Malaysia easily has some of the worlds most beautiful islands. On the coast of the peninsula, off the coast of Borneo, and indeed, part of the large island of Borneo is Malaysian territory.
If you want to relax and enjoy lovely beaches, traditional cuisine, local culture, and a variety of water sports, here are seven of the most relaxing Malaysian islands to inspire you!
The Perhentian Islands are located off the coast of the north eastern part of the Malay peninsula. There are a couple of different islands within the group, each offering a combination of relaxation and fun activities. It is easy to hop between the islands by boat if you fancy a change of scenery.
The most laid back of the islands is Pulau Perhentian Besar. Explore the pretty island, laze on the soft white sandy beaches, admire a variety of aquatic creatures with a snorkeling or diving trip, laze in a hammock with a good book or simply soaking up the sun and the atmosphere, and generally enjoy a totally blissful time on these pretty islands.
Located off the eastern coast of Borneo’s state of Sabah, Sipadan Island is famous for its incredible diving opportunities. It is also known for its hundreds of sea turtles and white sandy shores. A protected area, it is not possible to actually stay overnight in the island.
Regular boats, however, operate from the closest town in Sabah and you could also arrange to stay on a house boat. It might be worth checking out the Viator’s scuba diving experience at the Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park on Sabah’s coast!
A great place for relaxing and taking it easy, Tioman Island is part of the Mersing Marine Park. The lush jungle and mountainous interior is excellent for those who enjoy hiking, biking, and wildlife spotting, not to mention the great views that you can admire.
The island is fringed with beautiful beaches and it is very easy to find a quieter spot where you can enjoy the feeling of having your own little slice of island paradise completely to yourself.
A large island off the eastern coast of the peninsula, Redang Island is a popular place for underwater explorations. The surrounding ocean is home to an abundance of fascinating sea creatures, and there are plenty of local companies that can help you to sort diving and snorkeling adventures.
The pristine beaches are also great for swimming and sunbathing. You can also enjoy hiking in the dense and wildlife-rich jungle.
A very popular island with tourists, Langkawi lies off the north western coast of mainland Malaysia, close to the border with Thailand. There are many facilities, amenities, and services, including accommodation to suit a wide range of budgets, and a plethora of restaurants and bars.
Take a ride on the cable car and admire the views, visit the local attraction parks, and trek in the forests. Water sports galore beckon, and the sandy beaches offer heaps of chances to take it easy in the sun!
Whilst the large island is not entirely Malaysian, with some parts belonging to Indonesia and others making up the small country of Brunei, two of Malaysia’s states can be found on Borneo – Sabah and Sarawak. Each offers lots of fantastic things for visitors to enjoy.
For example, in Sabah you can enjoy the towering jungle canopy walk at Poring Hot Springs, be awe-struck by the mighty Mount Kinabalu, take a boat ride along Lake Kinabatangan, visit the historic Sandakan, and enjoy culture, beaches, and water sports in Kota Kinabalu, amongst other places.
As you dive into the ocean you will be greeted with the sight of many colourful and interesting fish as well as other marine life. Sarawak offers a fascinating glimpse into the lives of former fearsome headhunting tribes, beautiful caves and interesting rock formations, beaches, and more.
Off the coast of the peninsula, close to the peninsular city of Marang, Kampas Island boasts delectable powdery white sand beaches. There are many gorgeous views and the diving and snorkeling in the clear waters reveals numerous interesting marine creatures.
Other great Malaysian islands for relaxation include the large and lively Penang, with its strong sense of culture and heritage, Pulau Pangkor, Pulau Mabul, and Pulau Tenggol!