5 student townships in Malaysia

Liveability, affordability and a plethora of job opportunities – all these wrapped up for a great student experience

© Pixabay via Pexels

According to data from the Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia (MoHE, Education Guide 15th Edition), the country is home to 20 public universities, 47 private higher institutions, and 10 foreign university branch campuses.

While universities create a new student culture, student townships have all the necessary ingredients to cater to the students’ needs. Affordability, connectivity, and facilities that are within the universities’ catchment area offer the best experience for students.

If you are on the fence about where to study in the country, we’ve mapped down top 5 student townships in Malaysia. Let’s dive in!

1. Bandar Sunway – Subang Jaya, Selangor

Sunway Pyramid. © Wikipedia Commons

Bandar Sunway is famous for the iconic lion’s head of the Sunway Pyramid.  Besides retail and commercial facilities, this township is known for many private higher institutions such as

  • Sunway University
  • Monash University Malaysia
  • and Taylor’s University (Lakeside Campus).

It has a diverse student community made up of local and international students – regardless of nationality. Its easy access to public transportation and contemporary setting also has positioned Bandar Sunway as a hotspot for any future students who are looking for a college.

Median rental price for a condominium in Bandar Sunway: RM 2,349/ month

Entertainment: Entertainment is within reach in Bandar Sunway. There are many restaurants and cafes that suits the student’s lifestyle. Most eateries offer free Wi-Fi and Instagram-able interior decorations too! The chic and modern concept attracts the millennials and Gen Z who are always up for the latest trend!

Getting around:  Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) connects the Sunway commercial area to train stations. The service runs from Sunway-Setia Jaya to USJ 7 LRT station. It passes through many hot spots such as Sunway Pyramid, Sunway Medical Centre and universities. Thus, this makes it easier for students at Monash University and Taylor’s Lakeside Campus to commute as it offers a seamless ride.

Also, the USJ 7 LRT station (Kelana Jaya Line) makes it more convenient for commuters to travel to other parts of Sunway or Subang Jaya, and KL downtown. Not only it’s affordable, the BRT and train lines also beat the traffic during peak hours!

2. Seksyen 7 – Shah Alam, Selangor

i-City. © Stephan Fussan/ Wikipedia Commons

Seksyen 7 is known for its famous LED-lit park, i-City. This township is an area comprised of educational, residential, commercial, entertainment and also industrial. Furthermore, it is home to

  • UiTM main campus
  • and UNISEL.

The population in this area is made up of university students, families and young professionals. There are also amenities like Shah Alam Hospital and recreational parks where people can jog, cycle and do water activities like kayaking.

Median rental price for a condominium in Shah Alam: RM 1,425/ month

Entertainment: There are selections of restaurants and cafes at Seksyen 7 commercial centre. From mamak to western food, you will never go hungry if you live here. Besides, there are fast food options like KFC and McDonald’s. On the other hand, Setia City Mall offers a broader range of entertainment. It’s about 15km from Shah Alam Seksyen 7 and has always been one of the student hangout spots within the Shah Alam area.

Getting around:  The closest train station is KTM Komuter Padang Jawa station. It is  2 km away from UiTM Shah Alam main campus. It serves Sentul and Port Klang route. On top of that, this station is one of the stops for KL intercity rail service and it passes through KL Sentral. From there, commuters can change to other train lines or bus services.

Not just that, the LRT 3 (Bandar Utama – Klang Line) will further ease Shah Alam people’s journey from the suburb to other parts of Klang Valley.  Upon completion in August 2020, the LRT 3 will serve UiTM and Seksyen 7 stations as well as other commercial areas.

READ: 5 things students ought to know before deciding to rent a house

3. Cyberjaya – Sepang, Selangor

Cyberjaya is located in the Sepang district of Selangor. It is known as Malaysia’s Multimedia Super Corridor. This suburb has a population of 70, 000 people comprise of locals, expats, and international students. More than 50% of the population are people from the 20-44 age group while 12% of the population are international students. Among the top universities in the Cyberjaya area are

  • Limkokwing University of Creative Technology
  • Cyberjaya University College of Medical Sciences
  • and Multimedia University (MMU)

Median rental price for a condominium in Cyberjaya: RM 1, 600/ month

Entertainment: One of the best activities to do in Cyberjaya is cycling. Yes, cycling! Cyberjaya Lakeside offer scenic cycling routes and you can also jog there. If you don’t own a bicycle, they have a bike renting service which is available at a few locations such as Cyberjaya Lakeside Community Club, Shaftsbury Square, and the D’pulze Shopping Centre.

