21 Malaysia Beaches

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The Southeast Asia region is no stranger to incredible beaches with some of the most picturesque views and sunsets found anywhere in the world. From Thailand to Indonesia, venture into pretty much any country or area in that region and you’ll stumble upon turquoise blue water, white sandy beaches and palm trees somewhere. Malaysia offers unbeatable ocean views at bargain rates and all the amenities you’ll ever need.

Malaysia surprises travellers with incredible experiences and unique culture that you’ll remember long after you’ve left. Beaches on the west coast of the Malaysian peninsula are more developed and have a wider range of accommodation choices while beaches on the east coast are pristine and many still have a village feel. Malaysian Borneo is also home to some incredible beaches. So, here’s a list of the 20 best beaches in Malaysia to get you started.

20 Malaysia Beaches

Beaches in Malaysia – West Coast

1- Batu Ferringhi

sunset at Batu Ferringhi Beach Malaysia
Penang’s Batu Ferringhi Beach is one of the most popular Malaysian beaches for a family holiday.

If you’re looking for a Malaysia beach vacation with a range of resorts to choose from, put Batu Ferringhi at the top of your list.

This beach is a haven for water sports and the Adventure Zone amusement park is great for families.

There’s an excellent choice of restaurants, shops and a night market that sells all kinds of things from batik sarongs to bikinis.

Easily accessible due to the beach’s proximity to George Town, Batu Ferringhi is an excellent spot to cool down during those steamy Malaysian summer months offering unbeatable sunset views over the Malacca Strait.

Batu Ferringhi is at Taman Pantai Batu, 11200 Tanjong Bungah, Pulau Pinang.

2- Tanjung Bungah

best beaches in malaysia dramatic sky over the mosque
The floating mosque of Tanjung Bungah is one of the dramatic sights on this Malaysian beach.

Tanjung Bungah is another spectacular beach on Malaysia’s Penang Island and, like nearby Batu Ferringhi, it offers a large range of dining, shopping and entertainment options.

Tanjung Bungah offers more than just perfect sunsets and white sand.

It has a host of activities such as scuba diving, parasailing, kayaking or jet skiing, rarely found at other beaches in the area.

Take a break from the adrenaline-charged activities to make a stop at the nearby Tanjung Bungah Market to try some authentic Malaysian cuisine or to pick up a souvenir to remember your trip.

The Penang Toy Museum is also a great spot to visit and is minutes from Tanjung Bungah, making Tanjung Bungah a premier beach to visit for both thrill-seekers and beach bums.

Tanjung Bungah is at 505, Jalan Tanjung Bungah, Tanjung Bungah, 11200 Penang.

3- Pantai Cenang

Pantai Cenang Beach Malaysia lounge chairs, green lawn, topiary trees and coconut palms
Pantai Cenang beach is the perfect Malaysian beach to relax or read a book.

Famed for its energetic nightlife scene, great food and crowds of foreign travellers to mingle with, it’s little wonder that Pantai Cenang is one of Malaysia’s more popular beaches.

Located on the picturesque Langkawi, one of Malaysia’s top island destinations, Pantai Cenang is a charming coastline with islets and a gorgeous white-sand beach.

Despite its liveliness and overabundance of clubs and bars, Pantai Cenang is very much a family friendly-beach, thanks to the many world-class amenities within walking distance.

This is especially true when visiting Pantai Cenang during the off-season when the raucous crowds are replaced by locals and the odd international backpacker trekking through the region.

Pantai Cenang is in Kedah.

4- Pantai Cahaya Negeri

Best Malaysia beaches
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The crescent-shaped Pantai Cahaya Negeri, located roughly 7.7 kilometres (4.8 mi) south of Port Dickson, is a treat for nature enthusiasts.

Not as busy as some other popular beaches in Malaysia but every bit as beautiful, Pantai Cahaya Negeri’s best-known feature is its picturesque wooden bridge connecting the beach to a second island.

Pantai Cahaya Negeri offers hiking trails through the mangroves on the second island, white sand and blue water.

An easy trip down from Port Dickson, Pantai Cahaya Negeri is one of the more serene beaches in Malaysia.

Pantai Cahaya Negeri is at 71050 Negeri Sembilan.

5- Teluk Dalam

too many beaches in malaysia a sampan on the ocean cruising past lush jungle
Malaysia’s beaches have lovely views of tropical landscapes that makes you feel instantly relaxed.

This laid back beach on Redang Island is by no means one of Malaysia’s busiest or most-developed beaches, however, it still plays host to the impromptu beach volleyball or beach soccer match now and then.

Best known for its boardwalk stretching across the beach and into the water, Teluk Dalam is one of Malaysia’s scenic beaches to visit.

