Located in Southeast Asia, the multi-ethnic country of Malaysia shares borders with Thailand, Brunei and Indonesia. The country, a federal constitutional monarchy, is leading its Asian neighbors economically and has seen success in the areas of natural resources, tourism, science and other types of business. The more successful the country becomes, the more visitors pour into its borders each year.
Malaysia is home to a variety of ethnicities and cultures, While freedom of religion is a protection the people enjoy, the government has declared that Islam is the official religion of the country. Buddhism, Christianity and Hinduism are also represented. The fact that Islam is the state religion flavors the political and legal standings of the country as a whole.
What’s most fascinating about the Malaysian culture is how much pride they take in it. They care so much about their rich culture that they have taken legal steps to protect it from being changed by the outside world. The people of Malaysia value their art. Carving, weaving and silversmithing tend to be their artistic focus. Their music is also quite exciting, being based around percussion and the variety of types of drums they use. Many musicians travel to Malaysia just to learn about their percussion style of music.
Malaysian cuisine has taken on a variety of influences from its neighboring countries. Leaning heavily on spices and chili (some hot and some not), the food tends to resemble dishes from Singapore and Filipino cuisine. Like most asian cultures, rice is a staple part of the diet, as is vegetables.
Beautiful rich colors and natural beauty are the foundation of the Malaysian landscape. From the rainforest to the lovely beaches, there are many varieties of plant and animal life that call this country home. With many species unique to the area, photographers flock to the rainforest to take pictures of the native birds, reptiles and mammals. Tourists fall in love quickly with the countryside and most certainly with the people, who are by nature kind, hospitable and warm. As tourism rises in the country, it continues to pull ahead as a country that has taken good care of itself economically and otherwise.