Malaysia is a stunning country, and its rich diverse heritage can be witnessed in its contemporary architecture and the culture of its ethnic communities. Malaysian Architecture has everything from shiny skyscrapers to Urbane design Mosques which are vibrant, gleaming and utterly gorgeous.
Islamic impressions as well as Moorish and Mughal inspirations, colonial styles and Asian designs heavily influence its architecture. These architectures are also representing Malaysia’s history, and religious and cultural richness flawlessly.
If you are visiting Malaysia to view these famous buildings yourself, here is a list of the top 20 Architectures of Malaysia that you must see with your eyes!
Top 20 Famous Buildings of Malaysia
1. Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur
Modern architecture in malaysia: Topping the list of Malaysia’s Architectural marvels is the stunning Petronas Twin Towers. Located in the heart of Kuala Lumpur, Petronas Twin Tower used to hold the title of being the tallest building in the world until it was surpassed by Taipei 101. Petronas Twin Tower is a Post Modern Islamic architecture which was opened to the world in 1999.
Pride of every Malaysian, this building is all cutting-edge designs with an Observation deck which you reach by taking in a high-speed elevator
And that offers the most beautiful panoramic views of KL. It also has a Skybridge that adds finesse to this dazzling architectural design.
You must visit Petronas Twin Tower and experience the majestic aura of this incredible architecture of Malaysia!
Timings: 10 am to 6 pm. Closed on Mondays
Address: Petronas Twin Tower, Lower Ground (Concourse) Level, Kuala Lumpur City Centre, Kuala Lumpur
Skip-The-Line KL PETRONAS Twin Towers Admission ticket
2. Sultan Abdul Samad Building in Kuala Lumpur
If you enjoy visiting the old palaces of Kings and Sultans and the architecture of the old days, then you are going to fall in love with the majestic Sultan Abdul Samad Building in Kuala Lumpur. Built-in Indo-Saracenic and Moorish architectural designs, this gorgeous building is now a government house. Built in 1897, it is all elaborate curved colonnades, a grand porch, a clock tower, huge arches, and exquisite copper cupolas.
A popular tourist attraction, Sultan Abdul Samad Building is a historical architectural wonder and a world-famous landmark you most definitely must visit while in Malaysia. Not only because you will be awe-struck but also to understand the reason it serves as a backdrop for Malaysia’s Independence Day parades!
Timings: 24 hours
Address: Jln Raja, Kuala Lumpur City Centre, KL
3. Kek Lok Si Temple in Air Itam
The next on this list of incredible architecture in Malaysia is the Kek Lok Si temple. Located at the foot of Air Hitam Mountain, George Town, Penang, this temple is not only one of the most intricately designed Buddhist temples, but it is also an incredibly popular religious site. In fact, In Southeast Asia, it is also considered one of the biggest Buddhist complexes.
One of the most wonderful things about this temple’s architectural design is that the Kek Lok Si pagoda consists of three different architectural tiers. The top tier is Burmese while the middle tier is inspired by Thai architecture and the bottom tier is Chinese architectural styles.
You must visit Kek Lok Si temple while in Malaysia because besides the awe-striking design of the temple, here you get to see wonderful statues, stairs and even a tortoise pond. There are also several prayer halls, pavilions and souvenir shops which you can explore!
Timings: from 8:30 am to 5:30 pm
Address: Jln Balik Pulau, Air Itam, Penang
4. Crystal Mosque in Kuala Terengganu
Being an Islamic country, you can expect some wonderfully designed Mosques and Crystal Mosque is definitely at the top of the list of the best architecture in Malaysia. Crystal Mosque is a popular tourist attraction in Malaysia due to its uniqueness and stunning design and intricateness.
Located in the Islamic Heritage Park on Wan Man Island off Kuala Terengganu, you must visit this incredible mosque and witness its beauty yourself. The main feature of the mosque is the sleek and modern exterior which is built with crystal, glass, and steel, and is so shiny that it reflects off the surrounding river.
