Nature & Parks Sightseeing beaches Malaysia

12 Best Beaches In Malaysia For The Ultimate Beach Vacation - Updated 2020

best beaches in malaysia

Malaysia is a nation located in the equatorial region. Owing to this, it is blessed with some of the best beaches, some popular and often visited by tourists and some literally untouched beauties. Find out about the best beaches in Malaysia in this article!

1. Mabul Island Beach, Sabah

Mabul Island
Source: Pixabay

Mabul Island Beach is located in the south-east side of Malaysia on the island of Sipadan in the state of Sabah. It is said to be one of the best diving destinations in the world, quite popular among locals and international divers as a muck diving spot. To reach this island you need to take a flight to Tawau and then take an hour long taxi ride to Semporna. From here you can take a speed boat ride to the island. You can book yourselves a chalet to stay in; it’s a really beautiful experience to stay in one.

Mabul Island Beach

Address: Sipadan Island, Sabah

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2. Layang-Layang Island Beach, Labuah

Layang-Layang diving28
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user matthew lee used under CC BY 2.0

Layang-Layang is another island off the coast of the federal territory of Labuan in East Malaysia, located off the northwestern coast of Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. It might seem that you are in the middle of nowhere! There is pretty much nothing to do here (other than diving, snorkeling or some bird watching maybe) on this island apart from the dive resort and the runway, a Malaysian Naval Station is situated on the other end of the island opposite the Resort which acts as an observation and training ground for the Royal Malaysian Navy. A big part of the island is said to have been reclaimed from the sea so there isn’t much of a beach on it either.

You can get here by chartered flight operated by MAS Wings. This island is situated in very deep waters. Its location is practically in the middle of nowhere and the ocean waters are very clear and unpolluted; untouched by humans! Very similar to the more popular Sipadan Island, except that this island is too far for any fisherman boat to pass by. You will also note that aquatic life is abundant and the corals are in pristine condition.

Layang-Layang Beach

Address: Layang Layang Beach, 87000, Labuan Federal Territory

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Malaysia and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Malaysia

3. Juara Beach, Tioman Island (from USD 970.0)

This beach is located on Tioman Island, off the coast of the state of Johor. You can reach this beach by ferry from Mersing, it takes about 5 hours from Kuala Lumpur or Singapore to reach Mersing by road. After arriving to Mersing or Tanguk Gemok (ferry jetty), you must take the ferry ride that lasts about 3 hours to get to one of Tioman’s jetties. From there take a local taxi to get to Juara Beach. Seems like a pretty long journey but you are going to see a piece of heaven! All the struggle will be totally worth what you will experience in Tioman.

Tip: When at Tioman Island, one thing to take care of are the sand flies. Either cover yourselves completely or use insect repellant, you do not want those pesky sand flies to spoil your holiday!

Juara Beach

Address: East Coast of Tioman Ialsnd, Mersing, Johor (see map)

Here are the best accommodations near Juara Beach:

Juara Mutiara Resort

Permata Beach Chalet

Private Tour: Tioman Island Reef Snorkel and Fireflies Day Trip from Singapore

Duration: 1 day

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4. Perhentian Kecil Island Beach, Terengganu

Perhentian Island is a beautiful destination for people looking for an island getaway in Peninsular Malaysia. The island offers clear blue waters and sandy beaches. You have the Perhentian Besar (big) and the Perhentian Kecil (small) islands. The former is slightly more crowded than the latter. There are a lot of smaller beaches in Perhentian Kecil Island, the Long Beach is more popular among tourists. You can snorkel, visit Turtle Bay, and Shark Point. To reach this island, the fastest and easiest way is to fly to Kota Bharu and take a taxi from the airport to the Kuala Besut Jetty (roughly a 45 minute journey). From the jetty, take the ferry to reach the island.

