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Malaysian Holidays For Your Travel Itinerary
Located in Southeast Asia, Malaysia is a hidden gem for those willing to try something new. One of the best ways to experience the culture is to attend one of the many Malaysian holiday celebrations.

Malaysia is a beautiful country made up of 13 federated states located in Southeast Asia. Originally British colonies, Malaysia is now a multicultural and multilingual country with aspects of everyday life drawn from native Malay and British customs. The official language spoken here is Bahasa Malaysia, although Chinese residing in the country speak their own dialects of the Chinese language, and other languages are spoken sporadically as well.

The capital of Malaysia is Kuala Lumpur, and the country's population, spread out among the various states, is about 25 million. Most of the country is Islamic with anyone claiming to be of Malay decent (about 65% of the country) being Muslim. Other religions are also tolerated with Buddhism, Hinduism, Sikhism and Christianity also found in Malaysia. Many of the most interesting celebrations in this country, however, are the Muslim holidays. Visiting the country during these periods can be a great experience.

One celebration in Malaysia that shouldn't be missed is the Moon Cake Festival. Ironically, it is a Chinese holiday made popular by the thousands of Chinese immigrants in residence here. This holiday, which takes place in August, September or October (there are no set dates for Muslim holidays, as they follow calculations from a lunar calendar) was started in the Mongolian dynasty of China. It is celebrated on the 15th day of the eighth moon, and it is held to celebrate the end of the harvest season. The celebration is also associated with paper lanterns. The Moon Cake Festival is celebrated with mooncakes, which are round and about the size of your palm. Flavors range from black bean paste to lotus paste to yellow bean paste, and they are traditionally given to elders to foster better relations.

Another holiday in Malaysia worth experiencing is the Hari Raya Aidilfitri, which is a Muslim holiday where you can meet the King and Queen of Malaysia personally. The line for this privilege can stretch for miles outside the palace in Kuala Lumpur, but is worth the wait. After all, how many opportunities do you get to meet a king? During this holiday, Muslims practice an "open house" where anyone can drop by whether you know the hosts or not and share a feast. The Hari Raya Aidilfitri is one of the most festive of Muslim holidays, occurring after the fasting month of Ramadan.

Witnessing a country wide holiday in Malaysia is an experience not to be missed! Contrary to what you may see in the media, people are generally very friendly.
About the Author
Rick Chapo is with Nomad Journals - makers of travel journals to preserve your travel experiences.
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