Teluk Dalam is the perfect getaway from the ritzy beaches that attract international beach go-ers, allowing those who venture here the chance to relax and unwind without a care in the world.

There’s a charming resort with friendly staff next to Teluk Dalam beach, where you can sleep in this picturesque slice of paradise.

Teluk Dalam is at 32300 Pangkor Island, Perak.

6- Coral Beach

hidden beaches in malaysia coral on sand
Closeup of a coral on a white sandy beach in Malaysia.

Coral Beach is a Pulau Pangkor gem and one of the best beaches in Malaysia.

A top-notch scuba diving and snorkelling destination, the spectacular Coral Beach is everything you’d imagine a tropical paradise to be.

Relax on the white sand while gazing out towards the ocean.

A favourite for couples looking to enjoy the island’s serenity and privacy, Coral Beach is the perfect place to snap photos to make your friends jealous.

Coral Beach is on Pulau Pangkor, Perak.

7- Berjaya Langkawi

10 beautiful beaches in malaysia happy woman with outspread arms on the central beach in Langkawi tropical island.
Some of the most popular beaches in Malaysia are in Langkawi Island.

If you’re looking for a luxurious Malaysian beach experience, then check out Berjaya Langkawi Resort’s private beach, which is open to guests staying at the resort.

Surrounded by waterfalls and tropical rainforests, the resort’s private beach has volleyball nets, comfortable shaded loungers and a pool bar to entertain you whilst you’re enjoying the breathtakingly beautiful views in luxury.

The resort is within walking distance of Langkawi’s sky cab, a cable car that takes riders up to the Langkawi SkyBridge, where you can gaze at impressive panoramic vistas stretching as far as the eye can see.

While the resort’s beach isn’t open to the public, it’s worth booking in for one night to enjoy its excellent amenities.

Berjaya Langkawi is at Karung Berkunci 200 Burau Bay, 07000 Langkawi, Kedah.

8- Tanjung Rhu

beaches in malaysia girl wearing white singlet and shorts sitting on a white sun lounge
Relaxing on a chaise lounge is the order of the day and some of the best beaches in Malaysia are on Langkawi Island.

One of Malaysia’s most luxurious beaches is Langkawi’s Tanjung Rhu, in the island’s northeast corner.

Private and exclusive, Tanjung Rhu has 2.5km of sand facing the Andaman Sea.

Public access is available but stay at the Tanjung Rhu Resort for the full luxury experience, where activities like massages, mangrove boat rides, catamaran sailing and exploring limestone caves are arranged for you.

The location for many international films, Tanjung Rhu’s clear water and white sand creates the perfect scene for lounging around or curling up with a book.

Tanjung Rhu is at Mukim Ayer Hangat, 07000 Langkawi, Kedah.

For more beaches around the world read:

Beaches in Malaysia – East Coast

Beaches in Malaysia east woman doing yoga on the beach
Enjoy the tranquillity of a Malaysian beach. You’ll find the quietest ones on the east coast of the peninsula.

9- Pantai Irama

Attracting locals and foreigners with live music and other weekend events, Pantai Irama, or ‘beach of melody’, is one of the best Malaysian beaches to visit if you’re looking to soak up the local culture.

On weekdays, the beach is a tranquil haven free from crowds that’s perfect for lounging around with barely anyone in sight.

Not only is Pantai Irama an excellent beach for those interested in a more traditional Malaysian experience away from the upscale hotels and resorts, but the beach is a great place to enjoy epic sunsets.

The area around the beach has excellent hiking trails through lush jungle-covered hills far from city life.

Pantai Irama is in Bachok, Kelantan.

10- Pantai Cahaya Bulan

Formerly known as Pantai Cinta Berahi, this long stretch of beach overlooking the South China Sea is called Pantai Cahaya Bulan, which means ‘moonlight beach’.

Commonly referred to by locals simply as “PCB”, the beach’s concrete seawalls are there to combat the effects of years and years of erosion.

Located roughly 11 kilometres (6.8 mi) from Kota Bharu, Pantai Cahaya Bulan is easy to reach and home to several local family-run caf├ęs and seafood restaurants.

With interesting locals, pleasantly warm water and a choice of local resorts, PCB is a good spot for a budget beach vacation.

Pantai Cahaya Bulan is in Kota Bharu, Kelantan.

11- Pasir Panjang

the best beaches in malaysia beach with deep blue skies, crystal clear waters and an island in the background
A remote Malaysian beach on a tropical island.

Redang Island is a tropical getaway with pristine beaches and beautiful blue water.

The curving Pasir Panjang Beach is a delight among the island’s many beaches.

Redang Island is home to an array of marine and plant species, making Pasir Panjang an excellent location to explore nature and spend time relaxing on the beach.

