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Beach of Tioman Island © David Russo/Flickr
Beach of Tioman Island © David Russo/Flickr

11 Reasons Why Malaysia Is The Perfect Winter Escape

Picture of Lu Yin Wai
Updated: 7 November 2017
Some winter holiday travelers prefer to enjoy their time in warm climate without worrying too much about cold winters. Malaysia is one of the most ideal winter getaways to escape from thick snow and freezing winds. Here are some reasons why Malaysia is an ideal winter escape for your upcoming holidays.

Tropical weather

Malaysia doesn’t have four seasons like Japan, South Korea and Taiwan. Its tropical weather happens all year round with sunny skies and humid rain falls. Travellers love the heat, which is why they love to come to Malaysia to escape from the freezing winter. They don’t mind sweating and sun bathing in Malaysia’s lovely weather. Make sure to book your flights and hotels in advance – the peak season in Malaysia happens between December and January.

Don’t have to worry about heavy clothing

There is no need to wear layers of heavy clothes to keep you warm. Malaysia’s weather is hot and humid, so you can wear single-piece comfortable clothing. Put on your favourite top and shorts along with your sunglasses. Add some sunscreen and paint the town red. You can even wear your favourite swimsuit or trunks to have your own beach or pool party. At night, you don’t need a jacket because the winds are light.

Relaxing at the islands

Escape from the thick snow and chilly weather to enjoy the sunny skies, sandy beaches and sea breezes at Malaysia’s tropical islands. The islands are surrounded by tranquil seas and each day has a beautiful sunset – it’s  is simply breathtaking. Enjoy the leisure beach activities or just relax on your favourite beach spot as the winter holiday goes by. There are plenty of popular and underrated beaches and islands to choose from, depending on whether you prefer someplace secluded or not. We suggest having your winter holidays at Langkawi, Perhentian Islands, Redang Island and Pangkor Island.

A view from Pangkor Island, Malaysia | © Ross Huggett/Flickr

Diving into the coral reefs

It is one of the ideal places to explore Malaysia’s beautiful coral reefs. With its tropical weather and warm seas, you don’t have to worry about freezing to death while diving into the turquoise seas. Put on your diving gear and the guide will take you to meet the sea creatures and colourful corals. Recommended diving spots are Pangkor Island, Perhentian Islands and Sipadan Island. If you have the passion to explore the seas’ coral reefs, you can also learn scuba diving and earn yourself a license through training guided by instructors.

Clown Fish Scuba Diving Malaysia

Say hello to the clown fishes at Malaysia’s beautiful coral reefs © Tchami/Flickr

Exploring the rain forests

The luscious rain forests invite explorers to meet various flora and fauna. Hiking through the rain forest’s trails is one of the exciting activities to become close and personal with Malaysia’s nature. You might meet some animal friends during your hiking adventures. There are some places (such as Taman Negara) where you can camp out under the night sky. Explore the rain forest’s wildlife at Bako National Park and Kinabalu Park. If you prefer somewhere close to Kuala Lumpur, we recommend visiting the KL Forest Eco Park (next to KL Tower).

Rainforest in Kinabalu Park

Rainforest in Kinabalu Park © Paul Mannix/Flickr

Dipping by the waterfalls

The best way to cool yourself off from the heat is to chill out by the waterfalls. The rain forest’s rivers flow toward the waterfalls which have their own natural pools. It is worth the hiking trip to visit. You can even spend the night camping nearby most waterfalls…or just climb your way up to the very top to soak in the panoramic views of rain forests. Visit the Rainbow Falls (one of Malaysia’s hidden gems), Lambir Hills National Park and Langkawi’s Seven Wells Waterfall and Durian Perangin Waterfall.

Latak Waterfall and pools at Lambir Hills National Park © Bernard DUPONT / Flickr

Adrenaline exploration in the caves

Challenge yourself and discover Malaysia’s limestone caves. Cave and river tours are provided to assist you based on your choice of exploration. For beginners, visit the Gua Tempurung in Ipoh – it has three large chambers with amazing rock formations. If you prefer to go advanced, explore Mulu Caves National Park, a challenging trek which includes Deer Cave and Clearwater Cave.

Deer Cave at Mulu Caves National Park

Deer Cave at Mulu Caves National Park, Sarawak © John Mason/Flickr

Gain experience in volunteering programs

Besides enjoying the sunny breeze in Malaysia, create your memorable experiences by participating in volunteering programs. This is a great opportunity to learn Malaysia’s various cultures, including art, food, language and daily lifestyle. In between your breaks, you can explore different parts of Malaysia such as Penang, Melaka, Sabah and Sarawak. There are many volunteer programs to choose to take part in – teaching in primary and secondary schools, taking care of Malaysia’s wildlife (orangutans, sun bears and turtles) and preserving the environment (islands, oceans and rain forests).

Celebrating Christmas and New Year differently

Skip the cold year-end holidays and celebrate Christmas in Malaysian style. Shop till you drop at malls and admire the beautiful Christmas decorations together with a big Christmas tree. You might catch the live performances that bring in the Christmas cheers. Enjoy your Christmas meals along with simple Malaysian delicacies (such as curries and satay (skewered meat grilled over charcoal). New Year celebrations are similar to the U.S. and Europe. However, you can watch the fireworks display on a rooftop without worrying about cold winds.

Fireworks at The Eye of Malaysia, KL

Fireworks at The Eye of Malaysia, KL © amrufm/Flickr

Savouring Malaysian desserts

Aside savoring the spicy and savory dishes (such as nasi lemak and laksa), you get to eat ice-cold desserts. Indulge yourself with Malaysia’s popular desserts on the sunny days. Cendol (shaved ice served with gula Melaka, condensed milk and pandan shaped rice) and ais kacang (shaved ice served with toppings and syrups) are the recommended desserts to cool you down from the tropical heat.

Cendol © Derrick Loh/Flickr

Friendly local smiles

One of the best eye-opening experiences of discovering the beauty of Malaysia is by communicating with the locals. The locals welcome travelers to Malaysia with their warm smiles and hospitality. They ensure that you enjoy your travels in this lovely country. Although some may not speak your language, their smiles, simple words and body language build a connection with you. They make you feel at home. Some locals will gladly share their unique culture and stories with you.