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TRAVEL TO MALAYSIA

Traveling to Malaysia can be an exciting experience, and there are various ways to reach the country depending on your location and preferences. Here are some common methods:

By Air:  Flights: Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) is the main international gateway. Many major airlines operate direct flights to KLIA from various countries. Other international airports in Malaysia include Penang International Airport, Langkawi International Airport, and Kota Kinabalu International Airport.

By Sea: Cruise: Some cruises offer routes that include stops in Malaysian ports. Popular cruise destinations include Penang, Langkawi, and Kuala Lumpur.

By Land: Bus: Malaysia is well-connected by road to neighboring countries like Singapore and Thailand. Long-distance buses are a convenient option for traveling within the region.  Train: You can also enter Malaysia by train from Thailand. The International Express Train runs from Hat Yai in Thailand to Penang and Kuala Lumpur.

By Car:  Self-Drive: If you're coming from neighboring countries with good road connections, driving into Malaysia is an option. However, be sure to check and comply with the necessary border-crossing regulations.

Visa Requirements:  Check the visa requirements for your nationality before traveling. Many countries are eligible for visa-free entry or visa-on-arrival for short stays.

Local Transportation:  Once in Malaysia, you can use various modes of local transportation, including buses, trains, taxis, and rideshare services.

Travel Insurance:  It's advisable to have travel insurance that covers medical emergencies and unexpected events. Check the coverage and make sure it's valid for the entire duration of your stay.

COVID-19 Considerations: Keep in mind any travel restrictions or requirements related to the ongoing global pandemic. Check for the latest updates on entry requirements and safety protocols.

Local Currency: The local currency is the Malaysian Ringgit (MYR). Make sure to have some local currency or a credit/debit card accepted in Malaysia for your expenses.

Before you travel, always check for the latest travel advisories, entry requirements, and any specific regulations that may apply.

LGBTQ+ Safety in Malaysia

Malaysia has conservative attitudes towards LGBTQ+ rights, and certain legal and social challenges may exist for individuals who identify as LGBTQ+. However, keep in mind that situations can change, and it's advisable to check for any updates or changes in the local environment.

Here are some considerations if you plan to visit Malaysia as an LGBTQ+ person:

Legal Status: Homosexual acts are technically illegal in Malaysia under the colonial-era sodomy law. Sharia law also applies to Muslims in certain states, which can affect LGBTQ+ individuals. Enforcement, however, can vary, and there have been instances of high-profile legal cases.

Public Display of Affection: It's advisable to avoid public displays of affection, as this can attract unwanted attention and potentially lead to legal consequences.

Accommodations: While larger cities like Kuala Lumpur may have more liberal attitudes, it's important to choose accommodations carefully. Some establishments may be more LGBTQ+-friendly than others.

Local Attitudes: Attitudes towards the LGBTQ+ community can vary widely. In urban areas, there might be more acceptance, but in rural or conservative areas, attitudes may be less tolerant.

Connect with Local LGBTQ+ Communities: In larger cities, there are LGBTQ+ communities and organizations. Connecting with these groups can provide insights into local dynamics and offer support.

Online Presence: Be mindful of your online presence, as social media activity and dating apps can be monitored.

Consult Recent Resources: Before your trip, check for the most recent information on LGBTQ+ rights and safety in Malaysia. Forums, travel guides, and local LGBTQ+ organizations can provide valuable insights.

Personal Safety: Prioritize your safety. If you feel uncomfortable or unsafe, it's important to prioritize your well-being.

Remember that attitudes and situations can change, and it's a good idea to seek up-to-date information closer to your travel date. Additionally, consider consulting travel advisories from your government for the latest information on safety and local laws.

When g10 visited KL and Penang in November 2023 we saw LGBTQ+ people out and about especially in Penang - read more about our time in Malaysia including some of our recommendations at the bottom of the page 

KUALA LUMPUR TRAVEL GUIDE

Kuala Lumpur, the capital city of Malaysia, is a vibrant and diverse destination with a rich blend of modernity and tradition. Here's a guide to help you make the most of your visit:

Getting Around: 

Public Transportation: 

MRT and LRT: Kuala Lumpur has an efficient Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) and Light Rail Transit (LRT) system that can take you to various parts of the city. Monorail: The monorail is another convenient mode of transport, especially for reaching key points in the city center.

Taxis and Ride-Sharing: 

Taxis are available, but make sure they use the meter. Alternatively, use ride-sharing apps like Grab for a more reliable and transparent service.

Sightseeing:

Petronas Twin Towers: Iconic twin towers that dominate the skyline. Visit the Skybridge for panoramic views.

KL Tower (Menara Kuala Lumpur): Offers stunning views of the city. Consider going in the evening for a beautiful sunset.

Merdeka Square: Historical square with the Sultan Abdul Samad Building and the Malaysian flag.

