Best Beaches in Malaysia

It’s la rentrée in France, the big return to the office after the long summer break. Depressed, as the grey Autumn weather falls, the last thing we want to do is think about work.  So what could be better than plan for your next vacation – Christmas! So here to help out my friends (many of you keep asking) are some tantalizing, exotic beach destinations in Malaysia for you to dream.  Just check Monsoon season as West Coast Malaysia is best November – February whilst East Coast Malaysia is best April – September.

Perhentian Islands

North East Terengganu of East Coast Malaysia is sublime. Pristine white sandy beaches and crystal clear blue waters that would make Leo (di Caprio) rethink twice of filming The Beach in Thailand. Seriously unrivalled diving in the region, the two islands are dotted with rustic beach huts and has become the number one destination for beach lovers and backpackers around the world. The location is so amazing you’ll forgive for the lack of luxury hotels. Just suck it up and dive into paradise.

Redang Island

Another diving hot spot in Terengganu, that’s not far from Perhentian. One of the largest and most beautiful of the east coast islands, Redang is also the most developed. Redang Archipelago is made of 9 islands that together constitute a protected marine park. With crystal clear waters and some of Malaysia’s best coral reefs, the island offers excellent diving and snorkelling.

Langkawi Island

Made up of 99 islands, Langkawi (duty free island) has now been given geopark status by UNESCO. Langkawi is the easiest to access of all the islands (40 mins direct flights from KL) with gorgeous sandy beaches. Boasting some of the most luxurious hotels, such as Four Seasons, The Datai, Westin, The Andaman, Casa del Mar etc you’ll be spoilt for choice!

Pangkor Laut Island

It’s not the main Pangkor island I’d recommend but Pangkor Laut Resort – a top notch 5star luxury hotel alone on an island. Voted as best romantic hotel, best spa, best hotel in Malaysia – Pangkor Island Resort is the ideal romantic getaway. Book for the Spa Village Villa, on stilts in the middle of the ocean and you’ll forget easily the real world. Heaven.

Tioman Islands

The largest of Malaysia’s east coast islands, Tioman is famed for its soft, sandy beaches, warm waters and coral reef. Most of the resorts are strung out on isolated bays along the western coast. Diving and snorkelling is excellent but also jungle hiking and sunbathing. Best luxury hotel is Japamala resort – to simply die for!

Rawa Island

Not far from Tioman, the privately owned island of Rawa is surrounded by sugary sands and transparent waters. There’s only one place to stay on the island but worth if you’re looking for the charming rustic feel.

Sipadan Island

Leaving the best til last, rated among the wold’s top 5 dive sites, Sipadan is fringed with white, sandy beaches. Surrounding the island is stunning coral reef teeming with over 3000 species of marine life and sightings of sharks, barracudas, turtles and manta rays are also common. Located in Sabah, Borneo in Malaysia – this is a true paradise delight.

Malaysia – truly Asia! See you soon folks.



23 thoughts on “Best Beaches in Malaysia

  1. Fantastic list! I’ve been to some but not all but now have them earmarked for the future. I’ve always said to my fellow Singaporeans that we’re very lucky to be living next door to paradise and now you’ve just confirmed that! Thank you…

  2. We just shot a drama on Perhentian last month – one forgets how gorgeous our country is – forget about Maldives, Mauritius etc., our islands are jewels. The sea is so BLUE and CLEAR…jawdropping! But of course being an East Coast person I have to say the West Coast can’t touch the East Coast sorry la…hehe. The photos here are sigh…sigh…sigh…and the best part is …they are TRUE!

  3. Less known than other tropical destinations in the world, but often more beautiful and charming! and more affordable!! who can beat that? My favorites are Perhentian, Redang and Tioman… but I still vouch for east coast islands for the sand, water, and amazing marine life… although the west coast has more 5-star resorts. As an avid diver, I still need to do Sipadan! It’s definitely on the list. Malaysia truly asia, thanks for the post 😉

  4. Hi Frog’s Princess (I’m guessing u r the latter, not the former!!) ha.. ha.. Great post. Thx for the great pics!! I blog about idyllic islands and beaches around the world, w/ an obvious focus on Asia. Let’s stay connected. Keep blogging great stuff!!
    PS: BTW r u KL-based now or Paris? Looks like u do some humanitarian work in Mal? My other blog covers these areas, as well as VolunTourism, Sustainable & Eco Tourism.
    ciao, dian
    San Diego

  5. Hi there! Wow, thank you for such a complimentary comment. We’re happy you love our blog and have checked out yours and its great. Keep up the good work!

  6. Amazing list! Just my type of places. There is nothing worse than a vacationing at a giant, sterile, cold, concrete resort with 50,000 kids running around (I like kids but not on vacation).

    Thanks so much for sharing Zatashah!

  7. I never realised we had such amazing sites just by our doorstep! We want a beach holiday but it’s December and monsoon, so Redang and Perhentian are close.

    My boyfriend dives, but I only snorkel. Which would you recommend – Sipadan, Langkawi or Tioman?

  8. Hello Ling, Sipadan is one of the best dives in the world, but December is not a good time to go either.
    Langkawi is great at this time of the year but snorkeling and diving are not so good.

  9. Hi Frog,
    Great list! I am going to spend my holiday in Malaysia in Feb. I worry about the weather. Which island would you recommend? Thanks a lot.

  10. Hi Lan,
    thanks for your message. For February, I would recommend the west coast of Malaysia: Pangkor Laut or Langkawi.
    Enjoy your holiday! Frog.

  11. Hi, I’ve been to Perhentian and I’m considering to visit Redang around April. I love Perhentian. Is Redang better than Perhentian? How about Tioman? I cant dive. Just snorkeling and looking for beatiful sceneries.

  12. Hi J.
    Thanks for your message. Hard to say – I think there’s a bit of a debate which is better between Perhentian and Redang. Redang is bigger and hotels are a bit better although both are quite backpackers. Tioman on the other hand probably comes 3rd on my list but definitely would recommend staying at the very nice boutique resort Japamala in Tioman. If I were you, I’d try somewhere new as you’ve done Perhentian… either Redang or Tioman.
    Have fun!

  13. Hi !! thanks for sharing this wonderful places. We’re planning our honeymoon and thinking of going somewhere in Asia. If will go for Malaysia which is the best you can recommend for SEPTEMBER (package/weather/activities/ambiance/service)

    Looking forward hearing your advices!!

    God bless!!


  14. Hi Lia! Thanks for your comment on our blog. I’d recommend for September to check out Sabah or Redang or Tioman for the best dives and lovely beaches. September is rainy season on the west coast of Malaysia but it should still be ok for the East coast. So check out these places: Redang, Tioman (eg Japamala Resort) or high end luxury hotel which is simply amazing Tanjung Jara in Terengganu. It depends on your budget of course, but there is something for everyone. 🙂 Another place that is also very nice in september is Bali… the dream honeymoon place. Congratulations and happy honeymoon!

  15. Great list of great beaches ! Congratulations !
    If i may add a comment on Langkawi: the nicest beach there (and possibly the nicest in Malaysia) is the Tanjung Rhu beach, where there is only one hotel is a paradise sandy bay…
    And on top of that, i got married on that beach !

Comments are closed.