Few sights are as majestic as the turquoise blue water gently lapping Pasir Panjang’s pure white sand.

Because of the island’s remoteness, this is one of the Malaysian beaches that is seldom crowded.

Whether it’s visiting the island to enjoy snorkelling opportunities around the island’s coral reef or to be pampered at one of the island’s upscale resorts, be sure to add Pasir Panjang to your itinerary list.

Pasir Panjang is at Pantai Pasir Panjang, Redang Island.

12- Coral Beach

Coral Beach is a Pulau Pangkor gem and one of the best beaches in Malaysia.

A top-notch scuba diving and snorkelling destination, the spectacular Coral Beach is everything you’d imagine a tropical paradise to be.

Relax on the white sand while gazing out towards the ocean.

A favourite for couples looking to enjoy the island’s serenity and privacy, Coral Beach is the perfect place to snap photos to make your friends jealous.

Coral Beach is on Pulau Pangkor,

13- Long Beach

beautiful beaches in malaysia blue water and white sand wtih boats dotted in the ocean
There are several beautiful Malaysian beaches on the Perhentian Islands for a tropical escape.

Situated on Malaysia’s Pulau Perhentian Kecil, which forms part of the beautiful Perhentian Islands, Long Beach attracts foreigners and locals looking to experience the very best beaches Malaysia has to offer.

Great diving and snorkelling spots, sipping cocktails at beach bars, trekking through lush jungles and turtle spotting whilst kayaking are just some of the incredible things to do at Long Beach.

Only accessible by boat, reaching the Perhentian islands isn’t exactly easy, however, those willing to put up with the journey will certainly not regret visiting a part of Malaysia so beautiful, it must surely be paradise.

Long Beach is at Long Beach Perhentian Kecil Kuala, 22300 Kuala Besut, Terengganu.

14- Turtle Beach

tripadvisor best beaches in malaysia long exposure, with cloudy sky during sunset
Coral on Turtle Beach in Malaysia’s Perhentian Islands.

If swimming alongside wild sea turtles excites or intrigues you, make sure to stop at the aptly named Turtle Beach on Pulau Perhentian Besar.

Snorkelling and swimming are the two most popular activities at Turtle Beach, which provides excellent opportunities to spot turtles and many other marine animals, including reef sharks.

If swimming alongside sharks sounds too scary, visit the beach between 9 pm and 5 am to spot green turtles laying their eggs on the shore.

There are also various opportunities to join volunteer groups to assist with incubating the eggs.

Turtle Beach is on Pulau Perhentian Besar, Kuala Besut, Terengganu. 

15- Taaras Beach

beaches to stay at in malaysia Woman hand with cocktail glass near swimming pool
There are plenty of resorts right across the country where you can relax on the beach in Malaysia.

Taaras Beach on Redang Island is one of the island’s most popular beaches both among locals and international visitors.

Forming part of the larger Taaras Resort area, a part of the beach is open to the public, with excellent scuba and snorkelling opportunities available to visitors.

While the luxurious resort itself is well worth a visit if you don’t mind paying a little extra, Taaras Beach is a beautiful harmony of white sand, pristine water and lush jungle-covered hills, which together create the perfect utopian image.

Few public beaches come close to capturing the sheer natural beauty of Taaras Beach, making it certainly one of the best beaches to visit in Malaysia.

Taaras Beach is at Peti Surat 126, 20928 Kuala Terengganu, Terengganu.

16- Juara Beach

Situated on the largely unpopulated and densely forested Tioman Island, Juara Beach is one of the more remote beaches in Malaysia.

Only accessible via a four-hour ferry journey, those who take the time to travel to this remote island will be treated to absolutely incredible views and the opportunity to experience a Malaysia less travelled.

Juara Beach allows visitors to enjoy the scenic sunsets and crystal clear water Malaysia is famous for, without the overbearing amount of tourists or pricy resort chains.

Whether it’s spending a night next to the beach in a cosy bungalow or visiting Juara Beach’s turtle hatchery to volunteer with protecting and collecting sea turtles and sea turtle eggs, Juara Beach will charm visitors with its relaxed atmosphere.

Juara Beach is at Kampung Juara, Pulau Tioman, 26800, Pahang.

17- Monkey Bay Beach

Also on Tioman Island, Monkey Bay Beach is just as remote and untouched as Juara Beach, making it a top beach in Malaysia to visit for solitude.

Only accessible via a jungle trail or by boat, getting to Monkey Bay Beach is no easy feat, however, the monkeys roaming the beach certainly makes the trek worthwhile.

These primate inhabitants inspired the beach’s name and are occasionally spotted on the sand, although they mostly live in the jungle surrounding the beach itself.

