The first recorded Jews showed up in Malaysia in the late 1800’s. The Jewish population in Malaysia never exceeded 200. Most Jews settled in Penang, and almost all the Jews have since left. In 2009 there was one old Jewish man 87 years old supposedly still in Penang. There is an old Jewish Cemetery in Penang. I did not go there to visit, as I like to see ‘live’ Jewish communities not ‘dead’ ones.
Malaysia is not one of my favorite places. They don’t like Israel or Jews very much. However, the country is large and diverse. You could go to a village were the locals will be out of touch with politics and accept you if you are a nice person.
There is some beautiful nature in Malaysia, however it has been disappearing quickly. Coral is destroyed by dynamite fishing and rain forest is cut down to make way for palm trees. If you do plan on going, the sooner the better as it’s hard to say how long a naturally beautiful place will be around.
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