[Updated 11 Mar 2022]
Malaysia has its fair share of amazing honeymoon places, which is perfect for couples who don't have the time (or budget since weddings are expensive after all) to travel to far-flung places. If you want to stay inspired while staying safe in the comfort of your home, we've come up with a list of the best honeymoon places in Malaysia for the newly-minted husband and wife looking for a post-wedding getaway when the situation gets better.
1. Pangkor Island, Perak
Known for a laid-back vibe and beaches, Pangkor Island is one of the best places for honeymoon in Malaysia. Situated off the coast of Perak that's sheltered by Indonesia, this island is less affected by weather as compared to islands on the east coast such as Perhentian and Tioman islands, which are inaccessible during the monsoon season.
Besides relaxing in the resort, snorkelling and diving, there are many fun things to do in Pangkor Island. Visit the 17th-century Dutch Fort where Dutch colonialists used it to store tin ore or go for a trek on Pangkor Hill for some lush jungle views. Stop by Sunset View Chalet for a beautiful sight of hornbills! These wild hornbills live on the island and show up at this resort daily around 6 PM to 6.30 PM, where guests can help feed them food. The owner of the place has been feeding the birds for over 13 years and they now come to him on instinct for their evening snack. And best of all, it's free of charge!
Another great thing about Pangkor Island is the quietness and remoteness that retain its natural beauty. Visitors can only predominantly get there by ferry from Lumut, and while the island has roads circulating around it, public transport is scarce. There are also many beach resorts in Pangkor Island, ranging from rustic guesthouses to ultra-luxurious resorts, so there's definitely something to suit every budget!
#HHWT Tip: Since Pangkor is a popular destination for locals, it's best to avoid visiting during the school holiday periods!
2. Kota Kinabalu, Sabah
Kota Kinabalu is one of the best honeymoon places in Malaysia! Whether you and your spouse are starting off married life by climbing Mount Kinabalu or enjoying a relaxing beach getaway, the capital city of Sabah is perfect. The majestic Mount Kinabalu will easily set the scene for your romantic trip. Even if you're not planning to climb it, it's worth visiting Kinabalu National Park to admire breathtaking views of the highest mountain in Malaysia!
#HHWT Tip: Kinabalu Park is about two hours away from the city centre. Renting a car and self-driving is the most flexible way to get there. Alternatively, you can take a minivan from Jalan Padang, or opt for a day tour with local tour operators.
There are also other things to do in Kota Kinabalu, from snorkelling in the waters of the Tunku Abdul Rahman marine park to eating fresh seafood. You and your spouse can also take a day trip to Kundasang, often called the New Zealand of Sabah, and spend the day marvelling at the awesome views and visiting Desa Dairy Farm. Check out our 4D3N Kota Kinabalu itinerary (including a day trip to Kundasang) for a better idea of what you can do during your trip!
Kota Kinabalu is also a popular tourist destination for Malaysia, so you'll be spoilt for choice in terms of accommodation. From modest hostels to the beachside luxury hotels (like the popular Shangri-La's Rasa Ria Resort & Spa or Sutera Habour Resort), you're bound to find the perfect hotel.
3. Langkawi, Kedah
Any list of honeymoon destinations in Malaysia would be incomplete without everyone's favourite island, Langkawi! Situated in Kedah, it's an evergreen travel destination for Malaysia, and rightly so! The combination of beautiful beaches, lush greenery and scenic attractions make it a much-loved romantic escape for those in Kuala Lumpur, Singapore and other surrounding areas.
Langkawi may be a collection of islands, but you'll be surprised at the variety of hotels, resorts, homestays and guest houses available, many of which are perfect for a honeymoon. Whether you go for the ultra-luxurious beachside resorts (think The Datai or The Andaman) or a cosy traditional-style house in the middle of paddy fields, find it all from our list of breathtaking resorts in Langkawi.
For the best things to do in Langkawi during your honeymoon, you'll be spoilt for choice. Visit the iconic Langkawi Cable Car and Sky Bridge, walk around the bustling Pantai Cenang or head to the Kilim Karst Geoforest Park for a mangrove tour. There are also other new attractions in Langkawi - head to Splash Out (Langkawi's first-ever water park) for some fun in the sun, or go tandem skydiving in Langkawi! Don't forget to check out delicious Muslim-friendly food in Langkawi.
4. Sipadan-Mabul Islands, Sabah
Looking for a romantic island retreat that's off the beaten path? Head to the Sipadan-Mabul Islands located off the coast of Semporna in Sabah! Known for some of the most beautiful diving spots in Malaysia, these two islands are perfect for couples who enjoy water activities.
#HHWT Tip: To get to Mabul or Sipadan Islands, travellers usually fly into Tawau, and your resort should have arranged a transfer for you to Semporna (90 minutes by car). From Semporna, you'll need to take another boat to the islands (45 - 60 minutes)
You can choose to stay at either island or both! For Mabul, Mabul Water Bungalows has become a popular place to stay for honeymooners. For Sipadan, check out the Sipadan-Kapalai Resort! Either way, you'll be staying in overwater chalets surrounded by some of the clearest, prettiest waters you'll ever see.