Perhentian Kecil Island Beach, Terengganu

Address: Pulau Perhentian Kecil, Kuala Besut, Terengganu (see map)

Stay close to Perhentian Kecil Island Beach and book a stay at one of the following accommodations:

BuBu Villa

Alunan Resort

Redang Island Snorkeling Experience

Duration: 8 Hrs Duration

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Malaysia and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Malaysia

5. Rawa Island Beach, Johor

Pulau Rawa
Source: Photo by Flickr user Mohd Fazlin Mohd ... used under CC BY 2.0

Rawa Island or Pulau Rawa is about 4 hours and 30 mins drive from Kuala Lumpur. You will arrive at Mersing Jetty and take the 30 minute ferry ride to reach Rawa Island. The island is located inside the archipelago of Sultan Iskandar Marine Park. One of the most popular attractions of Rawa Island is its slides! You can’t find them anywhere else in the country! It’s the typical idyllic tropical island for you to relax well! You can snorkel, scuba-dive, do hobby cat sailing, and kayaking.

Rawa Island Beach, Johor

Address: Pulau Rawa, Johor

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6. Redang Beach near Taaras Resort, Redang (from USD 226)

Redang is a gem located on the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia. It is very popular among locals for its crystal clear waters, white sandy beaches and an amazing aquatic life. Snorkeling and scuba diving are activities you definitely must do when you are in Redang. The whole experience of a beach holiday is very gratifying and makes you very relaxed. The beach at Taaras Resort is absolutely a treasure and a part of it is open to the general public and referred to as Pantai Awam.

Redang Beach, Redang Island, Terengganu

Address: Pulau Redang, 20928 Redang Island

Redang, Lang Tengah, and Bidong Islands Snorkeling Experience

Duration: 9 Hrs Duration

5 reviews

The Taaras Beach & Spa Resort

Address: C-O Lot GL-04 Lapangan Terbang Sultan Mahmud
Price: from 226 USD

Fire extinguishers Spa and wellness centre Free WiFi Currency exchange Trouser press Beachfront Luggage storage Live sport events (broadcast)

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Malaysia and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Malaysia

7. Coral Beach, Pangkor (from USD 42)

To get to Pangkor Island you can take a bus to Lumut from where you will have to take a 30-minute boat ride to the island. You could also fly into Ipoh and take a bus from there. Coral Beach is said to be one of the best beaches on the west coast of Peninsular Malaysia. With clear emerald-green water, and a bleached sandy beach. The Coral Beach is one of the most serene beaches you can find on the island, one that will surely take your breath away. This is said to be an ideal beach for newly-weds for its romantic and almost empty beaches, lots of privacy eh!

Coral Beach, Pangkor

Address: Coral Beach, 32300, Perak

The closest and best accommodation near Coral Beach is Anjungan Beach Resort. Book a room now for a trip of a lifetime!

Anjungan Beach Resort

Address: 6610 Nipah Bay
Price: from 42 USD

Canoeing Free WiFi Meeting/banquet facilities Garden Swimming pool Linens, towels and laundry washed in accordance with local authority guidelines Restaurant Hand sanitizer in guest accommodation and key areas

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Malaysia and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Malaysia

8. Gaya Island Beach, Kota Kinabalu (from USD 61.0)

Gaya Island or Pulau Gaya in Malay is a sizeable Malaysian island located just 10 minutes off Kota Kinabalu, the capital of the East Malaysia state of Sabah. The island is a part of the Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park. It is the biggest island of the National Park closest to downtown Kota Kinabalu. It is covered with dense virgin, tropical forest. To reach this island, you can take a speed boat from the Kota Kinabalu jetty point.

Gaya Island Beach

Address: Kota Kinabalu, Sabah (see map)

There are several accommodations located on Gaya Island, here’s our pick of the best three:

Bunga Raya Island Resort & Spa

Gaya Island Resort

Gayana Marine Resort

Gaya Island Hiking with Lunch on Sapi Island

Duration: 7 Hrs Duration

1 review

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Malaysia and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Malaysia

9. Golden Beach, Sarawak (from USD 57)

The Golden Beach is located in Kuching, Sarawak. You will be very pleased to see the breathtaking views of the South China Sea, a lovely alternative to those living in an urban setting. You can also find that this is one of the beaches where turtles lay their eggs so it is sometimes referred to as the Turtle Beach. This beach is a part of the Similajau National Park.