Not just that, you can go to Raycer Powerhouse for the go-kart if you are up for some adventures. Different levels of karts are available for players, depending on their experience in go-karting. Furthermore, there are selections of food in Cyberjaya. From local cuisine to middle eastern delicacies, it sounds like a real gastronomic adventure!

Getting around:  Cyberjaya is about 30 km or about an hour drive away from KL City Centre. It is linked to the city centre and Klang Valley via several highways like

  • ELITE
  • MEX
  • LDP
  • and SKVE

The Cyberjaya Shuttle Nadi Putra allows commuters to travel to most areas in Cyberjaya and it operates from 7 am until midnight. Not just that, the Dedicated Transportation System (DTS) departs from nine locations daily. It connects Cyberjaya to main transportation hub within the Klang Valley, Banting, Klang, and Seremban.

Besides, the ERL is the most convenient transportation mode to get to Cyberjaya. It takes 20 minutes to the Putrajaya Sentral Station from KL Sentral. The Nadi Putra shuttle buses (J02, J05) and RapidKL (U429) will then connect the commuters to Cyberjaya and other parts of Putrajaya.

4. Skudai –Iskandar Puteri, Johor

Skudai is one of Malaysia’s student townships that is located at the southwest of Johor. This suburb of Iskandar Puteri is home to the University Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) campus which was established on April 1, 1975.  Besides that, it is also part of the new corridor of Johor. If you think Skudai is boring, you might want to spend some time to check out the attractions and activities that it has to offer!

Median rental price for a condominium in Skudai: RM 1,100/ month

Entertainment: Among the nearby hotspots are Legoland, Danga Bay, Dataran Bandaraya Johor Bahru, and Johor Premium Outlet. On top of that, Singapore is only a drive away from Johor Bahru. This is a great opportunity to visit the neighbouring country!

Getting around:  There’s no intercity train service in Johor. Students may opt for GRAB, buses from the Skudai bus station or Larkin Sentral, car rental and even flights. Buses from Larkin Sentral has direct services back and north many cities and town in Malaysia.

Besides that, they also offer services in Singapore!  Senai Airport is about 15km from UTM Skudai campus. Hence, it is convenient for local and international students who wish to connect to international flights.

5. GeorgetownPenang

Kapitan Keling Mosque is one of the oldest mosques in Georgetown. © Didier Marti/ gettyimages

Penang’s rich heritage and historical background make it one of the most beautiful places for study. Georgetown is not only one of the UNESCO World Heritage sites, but it also hosts one of the country’s most renowned universities Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM). Not just that, there are several other private colleges such as

  • Penang Medical College
  • SEGi College Penang
  • and KDU Penang University College

Good food, tourist attractions, and rich cultural background. This is a perfect place for students and as you can easily plan for weekend trips and immerse into the local settings. There’s so much opportunity outside the classroom to experience first-hand!

Median rental price for a condominium in Georgetown: RM 1, 800/ month

Entertainment: Georgetown has a wide range of entertainment for everyone. ­­­ You will never get tired of Penang as it offers a vibrant nightlife and delicious local street food. Visit pre-war buildings, art galleries and cafes for an exciting time with friends.

Also, you can visit the temples like Wat Chaiya Mangkalaram and Dhammikarama Burmese Temple that was built in 1803. Besides, don’t miss the chance to get into nature at the Penang National Park. It’s the world’s smallest national park with sandy beaches along its shoreline. You can trek along the trails and if you’re lucky enough, you’ll get to spot dolphins in the sea!

Getting around: USM (Sungai Dua) is easily accessible via the Rapid Penang buses. Rapid Penang buses

  • 301
  • 303
  • 304
  • and 308

connects the USM campus to many major destinations including Sungai Nibong Express Bus Terminal. The terminal is 5 minutes away from the campus and it serves long-distance destinations including Thailand and Singapore. There is also a free bus service within Georgetown that makes it easy to explore Penang. On the other hand, Penang International Airport is about 8.4 from USM and it has direct flights to numerous major destinations around the region.

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Each city and township are popular for different reasons. No matter which area you choose for study, pack your bags and head over to your desired destination. You will definitely come home with unforgettable memories. What other cities and townships are worth exploring? Let us know!

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