Malaysia’s Tourism Industry: A Treasury of Wonderful Experiences

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Malaysia’s tourism industry is very rich and vibrant, and also at a very affordable price. From the iconic Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur to the renowned Batu Caves located in Selangor. Visitors can immerse themselves in the rich cultural heritage of Malacca or enjoy the beautiful beaches of Langkawi. Malaysia also offers many culinary delights such as the famous Nasi Lemak, lively festivals, and many more. It is a great destination for food enthusiasts and culture seekers.

Malaysia’s tourism industry is considered rich and vibrant due to several factors as illustrated bellow.

Malaysia’s Rich Cultural Diversity

Malaysia’s culture is comprised of mostly Malay, Chinese, and Indian cultures. This diversity is shown in its festivals, cuisines, historic landmarks, and many more. Making Malaysia a unique and fascinating destination.

Malay culture is known to be the backbone of Malaysia’s identity. Malay culture has accumulated from customs deeply rooted from traditions passed down from generations to generations. It has contributed to many customs including traditional dance such as ‘joget’, traditional attire such as baju kurung, and festivals such as Hari Raya Eid al-Fitr.

The Chinese Malaysians are descendants of immigrants from southern China. They have preserved their culture here through customs such as Chinese New Year celebration, traditional Chinese Medicine, Chinese influenced cuisines, and ancestral worship rituals.

Indian Malaysians came to Malaysia through traders. They bring and preserve their culture here through practices of Hinduism, traditional dances, the bright festivals, and their flavorful cuisines.

Besides Malay, Chinese, and Indian cultures, Malaysia is also influenced by Europeans on its culture—specifically British. Examples are colonial-era architecture, the practice of Christianity such as the celebration of festivals like Christmas, as well as Eurasian cuisines.

Malaysia Offers Haven and Adventure Tourism

Malaysia offers many stunning landscapes. From its tropical rainforests to its pristine beaches. Tourists can enjoy many activities such as jungle trekking in state parks, snorkeling, and even diving.

Nature lovers can come to Malaysia and enjoy its lush rainforests, perfect for jungle trekking. Malaysia has one of the worlds’ oldest rainforests, Taman Negara. It provides many trekking paths, pristine wilderness, and night safari services.

For cave enthusiasts, Malaysia has numerous caves waiting to be explored. An example is Gunung Tempurung located in Perak as well as Gunung Mulu National Park in Sarawak. Tourists can navigate through caverns, underground rivers, and observe beautiful limestone formations.

Malaysia with its pristine beaches and marine environments, offers a diving and snorkeling haven. Pulau Supadan in Sabah is known for its gorgeous coral reefs while Pulau Perhentian in Terengganu offers crystal clear waters which is home to many colorful marine life.

The mountains present in Malaysia also give opportunities for treks and climbs. Mount Kinabalu is Southeast Asia’s highest peak located in Sabah, Malaysia. The summit may be challenging but the valleys surrounding it Is worth the hard work.

Malaysia’s Outstanding Historical Landmarks

Malaysia has numerous historical landmarks. One of them is George Town in Penang which is known to be a UNESCO World Heritage. George Town is described as “unique architectural and cultural townscape” due to its shared rich multi-cultural trading heritage. Its strategic location attracted many traders from around the world which lead to the diverse population there. Its streets has many well-preserved colonial buildings with British, Chinese, Indian, and Malay architecture styles. For culture seekers, George Town is a paradise of cultures.

Besides George Town, Malaysia also has Malacca City. Malacca is gifted with centuries of interactions between diverse communities which resulted in a unique blend of traditions. Blending of Malay, Chinese, Indian, as well as European traditions. Malacca includes unique architectural landmarks from the colonial-era as well as religious sites. Apart from that, Malacca is also loaded with delicious cuisines and traditional arts and crafts. With the city’s rich history, religious diversity, and multicultural heritage, Malacca is one of the most fascinating destinations in Malaysia for visitors who seek to explore Malaysia’s cultural tapestry.

