Peninsular Malaysia has easy access to jungle trekking (in Taman Negara), scuba and snorkeling (in Langkawi, Tioman, and Redang), and, at certain times of the year, surfing and wakeboarding (in Cherating), but the states of Sabah and Sarawak are the true adventure seeker's dream. Both states have massive tracts of primary rainforest, unique plants and animals, and fascinating indigenous people. Sarawak claims one of the longest cave systems in the world, parts of which contain evidence of prehistoric civilizations. Sabah has the added attraction of excellent scuba in Tunku Abdul Rahman Park, Layang Layang, and Sipadan; mountain trekking at Mt. Kinabalu; and white-water rafting at certain times of the year. For the best adventure travel operators, see the recommended tour operators in "Responsible Travel," above.
Travelers who are interested in learning more about Malaysian food should contact foodies 'n' friends (www.foodiesnfriends.com.my) for tours within KL and around the country, as well as master classes, workshops, and even cooking classes for children. One of the best places to learn about the intricacies of Malay cooking is with Shukri Shafie, who conducts hands-on "Cook with Shuk" classes in his traditional-style wooden Malay kampung home on Langkawi island. He also operates a beachside restaurant on Langkawi called The Lighthouse (www.thelighthouse-langkawi.com).
Malaysia has been attracting medical tourists who come for quality services in a number of state-of-the-art, internationally accredited hospitals staffed by Western-trained physicians. While cost-cutting is typically the main motivation for such trips, other factors include privacy issues and holiday down-time during recuperation.
Tourism Malaysia recommends two organizations, Malaysia Healthcare (www.malaysiahealthcare.com) and MediTravel (www.meditravel.com.my), both of which can help travelers plan their medical needs, link them with specialists appropriate to their cases, and help plan all aspects of travel.
Volunteer & Working Trips
The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF-Malaysia, previously the World Wildlife Fund; tel. 03/7803-3772; fax 03/7803-5157; www.wwf.org.my) can provide assistance to those who are seeking to volunteer or take up an internship in Malaysia, or at least direct potential visitors to organizations or locations where this could be possible. Resumes should be forwarded directly to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.