommended hotels in George Town:

  • Royale Chulan Penang: A luxury hotel that offers accommodations in the UNESCO World Heritage Site of George Town, with a revolving restaurant, a spa, and an outdoor pool.
  • Hompton Hotel by the Beach: A modern hotel that features air-conditioned rooms with sea views, a fitness center, a restaurant, and a bar, located just a few steps from Tanjung Tokong Beach.
  • JEN Penang Georgetown by Shangri-La: A 4-star hotel that is located next to the KOMTAR building, 1st Avenue Shopping Mall, and Prangin Mall, with an outdoor pool, a health club, and a buffet restaurant.
  • Summer Tree Hotel Penang: A cozy hotel that offers modern, air-conditioned guest rooms and a shared lounge, located in George Town.
  • Tune Hotel Georgetown Penang: A budget hotel that provides basic amenities and free Wi-Fi in the UNESCO World Heritage heart of George Town.
Malaysia George Town Hompton Hotel by the Beach
Hompton Hotel by the Beach in George Town

Malacca

Malacca in Malaysia is a captivating destination known for its rich cultural heritage, UNESCO-listed old town, and diverse culinary scene. With influences from Portuguese, Dutch, and British colonial eras, the city showcases a unique blend of architecture, museums, and monuments. Malacca also offers a harmonious coexistence of various religions, visible in its mosques, churches, temples, and shrines. Food enthusiasts will delight in the multicultural flavors found in Peranakan and Portuguese cuisines, as well as the vibrant street food scene featuring local favorites. Malacca is an ideal choice for travelers seeking a captivating cultural experience and a gastronomic adventure.

Recommended hotels in Malacca:

  • Swiss-Garden Hotel & Residences Malacca: A 5-star hotel that offers spacious accommodations with stunning views of the Malacca River and the city, as well as two infinity pools, a fitness center, and a restaurant.
  • Jonker Boutique Hotel: A 3-star hotel that is located in the heart of Jonker Street, the famous heritage and cultural district of Malacca, with elegant rooms, a cafe, and a souvenir shop.
  • Hotel Ramada Plaza Melaka: A 5-star hotel that is situated near the historical Stadthuys and A’Famosa fort, with modern rooms, an outdoor pool, a spa, and five dining options.
  • Noble Resort Hotel Melaka: A resort hotel that is surrounded by lush greenery and natural attractions, such as the Butterfly and Reptile Sanctuary and the Mini Malaysia Park, with cozy rooms, a swimming pool, and a restaurant.
  • Hotel Puri Melaka: A boutique hotel that is housed in a restored Peranakan mansion, dating back to the 19th century, with antique furnishings, a courtyard garden, and a museum.
Malaysia Malacca Swiss-Garden Hotel
Swiss-Garden Hotel in Malacca

Ipoh

Ipoh, a captivating Malaysian city, boasts a blend of historical richness, artistic splendor, natural beauty, culinary delights, and family-friendly attractions. Immerse yourself in the city’s history and culture by visiting the Han Chin Pet Soo Museum, the grand Ipoh Railway Station, and the colonial landmarks along the Ipoh Heritage Trail. The city is renowned for its vibrant street art, particularly along the Ipoh Mural Art Trail, and offers interactive photo experiences at Funtasy House Trick Art and Ipoh Upside Down World. Surrounding Ipoh are stunning limestone cave temples like Perak Cave Temple and Kek Lok Tong, and the scenic Cameron Highlands. Foodies can savor local specialties like Ipoh bean sprouts chicken rice and authentic Chinese dim sum, not forgetting the famous Ipoh white coffee. For family fun, don’t miss the Lost World of Tambun Theme Park and the Harry Potter-themed café, Platform 9 1/2.

Recommended hotels in Ipoh:

  • WEIL Hotel: A conveniently situated property in the center of Ipoh, providing a comfortable accommodation experience.
  • M Roof Hotel & Residences: A contemporary hotel featuring a rooftop pool and breathtaking vistas.
  • The Banjaran Hotsprings Retreat: An opulent resort tucked away in lush surroundings, offering rejuvenating hot springs.
  • MH Hotel: A modern hotel acclaimed for its exceptional service and strategic location.
  • M Boutique Hotel: A charming boutique establishment characterized by its distinctive designs and inviting ambiance.

Cameron Highlands

Cameron Highlands, located in central Malaysia, offers a refreshing escape from the hot coastal regions and bustling cities. With its cool climate and picturesque landscapes, it provides a perfect retreat for nature lovers and those seeking tranquility. Explore the expansive tea plantations, breathe in the fresh mountain air, and embark on invigorating hikes along scenic trails. The region’s tea production is renowned, making it a must-visit for tea enthusiasts who can indulge in a cuppa while admiring the lush tea fields. Cameron Highlands also offers a diverse range of accommodation options to suit different budgets, ensuring a comfortable stay amidst the natural beauty of the area.