It’s an incredible destination to visit due mainly because of its remoteness and the bay’s calm waters, which make snorkelling and swimming ideal activities to enjoy.

Monkey Bay Beach is on Pulau Tioman, Pahang. 

18- Cherating Beach

best beaches in malaysia 2016 green fishing boat on the beach with others moored in the water
Fishing boat at Cherating Beach on Malaysia’s East Coast state of Kuantan.

Home to the all-inclusive Club Med as well as a host of other beach resorts, Cherating Beach is an east coast beach town with a laid-back vibe. 

Cherating Point is a popular destination for surfing, especially during the monsoon season between October and March when the swells are around four feet (1.2 m).

Cherating Beach is in Balok, Pahang. 

19- Rawa Island Beach

nicest beaches in malaysia Panoramic view of a beautiful beach with turquoise water in Rawa island Malaysia
Rawa Island has one of the most stunning beaches in Malaysia.

Named after the numerous white doves that inhabit the island, Rawa Island is a gem of a destination as popular as it is beautiful.

A haven for scuba diving and snorkelling thanks to the lively coral reefs around the island, Rawa is simply a paradise for adventure seekers and beach bums alike.

A lack of major roads on the island means that footpaths are the only way to navigate the 1 kilometre (0.62 mi)-long tiny island.

Unspoilt apart from the sole resort which occupies the island, Rawa is home to all sorts of species such as sharks, jellyfish, reptiles and eagles, making the island a perfect place to become at one with nature.

Rawa Island Beach is at Rawa Island, 86800 Mersing, Johor.

20- Pasir Bogak

are there nice beaches in pahang malaysia sunset view of a beach with silhouette of tree, boats and small island located in Pangkor island
Gazing at the sunset on a Malaysian beach is one of the pleasures on Pangkor Island.

Pasir Bogak is on Malaysia’s Pangkor Island and is the island’s most-developed beach, with many hotels well within walking distance from the beach.

While Pasir Bogak certainly caters to travellers, the region’s permanent inhabitants rely heavily on the local fishing industry, making use of the beach to cast their nets out into the water to catch the daily supply of fresh fish.

The local culture and traditions make Pasir Bogak a fascinating beach in Malaysia to visit.

Hiking trails are located all around the quiet beach for travellers to enjoy, however the best attraction at Pasir Bogak is the impressive sunsets that are truly a sight to behold.

Pasir Bogak is at Jalan Pasir Bogak, 32300 Pulau Pangkor, Perak. 

Beaches in Malaysia – Borneo

nice beaches in malaysia A beautiful slender girl in a swimsuit enjoys a tan while lying on a tropical beach, holding a glass of pineapple juice in her hand
Enjoy sun, sand and a tropical fruit drink on one of these fantastic Malaysia beaches.

21- Pulau Tiga

Pulau Tiga, or Tiga Island, hit the international stage as the set of the series Survivor: Pulau Tiga, the very first season of the hit TV series.

Great swimming and snorkelling spots can be found all around the island, with two resorts also situated on the island.

The island has a wide variety of fauna and flora, including a rather large snake population with various species, all calling the island home.

The island is well-known for its volcanic mud that has therapeutic benefits.

Pulau Tiga is an excellent destination to visit with good beaches, with the island’s TV fame and beautiful scenery also making it worth your time.

Pulau Tiga is in Labuan, Malaysia.

22- Gaya Island Beach

10 best beaches in malaysia Tanjung Aru Beach Sunset
A stunning sunset at Tanjung Aru Beach in Malaysia in Kota Kinabalu, which is home to several of the best beaches in Malaysia.

Located less than 10 minutes off the coast from Kota Kinabalu, the 1,465 hectares (3,620 acres) Gaya Island is home to fabulous 5-star resorts and raw untouched nature.

Situated within the Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park, Gaya Island blends thick jungles and unblemished beaches with luxurious amenities perfect for enjoying the best of both worlds.

Spend your day hiking through the lush hills and finish by sipping a drink on the island’s beach while enjoying the sunset.

Few beaches in Malaysia can match Gaya Island’s blissful tranquillity and exotic aura, making spending a night or two on the island an absolute treat.

Boat trips to Gaya Island can be found at Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. 

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Christina Pfeiffer Travel Writer
Christina Pfeiffer is a writer, photographer and video blogger based in Queensland, Australia. She has lived in three continents and her career as a travel journalist has taken her to all seven continents. Since 2003, she has contributed travel stories and photographs to mainstream media in Australia and around the world such as the Sydney Morning Herald, CNN Traveller, The Australian and the South China Morning Post. She has won many travel writing awards and is a full member of the Australian Society of Travel Writers.