Make the Most of Your Time in Malaysia

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Discover Malaysian Borneo's Mount Kinabalu
How Many Days To Spend in Malaysia

Two weeks is the perfect amount of time to spend in Malaysia, allowing you to explore the region's top wilderness venues and experience many of its cultural highlights. However, you can still enjoy Malaysia with far fewer days: five is long enough for a wildlife-rich rainforest experience, including time for relaxing on white sand beaches and snorkeling the Sulu Sea, while in a week to 10 days, you can dive deeper and experience multiple regions.

Observe native East Malaysian wildlife as you boat along the Kinabatangan River
Map of 5 Days in Malaysia - 5 Unique Itinerary Ideas
5 Days in Malaysia - 5 Unique Itinerary Ideas

With only five days in Malaysia, focusing on one to two destinations is best. Travelers interested in urban adventures can sample street food in Kuala Lumpur and take a boat tour of UNESCO-listed Melaka. Wildlife enthusiasts can spot orangutans and more on Kinabatangan River safaris in Malaysian Borneo, while beach lovers can snorkel at Lankayan Island. Those looking for variety should head to Kuching, where they'll visit historical sites, learn about Bidayuh culture, and see endemic species at Bako National Park.

Visit Kek Lok Si Temple, the largest Buddhist Temple in Malaysia
Map of 1 Week in Malaysia - 6 Unique Itinerary Ideas
1 Week in Malaysia - 6 Unique Itinerary Ideas

One week in Malaysia is enough time to visit four destinations, like the classic Melaka to Penang trip for first-timers keen on a quick pace and a variety of activities. Those that prefer a slower pace can take a Langkawi beach holiday, and food-focused travelers will enjoy feasting on dim sum in Ipoh and street food in Penang. The Borneo itineraries are best for outdoorsy types—Gunung Mulu is suited to cave enthusiasts and avid hikers, while the wildlife safaris on the Borneo Adventure are perfect for animal lovers.

Walk across the iconic Petronas Twin Towers skybridge for views over Malaysia's capital, Kuala Lumpur
Map of 10 Days in Malaysia - 5 Unique Itinerary Ideas
10 Days in Malaysia - 5 Unique Itinerary Ideas

In 10 days in Malaysia, you can see most of the highlights and four to five destinations in Peninsular Malaysia and East Malaysia. Choose an itinerary that samples both regions, relax at Langkawi Island on the Andaman Sea, go rainforest hiking and spot waterfalls at Lahad Datu in East Malaysia, or focus your trip on jungle trekking and tracking orangutans in Nanga Sumpa. Alternatively, split your time between city life in Kuala Lumpur and discovering caves and nature in Borneo's Gunung Mulu National Park.

Observe orangutans in a rehabilitation center in West Malaysia's Sepilok
Map of 2 Weeks in Malaysia - 5 Unique Itinerary Ideas
2 Weeks in Malaysia - 5 Unique Itinerary Ideas

With two weeks in Malaysia, you can visit five to eight destinations. Adventurous travelers should explore Langkawi island in West Malaysia while those wanting an off-the-beaten-path experience should consider Malaysian Borneo for cultural village visits and cave excursions at Gunung Mulu National Park. For natural highlights, snorkel at Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park and see orangutan sanctuaries, and add a fun day at Universal Studios Singapore for a multicountry trip.