• Ronit Tal Shaltiel

20 interesting facts about Malaysia

Updated: Sep 30, 2020

1. The name Malaysia may derive from the word Melayu, or Malay, that could come from the Sungai Melayu (Melayu River) in Sumatra. The river’s name is derived from the Dravidian (Tamil) word malai, or “hill.”


Kuala Lumpur is home to the Petronas Towers - the twin architectural titans which, together, were ranked as the world's tallest building between 1998 and 2004.

3. Malaysia is home to some 31 million people, but only half of them are Malay. There are Chinese and Indian swirls to this ethnic diversity- as well as indigenous tribal groups, particularly on Borneo.

4. Malaysia's most famous plant is the Rafflesia flower. With a bloom that can extend more than a yard in diameter, the Rafflesia is the largest flower in the world.

5. Malaysia has a total of 878 islands.

6. The largest cave chamber in the world by area is the Sarawak Chamber in Gunung Mulu National Park in Malaysia’s Sarawak.

7. Malaysia’s Kinabalu National Park is home to the parasitic Rafflesia arnoldii or corpse flower. It totally embeds itself into the host plant and the only part that is visible is the flower.

8. In Malaysia, it is generally considered rude to point at people or things with the index finger. A bent index finger or thumb is used to point—or, rather, to knuckle—in the right direction.

9. Malaysia is the only country that includes territory both on the mainland of Southeast Asia and in the islands that stretch between the Asian continental mass and Oceania.

10. Malaysia has its own species of a stripey orange big cat, the Malayan Tiger – which is found on the Malay Peninsula. It is slightly smaller than its Indian cousin, but there have been sightings in states such as Kelantan, Pahang and Johor.

11. Some buildings in Malaysia do not have the fourth floor. They are replaced by “3A” as the sound of four (sì) is similar to the sound of death in Chinese.

12. According to the World Tourism Organization (WTO), Malaysia has developed into the ninth most visited country in the world.

13. The history of Malaysia has been recorded in Seharah Melayu (The Malay Annals). It begins with Alexander the Great, who is said to be the ancestor of Malay royalty Borneo is actually the third largest island in the world, after Greenland and New Guinea.

15.  Malaysia is the only country in the world to have actually won the war against Communism.

16. . The tallest mountain in Southeast Asia is Mount Kinabalu, located in a state called Sabah.

17. There is countless traditional food from the country, and amongst each traditional food.

18. Bario in Sarawak’s Kelabit Highlands is the most isolated settlement in Malaysia, there are no roads in this part of the world and everything has to be transported in and out by airplane.

19. Malaysian elections are not scheduled for a particular day, and it's anyone's guess exactly when the next one will occur. Malaysia's constitution mandates a federal election be held at least once every five years, But the prime minister can force an early election.

20. Penang Island is the longest bridge in Malaysia and Southeast Asia. The full length of the bridge is approx 15 miles.

Source: Wikipedia, images Pixabay

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