Grab any random Malaysia tourist guide book in the bookstore or watch a documentary on the television and you will typically find Malaysia being introduced as a country renowned for its rich cultural heritage, multicultural and multiethnic society, beautiful blue waters, pristine white sandy beaches, lush rainforests and a food heaven for food enthusiasts.
But without the books and the documentaries, just how much do you really know about Malaysia? Have you reached to that stage where you can confidently stand tall with your head held high and say you know just about everything there is to know about the country?
Perhaps you do, or perhaps you don’t. The country is full of mind-blowing facts, facts that you have probably never even heard of. Are you ready for it? Let’s start blowing your mind with the 5 things that you never knew about Malaysia.
One of the World’s Largest Roundabouts is located in Putrajaya
Named after Almarhum Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah, the eighth Sultan of Selangor Darul Ehsan and the eleventh Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia, the Persiaran Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah is the main roundabout in Putrajaya. The roundabout is also known as the Putrajaya Roundabout, and leads to major landmarks such as the Federal Government Complex, the Putrajaya Independence Square and the Putra Mosque.
But what makes the Putrajaya Roundabout one of the world’s largest? In comparison to other roundabouts, the diameter of the Putrajaya Roundabout is approximately 3.5km (2.2 miles). To give you an idea of how big that measures up to, the entire size of the roundabout is equivalent to 100 football fields.
You need to show your passport to travel within Malaysia
You may already know this, however, there may be others who may have never heard of it at all. For most of us, we know that foreigners are required by the immigration to present their passport when they are travelling to another country.
However, the same cannot be said about Malaysia as foreigners are required to present their passport if they were to travel between Peninsular Malaysia and East Malaysia (Sabah and Sarawak). As though Peninsular Malaysia and East Malaysia are two separate countries. As odd as this sounds, this rule even applies to native Malaysians, though they have the option to show their passport or their identity card.
There are 136 individual languages listed for Malaysia
Malaysia is an ethnically and culturally diverse nation, so it is not unusual for native Malaysians to be conversant in more than one language or dialect. The most common languages and dialects are English, Bahasa Malaysia, Kelantanese, Terengganuan, Kedahan, Sarawakian, Bajau, Negeri Sembilan Malay, Banjar, Bruneian, Indonesian, Mandarin, Hokkien, Cantonese, Hakka, Teochew, Fuzhou, Hainanese, Foochow, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Hindi, Punjabi, Gujarati, Manglish, Bahasa Rojak and Peranakan.
Do you know that there are other languages and dialects spoken in Malaysia? You may have heard a Malaysian speaking in a language or dialect that may resemble those spoken in another country, but in reality, it is one of the 136 individual languages listed for Malaysia. And out of the 136 languages and dialects, 134 are living and the other 2 are extinct.
The Southernmost Point of Mainland Asia is located in Malaysia
If someone were to ask you, “Do you know where is the Southernmost Point of Mainland Asia?”, would you be able to answer the person? Would you say it is in Singapore? Or would you go with Indonesia?
Many would have thought that the southernmost point is located in either one of these two countries, but the southernmost tip is in Tanjung Piai, located in the Pontian District of Johor Darul Takzim.
The Kuala Lumpur Railway Station was built to withstand snow
Located along Jalan Sultan Hishamuddin, the Kuala Lumpur Railway Station with its Neo-Mughal architecture is one of the most prominent and historical landmarks in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The railway station was designed by Arthur Benison Hubback and served as Kuala Lumpur’s main railway hub until the year 2001. If the designs look oddly familiar to you, well the same Arthur Benison Hubback also designed the Jamek Mosque and the Sultan Abdul Samad Building.
This leads us to the mind-blowing fact about the Kuala Lumpur Railway Station which is it was designed to withstand approximately six feet of snow and with snow gutters on the roof. Now, considering the fact that Malaysia’s climate is hot and humid throughout the year, and the average temperature is approximately 27°C, it may take a long time for us to get the chance to witness snow falling on the Kuala Lumpur Railway Station.
With that we conclude our round-up of the 5 things you never knew about Malaysia. Are you bowled over with some of our facts? Share in the comment if you know of any other bizarre ones worth mentioning. Happy 60th birthday Malaysia!