13 Fun Facts About Malaysia That May Surprise You – Plan Your Trip Today
What are the interesting facts about Malaysia that you heard of which made you curious about visiting?
Ever had that friend who couldn’t decide which country to visit in Southeast Asia?
Here’s what you can tell them.
Malaysia is a safe, beautiful, and tourist-friendly country and a perfect destination for anyone looking for fun and relaxation.
We hope the fun facts about Malaysia help entice you to visit sometime soon.
Before you travel to Malaysia, check out Travel Stylus, which explains in detail all other things you may want to know before traveling.
Topics include food, culture, budgeting, and more.
Keep reading for some interesting facts about Malaysia!
1 Malaysia Has Largest Flower In The World
Fun facts about Malaysia’s largest flower – the Giant Rafflesia.
The largest flower species in the world grows in limited rainforest regions across Peninsular Malaysia and Borneo.
How big is the Rafflesia plant?
The rare flower can grow to be 3 feet across and weigh up to 15 pounds! It is a parasitic flower with no visible leaves, roots, or stems.
The Rafflesia is the state flower of Sabah, Malaysia.
Kinabalu National Park is one of the best places to start your search for this rare flower.
In Peninsular Malaysia, it can be found at Lojing on the outskirts of Cameron Highlands towards Gua Musang.
Not so fun but exciting fact about Malaysia – Rafflesia is also known as the “corpse flower” as it emits a repulsive odor, similar to that of rotting meat.
The offending odor attracts insects that pollinate the plant.
Rafflesia is a rare plant, and there are 29 species identified worldwide; the Rafflesia arnoldii is the most sought in Sabah and Sarawak.
In Peninsular Malaysia, the Rafflesia can be found in Kelantan, Pahang, Perak, and Terengganu.
In Royal Belum State Park, Perak, three flower species are found, the Rafflesia kerrii, Rafflesia cantleyi, and Rafflesia azlanii.
2 Malaysia Is The Most Biodiverse Country On The Planet
Malaysia is one of the world’s megadiverse countries.
Ranked the 12th in the world according to the National Biodiversity Index, the country’s richness and endemism are in four terrestrial vertebrate classes and vascular plants.
The Penang Hill Biosphere Reserve
With this designation, the Penang Hill Biosphere Reserve, which comprises 12,481 hectares of marine and terrestrial ecosystems in the north-western part of Penang Island, will be counted among a distinguished global network of 714 Biosphere Reserves across 129 countries.
Biosphere Reserves worldwide are celebrated for their exceptional biodiversity and distinct social landscapes, as well as for their potential to demonstrate innovative ways of living in harmony with nature.
3 Malaysia Has 66 National Parks
Tropical Rainforests are some of the most beautiful natural places in the world.
Home to thousands of unique species of plants and animals, the rainforests are vital to the global ecosystem.
The ancient Malaysian rainforests are more than 130 years old, and all of them are endangered.
Taman Negara National Park is one of the world’s oldest deciduous rainforests, older than the largest rainforest on the planet – the Amazon Rainforest (55 million years.), existing at the time when dinosaurs used to roam the earth.
With around 66 national and state parks and forest reserves in Malaysia, the protected area are a thriving ecosystem of thousands of different species of flora and fauna.
The top endangered animal species native to Malaysia, the Malayan tiger, Malayan tapir, Bornean orangutan, Asian elephant, Malayan Sun bear, and the critically endangered species Black shrew, are protected here.
Aside from Taman Negara National Park, other fascinating parks to visit are Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park, Niah National Park, Kinabalu National Park, Gunung Mulu National Park, and more.
Malaysia’s rich natural environment allows nature lovers to have some nonstop exploring.
4 Archaeological Sites in Malaysia
Some of the most notable archaeological and cultural sites in Malaysia are the
- Unesco World Heritage cities of Penang and Malacca (jointly listed)
- Lenggong Valley in Perak, the Bujang Valley archaeological park (Kedah)
- Niah Caves (Sarawak)
Perak Man is the name given to the skeletal remains of a man thought to have lived about 11,000 years ago in the Lenggong Valley district of Hulu Perak.
It is the oldest human skeleton found so far in Peninsular Malaysia.
5 The World’s Largest Cave Chamber Is In Malaysia
Sarawak Chamber is the largest known cave chamber in the world by area and the second largest by volume after the Miao Room in China.
It is in Gua Nasib Bagus (Good Luck Cave), located in Gunung Mulu National Park, in the Malaysian Territory of Sarawak, on the island of Borneo.
The cave is so vast that it can accommodate 40 Boeing 747s without the planes having to overlap their wings to fit in.
6 Malaysia Has Some Of The Most Popular Tourist Cities
Malaysia is well known for its diverse and tourist-friendly cities, where the area is mixed with English speakers.
Penang is one of the most popular cities in Malaysia, located on the Peninsula.
The capital George Town has a rich history of old colonial architecture juxtaposed with modern malls, a lively street food scene, and a perfect place to relax with local shops, restaurants, and an ocean view.
Penang Asam Laksa is no. 7 on CNN’s World’s Best 50 Foods list.
Another famous city for tourism in Malaysia is the city of Kuala Lumpur, a commercial city well connected with hotels, resorts, theme parks, malls, shops, parks, restaurants, and more.
The Petronas Towers are a significant landmark of Kuala Lumpur and are a coveted filming location.
The cities of Malaysia are tourist-friendly and beautiful; be sure to visit a few of them when you visit Malaysia.
7 Malaysia’s Stinkiest Fruit
Not everything smells funky in Malaysia.
