4 Reasons Not to Skip Malaysia During Your Southeast Asia Trip

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Photo by Zukiman Mohamad on Pexels.com

Malaysia is one of Southeast Asia’s forgotten paradises. Located in between Indonesia and Thailand, Malaysia has the same wild jungles and painfully pretty beaches. As much you enjoy the beaches, you don’t just visit Malaysia to lie on a beach. You will be blown away with the incredible culture experience. Made up of residents of Malay, Chinese & Indian, your visit to Malaysia is like visiting three places at a time.

Let’s see how to spend your money and time wisely.

If your only experience of a Southeast Asian city consists of walking down Khao San Road or Chatuchak Market in Bangkok, wedged between 40,000 sweaty tourists buying hemp caftans and tie-dyed beach dresses, then you haven’t experienced a Southeast Asian city properly. Kuala Lumpur is one of the most advanced cities in Asia, with amazing skyscrapers. From the twin tower of KLCC and KL Tower to name a few.

Visit to the Islands – Snorkeling or Diving

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Despites of what can you get in Bali or Phuket, there’s more option for you to chooese in Malaysia. Sipadan, Perhentian, Tioman and more. It has pretty much everything you could ask for: lush jungle & Blue Crush–like beaches. One of the best parts about a tropical vacation is exploring the tropical marine life. Malaysia has some of the best snorkeling and diving locations in the world and Tenggol Island is one of them. Located off the east coast, Tenggol and the surrounding islands are arguably some of the most naturally beautiful places on the planet. Getting there requires a 1.5 hour boat ride from the mainland, where tropical fish and teeny-tiny (incredibly harmless) reef sharks await.

Eat Your Way Through Penang

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photo credit : awesomepenang.com

Everyone in Malaysia will tell you to go to Penang for the food. To satisfy them—as well as eat your way through Malaysian cuisine, Penang should be on the top of your list. This is your chance to experience Malaysian hawker food at its best, Roti canai, assam laksa, satay, nasi lemak. If you’ve no idea what any of those words mean, google them..lol Throw caution to the wind and allow yourself to get lost in the wonderful world of Malaysian street food. Just make sure you save room for dessert.

 

Get Lost in the Jungle
Okay, don’t really get lost in the jungle, but you should go exploring the jungle. The island of Borneo (which is split between Malaysia, Brunei, and Indonesia) has one of the oldest rain forests on the planet, home to incredible species like the Bornean orang utan (which is endangered) and the adorable orange proboscis monkey. If you like to split your time between a bit of jungle trekking and away from hustle bustle of the city, make Gaya Island Resort) your base. You can explore the lush wilderness all day and sleep in an opulent suite located in a tropical mangrove, all night.

Hope this will help you to ease your visit to Malaysia.

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Cheap Public Transport to Use in Penang

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photo credit : flickr

There are plenty of convenient, reliable, and affordable forms of public transportation in Penang, including buses, taxis, ferries, and a funicular.

Penang Buses

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photo credit : Penang Hop on Hop Off

You can buy tickets to the Penang Hop on Hop off Bus for 24- or 48-hour durations. Buses run about every 30 minutes. These buses a great way to see Penang, and they offer discounts for students.

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Rapid Penang runs air-conditioned coach service all over the island. This is the cheapest way to travel around Penang, but it often involves a long wait.

The city of Penang offers free shuttle service to historical sites. Shuttles run in a loop and you can hop on or off at any of the shuttles stops.

Penang Ferries

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photo credit : whatsonpenang.com

A fleet of eight ferries links Georgetown to Penang Island and to Butterworth on the mainland. The first ferry departs from Butterworth at 6:00 a.m., with the last one leaving at midnight. Departures from Penang Island start at 5:30 a.m. The ferry can carry both pedestrians and cars.

Penang Taxi/Grab

Taxis are convenient, but can be troublesome. Drivers ignore the meter and charge what they want, even though the law prohibits it. It works out better to flag one on the street and negotiate the price in advance. Always ask the price before getting in, and unless you’re sure it’s fair, try to bargain it down.

Alternatively for now, i would recommend you to use Grab instead of Taxi services.

Penang Funicular

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photo credit : penang-traveltips.com

The Swiss-made funicular (tram) takes about a half hour to climb Penang Hill. It’s a slow-but-fun ride that reveals vegetable farms and colonial homes along the way.

Hope this give you some ideas to plan your trip soon.. 🙂

 

How to Get Around in Singapore

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If this is your first time in Singapore, let me share with you some useful tips to ease your experience. With a wide network of stations located across the city, MRT seems to be an absolutely perfect solution for traveling in Singapore. However, there are still other vehicles in the city that you can use in other cases such as taxis/grab, buses, or rental cars, motorcycles or even walk. With the range of only 50 cents to less than S$10, you can easily travel around the city.

The question here is how to get around Singapore? Let’s explore 3 means of transportation in Singapore for you when traveling in this beautiful and bustling city.

Bus

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photo credit : backpackingmalaysia.com

Let me start with the bus because this is one of the cheapest option and it is easy to find a place on the bus from all corners of streets in the city. A bus trip just costs from 60 cents to 1 – 2 SGD, depending on how far the distance is. If you are about to travel by bus in Singapore, you can buy a copy of the TransitLink Guide (approximately SGD 1.5 per copy) at most bookstores. Similar to the MRT, you can buy tickets on each departure, or use the EZ-link card and recharge in order to use gradually. You can travel by bus and also walk to visit places nearby. Or you can buy the Singapore Tourist Pass.

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photo credit ; hippopass.com

Another option is you can try the hop-on-hop-off bus service. This is the perfect option if you want to take a stroll around the city. This service allows visitors to “jump” down at any their favorite sights, enjoy the beauty of sights leisurely (no time limit), then catch another Hop-on-hop-off one to go to next places.

Taxi

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photo credit : thefinder.com.sg

Singapore has thousands air-conditioned taxis which present on the streets of Singapore both day and night. Most taxis have a meter. The first 1.5 kilometers cost 2.4 SGD and then plus 10 cents for every 240 meters. However, during peak hours (07:30 – 09:30 and 17:30 – 19:00) at the downtown area, or directly from the airport to the hotel, you will charge an additional fee (normally about SGD 2, but may be more expensive depending on the specific situation). If you travel by taxi at night, the cost will add about 50% more. You can also opt for Grab. Both offer equal quality of service.

Trishaws

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Trishaws or tricycles with back cages were once a means of transportation in the past in Singapore. However, from time to time, it is very difficult to find this vehicle at lion island. If you are looking for some nostalgic experience, you can visit Chinatown and Little India. Most trolleys drivers will wait for visitors along Waterloo Street and each 45-minute-trip will cost about SGD 25 to SGD 45.

With these vehicles, I hope you have some ideas for your journey, which makes your trip more convenient and fun. However, to save the cost of travel, the best advice is to combine MRT and bus because these public transports are fixed and always cheaper than a taxi or get the Singapore Tourist Pass if you plan to use the public transport a lot.