Family resorts in Malaysia for an idyllic school break

A family holiday without the stress is possible with these great kid-friendly spots in Malaysia.

The children come first at family resorts in Malaysia. That’s all thanks to the facilities—we’re talking themed bedrooms, on-site water parks and pint-sized spas. Kids’ clubs mean that little ones can make new friends while mum and dad take advantage of the more adult attractions at these family beach resorts, like massage rooms and swim-up bars serving more than just juice.

With Malaysia being the nature lover’s paradise that it is, it’s the perfect place to get little imaginations going among rainforests and magical mangroves. Kids can discover local wildlife from stingrays to fireflies, or you can go the classic route of hitting up huge theme parks with enough attractions to keep them busy until bedtime. You’ll find these family hotels all across the region, from buzzing Kuala Lumpur to beach resorts on sun-soaked Langkawi Island. Whatever you choose, you’re in for a family trip in Malaysia you won’t soon forget.

A LEGOtastic family resort in Malaysia for build-your-own adventures


LEGOLAND Malaysia is a colourful wonderland no matter the age of its guests. Every detail here brings LEGO to life—not only are there water and theme parks with over 70 rides to discover between them, but daily activities for kids include LEGO-centric costume parades and dance parties.

In your family room, every design serves to fire up little imaginations. Take your pick between pirate, Ancient Egyptian, knight and Ninjango-themed spaces. In pirate bedrooms, up to three kids will get their very own area to sleep in, complete with swashbuckling bunk beds and a TV. Skull and crossbones bedding and treasure map rugs will have all your first mates feeling first rate.

When the fun has your brood ready to eat, dig into fresh Japanese food at Kai’s Sushi Bar. While you sip on authentic sake, kids can feel fancy with their own colourful juice creations.

Hotel Legoland Malaysia

Johor Bahru
8.2 Very good (7 reviews)

A family resort in Malaysia with its own beach

When little ones at the Shangri-La’s Rasa Ria Resort and Spa aren’t playing on the private white sand beach, they can take over the on-site kids’ pool. The slippery slides are right next to the adults’ pool, so you can keep an eye on your crew while you take your own refreshing dip. If you’ve dropped them at the kids’ club, head to the spa for a spicy ginger and fragrant lemongrass herbal massage.

There’s plenty to do here, from chilled-out petanque to water sports. Ask at reception about the hotel’s bicycle tours, or magical activities like river excursions and firefly watching. You’ll earn big brownie points as your little ones’ eyes widen in wonder at the golden lights flickering among wildflowers at dusk. You can even tick off that bucket list item of horseback riding on the beach!

Come dinner, fill up on classic Indian dishes like creamy Rogan Josh curry at Naan before retiring to bed. Family rooms can accommodate two adults and two children, so you’ll all be snug as bugs. Take your morning tea on the balcony before running a bath in the free-standing tub before your little monsters awake.

Shangri-La Rasa Ria, Kota Kinabalu

Top rated
Kota Kinabalu
9.2 Excellent (3093 reviews)

Rock climbing and archery at this family resort in Malaysia


Introduce the family to the wilderness of Langkawi at the Four Seasons Resort Langkawi. Spacious family villas have three bedrooms and private pools for splashing around in while tropical birds swoop overhead. There are plenty of opportunities for exploring—the hotel is surrounded by lush rainforest. Take your brood aboard a wildlife tour or go paddling on the private beach.

Family breakfasts are held at Serai. Tuck into tropical fruits, fluffy pancakes with mixed berries or authentic Malay Roti Canai. Kelapa Grill serves child-friendly dishes like wood-fired pizzas at lunch, or you can order room service for intimate family meals right in your villa. All fuelled up, kids can jump right into exhilarating activities like rock climbing, yoga and archery, design their own henna tattoos or take up batik painting. As for family fun, you need only go as far as the sand—hello, beach volleyball!

