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Best time to visit Malaysia

Posted by on May 1st, 2007
Filed Under: About Malaysia, Questions

When’s the best time to visit Malaysia?

Check the 2009 Events Listings to plan your trip.

The best time to visit Malaysia is to avoid the two peak tourist seasons. The first peak tourist season falls roughly from the beginning of December to the end of January, covering the major public holidays — Christmas, New Year’s Day, Chinese New Year. Hari Raya Puasa, celebrating the end of Ramadan, shifts dates from year to year. During this season, Asian travel routes are booked solid and hotels are maxed out. Favorable deals are rare, because most of Asia takes annual leave at this time.

Try to avoid east coast destinations and Island Malaysia between November and January. Otherwise, Malaysia can be enjoyed at any time of year as the weather is generally hot, sunny and fairly uniform; it’s rare to have a day without showers and unusual to have a day without sunshine. Take light summer clothes, carry an umbrella and an extra warm sweater if visiting the hill stations.

Singapore’s school holidays occur from mid-May through to the end of June, and again during November and December, when families are likely to flock to Malaysia’s seaside resorts, particularly the budget and mid-priced properties. Persoanally if you have a flexible time schdule, this period is definitely NOT the time to visit Malaysia. I hate to say it, but I’ve heard numerous complaints about resort holidays that have become nightmares when guests have to wrestle to get to the breakfast buffet and must suffer screaming children around the pool. Malaysia’s school holidays fall about 1 or 2 weeks each during March, June, and August, then again from November through December – best time to visit Malaysia? I bet not!

The second peak season falls in the months of June, July, and August, and can last into mid-September. During this period hotels are booked solid with families from the Middle East as this is school holiday season for many of the region’s countries. After September it’s quiet again until December. Both seasons experience approximately equal tourist traffic, but in second peak season months that traffic may ebb and flow.

Climate considerations will play a factor in your consideration for the best time to visit Malaysia. If you want to visit any of the east coast resort areas, the low season is between November and March, when the monsoon tides make the water too choppy for water sports and beach activities. During this time many island resorts will close. On the west coast, the rainy season is from April through May, and again from October through November. The Northeast Monsoon arrives the beginning of November and stays until mid-March, when temperatures are slightly cooler, relatively speaking, than other times of the year. The heaviest rainfall occurs between November and January, with daily showers that sometimes last for long periods of time; at other times, it comes down in short heavy gusts and goes quickly away. Wind speeds are rarely anything more than light. The Southwest Monsoon falls between June and September.

The temperature is basically static year-round. Daily averages are between 67°F and 90°F (21°C and 32°C). Temperatures in the hill resorts get a little cooler, averaging 67°F (21°C) during the day and 50°F (10°C) at night.

During Malaysia’s official public holidays, expect government offices to be closed, as well as some shops and restaurants, depending on the ethnicity of the shop owner or restaurant owner. During Hari Raya Puasa and Chinese New Year you can expect many shop and restaurant closings. However, look out for special sales and celebrations. Also count on public parks, shopping malls, and beaches to be more crowded during public holidays, as locals will be taking advantage of their time off.

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2 Responses »

  1. Compliments, im hygenus osakwe from Nigeria in west Africa, its my pleasure writing to you to ask this this question, what will it cost me to travel to ,malaysia to fourther my Studies?
    hope to hear from you soon.

  2. hi

    thanx for putting together such a great article. I loved this site – it has been a great help for me to plan my trip to Malaysia in 2009

    – Ronin