Planning a trip to Malaysia? Then you should! Spend a few days exploring the country, eating some weird yet wonderful street food, exploring the steaming jungles, meeting the amazing locals, hike to one of the largest flowers in the world and get the grip to the Malaysian history and culture. And YES, all of this is possible on a shoestring budget! Malaysia is a country full of variations and surprises, and after spending a few days in Malaysia it will surely leave you wanting for more. So, let’s get on to unveil the secret guide to explore Malaysia on a budget.
Visa entry to Malaysia is super easy – combining that with a rich local culture, stunning religious sites, affordable accommodation and with a plenty of adventure antics, you’re all set to kickstart your budget trip to Malaysia. Check out the Malaysia visa fee here!
Best time to visit Malaysia – Go Monsoon!
If you don’t mind bad hair days then visiting prior or after monsoon would be your best budget bet. Between November and March, the Peninsula Malaysia experience the northeast monsoon hit – which means the hotel and flight prices will fall in the week leading up to, or directly following, these months. (Book it!)
Travelling by Train, bus or flight?
If you’re travelling inter-state within Malaysia, you can choose your own mode of transportation, it costs roughly the same. From one-way trip to Kuala Lumpur to Penang, a bus will cost you around RM60, the ETS train will cost around RM59, and a flight ticket will cost somewhere around RM79.
Hotel or AirBnb?
It’s totally your choice! Either you can rent a furnished apartment or a beautiful homestay through AirBnb or else go for an affordable hotel stay. Consider akbartravels.com Travel Experts and get your hands on an exclusive deals and unmatched prices. Check out the gorgeous hotels here.
Things to do in Malaysia for FREE
Malaysia is a melting pot of different Asian cultures which make “Malaysia, truly Asia” and one of the top tourist destinations. The country also has some of the insane shopping destinations, wild nightlife, diving, rock climbing, exotic spas and many more attractions! Yes… that’s a WOW list of things, but you must be worried about the huge expenses, isn’t it? Then worry not, akbartravels.com have got you some free things that you can do in Malaysia without burning a hole in your pocket.
1. Shop at Pasar Percuma, KL’s Only Free Market!
The Pasar percuma market and the system they follow there will definitely going to take you back to 6000 BC. The market is one-of-a-kind bazaar which follows a totally different concept of shopping, which is based on barter system. You can giveaway your pre-loved items to others including old clothes, bags, movies, etc and exchange it for another item. Everything here is free, hence the market is named, ‘free market’.
2. Stroll around Perdana Lake Gardens
Take a walk around the Lake Gardens and enjoy the nature at its best away from noise and crowd of the city. The Perdana Lake Gardens popularity dates back to 1880’s. The garden is built around an artificial lake with colorful flowers and botanical gardens, the Perdana Lake Gardens attracts a lot of tourists and it is a regular venue for cultural and musical events in Malaysia.
3. Visit Batu Caves
One of the major tourist attractions in Malaysia, Batu caves attracts over a million worshippers for its renowned Hindu cave temple and shrine. Jump on a Komuter train and stop at Batu Caves station, which is right at the foot of Batu caves. It is one of the most glorious sites of Malaysia and attracts huge crowd during the Thaipusam festival. Entry is Free!
4. Free Trekking through Penang National Park
Adventure freaks don’t miss a chance to go on hiking and trekking wherever they are travelling. And when it comes to a place like Malaysia, you’ll be spoilt for choices. The place provides various trekking options and that too for free! You can pick from Gunung Lambak, located at Kluang Town, Penang Hill Loop, Pine Tree Trail, and Penang National Park etc.
5. Catch the sunset at the Melaka Straits Mosque
If you’re looking for a solitude place where you could witness the nature at its best then head to the man-made island of Melaka Island, off the city’s coast. The Melaka Straits mosque provides a breathtaking view, especially around sunset. Take a walk along the beach to catch the magical view as the mosque lights up.
