A road trip is a lot of fun, but I guarantee you will enjoy yourself more if you prepare for it. Ideally you should be self driving your way, so that you can stop at any location you wish. If you do not have your own transport, you can certainly rent a car from any of the major car-rental agencies. They will even send the vehicle to your hotel, and you can specify where to drop off the vehicle when you are done. If you are a Malaysian with your own car, that would not be a problem.
To get the most out of your road trip, you should do your homework before you start your journey. This is an advice which I myself have occasionally overlooked, and pay the consequence for it. When I say "do your homework", I mean plan in advance where you want to do, and whether your journey is realistic according to the amount of time you have in your hand.
Time in your hands
Time is the most important aspect when planning a road trip. How much time do you have at your disposal for this trip - a few hours, a full day, two days? The amount of time in your hand will determine how far you are able to go. I will expect you to be travelling within a reasonable speed, that is, within the speed limit of highways that you are taking.
Do not for the sake of time compromise on your safety, the safety of your loved ones, and the safety of other road users, by exceeding the speed limit, becoming a risk to yourself and others. Always remember: no destination is so important that it's worth dying to get there. And what benefit you, if you were to die on the road before you reach it?
The speed limit on the North-South Expressway is 110 km per hour. On local roads it is usually around 80 km per hour, occasionally 70 and or 90.
Choosing your destination
Having determined the further you are able to travel for your trip, choose your destination that falls within the maximum radius of that time limit. The closer it is, the longer you have to sightseeing it.
On this website, you will find that places are categorized by state (for example, "Perak") as well as type ("beaches"). The majority of people go by geographic location. You could choose, for example, to explore Ipoh, and all the sightseeing places around it. The other, less used possibility, is to choose a type of location, say beaches, and look for all the beaches in the country. Needless to say, this will be a more challenging endeavour, as you may be taken to far flung locations distant from one another.
With the advent of Global Positioning System (GPS) devices, it takes the guess work and memory work out of travel. On this website, I make frequent use of GPS Navigator in pinpointing location of sights. Rather than relying entirely on your GPS Navigator to show you what's there to see, I find that it is more beneficial to plan in advance all the location you are visiting, and perhaps listing them down on a sheet of paper, with their coordinates. That way, you can sequence the places you are visiting in proper order, and cut down on having to back track. I make use of Google Maps to pinpoint the coordinates which is then displayed on this website for your use.
A good GPS Navigator Device is helpful in getting you around. (30 July, 2016)
What to eat
Some people enjoy creating food trips. Their main purpose is to enjoy food, so they do their homework around what is there to eat. Me, I prefer sightseeing, for I am curious to see what's there to see, so I place my time to see as much as possible. Where food is concerned, we usually bring our own.
We enjoy homecooked food, so we often bring the food we cooked on picnics. The advantage of doing this, is that we never have to worry about not finding a restaurant we like. We are used to stopping anywhere at all, spreading out a mat, and enjoying a picnic under a tree or shelter. Nowadays, we feel that picnicking has gone out of style, but we are happy to bring it back.
Our picnic meal on the road (6 September, 2015)
We stop for our meal just about anywhere, like right here, at this shelter near Padang Rengas. (6 September, 2015)
What to bring
My wife and I tend to pack the house and a half for our road trips, even when we are going somewhere nearby. We have towels, extra clothes, bandages, mosquito repellent, balms, umbrellas, sun hats. We would usually pack a cooler box in the car, where I would have a few packet drinks, chilled with packs of dry ice (these can be reused over and over), another coolbox tumbler of drinking water, plates, cutlery and food. Though we travel often, we still haven't come around to travel light. But since we enjoy doing it this way, this is how we will continue doing it.
Always make sure that your vehicle is in good shape. We take our car to our regular shop for servicing, making sure that the tyres are not balding, the batteries are good - and if they are not, we change them. Taking good car of your vehicle, even when you are not on a road trip, is worth the while, as it cuts down on the likelihood of a breakdown in the middle of nowhere.
If you are driving a rented car, do a thorough examination of the car before starting your journey. If you find something not working properly, you should reject the vehicle and ask for a replacement. When I rent cars for my use, I also take photos for the whole vehicle, front, back and side, so that there is no dispute with the car renting agency afterwards.
Before you start your journey, make sure to fill up the tank. That way, you do not have to waste time searching for a petrol station.
A road trip is a time for you to explore and discover, and my wish is that you get to do it smoothly and with minimal hassle. Through this website, I endeavour to provide you with information on all the places in Malaysia that you can discover. I hope that the information that I have shared will be of help as you embark on your road trip.
Thank you for visiting my website, Penang Travel Tips. Since starting it in 2003, it has become my own online encyclopedia. My name is Timothy Tye, you can call me Tim. I am a full-time website author writing only my own website, to describe things and places I am curious about. To know more about me, go to www.timothytye.com
As a Christian, I hope that through this website, I am able to deliver God's Good News to people all over the world.