To Malaysians, the King of Fruits, the Durian smells heavenly with a creamy custardy taste that rivals any cheesecake!
How good is this theory fruit?
Like all Malaysians, wild tigers, too, love the Durian.
A tiger will gather the Durian and pile them in a heap before devouring the fruit using its paws and teeth.
Fun Facts About Malaysia: Sometimes, you can find BBQ Durian in Malaysia!
Malaysians love a particular durian, the Musang King, and a durian investment scheme is available.
A few such schemes are available where farms are plated with nothing but Musang King trees!
8 Malaysia Has Some Bizarre Festivities
Ranking among the countries with the most public holidays, Malaysia has 14 National holidays! The different Malaysian states also observe state holidays.
Aside from religious festivals observed by the Muslim and Buddhist communities, some of Malaysia’s more unusual cultural festivities are the Nine Emperor Gods Festival, Thaipusam, Ancestors’ Day, and Gawai Dayak.
Nine Emperor Gods Festival (Penang)
The Nine Emperor Gods Festival is a Taoist celebration with devotees observing a strict Vegetarian Diet for nine days.
Every year millions of Hindu devotees make vows and pledges to Lord Murugan to prove their gratitude and pay penances to him on Thaipusam day.
Ancestors’ Day (Carey Island, Selangor)
The indigenous animists’ people of the Mah Meri tribe celebrate Ancestors’ Day with prayers, food in traditional costume, dance mask ‘Bajus’ for Ari Moyang (Ancestors Day)
Gawai Dayak (Sarawak)
The Gawai Dayak festival celebrates the end of the rice harvesting season in June.
On Gawai eve, glutinous rice is roasted in bamboo.
The celebration starts on the evening of 31 May with a ceremony called Muai Antu Rua to cast away the spirit of greed and ensure that bad luck will not interfere with the good celebrations.
Depending on when you travel to Malaysia, you may travel during one of the 14 different National holidays and experience authentic Malaysian culture.
9 The National Sport Of Malaysia
Football and badminton are among the most popular sports in Malaysia.
Others include golf, bowling, squash, and water sports, such as yachting, kayaking, swimming, water polo, and diving.
Many Malaysian athletes achieve excellence at the international level.
10 Malaysian Traditional Games
Malaysians’ strong sense of community is reflected in many traditional games during festivities, such as before or after the rice harvest season and weddings.
Some of these include the mesmerizing fluid movements of
- Silat (Malay martial art)
- Sepak Takraw
- Wau (Giant Kites)
- Gasing (giant spinning top)
- Wayang Kulit (traditional puppet shadow theatre)
- Congkak (game of mathematics)
- Chingay (giant triangular flags procession)
- Speak Manggis (kicking a rattan ball)
11 Malaysia Has Two Of The Worlds Largest Festivals
Rainforest World Music Festival
The Rainforest World Music Festival is an annual three-day music festival celebrating the diversity of world music, held in Kuching, Sarawak, Malaysia.
There are daytime music workshops, cultural displays, craft displays, food stalls, and main-stage evening concerts.
George Town Festival
The George Town Festival is an annual cultural festival held within the city of George Town in Penang, Malaysia.
Inaugurated in 2010, the festival was initially mooted to celebrate the inscription of George Town as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
12 Malaysia Has A Hungry Ghost Festival
The Hungry Ghost Festival is celebrated in the seventh lunar month of the Chinese calendar, unlike any Halloween celebrations you have seen.
Ghost Month occurs in the seventh lunar month of the Chinese calendar, with the Hungry Ghost Festival happening in the middle of that period.
In Chinese culture, the gates of hell and heaven are believed to be open this month. The ghosts can then roam the living realm, and the spirits of the deceased ancestors can return to visit the living.
Whether you believe it or not, the night before the first day of Ghost Month marks the opening of the gates of hell and heaven.
While the offerings differ from family to family, people prepare food offerings and burn incense, candles, joss paper, and Hell money!
As both good and evil spirits are believed to start to enter the living realm, these offerings are to appease the roaming ghosts and pray for safety.
Some superstitious things not to do are to visit any “yin” or negative places such as the hospital, cemetery, or funeral.
Malaysian elders generally avoid staying out late at night.
13 Malaysian Mamak Culture
The first thing you should know about Malaysians is they are passionate about food, and Malaysia has inherited many cuisines from its melting pot of cultures.
Malaysian food scene can include eats on the cheap side, international cuisine, fine dining and retauratnat, kopitiam, warung, night markets, and street food stalls.
The most prevalent among the locals is the 24/6/365 Mamak stalls every Malaysian goes to for a curry rice meal any time of the day and night!
These eateries are best for frothy Teh Tarik (pulled tea) and Instant Noodles with Fried Chicken and sunnyside eggs, firmly established in Mamak culture!
Facts About Malaysia Worth Visiting Today!
Now that you have read a few interesting facts about Malaysia, you should feel ready to embark on your trip to Malaysia.
Traveling to Malaysia will be an unforgettable experience for you.
Won’t you take advantage of this opportunity?
For the past few years, traveling abroad has been uncertain.
Now is the best time to travel and experience Malaysia.
Plan Your Trip to Malaysia With These Resources
Flights: Start planning your trip by finding the best flight deals on Skyscanner
Book your Hotel: Find the best hotel prices with these two platforms. If you are in Europe, use Booking.com and TripAdvisor if you are anywhere else.
Another fun fact about Malaysia is the locals speak Manglish, or Mangled English, a spoken English-based creole in Malaysia.
Happy travels are safe travels.
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