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Malaysia

Background

Malaysia

During the late 18th and 19th centuries, Great Britain established colonies and protectorates in the area of current Malaysia; these were occupied by Japan from 1942 to 1945. In 1948, the British-ruled territories on the Malay Peninsula formed the Federation of Malaya, which became independent in 1957. Malaysia was formed in 1963 when the former British colonies of Singapore and the East Malaysian states of Sabah and Sarawak on the northern coast of Borneo joined the Federation. The first several years of the country's history were marred by a Communist insurgency, Indonesian confrontation with Malaysia, Philippine claims to Sabah, and Singapore's secession from the Federation in 1965. During the 22-year term of Prime Minister MAHATHIR bin Mohamad (1981-2003), Malaysia was successful in diversifying its economy from dependence on exports of raw materials to expansion in manufacturing, services, and tourism.

About

Malaysia is a country in South-East Asia, located partly on a peninsula of the Asian mainland and partly on the northern third of the island of Borneo. West (peninsular) Malaysia shares a border with Thailand, is connected by a causeway and a bridge (the 'second link') to the island state of Singapore, and has coastlines on the South China Sea and the Straits of Malacca. East Malaysia (Borneo) shares borders with Brunei and Indonesia.

Read more about Malaysia in our Malaysia travel guide »

Featured journals from

Malaysia

Featured hotels in

Malaysia

MalaysiaPrince Hotel and Residence Kuala Lumpur 

No. 4 Jalan Conlay
Kuala Lumpur 50450
Malaysia

Price (US$): $410 - $411 / night

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Location. Located in central Kuala Lumpur, Prince Hotel and Residence Kuala Lumpur is a family friendly hotel within walking distance of Pavilion Kuala Lumpur, Starhill Gallery, and Fahrenheit 88 Shopping Mall. Additional points of interest include Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre and Malaysian Houses of Parliament. Hotel Features. Prince Hotel and Residence Kuala Lumpur features a poolside bar, a bar/lounge, and a snack bar/deli. Room service is available 24 hours a day. Recreational… more »

MalaysiaPullman Putrajaya Lakeside 

No 2 Jalan 5/5
Presint 5
Putrajaya 62200
Malaysia

Price (US$): $108 - $141 / night

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Location. Located in Putrajaya, Pullman Putrajaya Lakeside is on a lake and close to Putrajaya Convention Centre, Putra Mosque, and Putrajaya Independence Square. Nearby points of interest also include Perdana Leadership Foundation and Palace of Justice. Hotel Features. Dining options at Pullman Putrajaya Lakeside include 2 restaurants. A bar/lounge is open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. Recreational amenities include an outdoor pool, a children's pool, a spa tub, a… more »

MalaysiaPutrajaya Shangri La 

Taman Putra Perdana
Presint 1
Putrajaya 62000
Malaysia

Price (US$): $119 - $126 / night

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Location. Putrajaya Shangri La is a business friendly Putrajaya hotel in a state/national park and close to Putrajaya Landmark, Melawati National Palace, and Putrajaya Independence Square. Additional points of interest include Putra Mosque and Taman Botani Tropical Botanical Gardens. Hotel Features. Dining options at Putrajaya Shangri La include a restaurant and a coffee shop/café. A poolside bar and a bar/lounge are open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. Recreational… more »

MalaysiaThe Royale Chulan Kuala Lumpur 

No. 5 Jalan Conlay
Kuala Lumpur 50450
Malaysia

Price (US$): $171 - $213 / night

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Location. The Royale Chulan Kuala Lumpur is a business friendly hotel located in Kuala Lumpur's Kuala Lumpur City Centre neighborhood, close to Karyaneka Handicraft Center, Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, and Malaysian Houses of Parliament. Additional points of interest include Merdeka Square and Putra World Trade Centre. Hotel Features. The Royale Chulan Kuala Lumpur features 3 bars/lounges, a coffee shop/café, and a poolside bar. Room service is available 24 hours a day. The hotel serves… more »

MalaysiaShangri La's Tanjung Aru Resort and Spa 

No. 20, Jalan Aru
Tanjung Aru
Kota Kinabalu 88100
Malaysia

Price (US$): $243 - $561 / night

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Location. Shangri La's Tanjung Aru Resort and Spa is located on the beach in Kota Kinabalu, close to Sutera Harbour, Sabah State Mosque, and Sabah State Museum. Other points of interest near this luxury resort include Plaza Wawasan and All Saint's Cathedral. Resort Features. Dining options at Shangri La's Tanjung Aru Resort and Spa include 4 restaurants. 3 bars/lounges and a poolside bar are open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. The resort serves a complimentary buffet… more »

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Malaysia

Capital
Kuala Lumpur
Location

Southeastern Asia, peninsula bordering Thailand and northern one-third of the island of Borneo, bordering Indonesia, Brunei, and the South China Sea, south of Vietnam

Geographic coordinates

2 30 N, 112 30 E

Area comparative

slightly larger than New Mexico

Border countries

Brunei 381 km, Indonesia 1,782 km, Thailand 506 km

Coastline

4,675 km (Peninsular Malaysia 2,068 km, East Malaysia 2,607 km)

Climate

tropical; annual southwest (April to October) and northeast (October to February) monsoons

Terrain

coastal plains rising to hills and mountains

Lowest point

Indian Ocean 0 m

Highest point

Gunung Kinabalu 4,100 m

Natural resources

tin, petroleum, timber, copper, iron ore, natural gas, bauxite

Population

28,274,729 (July 2010 est.)

Ethnic groups

Malay 50.4%, Chinese 23.7%, indigenous 11%, Indian 7.1%, others 7.8% (2004 est.)

Religions

Muslim 60.4%, Buddhist 19.2%, Christian 9.1%, Hindu 6.3%, Confucianism, Taoism, other traditional Chinese religions 2.6%, other or unknown 1.5%, none 0.8% (2000 census)

Languages

Bahasa Malaysia (official), English, Chinese (Cantonese, Mandarin, Hokkien, Hakka, Hainan, Foochow), Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Panjabi, Thai

Government type

constitutional monarchy

Independence

31 August 1957 (from the UK)

National holiday

Independence Day/Malaysia Day, 31 August (1957)

Chief of state

King - Sultan MIZAN Zainal Abidin (since 13 December 2006); (the position of the king is primarily ceremonial)

Head of government

Prime Minister Mohamed NAJIB bin Abdul Razak (since 3 April 2009); Deputy Prime Minister MUHYIDDIN bin Mohamed Yassin (since 9 April 2009)

Internet country code

.my

Internet users

15.355 million (2009)

Airports

118 (2010)

Ports and terminals

Bintulu, Johor Bahru, George Town (Penang), Port Kelang (Port Klang), Tanjung Pelepas

Other countries in the region