Golden Beach, Sarawak

Address: Similajau, 97000 Bintulu, Sarawak

Website: Golden Beach

If you’re looking to stay close to Golden Beach, look no further than Samalaju Resort Hotel.

Samalaju Resort Hotel

Address: Lot 132, Block 1, Kemena Land District Samalaju Industrial Park, Bintulu
Price: from 57 USD

Designated smoking area On-site parking BBQ facilities Express check-in/check-out Meeting/banquet facilities Breakfast in the room Facilities for disabled guests Room service

Bako National Park Day Tour

Duration: 6 Hrs 30 Min Duration

35 reviews

10. Dive into the bright blue abyss at Pulau Kapas

Pulau Kapas, Malaysia
Source: Photo by Flickr user Dave Anderson used under CC BY 2.0

Pulau Kapas is one of Malaysia’s most celebrated beaches for its vast marine diversity. Despite the climate crisis making it difficult to steer trash off the oceans, Pulau Kapas still manages to preserve its beautiful fish, turtles, coral, and even a few sharks here and there. This hidden gem is a great place for water adventurers who can do all the water sports imaginable in the aquamarine blue waters. Travelers and tourists will enjoy scuba diving and snorkeling to name a few. Those who wish to sail around can take a day trip to Gem Island via online booking where some boats row you to the nearby island to discover more of Pulau Kapas’ finest blue waters.

Pulau Kapas

Address: Kapas Island, Pulau Kapas, Terengganu, Malaysia

Opening hours: 24 hours, Sun to Mon

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11. Explore the nightlife at Pantai Cenang (from USD 82.0)

This part of Malaysia’s waterworks is one of the most visited and beloved by travelers and tourists. Located in a central area where the best dining and drinking establishments are found, Pantai Cenang is the place to be if you like lounging by the stunning white sand beach and exploring the beach nightlife. Enjoy the breathtaking sunsets with a mango daiquiri at hand and check this off your travel bucket list. Pantai Cenang’s blue waters are best for swimming and sunbathing. Take a look at the local cafes and restaurants, souvenir shops and duty-free outlets before leaving this scenic paradise; truly one of the books when in Malaysia.

Pantai Cenang

Address: Pantai Cenang 07000, Kedah, Malaysia

Website: Pantai Cenang

Nature Tour EcoRide Half Day with Twizy Electric Car: Pantai Cenang <-> Sky Cab

Duration: 240 to 270 minutes

1 review

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Malaysia and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Malaysia

12. Tanjung Rhu, Langkawi (from USD 65)

Tanjung Rhu Beach in Langkawi Island is another very popular beach. This beach is located near the northeast corner of Langkawi. Pantai Tanjung Rhu is pretty secluded and exclusive. There are several tourist attractions to visit around this area. The beach is famous for its crystal clear waters, white sandy beach. Many a foreign film has been shot here in these crystal clear waters. You have regular beach activities that can be done here. The public beach is lovely, the private beach which is part of the resort is even lovelier.

Tanjung Rhu, Langkawi

Address: Tanjung Rhu, Mukim Ayer Hangat Pulau, Langkawi

Book a stay at Tanjung Rhu Resort which has its own private beach and is a stone throw’s away from Tanjung Rhu Beach.

Tanjung Rhu Mangrove Tour with Lunch and Transfers in Langkawi

Duration: 4 Hrs 30 Min Duration

64 reviews

Tanjung Rhu Resort

Address: Mukim Ayer Hangat
Price: from 65 USD

Children television networks Process in place to check health of guests Shuttle service (additional charge) Live sport events (broadcast) Non-smoking rooms Spa and wellness centre Babysitting/child services Board games/puzzles

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Malaysia and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Malaysia

Visit Malaysia - a truly Asian country!

Malaysia is a beautiful place, a melting pot of cultures and equally blessed with breathtaking natural wonders. Visit Malaysia and its beaches to see it, experience it and believe it.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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