The one misconception that people often have is travelling needs a lot of money. Budget travelling is the way to go for most people — especially students or those who are on a tight budget. You may want to consider domestic trips to significantly cut down on the expenses. Still can’t believe that you can travel in Malaysia at a low cost? Here are our tips to enjoy your trip on a tight budget without skimping on the memories cherished!
1. Kuala Lumpur City Tour
Have you ever wandered off and explored the metropolitan city Kuala Lumpur? It’s time to discover KL like a foreign tourist! I bet many of you have never tried to get on board the Hop-On Hop-Off bus city tour that covers over 70 attractions for just RM 25.00 per day. Believe me, it is going to be fun! You can also hop onto the free Go KL City Bus that covers the primary business and tourist routes in Central Business District in Kuala Lumpur. If you mind getting stuck in the traffic, you can hit the railways; either on the KL LRT, KL Monorail or KL MRT starting from RM 1.00, depending on your destinations. The bright side of KL is the many options of hotel or hostels for different budget. Most of them are located right smack in the city centre, within walking distance from many attractions.
Kuala Lumpur offers lots of free things to do such a visit to the Merdeka Square and the historical Sultan Abdul Samad building. Meanwhile, a visit to the National Museum will only cost you RM 2.00 per person. Learn about the history of Kuala Lumpur and Malaysia at the KL City Gallery with just RM 5.00. If you prefer having a guided tour, you can join the free Heritage Walk tour, introduced by the KL City Gallery.
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2. Penang Food Tour
Good news for the foodies! Penang is not only one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Malaysia, but also the haven of food at affordable prices. Travel for free in George Town by taking the Central Area Transit shuttle bus that covers numerous points of interests around the city of George Town. You will be glad to know that hawker stalls are primarily scattered around George Town. Along the streets, there are plenty of stalls selling favourite local snacks such as rojak and cendol. They are certainly pocket-friendly, ranging between RM 3.00 – RM 8.00 per meal. Well, sometimes you can even get them cheaper if you are lucky!
Some of the famous places where you can easily find cheap street foods are the Gurney Drive and the Chinatown — both located in George Town city. Have a taste of the hearty local food such as the Hokkien Mee, Assam Laksa and Nasi Kandar. Consider staying in George Town area as it will be easier for you to catch the free shuttle bus without having to spend extra money to reach George Town.
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Beach bummers will definitely love this! Langkawi Island is home to several white sandy beaches with varieties of activities to keep you busy all day long. Some of the famous beaches frequented by tourists are the Pantai Cenang Beach, Pantai Tengah Beach, Tanjung Rhu Beach and Pantai Kok Beach. Once you get tired of the beaches, you can visit the Dataran Square, take a stroll at the Lagenda Park or recharge yourself at the Telaga Tujuh Waterfall.
There are ways to limit your expenses there while keeping the fun during your trip to the island. Many people recommended renting a car on the island, as it is much cheaper than hailing a cab. The island is not that large either, so it’s less likely you’ll get lost. For those without a driving license, renting a bicycle or a motorcycle is another way to enjoy the island. Langkawi also offers excellent yet affordable hotels/hostels with gorgeous coastal views, making your vacation perfect.
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4. Historical city of Melaka
Melaka is a captivating city especially for history buffs! The city centre itself is rich with outstanding architecture. The buildings were uniquely influenced by the Dutch before Malaysia gained its independence. Named as one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Melaka has plenty of attractions that are within walking distance from each other. Most of its hostels and hotels are also located in the centre of the city, shortening your walking trip.
While not the cheapest, food is still affordable in Melaka. A hearty meal along the street will cost you around RM 4.00 – RM 6.00. Good news is, Melaka is full of free things to do, ensuring a great vacation for budget travellers. You can always enjoy your own do-it-yourselves free tour in the city’s historic districts. Just make sure to include some of the well-known attractions such as the Dutch Square, the Christ Church and the Stadhuys. Stroll along the Melaka River, best enjoyed preferably at dusk while having a drink at one of the restaurants along the river. Another must-do is climbing the St. Paul Church and not to forget, visiting the nearby A’ Famosa Fort. Do not miss the exciting night market at Jonker Walk on the weekend where you can shop for antique items at good prices.
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5. Ipoh Old Town city tour
Ipoh old town may not be as big as Kuala Lumpur, but we recommend you to rent a car. That will save you from the headache of waiting for public transportation. Some attractions are quite far from the city, so hailing a cab can cost you more. Ipoh is getting famous these days, and some even dubbed the city as the next “Food Heaven in Malaysia” after Penang. Ipoh does have a diverse range of food at a reasonable price.
Despite being not as developed as Kuala Lumpur, Ipoh has its own charm. Spend some time enjoying the Street Art where different types of murals painted on the walls of the buildings reflecting the daily lives of the locals. These are everyone’s favourite Instagram photo spot! If you rent a car, you can visit some of the temples in the outskirts without any entrance fee including the Sam Poh Tong temple and Kek Lok Tong temple. A half day trip to the historical Kellie’s Castle, around 30 minutes drive from Ipoh, is also another thing not to be missed.
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There you go! Malaysia has lots of interesting places to visit without having to rob the bank. All you need to do is to plan your trip well and get ready for your next adventure!