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3 Must Visit Destinations When Traveling To Malaysia For The First Time

I have been to Malaysia numerous times that I actually lost count. Whenever someone ask me how many times I've been there, I say..hmmmm well, around 10 times! Haha. But kidding aside, ever since I moved in this part of the world, Malaysia became my 2nd Home. 


I first visited Malaysia in 2016 and met so many amazing people. Basically this is one of the reasons why I always travel back to this country. Malaysia offers a diverse tapestry of experiences. From its bustling cities and mega towers, to its pristine beaches and rainforests.  It is somewhat similar to the Philippines where I live but different in so many ways. 


Malaysia is also known for its rich cultural heritage with a population comprising of various ethnic groups such as Malays, Chinese and Indians. And with such cultural diversity, comes amazing FOOD. 


Anyway, before I get carried away. I better get to the point of why I am writing this blog.

Recently on my 10th (or so) visit to Malaysia, I was part of the FAMtrip (Familiarization Trip) organized by Philippine Airlines in coordination with Tourism Malaysia. During this trip, I rediscovered Malaysia as if it is my first time to travel in this country. 

So, I thought of writing a blog on where to go it you are visiting Malaysia for the first time. 


Note: These recommendations are assuming that KL will be your kick off point.



Of course, visiting the capital is a no brainer. 

Most of the major flights  coming in and out of Malaysia will bring you to Kuala Lumpur (KL).  So, it is a shame if you’ll skip exploring the capital. 


I can say that KL is where you can get most of what Malaysia can offer and the rest can be an easy drive away. 

View of KL from KL Tower

A visit to this bustling metropolis is a must for numerous reasons. First and foremost, the iconic Petronas Twin Towers and KL Tower stand tall as an architectural marvel, offering panoramic views of the city from their observation deck. 

You can immerse yourself in diverse cultures as you explore the colorful street markets, where you can sample delectable street food and shop for unique souvenirs. 

From the busy and packed shopping districts of Bukit Bintang to the serene nature parks and the cultural heritage of Merdeka Square, Kuala Lumpur presents a captivating blend of old and new, tradition and modernity, making it a destination that is worth visiting over and over again (like me!!) 

My visit in KL will not be complete without a quick exploration in China Town

Recommended Attractions in KL

KLCC / Petronas Twin Towers

KL Tower

Bukit Bintang

Batu Caves

Merdeka Square

Petaling Street/ China Town

Central Market

National Palace / Istana Negara

Jalan Alor


Whenever I think of Penang, there are 2 things that come in my mind.  FOOD and STREET ART.  But mainly food haha. 


I once remember a Malay friend of mine mentioned that Penang is Malaysia’s Stomach. Which is very Telling to the culinary experience waiting for you when you visit this small island state. 

Penang is famous for its well preserved heritage houses

Typical Street in George Town


Penang is known for captivating fusion of history, culture, and culinary delights. One of the top things to do is simply exploring the UNESCO Heritage-listed city of George Town and find yourself walking along the charming colonial architecture that blends harmoniously with vibrant street art, temples and cafes. They even have a place called Harmony Street! 

Penang is very iconic that even locals often visit Penang whenever their appetite for exploration kicks in. 

One of the famous street arts in Penang called "Little Children on a Bicycle". This one is located in Armenia Street. 

Recommended Attractions in Penang

Armenia Street

Harmony Street

Penang Hill / The Habitat

Kek Lok Si Temple

Chowrasta Market

Clan Jetties

Blue Mansion

Look for Street Art (they are everywhere)

Penang Tower /Rainbow Skywalk

Eat everything

Chulia Street/ Backpacker Street

Watch one of my Travel Eats episodes featuring the mouth watering food in Penang



If Penang is the Food Capital, Melaka on the other hand is the Historic Capital of Malaysia


We didn't visit Melaka on this trip but I thought I should include it in the list.  Like Penang, this is also a few hours drive away from Kuala Lumpur (just on the opposite side of Malaysia). 


This historical city will capture visitors with its rich heritage, charming architecture and cultural diversity. 

With its century old buildings and traditional Peranakan houses, it is also recognized as a UNESCO Heritage site. 


Melaka Red Square

View of Melaka from The Eye of Melaka 

Melaka and George Town represent exceptional examples of multi-cultural trading towns in East and Southeast Asia, forged from the mercantile and exchanges of Malay, Chinese, and Indian cultures and three successive European colonial powers for almost 500 years, each with its imprints on the architecture and urban form, technology and monumental art. Both towns show different stages of development and the successive changes over a long span of time and are thus complementary. - UNESCO

When visiting Melaka, you will Immerse yourself in the city's unique blend of Chinese, Malay, and European influences. You will also discover the remnants of Portuguese and Dutch colonial history at iconic landmarks such as A Famosa and St. Paul's Church. 

I got a traditional fake wedding in Melaka

Jonker Street Night Market

Recommended Attractions in Melaka


St. Pauls Church

Jonker Street / Night Market

Kampung Balik Bukit

Red Square

Huang Tuah Center

Menara Taming Sari

River Cruise

Overall as one my favorite countries to visit,  I am very biased with everything Malaysian. Kidding. But, I can say that as someone who always travels, Malaysia is on top of my list (except for the weather). I am in love with its diversity and how everyone lives together in harmony. It is a perfect example of mixing the modernity of today’s world and respecting and preserving its history. 


If you haven’t considered visiting Malaysia, what are you waiting for? And if you are planning to visit Malaysia soon…..I AM EXCITED FOR YOU! 




If you are going to visit Malaysia from the Philippines and want to experience these destinations with ease, you can contact these travel agents:

Step Up Internation Services Inc


Lindela Travel & Tours


Mulan Travel


The Travel Guru


I Love Travel


Bon Voyage Travel


Larry's Classic Travel


Destination Unlimited


Pan Pacific Holidays


Fiesta Tours and Travel 


FCM Travel Services




If you want to fly from Manila to Kuala Lumpur comfortably, Philippine Airlines is our Airline of choice. Philippine Airlines flies daily from Manila to Kuala Lumpur.


This trip is in collaboration with Philippine Airlines.  Follow their instagram page @flypal and our trip at #flypaltonewdiscoveries .  All editorials and photos are my own unless mentioned or sighted from sources.



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