You should visit Crystal Mosque because aside from the main mosque, you also get to see the replicas of other popular mosques located around the whole like Aleppo Citadel, Taj Mahal, Masjid al-Haram etc. it is also a great spot for doing awesome photography sessions!
Timings: 6 am to 11 pm
Location: Pulau Wan Man, Losong Panglima P’erang, Kuala Terengganu
5. Menara Kuala Lumpur
If you enjoy visiting tall, modern glass architecture then you will enjoy visiting Menara KL, also known as the KL Tower. This tower has not only earned Malaysia a name in another list of top 10s but it also serves as a major tourist attraction. One of its most attractive features is the main lobby of the ground floor which is designed with glass-clad Muqarnas by Iranian Craftsmen which gleam like exquisite diamonds.
You must visit KL Tower and experience one of the best 360-degree views of the city from the KL Tower Observation Deck! If you want some awesome photographs for your Instagram, bring along your camera too and get access to Sky Deck and the sky box, an extended glass box from Sky Deck!
Timings: 9 am to 10 pm
Address: 2 Jalan Punchak, Off, Jalan P. Ramlee, 50250 Kuala Lumpur
6. Istana Negara in Kuala Lumpur
Another exemplary architecture of Malaysia is the Istana Negara, also known as the Royal King’s Palace. It is a humongous Palace built in Islamic and Western architectural designs and was originally owned by a Chinese millionaire. Today, it serves as the official residence of the supreme King of Malaysia. Istana Negara is a significant symbol of Malaysia’s heritage.
It is an elaborately designed building with huge golden domes dominating the exterior design.
If you are a history buff, this is the perfect place for you to visit. You can also visit the Royal Museum here. Taking a picture at the main entrance of the palace is a must!
Timings: 24 hours
Address: Jln Tuanku Abdul Halim, Bukit Damansara, 50480 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur
7. Melaka Sultanate Palace Museum in Malacca
The next on this list of top Architecture in Malaysia is the Melaka Sultanate Palace Museum in Malacca. Built-in 1986, it is a beautiful wooden replica of the Sultan Mansur Shah Palace, serving as a prominent museum dedicated to Malacca Sultanate’s history.
You should come and visit Melaka Sultanate Palace Museum because not only do you get to see an incredible piece of architecture but also explore a total of 1350 antiques, prints and photographs from the Sultanate era.
Timings: 9 am to 5 pm. Closed on Mondays
Address: Jln Kota, Banda Hilir, 75000 Melaka
8. Ipoh Railway Station in Perak
When you visit Malaysia’s Ipoh, you must visit its railway station too. Popularly known as the Taj Mahal of Ipoh, Not only Ipoh’s Railway Station is an important historical landmark but this gorgeous single-story British-style architecture is also popular as a photography destination.
This railway station is designed with Neo-Moorish and Indo-Saracenic elements with quaint verandahs, Moorish domes, and towers, creating a stunning piece of architecture.
You should come to click perfect pictures for your Instagram!
Address: Stesen KTM, Ipoh, Perak
9. Ipoh Town Hall and Old Post Office
Another example of awesome architecture in Ipoh that you must visit is the Ipoh Town Hall and Old Post Office. Ipoh Town Hall and Post office were designed by the architect who designed Ipoh’s Railway Station. Located in the same building, Ipoh Town Hall and Old Post Office were built with the same grandeur of the British Raj as other architecture in the city.
As the name suggests, Ipoh Town Hall was constructed to provide a socialising platform for the high-ranking officers and Britain elites. They built a public theatre where various musicals, plays and performances took place. The back section of the building housed the Post Office whose entrance faced Jalan Dato’ Sagor.
Don’t skip visiting Ipoh Town Hall and Old Post Office because you are going to be absolutely amazed!
