Sapi Island in Borneo Malaysia

Best time to visit Malaysia

Month-by-month guide of when to visit.

Sapi Island

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When to go to Malaysia

Malaysia's two distinct regions, Peninsula Malaysia and East Malaysia, offer diverse landscapes. The former shares borders with Thailand, while the latter, nestled in Borneo, neighbours Indonesia and Brunei.

Malaysia enjoys a tropical climate with temperatures averaging in the low 30s°C throughout the year. It experiences two monsoon seasons: the southwest monsoon (late May to September) and the northeast monsoon (November to March).

The Cameron Highlands, cloaked in lush forests, house tea plantations and enchanting jungle trails. Elevated altitudes make this the coolest part of Malaysia, where temperatures average at about around 22ºC throughout the year, making this area ideal for tea cultivation. Rainfall is more frequent between September and December.

Kuala Lumpur, the bustling capital, showcases iconic landmarks like the Petronas Towers and KL Tower, offering spellbinding vistas. Stroll through vibrant markets and admire colonial-era architecture. Weather remains favourable year-round, with occasional showers enhancing the city's charm. Whenever it rains, you can always duck into a shopping centre on underneath a market stall and wait it out (it usually passes quickly).

The southern region includes the historic city of Melaka, full of cultural wonders and culinary delights. Nearby Johor Baharu is celebrated for its fruit and oil plantations. Expect a tropical climate year-round, with drier (but still humid) periods from December to March.

Malaysia's coastal regions alternate wet seasons, ensuring beach lovers can bask in the sands all year. On the west coast, Langkawi and Penang offer pristine beaches and historical charm. The east coast, home to the Perhentian Islands and Tioman Island, experiences a monsoon season from November to February.

East Malaysia, encompassing Sabah, Sarawak, and Labuan, enjoys a sheltered location, avoiding monsoons and typhoons. Visit Mount Kinabalu, explore the Gunung Mulu National Park caves, and meet orangutans in Semengoh. The best time for wildlife and fauna exploration is from May to September, with heavier rains from October to March.

Malaysia's varied climate and landscapes ensure endless adventures for culture enthusiasts, beachcombers, and nature lovers.

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Escape the monsoon rains on the west coast by visiting the east coast islands like Perhentian and Tioman Island. Enjoy water sports, such as snorkelling and diving. Participate in Chinese New Year celebrations, marked by colourful parades and cultural events.

Pantai Cenang Beach Langkawi Malaysia


Continue exploring the east coast for water activities and pristine beaches. Attend Thaipusam, a mesmerizing Hindu festival celebrated with grand processions, in Kuala Lumpur, with warm, weather and enjoyable temperatures.

Hawker food Penang Malaysia


Explore the west coast with pleasant weather and temperatures. Occasional rain will not dampen the shopping experiences in KL! Alternatively, discover the art decorating the streets of Penang and indulge in its diverse culinary delights at the Penang International Food Festival under sunny skies.

Songkran festival pink flowers buddhism


Explore the multicultural charm of Penang during the Songkran Fest.ival, immersing yourself in water festivities On the east coast, the Perhentian Islands open up for snorkelling and diving enthusiasts. Kuala Lumpur's cultural tapestry shines during the Hari Raya celebrations, with vibrant decorations and festivities in the city.

Nature lovers can explore the lush landscapes of Taman Negara or visit the tea plantations in the Cameron Highlands. April offers a diverse mix of cultural celebrations, beach relaxation, and nature adventures in Malaysia.

Cameron Highlands Malaysia


Head to the highlands like Cameron Highlands for (relatively) cool, pleasant weather with temperatures and breathtaking floral displays at the annual Cameron Lavender Garden Festival.

The east coast's Redang Island beckons with clear waters and vibrant coral reefs, perfect for snorkelling. Explore Penang's cultural richness during the George Town Heritage Festival, immersing yourself in art and history. Langkawi's pristine beaches offer a serene escape.

Street art Tapah Penang Malaysia


On the west coast, visit the historic streets of George Town in Penang, try the local street food, and admire street art. Langkawi offers beautiful beaches, cable car rides, and island-hopping adventures. On the east coast, Tioman Island beckons with pristine beaches, snorkelling, and diving spots. Don't miss the stunning Juara Turtle Project.

Kuala Lumpur boasts the iconic Petronas Twin Towers, Batu Caves, and vibrant street markets like Jalan Alor for delicious street food.

Perhentian Island Jetty Malaysia


On the west coast, embrace cultural festivities in George Town, Penang, during the George Town Festival. Langkawi continues to charm with its beaches and duty-free shopping. Explore the east coast's Perhentian Islands for excellent diving and snorkelling. Kuala Lumpur's shopping scene, including Bukit Bintang, offers great deals during the mid-year sales.

Nature enthusiasts can venture to Taman Negara, Malaysia's oldest rainforest, for trekking and river cruises. For a cultural immersion, witness traditional dance performances and festivals across the country.

Merdeka Square Kuala Lumpur Malaysia


Langkawi's beaches remain inviting ,as do the vibrant Perhentian Islands for pristine beaches and vibrant marine life. Kuala Lumpur hosts the Merdeka Day celebration, showcasing the nation's independence with parades and events.

Trek through the lush Cameron Highlands for a stimulating adventure.

Mt Kinabalu Malaysia


Nature enthusiasts can venture to Kinabalu Park in Borneo for trekking amidst stunning biodiversity.

Celebrate the Mooncake Festival in Penang, enjoying lantern-lit streets and traditional performances. Similarly, Kuala Lumpur comes alive during the Mid-Autumn Festival, showcasing vibrant lantern displays.

Batu caves Selangor Malaysia min


The west coast, including destinations like Penang and Langkawi, enjoys drier and sunnier conditions, making it an ideal time for beach holidays. On the east coast, you might still encounter some rain, but it's generally a good month for water activities like snorkelling and diving. In Kuala Lumpur, the capital, expect occasional rain showers and comfortable temperatures. Participate in Diwali, the Festival of Lights, celebrated by the Indian community.

Tioman Island Malaysia


In November, Malaysia experiences a tropical climate with varying conditions across the country. On the west coast, places like Penang and Langkawi typically enjoy drier and sunnier weather, making it an excellent time for beach getaways. The east coast, including places like Tioman Island, may have more rainfall, but it's still a good time for diving and snorkelling. In Kuala Lumpur, the capital, expect occasional rain showers and cooler temperatures.

Malacca Melaka Malaysia River


December marks the beginning of the Northeast Monsoon season in Malaysia. On the west coast, which includes places like Penang and Langkawi, you can expect heavy rainfall and rough seas, making it less favorable for beach activities. The east coast, on the other hand, experiences drier and sunnier weather, so destinations like Tioman Island become popular for water sports and relaxation. In Kuala Lumpur, you can anticipate occasional rain showers and cooler temperatures. December is a time of contrast, with the east coast offering better weather for outdoor activities while the west coast experiences more precipitation.

Chat to a Malaysia expert.

Start planning your Malaysia holiday today.

  • Alistair


    Managing Director

Call an expert on

01768 603 715

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