Batu Caves:  A limestone hill with a series of caves and cave temples. The giant golden statue and the steep climb make it a unique experience.

Islamic Arts Museum:  One of the largest museums of Islamic art in Southeast Asia. It showcases a vast collection of artifacts.

National Mosque of Malaysia:  A modern mosque with beautiful architecture. Non-Muslims are welcome outside prayer times.

Cultural Experiences:

Chinatown (Petaling Street):  A bustling area known for its vibrant street life, markets, and delicious street food.

Little India (Brickfields):  Experience the colorful Indian culture, shop for spices, and enjoy authentic Indian cuisine.

Central Market:  A historic market showcasing Malaysian arts and crafts. Great for souvenirs.

 Food:

Hawker Centers:  Try local delights at hawker centers like Jalan Alor for a variety of Malaysian street food.

 

Nasi Kandar Line Clear:  Famous for its Nasi Kandar, a Malaysian dish of rice with various curry dishes.

Pasar Seni (Central Market) Food Court:  Offers a variety of local dishes in a vibrant setting.

Shopping:

Suria KLCC: Located beneath the Petronas Towers, it's a high-end shopping mall with international brands.

Bukit Bintang:  A popular shopping and entertainment district with malls like Pavilion KL

Parks and Recreation:

KLCC Park: A beautiful park surrounding the Petronas Towers, great for leisurely walks and picnics.

Lake Gardens (Perdana Botanical Gardens):  A sprawling green space with gardens, a bird park, and the National Museum.

Practical Tips:

Weather: Kuala Lumpur has a tropical climate, so dress accordingly. It can be hot and humid, with occasional rain.

Respect Local Customs:  Malaysia is a multicultural society. Respect local customs and dress modestly when visiting religious sites.

Language: English is widely spoken, but learning a few basic Malay phrases can be helpful and appreciated.

Currency: The currency is the Malaysian Ringgit (MYR). Credit cards are widely accepted.

Remember to check for any travel advisories or updates before your trip. Enjoy your time in Kuala Lumpur!

GEORGE TOWN TRAVEL GUIDE

George Town, the capital city of  the state of Penang, is a vibrant and historic destination known for its rich cultural heritage, delicious street food, and well-preserved colonial architecture. Here's a guide to help you make the most of your visit to George Town:

Getting There:

By Air: The nearest airport is Penang International Airport (PEN), located about 16 kilometers south of George Town. You can take a taxi or use ride-sharing services to reach the city.

By Bus: Long-distance buses connect George Town to various cities in Malaysia.

By Ferry:  If you're coming from the mainland, you can take a ferry from Butterworth to George Town. The ferry terminal is conveniently located in the city center.

Getting Around:

Walk:  George Town is a pedestrian-friendly city, especially in the UNESCO World Heritage Site area. Walking allows you to explore the narrow streets and alleys at your own pace.

Public Transportation:  Rapid Penang buses operate throughout the city. Consider purchasing a Rapid Penang Tourist Passport for unlimited bus rides.

Trishaws: Experience a nostalgic ride on a colorful trishaw, a traditional mode of transportation.

Bicycles:  Many areas are bike-friendly, and you can rent bicycles to explore the city and its surroundings.

Places to Visit:

George Town UNESCO World Heritage Site: Explore the historic center with its well-preserved colonial architecture, street art, and cultural landmarks.

Street Art:  Marvel at the famous street art scattered across the city, including works by Ernest Zacharevic. Pick up a street art map for guidance.

Penang Peranakan Mansion:  Discover the rich Peranakan heritage at this beautifully restored mansion.

Penang Hill: Take a funicular train to the top for panoramic views of the island.

 

Kek Lok Si Temple:  Explore the largest Buddhist temple in Malaysia, located in nearby Air Itam.

 

Khoo Kongsi:  Visit this elaborate Chinese clanhouse, known for its intricate architecture and rich history. 

 

Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion (The Blue Mansion):  Tour this iconic indigo-blue building, a symbol of George Town's historical significance.  

Food and Dining:

Street Food:  George Town is a food lover's paradise. Try local specialties at Gurney Drive Hawker Centre, New Lane Hawker Center, and Kimberly Street.

Nyonya Cuisine:  Indulge in Peranakan or Nyonya cuisine, a unique blend of Chinese and Malay flavors.

Hawker Centers:  Dive into the local food scene at popular hawker centers such as Red Garden Food Paradise and Chulia Street Night Hawker Stalls.

Shopping: 

Penang Road Famous Teochew Chendul:  Don't miss trying the famous local dessert while exploring the shops on Penang Road.

Little India: Experience the vibrant colors and scents of Little India, where you can shop for spices, textiles, and traditional Indian goods.