Address: 2700, Jalan Panglima Bukit Gantang Wahab, Ipoh, Perak
10. Stadthuys in Malacca City
If you seriously enjoy visiting ancient Malaysian architecture, historical monuments and buildings, you will surely enjoy visiting Stadthuys. Located in the heart of Dutch Square in Malacca City, Stadthuys is said to be one of the oldest remaining Dutch buildings in entire Asia, making it an extremely popular tourist destination. In 1982, it was turned into a museum that you can visit and quench your thirst for historical facts!
Stadthuys is a beautiful riverfront building with a bright terracotta-red exterior with markings of distinct Dutch architectural designs. It features louvred windows, a tilted roof as well as large doors with wrought iron hinges, massive walls white wooden shutters.
Do come and visit Stadthuys as it is not known as the jewel of the Dutch Square for nothing!
Timings: 9: 00 am to 5: 30 pm
Address: Stadthuys, Banda Hilir, Melaka
11. Penang Town Hall in George Town
Located in George Town city of Penang, Penang Town hall is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that you must visit while visiting Malaysia. This majestic two-storey building is built in Palladian and Edwardian Baroque architectural styles and it is coloured all stark white.
Not only is it a building of great historic value but many renovations and additions to the original structure have been done to maintain its glory. It consisted of an assembly, a library and a ballroom that Penang’s elites used for entertainment and socialising.
Today, Penang Town Hall is used as the main venue for popular events like George Town Festival. That’s why I highly recommend that you visit Georgetown and Penang Town Hall in August when this festival takes place.
It is one amazing, elegant piece of architecture that you should visit at least once!
Timings: 8 am to 5 pm. Closed on Weekends
Address: Jalan Padang Kota Lama, George Town, Pulau Pinang
12. Suffolk House in George Town
Located just off Jalan Air Itam, George Town, Suffolk House is a popular house on the estate owned by Captain Francis Light. It is also a popular tourist attraction for its amazingly symmetrical architecture and its curious history. As this house is one of the first settlements on Penang Island by the Britishers, it is a great place to learn about the local lives and their time spent here in the earlier decades of settlement.
You can also learn about the curious case of whether Captain Light was actually the founder of the island or not. Because many claim that it was already inhabited by Malay fishermen long before his arrival.
Nowadays, you can visit Suffolk House and soak in the historical and cultural riches of this place. You can explore the house and the garden here and even opt for a guided tour!
Timings: 11 am to 11 pm
Address: Jalan Air Hitam, Georgetown, 10460 George Town, Penang
13. National Mosque of Malaysia (Masjid Negara) in Kuala Lumpur
Masjid Negara which is also popularly known as the National Mosque of Malaysia is another example of the incredible architecture of Malaysia. Located in the capital city of Kuala Lumpur, this exquisitely designed creation stands proud among the gleaming towers of Malaysia. The architectural design is based on the concept of contemporary designs with modern influence.
You should check out Masjid Negara and see beautiful blue and green tilled beauty yourself!
Timings: 9 am to 11 pm
Address: Jalan Perdana, Tasik Perdana, Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur
14. Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah Mosque
The next on the list of most famous buildings in Malaysia is the Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah Mosque which is an extremely popular tourist attraction as well as a pilgrimage. Not only is it the largest mosque in Malaysia but it is also the second largest in Southeast Asia!
Also popularly known as Blue Mosque, the Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah Mosque is stunning and totally worth the visit. You should come here and admire its majestic glory while overlooking the Garden of Islamic Arts along with 9 galleries which can explore and view the sculptures, fine calligraphy and paintings of Islamic arts.
Add Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah Mosque to your list of must-visits and see an architectural wonder with your own eyes!
Timings: From Monday to Thursday, the times are from 9 am to 12 pm and 2 pm to 4 pm. On Fridays, only Muslims can visit. On the weekends and public holidays, the timings are from 9 am to 12 pm, 2 pm to 4 pm and then, 5 pm to 6: 30 pm.