Recommended hotels in Cameron Highlands:

  • Zenith Cameron: This top-tier hotel boasts an impressive 8.5 out of 10 rating on Booking.com.
  • Cameron Highlands Resort: A high-class hotel that provides a lavish experience in the midst of Cameron Highlands.
  • The Lakehouse: A luxury hotel celebrated for its delightful English countryside atmosphere.
  • Nova Highlands Hotel: A well-appointed 4-star hotel offering comfortable lodgings equipped with contemporary amenities.
  • Avillion Cameron Highlands: A 4-star hotel that provides a serene retreat surrounded by lush green landscapes.
Malaysia Cameron Highlands Resort
Cameron Highlands Resort

Penang Island

Penang Island, a favored destination for those seeking a taste of Malaysia’s rich culture and history, offers an array of compelling reasons to make it your Malaysian base. The UNESCO World Heritage Site of George Town stands as a testament to the nation’s colonial and multicultural heritage, with its historical streets and landmarks like Fort Cornwallis, Clan Jetties, and the Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion.

The cityscape is adorned with vibrant street art and murals, adding a burst of creativity. Food enthusiasts will revel in Penang’s renowned cuisine, a fusion of Malay, Chinese, Indian, and Peranakan flavors available at hawker stalls, night markets, and restaurants.

The adventurous can explore the Penang National Park’s diverse ecosystems or take in breathtaking island views from The Habitat Penang Hill’s canopy walk and skywalk.

For those seeking a spiritual journey, Penang Island boasts impressive temples like Kek Lok Si, Southeast Asia’s largest Buddhist temple, alongside mosques, churches, and Hindu temples, all harmoniously coexisting. Throughout the year, the island comes alive with festivals and events celebrating its diverse traditions and customs, making Penang Island a truly immersive cultural experience.

Recommended hotels in Penang Island:

  • Shangri-La’s Rasa Sayang Resort & Spa: A top-notch beachfront resort in Batu Ferringhi.
  • Eastern & Oriental Hotel, Penang: A luxurious heritage mansion nestled in the heart of George Town.
  • Hard Rock Hotel Penang: A premium hotel that delivers a lively and music-infused experience.
  • Evergreen Laurel Hotel Penang: A high-class hotel celebrated for its sophistication and cozy accommodations.
  • G Hotel Kelawai: A first-rate hotel boasting a contemporary and chic design.
Malaysia Shangri-La's Rasa Sayang Resort & Spa
Shangri-La's Rasa Sayang Resort & Spa in Penang

Redang Island

Redang Island in Malaysia beckons travelers with a host of natural and cultural attractions. It’s a snorkeling and diving paradise, boasting a marine park that safeguards vibrant coral reefs and marine life. Dive into the tranquil waters to witness colorful fish, turtles, and even sharks. For adventure seekers, the island’s lush jungles offer trekking opportunities, culminating in breathtaking views from Bukit Besar.

Redang Island also offers the mesmerizing spectacle of bioluminescent plankton, known as “blue tears,” lighting up select beaches and offering captivating boat tours. To immerse in local culture, visit the fishing village of Kampung Air, where you can experience traditional living and savor local cuisine. Finally, relax on pristine beaches, soak up the sun, and pamper yourself with spa treatments while relishing captivating sunrises and sunsets from various vantage points.

Recommended hotels in Redang Island:

  • The Taaras Beach & Spa Resort: An exquisite coastal retreat featuring breathtaking sea vistas.
  • Redang Beach Resort: A versatile beachside resort offering a plethora of activities and convenient access to the shore.
  • Laguna Redang Island Resort: A luxurious resort boasting a secluded private beach and an extensive array of amenities.
  • Redang Lagoon Chalet: Comfortable beachside chalet accommodations, just steps away from the ocean.
  • Sari Pacifica Resort & Spa Redang Island: A seaside haven with a spa and mesmerizing sea panoramas.

Langkawi Island

Langkawi Island, a Malaysian tropical paradise, offers an array of attractions. From the Langkawi Sky Bridge and Cable Car to captivating caves and waterfalls, the island’s natural beauty beckons exploration. Wildlife enthusiasts can delight in Langkawi Wildlife Park and Pulau Payar Marine Park, where interactions with diverse species and vibrant marine life await.

Immerse yourself in Langkawi’s rich culture through landmarks like Dataran Lang and Legenda Park, or step into a world of optical illusions at the 3D Art in Paradise Langkawi museum. And don’t forget to take advantage of Langkawi’s duty-free shopping, offering an array of goods at enticing prices. With a spectrum of activities from water sports to land adventures and serene beachfront relaxation, Langkawi ensures a fulfilling island experience. Recharge at spas and wellness centers to complete your island getaway.

Recommended hotels in Langkawi Island:

  • PARKROYAL Langkawi Resort: A lavish 5-star beachfront retreat nestled in Pantai Cenang, boasting an outdoor pool, fitness center, and lush gardens.
  • VILLA PADDY: A cozy 2-star hotel situated in Kampung Padang Masirat, providing comfortable and affordable lodging.
  • The Ritz-Carlton, Langkawi: An opulent coastal haven in Pantai Kok, offering exclusive access to a private beach, tennis court, and a state-of-the-art fitness center.
  • The Smith House: A well-appointed hotel located in Pantai Cenang, featuring an on-site restaurant and complimentary WiFi for guests.
  • Wings by Croske Resort Langkawi: Positioned in Pantai Cenang, this modern resort boasts an outdoor swimming pool and an extensive breakfast menu to cater to various tastes.
Malaysia PARKROYAL Langkawi Resort
PARKROYAL Langkawi Resort

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