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Peninsular Malaysia is home to the bulk of the Malaysian population, and is also the centre of the country's economic activity. It is separated from Malaysian Borneo by the South China Sea.
Peninsular Malaysia tends to be the landing spot for most travellers. Kuala Lumpur, the nation's capital, is located on the west side of the peninsula.
Peninsular Malaysia is located on the Malay Peninsula. It shares borders with Thailand in the north and is bounded by the Strait of Malacca to the west and the South China Sea to the east. Singapore lies at the southern tip of the peninsula.
Peninsular Malaysia is also known as West Malaysia, while Malaysian Borneo is alternatively known as East Malaysia.
Peninsular Malaysia is divided into 11 states and two federal territories (FT):
|Northern||Perlis, Kedah, Penang, Perak|
|Central||Kuala Lumpur (FT), Putrajaya (FT), Selangor, Negeri Sembilan|
|East coast||Pahang, Kelantan, Terengganu|
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Peninsular Malaysia has a hot and humid climate with temperatures at sea level between 30 °C and 35 °C almost on a daily basis throughout the year. Temperatures at night are generally between 22 °C and 26 °C and it rarely gets cooler than this. Apart from the fairly stable temperatures, also the humidity is very high during the year, especially during the early morning and late afternoon/early evening.
The northeast monsoon affects the eastcoast from November to February, with heavy rains during this period of time. The southwest monsoon affects mainly the westcoast of the peninsula from May to September but rainfall is far less, because much of the rain hits Sumatra first.
That said, there really isn't a real dry season on the peninsula, just some drier intervals when the chances of days of rain on end are very small, but later afternoon downpours stay common most of the year in all parts.
The interior of the peninsula has the most rain in October and November with Kuala Lumpur hitting an average 300 mm of rain a month. April is almost as wet.
Apart from the heaviest rainfall in the months of November to January during the northeast monsoon at the eastcoast (when many of the hotels and resorts on the coast and islands are closed), it rarely affects travellers in other places or during other times.
Main article: Malaysia
There are 4 international airports on Peninsular Malaysia:
Refer to the main Malaysia article for details on how to get to Peninsular Malaysia by train, car, bus, boat or on foot.
Domestic air travel is currently dominated by AirAsia because of its low fares. Malaysia Airlines also serves domestic routes, and regularly offers promotional fares on a limited seats in its domestic and regional flights.
Firefly, a subsidiary of Malaysia Airlines, flies to Subang (15 km from Kuala Lumpur), Penang, Langkawi, Kota Bharu, Kuala Terengganu, Kuantan on turbo propeller Fokker 50 aircrafts. Each plane has a maximum capacity of 50 passangers only.
The Malayan Railway [Malay: Keretapi Tanah Melayu (KTM)] is the operator of the rail services in the peninsula. Its network runs through most states in the peninsula except Malacca and Terengganu. The main line runs from the north of the peninsula in the state of Perlis (connecting from Thailand) along the west coast states passing through Kuala Lumpur right until the south end before it terminates in Singapore. The east coast line runs from the state of Kelantan (connecting from Thailand) through the jungle in the middle of the peninsula (hence the name jungle train) and connecting to the west coast line at Gemas in the state of Negeri Sembilan. Almost all intercity train services terminate in Kuala Lumpur.
Travelling by road is very convenient in the peninsula. There is a vast network of express ways spanning from north to south, east to west, along the east coast, and within the Kuala Lumpur metropolitan area.
The main backbone in the peninsula is the North-South Expressway (NSE) running from the Malaysian-Thai border passing through Kuala Lumpur until the Malaysian-Singapore border. The East Coast Expressway (ECE) links the east coast states with the west coast at the Kuala Lumpur-Karak Expressway. ECE starts from Karak in inner Pahang, to the east in coastal Kuantan, continuing along the coast to the north in the state of Terengganu.
Intercity express bus services are available in major cities and towns in Malaysia, with the majority of them heading towards the capital city Kuala Lumpur. Check the Expressbus website for details about companies, routes and schedules and prices.
Passenger ferry and boat services are available for travelling from the mainland to islands like Penang, Langkawi, Pangkor, Tioman, Redang, Perhentian, and Labuan. The Penang Ferry Service (Butterworth-Georgetown) even carries vehicles from one side to another and was the main access route before the Penang Bridge was built in 1985, linking the island and mainland.
Langkawi Ferry operates fast services from Penang to Langkawi daily in the morning, leaving at 8:00am and taking less than 2 hours. They leave Langkawi at 5:00pm.
Other destinations to and from Langkawi include Kuala Perlis, Kuala Kedah and from Tioman to Tanjung Gemok.
Malaysia is a paradise for good food, particularly Malacca and Penang Island. Locals know it as the paradise for good food. Malacca offers a conglomeration of Portugese, Malaysian and Chinese food while Penang is offer more localized and eccentric fare. The food in Kuala Lumpur, the heart of Malaysia, caters for just about everyone and if you're particular about food, you can't go wrong when you hit a food court. Food courts in Malaysia usually have lots of stalls offering a variety of food - so all you have to do is to enter it, make your choices and hit the bowl.
Shopping centers also offer many different types of food. Italian, Japanese, Korean, Chinese, local or other Western and fast food fares are available everwhere. Eating in Malaysia is not at all expensive when compared to neighboring countries like Singapore, Hong Kong and Korea. The better-looking the restaurant, the more you can expect to pay.
Most foreigners are advised to try their luck at Jalan Alor where the food is dubious as to cleanliness but scrumptious down to the last bit.
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Ask bryannn a question about Peninsular Malaysia
I spend half my time in Peninsular Malaysia, especially the East Coast. I've also been to KL, Penang, Port Dickson. and Melakka.
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