6. Go for Free Wine Tasting
Yes, we know a glass of wine costs too much anywhere in Malaysia. But, what if we tell you that there’s a place called “The one Avenue Dataran Pelangi”, where you can taste wine for free. The place gives you a chance to taste some of the exclusive varieties of South African wines and chill around with wine enthusiasts. Make sure you book for the free wine tasting session in prior. It happens every Friday from 17:00 – 18:00.
7. Catch a Free Performance of Cultural Malay Dances
Malaysia is popular as one of the happening countries. The country has different types of cultural performances happening every day, which you can enjoy for absolutely free. You can enjoy the colourful dance show, vibrant costumes and traditional music. Such traditional dance shows mostly takes place in places like Central Market’s outdoor stage and Malaysian Tourism Centre (MaTiC).
8. Go Clubbing!
Clubbing is one place where people end up spending the major chunk of their trip’s budget, No, no, don’t fret! We’ve good news. There are few places in Malaysia where you can go clubbing for free! As a part of their Happy Hours promotion, few places do not charge money and even provide beer for free. You can check out places like Skybar at Traders Hotel, Firangipani (free entry on Saturday), Zeta Bar at Hilton KL (free entry every day).
Also Read: How to apply Malaysia Visa online
Places to Visit in Malaysia on a Budget
One of the most popular spots in Malaysia and a great place to chill for a few days. The peaceful island of Langkawi sits upon an ancient Limestone shelf and is home to South East Asia’s largest eagle population. If you’re exploring Malaysia on a budget and looking to head away from the party beaches, then you should definitely visit Langkawi for some great treks, snorkeling and scuba diving.
Cenang Beach in Langkawi is the place to witness some action with plenty of jet skiing and other water sport options, but the beach is usually crowded, to see the real Langkawi hire a motorbike and hit the roads for a day of exploring.
Once a major trading hub for ships and majorly occupied by Europeans, Penang has kept much of its colonial heritage intact and is an incredible place to visit.
Hire a bike for cheap, which will not cost you much and explore the Georgetown and its legendary street art. Get lost in the beautiful colonial streets, passing through the vibrant Little India and witnessing the amazing street art around the city. There’s so much to do in Penang, and your Travel Expert will help you in planning your trip.
On your visit to Penang, you cannot miss the Kek Lok Si Temple or ‘Temple of Ultimate Happiness’. The beautiful Buddhist temple faces the sea and overlooks the ever-growing city of new and old Penang. We know you’re on a budget trip to Malaysia and would like to save wherever you can but here we recommend, if your budget allows then hire a guide at the car park for relatively cheap. The guide will tell you about the glorious history behind each of the 10,000 carved symbols.
If this doesn’t convince you to book your Malaysia visa, then the place also has one of the biggest statues – standing at 99ft, Kuan Yin, the Goddess of Mercy. Try visiting the temple during Chinese New Year and witness the temple decorated with thousands of lanterns for 30 days. The sight will definitely give you goosebumps.
Cameron Highlands is a new backpacker area and a perfect place for someone exploring Malaysia on a budget. Cameron Highlands are breathtakingly beautiful and should definitely be on your list while planning Malaysia on a budget. Catch the gorgeous scenery, cascading tea plantations and misty cloud forest while you hit the roads Cameron Highlands, away from the city life. Sample the leaves, take a stroll around the plantations and learn about the tea making process.
Hop on to a bus ride from Kuala Lumpur and within hardly 3 hour you will reach the town of Melaka. This small town of Melaka has a strange obsession with Hello Kitty. Once the city was tourist first choice before Kuala Lumpur developed, but now it is more of a sleepy backpacker town. Melaka is a cheap place to hang out, which makes it a perfect place for people travelling to Malaysia on a budget.
Where to Eat?
When in Malaysia, do as the locals do – gorge at food courts or try the delectable street food! In Kuala Lumpur, you can go for a complete meal, including a dessert and a drink, for under RM15. And, in places like Ipoh or Penang, you can have a mini feast for the same amount. Though, it’s not a fine dining, but surely going to be kind to your purse.
So what are you waiting for? With such a handy detailed guide on travelling Malaysia on a budget, pack those bags and go on that vacation that you’ve been pushing forward because of your low budget.