Should you need some time to yourself, just go for a stroll through the resort’s 48 acres of tropical gardens. Parents can sign up for a decadent Couples Ritual at the spa while the kids are safely within the hands of on-site babysitters.

Four Seasons Resort Langkawi

Tanjung Rhu
9.6 Excellent (576 reviews)

A family resort in Malaysia on its own private island


With its own marina and boardwalk, Hotel Vivanta by Taj is a relaxing getaway in Langkawi with unparalleled ocean views. Start the day with a buffet breakfast stocked with Asian and Western foods at Senari Restaurant, then head to the private beach where the kids can paddle and make sandcastles.

This 94-room hotel is part of the prestigious Taj collection. In nature-inspired rooms, run a bath for the little ones in your luxurious ensuite’s deep soaking tub. Scrubbed and clean, head out to the furnished balcony to name constellations as they appear in the sky.

The next day, embark on the hotel’s Jungle Trails experience to spot local wildlife. Alternatively, the Mangrove Tour lets kids feed a stingray if they dare and explore Langkawi’s ancient mangroves by boat. The hotel also offers bike rentals for family rides along the promenade, or you can hire kayaks for an ocean adventure.

After all that traipsing, parents can get some well-deserved downtime in an ocean-facing cabana at Ulik Mayang Spa. Try the Mayang Signature Therapy, which includes a herbal sauna followed by a wrap, a scrub, a massage and reflexology treatment.

Rebak Island Resort & Marina, Langkawi

Top rated
8.5 Excellent (95 reviews)

A family at a resort in Malaysia set deep in nature


Discover the five-star Philea Resort and Spa in Malacca for a retreat into the rainforest. The hotel’s inspiring setting will encourage little ones to get outside and explore—think towering trees, emerald hills and gentle waterfalls to bring out the adventurer in anyone.

The outdoor swimming pool is fed by its own waterfalls, creating a scenic backdrop for your morning splash. Drop the kids off at Phili Kidz Children’s Club for indoor games, or herd the whole family to Tanjung Wellness Spa for customised pampering. Even your littlest can get in on the self-care, what with body scrubs, manicures and facials included in Prince and Princess spa treatments.

You’ll have air conditioning in your room to keep the kids cool on hot summer days, bathtubs to wage plastic sea battles in and an LCD TV for evenings with Dora the Explorer. When little mouths get hungry, you’ll find poolside snacks throughout the day at Bayu Cabana Restaurant, or you can fill up on Western and Asian fusion foods at Cravo Cravo, open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Philea Resort & Spa

Ayer Keroh
7.4(401 reviews)

A Tioman Island gem of a family resort in Malaysia


Triple rooms, gleaming suites and beach chalets mean there’s plenty of room for everyone at Berjaya Tioman Resort. Suites have cable TV for family movie nights and private balconies for soaking up the sun. In your separate living area, put your feet up on plush sofas while your brood stays cool in the air con.

There’s plenty to do around Tioman Island to get to know the place. The sparklingly clear waters have earned Tioman the title of one of the finest dive sites in Malaysia. The hotel itself hosts a five-star PADI dive centre, so little and large divers alike can check out coral reefs and technicolour fish. Children too young to dive can stare wide-eyed at marine wonders through the floor of a glass-bottomed boat.

For a break from parenting, make use of the hotel’s babysitting service and enjoy an adult meal. There’s Thai food by the beach at Matahari Restaurant, where dishes are flavoured with fresh mint, cilantro and basil, as well as zingy lemongrass. Alternatively, experience authentic Malay cuisine at Sri Nelayan, which also offers a breakfast buffet to fuel everyone up for the day.

Berjaya Tioman Resort

7.8 Good (278 reviews)

Water park thrills at a themed family resort in Malaysia


At the Hotel Sunway Lost World, you’ll be right next to the Lost World of Tambun Theme Park’s pools, rides and shows. Get a taste of the attractions to come from the window of your Family Suite—make sure to rise early to get a good head start for a full day in the park. As for bedtimes, claim the master bedroom for the adults while kids get cosy in two single beds in the living room.

