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Malaysia: The Best Family Tourist Destination

July 12, 2014 Destination ASEAN No Comments Email Email

Malaysia was crowned as The Best Family Tourist Destination by renowned Lonely Planet India Travel Awards 2014 in Mumbai recently. The award is important for Malaysia as the country prides itself for being the perfect family holiday destination, offering wholesome entertainment activities for the entire family.

As there are more developments to promote family theme parks and entertainment centres, Malaysia is seen as family-friendly among tourists and locals alike. Family tour packages are also aplenty, especially for Langkawi, Penang, Kuala Lumpur, Johor, Sabah and Sarawak.

Family vacations in Malaysia generally cover a mix of culture, nature, adventure and tonnes of fun. These could include a visit to wildlife sanctuary, national or state zoo, river cruises, cycling, snorkelling and fun time at theme parks and entertainment centres.

Every family member deserves a break

For the busy parents, a vacation in Malaysia is an opportunity to spend quality time with their children. This is the time to foster good family ties and instil family values through educational tours in a fun way. Malaysia has many national parks and zoos for a fascinating family holiday. In fact, the arrival of two pandas from China in the National Zoo is a new key attraction at the zoo.

The two 8-year old giant pandas are a loan from China to Malaysia to commemorate the 40-year diplomatic relations between the two countries.

The National Zoo covers 110 acres of land and is nestled only 5 kilometres from Kuala Lumpur city. An open concept zoo with 90% of its animals kept in spacious exhibits, the National Zoo boasts over 5,000 animals, including 476 species of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fishes. Some of the attractions are the Insect Zoo, Amphibian World, Hornbill Centre, Reptile House, Malaysian Elephants, Lake Birds, Bird Aviary, Nocturnal, Australian Plains, Humboldt Penguin, Children’s World, Bear Complex, Savannah Walk, Hippopotamus, Mammal Kingdom, Tunku Abdul Rahman Aquarium, Cat Walk and the Ape Centre. Visitors can also enjoy the multi-animal show featuring sea lions, macaques and macaws daily.

Fun-filled time at theme parks

According to Manoharan Periasamy, Director of Tourism Malaysia (India), the Lonely Planet award is recognition of Malaysia’s achievements in promoting the country as a leading ASEAN family destination. “The rapid development of various theme parks and children entertainment centres in Malaysia, such as Legoland, Puteri Harbour Family Theme Park, Kidzania, and i-City, to name a few, is a testament to the fact.”

Legoland Malaysia theme park, the first in Asia is located in Nusajaya, Johor. It is the sixth such parks in the world. Legoland Malaysia features over 40 interactive rides, shows and attractions, including the Miniland. Here, over 30 million Lego bricks are used in the building of world iconic landmarks, such as the Petronas Twin Towers, The Merlion Statue, Taj Mahal and others. Other attractions include Lego City, Land of Adventure, Imagination, Lego Kingdom and Lego Technic. The highest tower is the Observation Tower, aloft at 60 metres from the ground and is the third Legoland Observation Tower in the world.

Another new theme park which is a few minutes from Legoland is Puteri Harbour Theme Park. This four-storey indoor them park consists of Sanrio Hello Kitty Town, The Little Big Club and a cartoon-themed restaurant, Lat’s Place. The main attraction at the Sanrio Hello Kitty Town is the Black Wonder, an interactive experience which enables children to find Hello Kitty and Dear Daniel who were kidnapped. Family members can take a nice family shot together at the Kitty House which is home to Hello Kitty. Pose with the bedroom, living room, kitchen and other rooms.

To further thrill visitors, check out the indoor playground, Tea Cups ride and the stage featuring Hello Kitty shows and parades. Meet Hello Kitty live and take a snap shot with it and other Sanrio characters.

Next is The Little Big Club dedicated to Pingu, Barney, Bob the Builder, Angelina Ballerina and Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends. Pose with Angelina Ballerina, play at Barney’s Playhouse and meet Little Big Club characters. If that is not enough for your children, take some fun rides, such as the Windmill Ride, Colin Crane Drop Ride, Harold Helicopter ride, Bertie the Bus ride, dodgems and a Thomas train ride.

More for the family. Quality time together.

Apart from Legoland and Puteri Harbour Theme Park, another interesting destination is KidZania. This is the place where your children can realise their dreams of being grown-ups. KidZania is about real-life experience, empowering, inspiring and educating children through role-play. Children can play in replica of a real city complete with shops, streets and buildings made and run by other children. Malaysia is one of the eight nations where the award-winning KidZania theme park was established since its first set-up in Mexico in 1999. Children aged 4 to 14 can choose from 90 authentic role-playing activities, from surgeons and pilots to fashion models and hair stylists. For toddlers aged 3 and below, they can enjoy story-telling and puppet shows, games, colouring books and puzzles.

i-City is another interesting theme park to explore. It is a city of digital lights, the first lightscape tourism destination in Malaysia with state-of-the-art LED technologies. What is intriguing about i-City is the night will be transformed into a fairy wonderland of lights with formation of trees, chariots, fairies, animals from LED lights. Apart from it, Malaysia’s all-stars interactive museum is also located in i-City. Meet and capture a photo with your favourite stars, from Korean pop star – Psy, King of Rock – Elvis, King of Pop – Michael Jackson, Mr Bean to President Obama and Jackie Chan. Visitors can also check out The Trick Art Museum in i-City featuring 3-D art with Egyptian, Sea Life, Animal Kingdom themes. Each display looks different when seen from different angles. Other interesting places in i-City include the Snowalk, the biggest man-made snow wonderland with ice sculptures and rides in Malaysia and the Waterworld which features Tornado Ride and many exciting water activities.

Besides KidZania and i-City, other popular theme parks are Sunway Lagoon, Berjaya Times Square Theme Park, Desa Water Park, Asian Water Sports Village Puchong, A’Famosa Theme Park, Lost World of Tambun and more.

New water adventure park for a splashing good time.

One of the latest attractions for all families is the Wet World Wild Adventure Park. It is the first-of-its-kind open seawater adventure park in Asia reminiscent of popular American challenge game show, Wipeout. Located in Batu Ferringhi, Penang, the Wet World Wild Adventure offers a number of obstacle courses in the form of inflatable floating features in the water for visitors. These features are nearly the same with what you see on-land adventure parks, such as the rock climber, running tracks and trampoline but the difference is all of them are on the water.

With so many exciting holiday destinations, bring your family over for a fun-filled quality time together. After all, Malaysia is Lonely Planet’s choice for the Best Family Tourist Destination.

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