If you've been planning to go on a short getaway this year, we have some good news to share! Malaysia has 8 long weekends in 2023 and that means, you have many opportunities to take a break and enjoy a relaxing weekend trip. Malaysians can easily take a week off (with careful scheduling of annual leave) to balik kampung or travel overseas. Now with pandemic restrictions easing up and countries opening up again, it’s time to look at the long weekends in 2023 so you can plan your next getaway. Scroll down our list of the best destinations in Malaysia to go to during a long weekend in 2023!
1. Janda Baik
Just less than an hour's drive from Kuala Lumpur, make your way to Janda Baik for a relaxing nature retreat! Surrounded by lush tropical rainforest and serene vibes, there are many resorts, chalets and homestays in Janda Baik to spend the night, and not forgetting the halal cafes that you can chill at with your friends in between!
Check out our recommended reads below to plan a nature retreat in Janda Baik!
- 7 Stunning Resorts In Janda Baik For Your Next Getaway
- 3 Halal Cafes You Never Knew You Could Find In Janda Baik, Pahang
- 10 Secluded Nature Retreats In Pahang To Escape The Crowd
2. Kuala Lumpur
Imagine waking up to a beautiful view of KL in the morning. Recharge from all the Raya visits by having a romantic staycation with your loved one at one of these beautiful accommodations. Alternatively, why not stay at a hotel connected to one of KL's many shopping malls? It'll be the perfect leisurely way to have a holiday without having to go anywhere!
Or you could even take it a step further - instead of going from one relative's house to another, why not outsource the venue and have your Raya gathering at one of these accommodations that are perfect for large family gatherings? It'll be an awesome vacation for everyone, and the best part is, no clean-up at home!
There are many reasons why travellers would plan a road trip to Penang. From nasi kandar and asam laksa to ais tingkap and char kway teow, there's no shortage of delicious halal food in Penang. Aside from being a famous street food capital in Malaysia, there are also other attractions and Instagram-worthy spots in Penang to keep you busy.
Check out our recommended reads below to kick-start your foodie adventure in Penang!
- 8 Delicious Halal Breakfast Spots In Penang That Are Perfect For Early Risers
- Eat Your Way Through Penang At These 12 Halal Eateries
- 3D2N Muslim-Friendly Itinerary To Penang (For Foodies!)
4. East Coast islands
The islands off the coast of Terengganu and Pahang are accessible (post-monsoon season) from March to October, so now would be the perfect time for a beach vacation! Choose from popular spots like Pulau Redang, Pulau Perhentian and Pulau Tioman, or cast your net wider and look at lesser-known islands such as Lang Tengah, Pulau Kapas or Pulau Tenggol. Tailor your island destination to whatever you feel like - whether you're looking for a laid-back beach holiday by pristine waters, or you're raring to go scuba-diving to see beautiful coral, there's an island to fit your desires!
With the abundance of delicious halal food and Instagram-worthy spots, planning a road trip to Ipoh is a must-do. If you've been thinking of going on a much-needed girls' trip with your besties, there are also many Instagram-worthy accommodations in Ipoh that'll cater to your travel needs, which is amazingly convenient if you're planning to spend a few nights at this destination.
There's a reason why Langkawi is a popular destination among families and road trippers. From the lapping waves of Pantai Cenang and tropical rainforest to duty-free chocolates and delicious seafood, it's definitely one of the best destinations in Malaysia to visit for your next family vacay.
For more inspiration for your Langkawi trip, check out:
- Langkawi Food Guide: 12 Delicious Muslim-Friendly Eateries For An Awesome Trip
- 9 Private Pool Villas In Langkawi For Your Next Beach Vacay
- 14 Budget-Friendly Accommodations In Langkawi (Under RM200!)
7. Kota Kinabalu
Known as the New Zealand of Malaysia, enjoy a two-hour scenic drive from Kota Kinabalu to Kundasang, a laid-back town located in Ranau. Famous for its mesmerising mountainous landscape, the main attraction is the Desa Dairy Farm where you can spot the Friesian cattle, a breed of dairy cattle, backed by the picturesque mountain view. You won’t find scenery like this anywhere else in Malaysia!
After conquering the mountainous area of Kota Kinabalu, try paddle boarding and explore Sabah’s beach. It’s certainly a unique way to experience Kota Kinabalu! You can even snorkel and get up close and personal with aquatic animals (hello, Nemo!), coral bar or sand bar. We recommend booking the late afternoon session so you can enjoy the sunset while paddle boarding. The sunset in Kota Kinabalu is simply breathtaking!
Known as the capital city of Sarawak, Kuching is a playground of sights and sounds that are waiting to be discovered. Brimming with character and laid-back charm, it also earned the nickname, the City of Cats, thanks to its moniker which means 'cat' in Bahasa Malaysia. The best part is, Kuching is amazing if you’re looking for an affordable getaway! 🥳
One attraction in Kuching you shouldn't miss out on is the Sarawak Cultural Village. Dubbed Sarawak's only living museum, you can spend about two to three hours here to know more about Sarawak's diverse ethnic groups. Step into the Sarawak Cultural Village and you'll see replicas of buildings that represent the ethnic groups of Bidayuh, Iban, Orang Ulu, Penan, Melanau, Malay, and Chinese. In each building, you'll be greeted by ethnic group members who are ready to host various traditional activities and entertain you with a multicultural dance performance.
Adult: RM85 (approx. S$26)
Child (2 – 12 years old): RM55 (approx. S$17)
Address: Pantai Damai Santubong, Kampung Budaya Sarawak, 93752 Kuching, Sarawak
Opening hours: 9am - 5pm
To inspire your trip to Kuching, check out:
- 8 Best And Cheap Things To Do In Kuching For A Weekend Getaway
- 5 Best Hotels In Kuching For Your Future Getaways (From RM156!)
- 8 Best Halal Sarawak Food To Try And Where To Find Them In Kuching
Planning a trip to Sekinchan comes with the promise of a laid-back holiday. It may just be a small town in Sabak Bernam, Selangor, but there are many things to do in Sekinchan for Instagrammers who love travelling off the beaten path. If you're planning to take some photos other than the famous paddy fields, you're going to love exploring other locations here!
10. Cameron Highlands
Everyone loves planning a fun trip to Cameron Highlands! Situated in Pahang, this highland retreat is famous for its serene tea plantations, local fruit farms, and cool weather. If you want to make the most of your time here, we have all the travel guides you need to plan the best holiday in Cameron Highlands!
Check out our recommended reads below before driving up to Cameron Highlands!
- 10 Super Fun Things To Do In Cameron Highlands On Your Next Trip
- 8 Budget-Friendly Accommodations In Cameron Highlands (Under RM180!)
- 12 Accommodations In Cameron Highlands For A Cool Mountain Retreat
...And there you have it! These are just some of the best destinations in Malaysia you should visit during a long weekend in 2023! Whether you're planning a short trip during the Thaipusam long weekend or Agong's birthday long weekend, we hope this list will inspire you to explore the beautiful places in Malaysia!