In Asia/ Itineraries/ Malaysia

Two week itinerary- Malaysia and Singapore

Rice fields of malaysia

This itinerary will include a good mix of city life combined with beautiful nature and wildlife. It is a perfect mix of best of both worlds and can be done in two weeks. There are also suggestions where to go if there would be more time.

 

My best memory from Malaysia is definitely from rainforest rivers. From watching all those nature documentaries as a kid, where host travels trough the jungle in a thin boat in lush green environment looking for exotic animals to reality of me sitting in that boat made Malaysia one of my favorite destinations I’ve ever visited.

 

What makes Malaysia interesting is the variety. Kuala Lumpur is modern buzzling busy city that is constantly being built. But then head couple of hours up, you are in the world’s oldest tropical rainforest, Taman Negara. Then take a bus towards coast line and find countless of islands to visit.

 

Two week itinerary goes:

Singapore-Kuala Lumpur- Taman Negara- Cameron Highlands

Spend the next six days exploring Singapore and Kuala Lumpur. Then head up to Taman Negara rainforest and after that travel towards tea fields in Cameron highlands.

 

Singapore

Singapore is the easiest place to start from simply because there are so many flights all over the world going there. Singapore is an unique combination of western and Asian cultures mixed in with all kinds of religions. In China town, there is a Indian- styled Hindu temple. That explains the combination of cultures in Singapore more than other words I could come  up with.

 

Prices are definitely higher in Singapore compared to Malaysia. Singapore can be explored in a couple of days easily, because the city itself is not big.

 

Where to stay

Since Singapore is not the cheapest country in South-East Asia, prepare to spend some money when staying there. There are the famous, high-end options for once in a lifetime experience alongside with budget backpacker options, but what I did was a combination of these both;

 

Adler luxury hostel

I would 1000 per cent recommend this hostel. If you are like me, and do travel with a budget, but are not into regular hostels and are travelling with your partner, this is for you. It is affordable but different to any hostel I’ve ever stayed at. The entrance to the hostel is actually a cafe that is free to use for all customers. Beds are capsule style, with more privacy than normal bunker beds. Couples can rent out shared capsule, which is nice if you are travelling with someone.

What to do

Some main attractions in Singapore that I would recommend are:

  • Gardens by the bay in day and night
  • Visiting china town
  • Having amazing lunch in Little India
  • Tasting singapore slings at long bar
  • Visiting Marine bay and checking out Merlion
  • Shopping in large modern shopping centers
  • Visiting beaches and universal studios at sentosa island

 

Kuala Lumpur

Malaysia petronas towers at night

Next stop in this itinerary is capital of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur. Kuala Lumpur is busy, loud and big city with constant flow of people and streets buzzling. There are still some things everyone should consider to see, even if cities aren’t your thing. And most of all, Kuala Lumpur is a good passing point for other parts of Malaysia.

How to get there

There are three diffenrent routes to take to get from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur:

  1. Plane
  2. Bus
  3. Train

Sometimes there are really cheap flights between these two cities and it is much faster than other options.  I chose the bus because it was cheapest and I must say that it was comfortable. The bus had AC and large seats. Tickets you can buy online beforehand. Just google it an you’ll find countless of different kinds. The third option, train, I have heard good things about. It is dercribed to be quite scenic and fun experience.

one compaint about the bus option is the crazy lines for getting passport stamp. The line took about two hours! just to get a stamp to  your passport. I don’t know if I was there at a unfortunate time or if its always that long.

 

Where to stay

In Kuala Lumpur, I wouldn’t opt for the cheapest options because you definetely get what you pay for. I stayed at medium-budget hostel option, and the whole building felt like it was going to collapse. To add that, the whole place had a funny smell. So the second time I was there, I stayed at Airbnb that had amazing rooftop infinity pool and unforgettable view over the whole city. Look for Airbnbs from Regalia Condominium building, those are ones with rooftop infinity pools. Only downside to that was it was further away from the city center. All public transport in Kuala Lumpur seemed to suck badly, so I would recommend using Uber and taxis instead.

View from AirBnB window

What to do

Batu caves, take a short train trip to go there

KLCC & The Petronas Towers

Visiting different parts of the city such as china town

Shopping experience in the street  markets and numerous shopping centers. If you are looking for electronics on a cheap, visit Low Yat Plaza

 

Taman negara

Taman negara jungle river

Taman negara is a national park taking visitors and enabling to see the beauty of rain forest. It is said to be the world’s oldest rain forest on their website, even though I have heard the same thing being said about other  rainforrests.