Location: Persiaran Masjid Street, Seksyen, Shah Alam, Selangor
15. Istana Budaya in Kuala Lumpur
Popularly known as the Palace of Culture, Istana Budaya is another example of incredible architecture in Malaysia. Istana Budaya is the national Performing Arts Theatre where cultural events like traditional local music, dance performances, theatre shows, operas, etc are organised.
It has elaborate designs with turquoise roofs and the overall design resembles Sireh Junjung which is the traditional flower arrangement that is used as a welcome to the guest to auspicious events like weddings in Malaysia.
You must visit Istana Budaya to experience the full extent of its cultural and traditional richness as well as the simple pleasure of looking at significant and visually pleasing architecture!
Address: Jln Tun Razak, Titiwangsa, Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur
16. Sultan Abu Bakar State Mosque
Another crucial historical heritage, Sultan Abu Bakar Mosque is a popular tourist attraction, located in Johor Bahru. The history of its construction is very intriguing and its construction and design are even more impressive.
Situated atop the hill on Lido Beach which faces the south of Tebrau that separates Malaysia and Singapore, you can visibly see Singapore but ignores the Straits of Johor. Its design has impressions of Moorish design components and a little Malay design too.
Do check out Sultan Abu Bakar Mosque while in Johor Bahru and click an amazing picture of Singapore from Malaysia!
Do visit this magnificent site because this gem of Johor Bahru is well worth it!
Timings: 9 am to 4 pm. It is closed on Fridays.
Address: Jalan Gertak Merah, Masjid Sultan Abu Bakar, Johor Bahru, Johor
17. Seri Perdana in Putrajaya
Located in Putrajaya, Seri Perdana is another must-visit famous building in Malaysia. Its architecture is influenced by Indo-Islamic, Middle Eastern, European and Malay architecture with a colour scheme of gorgeous jade green which reminds one of Prague (Czech Republic).
Clicking a picture at Seri Perdana is a must because you don’t get to see such majestic and awe-striking creations very often. Add Seri Perdana to your itinerary because otherwise, you will be seriously missing out!
Timings: 9 am to 4 pm every day except Fridays when It is closed.
Address: Kediaman Rasmi Perdana Menteri, Kompleks Seri Perdana, Persiaran Seri Perdana, Presint 10, Putrajaya
18. Dewan Undangan Negeri Sarawak Building in Kuching
Housing the oldest legislative body in Malaysia, Sarawak State Legislative Assembly also called Dewan Undangan Negeri Sarawak is another wonderful example of beautiful architecture in Malaysia. The building of Dewan Undangan Negeri is a magnificent creation of excellent architecture located in Sarawak in between the Astana at the northern bank of the Sarawak River.
Dewan Undangan Negeri Sarawak is a perfect example of modern architecture with cultural respect. This majestic building is nine-storey with a cross-section resembling a nine-pointed star. The most distinct feature is its golden roof which is akin to a Malaysian royal umbrella.
Make sure you add Dewan Undangan Negeri Sarawak to your itinerary and don’t forget to click awesome pictures!
Timings: 8 am to 5 pm except on Saturdays and Sundays when it is closed.
Address: New Sarawak State Legislative Assembly Building, Petra Jaya, Kuching, Sarawak
19. Masjid Jamek in Kuala Lumpur
If you are looking for architecture which is inspired by Moorish and Mughal styles then you will enjoy a visit to the Masjid Jamek. With lush green palm trees all around, this mosque is a must-visit in Kuala Lumpur.
It has three approximately twenty metres tall white domes which surround the mosque’s main prayer hall. Visitors are allowed on the grounds after prayer hours only. Almost a century old, Masjid Jamek also neighbours a bazaar where you can explore and buy traditional and culturally exquisite goods!
