The National Mosque of Malaysia - how to visit and what to know before you go (Kuala Lumpur)
You can’t miss Malaysia’s uniquely modern National Mosque. The Masjid Negara, which is located right in the center of Kuala Lumpur, looks like no mosque I’ve ever seen before! The space-age modern architecture of the prayer hall looks something like an unfurled umbrella, and the interior is bathed in the colored light from stained-glass windows.
Malaysia is an officially Muslim country, so it’s no surprise that the country’s national mosque is fittingly grand. Visitors, even non-Muslims, are welcome to visit the National Mosque during certain hours. Here’s what you need to know about the National Mosque of Malaysia before you go.
Where is Malaysia’s National Mosque?
Masjid Negara, the National Mosque of Malaysia, is located in the center of Kuala Lumpur. The mosque is located just across from the Islamic Arts Museum and within walking distance to the Bird Park and National Planetarium.
How to get to the National Mosque in KL
You can reach the National Mosque on foot from Masjid Jemak Station and Central Market, but there is also a free (red line) bus (GoKL) that runs to the mosque from KL Sentral Station.
Alternately, take a taxi for a few ringgit from the city center.
Masjid Negara, the National Mosque of Malaysia
Jalan Perdana, Tasik Perdana, 50480 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Can non-Muslims visit Malaysia’s National Mosque?
Non-Muslims are welcome to visit Malaysia’s National Mosque during certain visiting hours. Visitors are asked to follow certain rules, such as adhering to a strict dress code and removing their shoes. If you are not wearing proper clothes, you will be lent a hooded robe to wear when entering the mosque. Women must keep their heads covered inside the mosque.
Photography is allowed during visiting hours, and there are guides on hand to answer any questions that you have about the mosque.
When can tourists visit the National Mosque of Malaysia?
Non-Muslims are not allowed to visit the mosque during daily prayers and are restricted to certain visiting hours. All visitors are welcome during visiting hours, which vary by day.
What to know about visiting the National Mosque in Kuala Lumpur
The National Mosque was built in 1965 to celebrate Malaysian unity and independence. The architecture of the mosque is a sign of its time, built in a modern style that looks beautifully retro today. The prayer hall is built in the shape of a 16-pointed star, and the minaret rises an impressive 73 meters above a sparkling fountain.
The prayer hall is big enough to hold 15,000 worshipers at any given time.
There is a small museum inside the mosque that tells about the architecture, construction, and history of the building.
Non-Muslims cannot enter the prayer hall, but may take photographs from the outside. Visitors are free to walk around and explore the beautiful mosque and surrounding gardens.
The National Hero’s Mausoleum
Behind the mosque is the Makham Pahlawan, the National Hero’s Mausoleum. Here, Malaysian national heroes, including former prime ministers, are interred in a place of supreme honor at the National Mosque.