 

There are two main ways of visiting Taman Negara:

  1. Going to rainforrest by yourself
  2. booking a tour

Both are good options, with different benefits in them. If you prefer hiking longer routes and exploring by yourself, it is better to go without tours, that tend to take really short routes. If you are not too keen on walking and more interested to learn more information about the rain forest, its history and visit people still living in the rain forests, go with tours. Tours usually also include boat ride trough the rain forest, which for me at least was one of the highlights.

How to get there

From Kuala Lumpur, there are many options on how to get to Taman Negara. I opted for public transport because it was easy and quite cheap also. Take a bus towards Jerantut, one of the entry points into the rain forest.

If you are not convinced with public transport, there are also private transportation options from your hotel hustle-free. This option is better if you prefer things to be simpler and easier. These are too expensive either.

Where to stay

To splurge:

Stay in Mutiara Taman Negara.

This hotel is located in the rain forest in a beautiful settings and offers everything one could hope  for. It is right at the beach with 9-minute walk and offers accommodation with views over Tembeling river or jungle.

If I would do my Malaysian trip over again, I would opt for this hotel definetely.

To save in costs:

Book a cheaper hostel/hotel from Jerantut, stay the night and arrange transportation to the rainforrest  trough your hotel or go with bus early next morning.

Check available hotels in Jerantut here

 

What to do

Different things to do in Taman negara include:

Hiking in the rainforrest

Visiting local village

Canopy walkway

Cruising alongside the river

Hike up to Bukit Teresek and see the different lookout points for scenic view

Have lunch at floating restaurant

 

Cameron highlands

Cameron highlands rainforest

Cameron Highlands could be described to be what Ubud is for Bali; the center or relaxation,calmness, mindfulness, lush green colors… It is absolutely beautiful and you should not skip it when visiting Malaysia. The main attraction there is the tea fields, but the experience doesn’t include only those. What makes the place amazing is the beautiful scenery and calm and beautiful city that is beneath the tea plantations.

 

Again, tea fields can be explored trough just simply going by yourself or  booking a tour, depending on what kind of experience you want. If you are more into long hikes, it’s better to just do it yourself, because tours don’t include much of that. If you are after more detailed explanations of the history and current situations of the tea fields and rain forest, go with the tour.

How to get there

You can book a private transportation there from Taman Negara, or optionally choose the public bus route. I chose the public bus route, but I have to warn you, it takes time. You have to go with three different buses and it can easily take up the whole day. Private transportation is not too expensive and can be way faster. So I recommend to make the decision based on what you value more, time or money. The classical question.

 

I don’t quite remember the route we took, but many forums recommend this route for public buses:

Jerantut – Gua Musang – Cameron Highlands

 

Where to stay

We stayed at a beautiful place called Gerald’s Place. The setting is beautiful filled with these old European styled buildings and the place has an overview over the rain forest. The owner was also really nice.

View over the rain forest from the balcony

What to do

  • Taking  a tour around area that takes you to the tea plantations and rainforest. The rainforrest is very different from Taman Negara, it is formed entirely from thick layer of moss, that you feel when walking on top of it.
  • Hiking around the tea plantations
  • Trying some local cuisines
  • Most of all; getting relaxed and breathing in the cool clean air

Suggestions if you have over two weeks

One awesome part of this itinerary is missing; islands. Malaysia is filled with beautiful islands that are worth checking out. Unfortunately, when I was in Malaysia, it was rainy season so I don’t have any experience from those. There was no point going to the islands because it was literally raining everyday for long periods of time. Some of the islands where even closed because of this. When you are in rain forest or tea fields, rain is not a big issue because it rains in rain forest always anyways. Some of the islands that I have heard other people recommend are:

  • Tioman island
  • Langkawi island
  • Penang
  • Perhentian Islands

 

In conclusion

This 2 week travel itinerary in Malaysia and Singapore tries to tackle the beautiful nature and buzling city life. I only focus on recommending things that I have experienced and where awesome.  If you enjoyed this itinerary or want to ask something, feel free to contact me. I know I am a small and new blog so any comments would make my day 🙂

 

 

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