When you’re not exploring the theme park, there are plenty of places to take it easy at the hotel. Adults can savour moments of quiet in the bubbling hot tub, or soak up the sun from a poolside lounger as kids make waves in the children’s splash pad.

For extra pampering, seek out the spa hidden within the theme park. The rich mineral springs will soothe muscles tired from water slides and detoxify your skin. To up the indulgence, book yourself a deep tissue massage and mentally check out for a while.

Sunway Lost World Hotel

7.8 Good (944 reviews)

The kid-approved family resort in Malaysia's capital


Experience all the sights of Kuala Lumpur through the eyes of a child at the Sunway Resort Hotel and Spa. It belongs to Sunway City, an enormous complex that houses a theme park and mall. Children will be kept entertained at the Kidz ‘R’ Us Club, with the help of swimming pool sessions, cupcake decorating classes and cheerful clowns. Meanwhile, mum and dad can take a lazy dip in the pool or check out the Balinese spa.

Premier Park View rooms can comfortably accommodate families of four, with super cosy cotton linen and views of the adrenaline-pumping slides and rides at Sunway Lagoon Theme Park. Let the kids choose which popular attraction they want to explore first: the wildlife park, the Nickelodeon Lost Lagoon or the hair-raising Scream Park.

The hotel restaurant, the Resort Café, has a range of Malaysian and Asian cuisines ready to order when tummies rumble. Try something different every day, from Western-style grilled meats to towers of chilled, fresh fruit great for fussy appetites.

Sunway Resort Hotel

Top rated
Bandar Sunway
8.6 Excellent (1324 reviews)

A family resort in Malaysia with over-water villas


You’ll find Pangkour Laut Resort on the private island of Pangkour Laut. Contemporary villas either hide away in the trees for rainforest-style privacy or stand proudly in the gentle surf on stilts—children will love the novelty of sleeping above the water.

If you’re celebrating a special occasion with the family, opt for one of the hotel’s Estates. These private complexes have their own butler on call, so you can order in a prepared meal without ever leaving the pool (though the separate dining pavilion might be a comfier snack spot).

Set some time aside for a treatment or two at the Belian Spa Pavilion. While you’re getting massaged right into heaven, the hotel will keep the kids busy with organised activities and two swimming pools. There’s a babysitting service too, so parents can have some alone time together in the evenings, or just smash out a workout at the gym, tennis or squash court if you prefer.

When it comes to dining, there’s a mouthwatering selection of restaurants to choose from. At Uncle Lim’s Kitchen, tuck into traditional Chinese bites while watching the sun set over the sea. All dishes put richly flavourful Malaysian ingredients to good use.

Pangkor Laut Resort - Small Luxury Hotels of the World

7.7 Good (484 reviews)

Dreamy beach life at a family resort in Malaysia


The Lotus Desaru Beach Resort sits directly along a long curve of photo-friendly sand in the Kota Tinggi region. There are plenty of outdoor activities to enjoy here, from beach volleyball to games of giant checkers.

Sign the kids up for treasure hunts, ‘sandy soccer’, sandcastle building or even paintball. And we haven’t even mentioned the water park yet! Let your brood expend their energy on the falling coconut ride, keep them within sight on the lazy river or swing by the Aqua Play area.

All that fun is sure to make the whole family hungry, which is just as well because every Friday there’s an all-you-can-eat Hawker and Steamboat dinner. Celebrate the eclectic flavours of Malaysian cooking with dishes like Penang assam laksa—that’s thick-cut noodles in a spicy, deliciously sour tamarind broth.

You’ll find accommodation at the resort in the form of one, two, three or four-bedroom apartments for a home-away-from-home feel. Throw together a communal dinner in the kitchenette if you prefer to swap restaurants for family-style meals on your private balcony, then cuddle up in front of the TV for a shared film with a pot of post-dinner tea.

Lotus Desaru Beach Resort & Spa

7.4(811 reviews)