Timings: 5: 30 am to 9: 30 pm
Address: Jalan Tun Perak, City Centre, Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur
20. Lexis Hibiscus in Negeri Sembilan
Located along the gorgeous Pasir Panjang beach in Port Dickson, you must make time to visit and stay at the pool villa of Lexis Hibiscus. With a total of 639, Lexis Hibiscus provide you with pool villas, water villas and tower rooms. Everything from exterior to interior is tastefully designed in modern designs.
Lexis Hibiscus Port Dickson is a wonderful and luxurious experience that is extremely unique. Laid out on the pristine waters of Port Dickson, the arrangement of Lexis Hibiscus’ villa resembles a flower. Lexis Hibiscus Port Dickson also holds two Guinness World Records to its name.
Don’t hesitate to hit the books because everything from the striking architectural design to luxurious accommodations and beach and water activities makes spending every penny here worth it!
Don’t you wish to glimpse this wonderful creature of the modern age with your own eyes too?
Address: 12th Mile, Jalan Pantai, Port Dickson, Negeri Sembilan
Malaysia is home to some of the most stunning architecture in Asia. There are so many awe-striking buildings as well as temples, mosques and historical buildings which make visiting Malaysia a well-worth trip. Malaysia’s architects have done their jobs excellently and provided not only their country but the world with some of the best pieces of architecture to behold.
Don’t you also wish to witness this diverse range of stunning creations of architecture while visiting a marvellous country like Malaysia?
If you enjoyed reading about the top architectures of Malaysia, check out our other blogs for more Travel Inspirations. Leave a comment and share your story because we would love to hear from you!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is the famous architecture in Malaysia?
Some of Malaysia’s most famous examples of architecture include the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur, the Sultan Abdul Samad Building in Kuala Lumpur, and the Kek Lok Si Temple in Penang. These buildings showcase a mix of traditional Malaysian styles with modern influences.
What is the architectural heritage of Malaysia?
Malaysia’s architectural heritage blends various cultures, including Malay, Chinese, Indian, and European influences. Traditional Malay architecture features wooden houses on stilts with intricate carvings and designs, while Chinese architecture is characterized by ornate roofs and colourful decorations. Indian architecture is known for its intricate carvings and bright colours, while European architecture can be seen in colonial buildings such as the British-inspired Kuala Lumpur Railway Station.
What is the traditional architecture in Kuala Lumpur?
The traditional architecture in Kuala Lumpur is a mix of Malay, Chinese, and Indian influences. The most iconic example is the Malay house, which features a steeply pitched roof, raised floors, and intricate wood carvings. Other notable styles include the Chinese shophouse, its narrow frontage and ornate façade, and the Indian colonial bungalow, which blends European and Indian design elements.
What is vernacular architecture of Malaysia?
The vernacular architecture of Malaysia refers to the traditional architectural styles and techniques developed over time by the local communities. It uses natural materials such as timber, bamboo, and thatch and features elements such as raised floors, pitched roofs, and open verandas to suit the tropical climate. Examples of vernacular architecture in Malaysia include traditional Malay houses, Chinese shophouses, and Indian bungalows.
What are the features of Malaysian architecture?
The notable features of Malaysian architecture are a complex mix of Islamic design, colonial control, and Asian traditions elements. They also have mediating interior and exterior space due to the humid tropical climate of the country.
What is the most famous architectural design in Malaysia?
The most famous architectural design that Malaysia is known for worldwide is the Petronas Twin Tower, located in its Capital city of Kuala Lumpur.
What is Malaysia’s most iconic historical building?
The most iconic historical building in Malaysia is the Sultan Abdul Samad Building. It is located in Kuala Lumpur and is a distinguished landmark of the country.
What are the 5 famous mosques in Malaysia?
The top 5 mosques in Malaysia which are most popular for their architecture are the Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah Mosque, Kapitan Keling Mosque in Penang, Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin Mosque in Putrajaya, Putra Mosque in Putrajaya and National Mosque of Malaysia in Kuala Lumpur.
What is the tallest building in Malaysia?
Warisan Merdeka Tower is the tallest building in Malaysia and the second tallest in the world.
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