Where to make the most out of 10 days in Singapore/Malaysia
April 6, 2016 10:34 AM   Subscribe

Looking for travel advice on how to make the most out of 10 days in and around Singapore. Is there enough time to visit Sabah/Borneo? Or is our precious time best spent in Penang/Langkawi, or elsewhere?

I will be travelling with my partner to Singapore at the tail end of August/beginning of September. We have 10 full days for visiting (not including days traveling home to and from Singapore). We like trekking, snorkeling, & local cuisine.
posted by ageispolis to Travel & Transportation around Singapore (3 answers total)
If you'd like to spend most of your time in Singapore with a short excursion up to Malaysia, then one of my recommendations is that you won't have to go so far East as up to Sabah or north as up to Penang. You can go a bit up north to the closest Malaysian state to Singapore, which is Johor, and from there, head to Tioman Island. You'll be well away from the monsoon season at that side of the coast. It is the most developed of the beach resort-type islands, comparatively, for good and bad.

I think 10 days is actually quite ample if you still want to hit Penang and Sabah, but it'll be on a massively packed schedule because you're talking about travelling from one end of the country to another. Still, flights aren't too long, and daily flights are numerous. It's just that there's a lot to do (and eat!).
posted by cendawanita at 10:52 AM on April 6, 2016

If you really enjoy food, Penang is a must visit. You can have time for Borneo because Kota Kinabalu has a pretty big airport that'll get you in pretty quickly to and from. Flights within the region are relatively cheap. If you want to spend more time outdoors, you can trek up Mount Kinabalu. There are a couple of dive and snorkeling sites around there too.
posted by astapasta24 at 1:11 PM on April 6, 2016

Depending on how much time you want to spend there, Sabah is definitely doable. I think it must be about a 3 or 3 1/2 hour flight to/ from Singapore? Kuching is one of my favourite towns in Malaysia and is also worth considering.

I've spent some time in Penang and it is a great place for food, history, culture, old monuments, etc. It's larger but nicer, more lived in, than Melaka, the Singaporean weekend jaunt of choice (which shares a similar Peranakan heritage). However, my impression is that Langkawi is beautiful but really heavily touristed. I believe the monsoon doesn't start till late in September, but if it does start earlier there is a chance snorkeling on the west coast (including Langkawi) will be affected at the time you're there. Tioman or Sabah might be better in this regard.

When looking at transport, I'd suggest looking at flights from the Johor Bahru airport as well, remembering that you should factor in a couple of hours to get there from Singapore (it's a tiny airport so you don't need to be there very early but traffic can be a nightmare).
posted by tavegyl at 11:15 PM on April 6, 2016

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