Malaysia’s Bright Festivals and Events

Throughout the years, Malaysia hosts diverse cultural and religious festivals such as Eid al-Fitr, Chinese New Year, Deepavali, Christmas and many more events. Visitors are granted an opportunity to explore and immerse in the local traditions.

Eid al-Fitr is an Islamic festival that celebrated the end of Islamic’s holy month of fasting. During the said holy month known as Ramadhan, there are many markets established all around Malaysia to prepare for breaking the fast. And at the end of Ramadhan, it is celebrated with prayers at the mosque, family gatherings, and a hefty feast usually consisting of ‘ketupat’ (rice cakes) and ‘rendang’ (spicy meat dish).

In Malaysia, the Chinese New Year is commemorated with great fanfare. It includes dragon dances, family reunions, the giving of ‘ang pow’ (red envelopes containing money), and indulging the festive treats. The Chinese New Year celebration lasts a few days and is welcomed with many red decorations all around.

Deepavali/ Diwali celebration is an Indian celebrates the triumph of light over darkness as well as good over evil. Families come together and many ‘diyas’ (oil lamps) as well as ‘Rangoli’ (colorful kolams) are used to decorated homes and temples.

The Christian community of Malaysia celebrated Christmas with religious services, festive decorations (consisting of red, green, and white), as well as gatherings with family and friends. Many places such as the shopping mall are decorated with lights and decorations.

On September 16th, the public commemorated the formation of Malaysia—when Malaya, Sabah, and Sarawak merged. On this day, the streets are filled with parades, performances, and patriotic events to celebrate the unity.

Culinary Gems by Malaysia’s Multicultural Population

Malaysian cuisines are known for its fusion of flavors due to the combination between Malay, Indian, and Chinese cooking styles. Tourists can also get the diverse culinary experience from street food markets, night markets, and even fine dining restaurants.

An example is the iconic Nasi Lemak. It is knows to be the nation’s national dish. Cooked with coconut milk and pandan leaves, Nasi Lemak is served with ‘sambal’ (Malaysian hot sauce), boiled egg, cucumber, and peanuts. Most of the time, the locals have Nasi Lemak for breakfast.

Roti canai is an Indian influenced flatbread. It texture is crisp outside, but once you bite it is soft inside. Roti canai is generally accompanied by a curry dipping. This dish gives off a buttery and salty taste that adds depth and creates balance between the buttery taste and the salty taste.

Malaysia has many spicy foods, one of them is Laksa. Laksa is a spicy noodle soup made with coconut milk or tamarind-based broth. It generally uses rice noodles served with prawns, chicken, tofu, and a variety of herbs. Laksa comes in many different styles in Malaysia, each with its own unique flavor.

Malaysia is also home to a very well-known fruit in Southeast Asia—the Durian. In Malaysia, this dish is considered to be the “King of Fruits”. The popular fruit has many types, one of the most popular and well-known types is the Musang King Durian. The usual durians taste is sweet with a very soft texture resembling that of a tofu. Although it is a cherished fruit in Southeast Asia, due to its strong aroma many foreigners tend to avoid/dislike this fruit despite the fact that this fruit is a must-try.

The success of Malaysia’s Tourism Industries is a result of the hard work of multistakeholders in Malaysia, particularly the support from the Government. The Government of Malaysia ensures that all public facilities are in place while at the same time providing comfort for foreign tourism. There is also no language barrier in Malaysia as most of the people spoke English. That is why foreign tourists feels at home in Malaysia and are willing to return and visit Malaysia again in the future. These in return provide economic growth for Malaysia as tourism industry in Malaysia is one of the main engines of growth of Malaysia’s economy.

Overall, Malaysia has a unique library of diverse elements that contributes to its vibrant and rich culture appealing to visitors worldwide, leaving them with unforgettable memories and experiences. You will love to come and explore Malaysia!

Written by: Syifa Azkadewi Dimurthi (10B SMA)