#HHWT Tip: Do note that beginning 2020, Sipadan will be closed every December, as part of the efforts to maintain the health of the reef and the marine environment.
5. Cameron Highlands, Pahang
Cameron Highlands may be known for its chillier climate and tea plantations, but it's also one of the best places for honeymoon in Malaysia! Just a 3-hour drive from Kuala Lumpur, there's plenty to charm and help up the romantic factor - especially when you stay at places like the Cameron Highlands Resort!
This colonial-style accommodation offers upscale and chic comfort in the highlands. It's the perfect place to unwind with your other half as you indulge in the spa facilities, explore the scenic colonial grounds, or enjoy high tea in the elegant Jim Thompson Tea Room.
Even if you don't stay at Cameron Highlands Resort, you'll still have a wonderful time in this chilly area of Pahang. Visit the BOH Tea Plantations, pick strawberries at the local farms, pet a fluffy Merino sheep at The Sheep Sanctuary and more fun things to do in Cameron Highlands.
6. Perhentian Island, Terengganu
Situated in Terengganu, Perhentian Island has been raved about for its beautiful beaches and amazing diving spots, with the added factor of being inaccessible during the monsoon months from November to March, meaning you can only visit this unique destination for about half the year! So what better place to have an awesome beach getaway in Malaysia, assuming your honeymoon coincides during the fair-weather period.
Travellers to Perhentian Island typically visit the two main islands, Pulau Besar and Pulau Kecil. Accommodation is available on both islands across a variety of budgets. Interestingly, there are no large-scale or chain hotels on the island, so your accommodation will be more in the realm of smaller boutique resorts, ranging from the rustic and more bare-bones kind to those with fuller amenities. But not to worry, the incredible beaches and the scenery will make your honeymoon an awesome one.
#HHWT Tip: From things to do and where to stay, check out this ultimate guide to Perhentian Island!
Penang may not be the first place you think of when it comes to honeymoon destinations in Malaysia, but for the couple that loves exploring a town and appreciates cultural and heritage sites, this place is perfect! Even if you're a repeat visitor to Penang, there are always ways to jazz up your trip to see Penang in a new light.
The biggest factor that would take your Penang trip up to honeymoon status would be where you stay. While Batu Feringgi is a popular area for honeymooners thanks to the stretch of beachfront resorts, you should consider some of the beautiful boutique hotels in Penang! Not only would it make for a unique stay, but it's also an Instagram-worthy one.
For a super swanky stay in the city, there's the upscale Eastern & Oriental Hotel for colonial and vintage vibes or The Edison George Town that offers a similar experience for a (slightly!) cheaper price.
8. Redang Island, Terengganu
Continuing on our island escapes is none other than the very popular Redang Island. Located off the coast of Terengganu, it has grown to be one of the best beach destinations in Malaysia.
You'll find the same beautiful waters of the South China Sea to wake up to, but Redang is also more developed than the neighbouring islands. There's also a good mix of budget and luxurious resorts in Redang Island.
9. Tioman Island, Pahang
We would be hard-pressed not to include Tioman Island on this list of best places for honeymoon in Malaysia. It's another popular honeymoon island destination and for good reason! Located off the coast of Pahang, Tioman boasts some pretty beaches. Apart from diving and snorkelling, you can go also go for hikes, bike around sections of the island or even go surfing on Juara Beach!
Take your pick of the various resorts, chalets, and other accommodations available on the island. From the upscale JapaMala Resort to the popular Barat Tioman Beach Resort, you'll have plenty to choose from.
10. Mulu, Sarawak
Our last destination on this list is a wildcard. But for the couple that's looking for something unique and different than the average spots, you can try Mulu! Prepare to bask in the beauty of Borneo as you explore this area in Sarawak that's filled with incredible natural scenery.
Many travellers visit Mulu primarily explore Gunung Mulu National Park, a protected rainforest area that's famous for its caves and limestone cliffs, especially The Pinnacles (fun fact: The Pinnacles are printed on the back of the RM100 note!).
However, to get there is no easy feat. It requires a 3-day trip and getting a guide is recommended to help you get there. If you and your partner are up for the challenge, it'd be amazing to have this experience to commemorate your honeymoon! For those who don't feel like doing the hike, Mulu National Park is still an incredible place to visit - see the four famous caves (Deer, Clearwater, Racer and Lagang) and hike around the lush flora and fauna.
For something extra special and romantic, why not upgrade your stay to Mulu Marriott Resort & Spa? This five-star resort is equipped with the finest service and amenities, and it'll surely be an unforgettable experience!
Whether you want an island escape, a city retreat, or explore somewhere new, these are some of the best places for honeymoon in Malaysia! Take advantage of the gems right in our backyard and have a fantastic honeymoon.