Blessed with a diversity of landscapes, rainforests and pristine beaches, Malaysia is scenic, alluring and culturally fascinating.
It consists of 13 states and has a total landmass of 330,803 square kilometres separated by the South China Sea into two similarly sized regions, Peninsular Malaysia and East Malaysia (Sabah & Sarawak).
Malaysia has its origins in the Malay kingdoms present in the area which, from the 18th century, became subject to the British Empire. The first British territories were known as the Straits Settlements, whose establishment was followed by the Malay kingdoms becoming British protectorates. The territories on Peninsular Malaysia were first unified as the Malayan Union in 1946. Malaya was restructured as the Federation of Malaya in 1948, and achieved independence on 31 August 1957. Malaya united with Sabah, Sarawak and Singapore on 16 September 1963. Less than two years later in 1965, Singapore was expelled from the federation.
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Map of Malaysia