The two things you should keep in mind while planning a holiday in Malaysia are the food and the festivals. These two things truly define Malaysian culture in the best way possible. A melting pot of different religions and cultures, it is safe to say that Malaysians have a lot of festivals to celebrate all year round. Irrespective of which festival it is, the interaction among the local Malaysians makes way for a special brew of culture and hospitable warmth that the country is known for, giving birth to the concept of an “open house”.
What is an “Open House”?
If you happen to be in Malaysia during any festival, be sure to attend an “open house” or Rumah Terbuka as the locals call it. Common during Eid, Diwali, Chinese New Year and Christmas in Malaysia, Open House is the perfect example of how well the diverse communities in Malaysia intermingle. Open house literally means the host’s house is open to receive all well-wishers and guests and everyone is invited to attend, regardless of their cultural or religious background. A practice unique to Malaysia, “Open House” is more than just a welcome to someone’s house. It is a way of life here where every race is mutually accepted and respected by all.
True to their hospitable self during “open house”, Malaysians welcome even tourist into their homes and give them an inside peek and a chance to be part of the festivities. Seen as the perfect practice to foster goodwill and renew social ties, it has been followed by the government too. During major festivals, the government houses are open to the public for food and drinks. Your local guide from Locaguide may be able to suggest the best open houses you can attend for an ongoing festival and the dos and don’ts you need to keep in mind. He will be the best person to help you mingle and interact with the locals and other guests.
Get a chance to taste authentic local homemade delicacies and watch performances and cultural dances by the local artists and orchestras in a unique setting. You’ll be surprised how different the experience will be and how closely you can experience a completely new culture.0