Malaysia is a Southeast Asian country occupying parts of the Malay Peninsula and the island of Borneo. It's known for its beaches, rainforests and mix of Malay, Chinese, Indian and European cultural influences. The capital, Kuala Lumpur, is home to colonial buildings, busy shopping districts such as Bukit Bintang and skyscrapers such as the iconic, 451m-tall Petronas Twin Towers.
Malaysia has its origins in the Malay kingdoms which, from the 18th century, became subject to the British Empire, along with the British Straits Settlements protectorate. Peninsular Malaysia was unified as the Malayan Union in 1946. Malaya was restructured as the Federation of Malaya in 1948 and achieved independence on 31 August 1957.
The highest point in Malaysia is Mount Kinabulu, on Borneo Island, at the height of 13,435 feet. UNESCO has even recognized this peak to be a World Heritage Site
Malaysia is a multicultural society. The main ethnic groups are the native Malays as well as large populations of Chinese, and Indians. When visiting the country it is clear that the ethnicities retain their religions, customs and way of life. The most important festivals of each group are public holidays.
Malaysia's persistent drive to develop and upgrade its infrastructure has resulted in one of the most well-developed infrastructure among the newly industrializing countries of Asia.
Malaysia's road network is one of the most comprehensive in Asia and covers a total of 144,403 kilometers (89,728 mi). The main national road network is the Malaysian Federal Roads System, which span over 49,935 km (31,028 mi). Most of the federal roads in Malaysia are 2-lane roads. In town areas, federal roads may become 4-lane roads to increase traffic capacity.