|Malaysia is a federation of thirteen states located in Southeast Asia.. The country consists of two geographical regions divided by the South China Sea.
Peninsular Malaysia (or West Malaysia) shares a land border on the north with Thailand and is connected by the Johor-Singapore Causeway and the Malaysia-Singapore Second Link to the south with Singapore. West Malaysia consists of nine sultanates (Johor, Kedah, Kelantan, Negeri Sembilan, Pahang, Perak, Perlis, Selangor and Terengganu), two states headed by governors (Malacca and Penang), and two federal territories (Putrajaya and Kuala Lumpur). Malaysian Borneo (or East Malaysia) occupies the northern part of the island of Borneo, bordering Indonesia and surrounding the Sultanate of Brunei. It consists of the states of Sabah and Sarawak and the federal territory of Labuan.
Malaysia obtained its independence from British rule on 31 August 1957, and will be celebrating it's 50th year of nationhood in the year 2007. The name Malaysia was adopted in 1963 when the Federation of Malaya, Singapore, Sabah and Sarawak formed a 14-state federation. Singapore was separated from Malaysia in 1965 and subsequently became an independent country.
Putrajaya is the administrative center of the federal government of Malaysia. Kuala Lumpur, the traditional capital which is affectionately known as KL, is to remain as Malaysia's financial and commercial center.
Malaysia has much to offer for travellers, with its diverse places of interest like tropical islands with its colorful marine life, cool mountain resorts, tropical rainforests etc. There are also many historical sites which reflected Malaysia's past under the colonial rule of the Portuguese, Dutch & Brtish. There are also many man-made landmarks in Malaysia like the Petronas Twin Towers (KLCC), Kuala Lumpur Tower, National Mosque, bird park, butterfly park, etc.
In East Malaysia, tattooing is an integral part of the indegenious clans' culture. It is widely accepted that the modern tribal tattoo that is widely practiced originated from the clans of East Malaysia. Tattoo here is mainly associated with headhunting for men and the coming of age for women. The original tattoo equipment used consists of a tapping mallet and a needle stick, whereby the mallet is used to continuously hit against the needle stick to make the tattoo. Of late, many tattoo shops, studios and parlors have sprung up in both East & West Malaysia which adopted the modern methods of tattooing which are more hygienic. However since tattooing is not regulated in Malaysia, it is recommended that you always check the shop's level of hygiene before settling for a tattoo, as many opportunists have set up shops without even buying an autoclave.