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From Malaysia
City Meets Country

Adventures in Malaysia
By André Gayot

Fewer destinations in Asia are as culturally and ecologically diverse as Malaysia. A visit to the country might put you in the midst of a Hindu festival at the Batu Caves in the cosmopolitan capital city of Kuala Lumpur or bring you up close and personal with elephants, tigers and leopards in Taman Negara National Park. Malaysia has been influenced by numerous cultures—Portugal, Holland, England, India and China—whose traditions have merged in exciting ways, as you can see in the British-colonial Georgetown district of Penang, which is inhabited by a lively Chinese population. Every corner of the country offers something unique. KL, as Kuala Lumpur is commonly called, boasts fine dining, nightlife and shopping to rival Singapore and Hong Kong. The Cameron Highlands are home to tea plantations, while Negeri Sembilan displays excellent examples of traditional houses built free of nails. For adventurers, Sarawak and Sabah—east of Peninsular Malaysia on the island of Borneo—feature an Orang-Utan rehabilitation center, longhouses (once inhabited by headhunters) and spectacular diving.

(Updated: 07/02/08 HC)

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