Practical Tips:

Weather: George Town has a tropical climate. It can get hot and humid, so dress accordingly and stay hydrated.

Language: English, Malay, Mandarin, and Tamil are widely spoken.

Currency:  The currency used is the Malaysian Ringgit (MYR).

Cultural Respect:  Respect local customs and traditions, especially when visiting temples and religious sites.

Remember to check for any travel advisories or updates before planning your trip, and enjoy your time exploring the rich cultural tapestry of George Town!

g10 IN MALAYSIA

In November 2023 we visited Malaysia. We heard about the countries views on being LGBTQ+ and we were a little apprehensive. We visited KL (Kula Lumpur and Penang and we were surprised and pleased to see LGBTQ+ people walking around some with their partners next to them. We have not taken their pictures to protect their identity but they did not seem to be hiding which was great to see. We of course know that we visited two areas which could be considered liberal but our impression was in these places society and the government seem to be at odds

SOULed OUT Bukit Jalil

Lot 3.112.00 & E3.112.00, Level 3, Pavilion Bukit Jalil, 2 Persiaran Jalil 8, Bukit Jalil, 57000 Kuala Lumpur

We came across this place during our time in Kula Lumpur. It is on the edge of the one of the big shopping complex's in the outskirts where we were staying.  The staff are very good and also very friendly and can't do enough for you. The food is very nice and they have a great selection of drinks and lots of offers. We have selected two here but the one we used on our visits were the mojito offer. They have several different flavours of mojito to try including peach and you also have the standard one too. What we liked about the drinks in general in Malaysia was they don't hold back on the measures so you really feel like you having a drink. Non alcohol ones are available too

FIG TREE RESORT PENANG

We came across this place on Facebook when we were planning our trip and decided to stay at the place for 1 night after we left George town before returning to Kuala Lumpur. It takes about 30 minutes drive from George Town.  You are advised to park your own car at a car park at the end of the drive. The car park we were told is safe but we advise do not leave anything important in the car. You are then driven in a 4 wheel drive along a track for about 10 minutes before arriving at the resort. 

We are taken down to the villa we were staying at which had two levels. It was very nice. There is no restaurant on the resort so you order you food for all your meals before you arrive. and the guys at the resort set it up for you in a beautiful location ( we won't tell you where so its a surprise for you) We enjoyed the swimming pool and just chilled out. We found out that we had the resort to ourselves. 

Fig Tree resort is a eco friendly resort so be aware of this before you choose it so its not luxury but it very special experience but we would also say that one or two nights would be enough 

 Jl. Kenari, Sungai Ara, 11900 Bayan Lepas, Penang, Malaysia

403093000_7446671878693981_8015102740654130291_n.jpg

Gravity Rooftop Bar

2, Persiaran Maktab, 10250 Penang

A lovely bar that we visited twice during our stay in George town. It is at the edge of the city and has stunning views from the outside bar looking over George Town towards the sea and in the other direction to Penang Hill 

The food and drink are done very well and the staff are very friendly. Why not jugs of cocktail which are done in a bottle (see picture on the left. You pour it using the tap at the bottom such a unique way of doing it 

You can spend a lot of time here but its worth it as the views never get boring 

Glaz Sky Bar

191, Jalan Magazine, Penang Island

Another roof bar to try out - there are plenty to try both In Penang and also in KL. This one is more central in George Town. and is smaller than Gravity and not as high but the views are still as stunning. This time you are able to look over the bay of Penang. The food and drinks are also great. 

On the night we visited there was a new bar person doing the cocktail bar so he was learning from the handbook as he went so we of course helped him along his way by trying several cocktails. To help we ordered some food which fab. 

A shout out to the manager who you can just about see in the picture on the left, he came over to us and asked us how we thought the bar man was doing we said really good - He gave us a free shot of whisky 

Travelodge Malaysia

101, Jln Macalister, 10400 George Town, Pulau Pinang,

Some of the places we stayed in Malaysia we would not do again. But this place we would. Yes we are saying stay in a Travelodge. We are not knocking the UK brand as we have and will probably stay in ones again in the UK but the ones in South east Asia are so different. They have swimming pools and gyms and the rooms are so lovely 

You can find these in several places in Malaysia as well as Japan, Thailand, South Korea to name just three more countries. 

HealthLand

Finally we could not end without mentioning HealthLand. They have branches across Malaysia and we tried 3 branches one in George Town and the others in KL, What we found is the same level of service in all of them. They are some of the best massages our CEO Gavin has had. 

Gavin had all over body massage a few times and a couple of feet and shoulder massages. Even with the feet and shoulder massages you feel your whole body is being treated.

If you are going to be in Malaysia for a few weeks we suggest that you get one of the packages that they offer as first of all these can work out cheaper and also you don't have to worry about paying each visit as you have already pre paid for your visits  

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