Chow Kit And Sabah On NYT’s 52 Places To Go In 2020

If you’re looking for a place to visit this year, look no further! Just pop over to the bustling district of Chow Kit, or the captivating island of Borneo, as both places just made it into the New York Times 52 Places To Go in 2020!

The annual list compiled but the highly acclaimed American newspaper provides a comprehensive list of places that travelers would not want to miss out on this year. The NYT described the places picked “to inspire, delight and motivate you to explore the world.”

We’ve always known that Malaysia has a lot to offer, from its unique natural landscape to its unique cultural heritage. But this year, Malaysia set the bar even higher by being one of only two countries in South-east Asia to make the list, the other being Cambodia.

chow kit and sabah on nyt’s 52 places to go in 2020Photo: The Culture Trip

Described as “an underappreciated neighborhood that receives a dose of fresh style and energy”, Chow Kit in Kuala Lumpur is 20th in the list of destinations to visit worldwide. Visitors are recommended to stay in two recently opened hotels, the 113-room Chow Kit hotel, designed by the Brooklyn-based Studio Tack and Momo’s, a wallet friendly alternative, both of which gave “the gritty, underappreciated red-light district” a fresh new vibe.

Ranking not far below is Sabah, which was ranked 28 out of 52 in the list and described as a biodiversity hotspot that offers “diverse experiences while still being largely off the tourist map.” Not only known for its primeval forests and  flourishing wild life, Sabah definitely offers a travel experience like no other.

chow kit and sabah on nyt’s 52 places to go in 2020Photo: mountkinabalu.com

“Adrenaline junkies can climb Mount Kinabalu and go diving with sharks off the Semporna coast. Beach lovers should head to Gaya Island, a short ferry ride from the capital of Kota Kinabalu,” the article said.

But Sabah’s biggest attraction still has to be the once in a lifetime opportunity to witness the endangered orangutans in its natural habitat. 

chow kit and sabah on nyt’s 52 places to go in 2020Photo: journeymalaysia.com

“Cruise along the Kinabatangan River in small boats to glimpse the apes, as well as pygmy elephants, crocodiles and proboscis monkeys. Or head to the Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Center, which has been rescuing orphaned orangutans from forest fires and poachers since 1964.”

Besides Malaysia, Kampot in Cambodia came in at number 23, and is the only other Asean destination mentioned in the list.

The top 10 travel destinations in the New York Times list includes US capital Washington DC; the British Virgin Islands; Rurrenabaque in Bolivia; Greenland in Denmark; Australia’s Kimberley Region; Paso Robles in California (USA); Sicily in Italy; Salzburg in Austria; Tokyo in Japan; and Caesarea in Israel.

In light of the Visit Malaysia Year 2020 campaign, will you be visiting two of Malaysia’s must go places in 2020?

By: Siti Farhana Sheikh Yahya