Being neighbours with Malaysia means that there's always time for a quick weekend getaway, especially for serious foodies. If you've gone to destinations like Johor Bahru and Kuala Lumpur one too many times, we've got ya. Instead of the usual popular haunts, we’ve rounded up some lesser-known destinations in Malaysia. Grab your passports, cross the border, and hit the road the next time you’ve got no weekend plans.
If you want to escape Singapore’s heat, head to Cameron Highlands. Made up of a series of small towns embedded in the mountains on the north-western tip of Pahang state bordering Perak, it makes a great weekend getaway for nature lovers. The towns are littered with plantations for tea, strawberries, and other fruits and vegetables.
Cameron Highlands is a great destination for hiking. More than one-third of the Cameron Highlands is covered by thick forests, and you can find colour-coded trails in the eight surrounding mountains leading to waterfalls, vantage points, the Mossy Forest, and even Mount Brinchang.
Drive time from Singapore: 7 h 30 mins
This quaint tin mining town in Kuantan was once dubbed as the 'El Dorado' of Malaysia. Sungai Lembing used to be the biggest tin producer in Pahang, and was the site of the largest tin mine in Southeast Asia. Walk around today and you'll find nostalgic pre-war buildings, quiet streets, and the delicious local specialities this town is known for.
Drive time from Singapore: 6 h 20 mins
Head further up north and you'll hit the beautiful state of Terengganu. Tasik Kenyir (or Kenyir Lake) is Southeast Asia's largest man-made lake, spanning 260,000 hectares. It's cradled by rainforests home to an assortment of flora and fauna including rare ferns, exotic orchids, hornbills, panthers, and elephants. Yes, you read that right. Accommodation varies from three-star resorts to chalets and floating houseboats.
Drive time from Singapore: 7 h 58 mins
Closer to home is Malacca, which barely needs an introduction. The historic city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site rich with heritage buildings, ancient landmarks, and colonial structures. It's famed for its local cuisine such as chicken rice balls, cendol, nyonya assam laksa, and various Kristang dishes. Spend a weekend exploring charming Peranakan shophouses, old churches, and the popular Jonker Street Night Market.
Drive time from Singapore: 3 h 56 mins
The royal town of Kuala Kangsar is rich in history and architectural wonders. A highlight here is the majestic gilt-domed Ubudiah Mosque constructed between 1913 and 1917. While you're there, visit the Sultan Azlan Shah Gallery, housed in a two-storey palace complex that used to be the residence of the Sultans of Perak. Additionally, traditional crafts such as keris-making and pottery-making are still thriving in this town.
Drive time from Singapore: 7 h 7 mins