• Officially: Federation of Malaysia
  • Capital: Kuala Lumpur


  • Population: 31 million (UN, 2012)
  • Major languages: Malay (official), English, Chinese dialects, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam
  • Major religions: Islam, Buddhism, Taoism, Hinduism, Christianity, Sikhism
  • Life expectancy: 73 years (men), 78 years (women)
  • Currency: Ringgit (MYR)


  • Area: 329,847 sq km (127,355 sq miles)
  • Consisting of two regions separated by 640 miles of the South China Sea.


  • Malaysia has one of south-east Asia’s most vibrant economies
  • Multi-ethnic, multi-religious federation of 13 states and three federal territories.
  • Having a gang tattoo is enough to get you arrested
    • Have tattoos or symbols of any secret society or unlawful organisation is illegal, and – if found guilty – carries a sentence of up to three years in jail, or a fine.


  • A major tourist destination, but there are fears that industrial development could harm the environment, particularly the rainforests of northern Borneo, which are under pressure from palm oil plantations and illegal logging.
  • In September 2018 Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said his country cannot accept same-sex marriage or LGBT rights.


  • Driving on the left