Many of you must be aware of the latest Visit Malaysia 2020
campaign logo. The rhinoceros hornbill perched alongside a hibiscus flower and
paku-pakis leaf has been the hottest topic of conversation this week.
While the environmentally inclined logo is a definite
upgrade from the previously garish Visit Malaysia 2020 logo, it did bring out many
grammar Nazis for the phrase “Visit Truly Asia Malaysia”.
Visit Truly Asia Malaysia? My grammar nazi is tingling.. https://t.co/M4OOM9WBCK
— M.Khairi (@mdotkhairi) July 22, 2019
FYI, “Visit Truly Asia Malaysia” is actually grammatically correct. The phrase excludes an article “Visit the Truly Asia Malaysia”, but articles are optional.
(If you don’t believe us, ask your English teacher lah.)
Anyway, with so much interest placed on the Visit Malaysia 2020 logo, we’ve decided to take a trip back in time to look at Visit Malaysia Year (VMY) logos of past years.
Visit Malaysia Year 1990
The entire Visit Malaysia campaign first came to light in
1990 with the theme “Fascinating Malaysia. Year of Festivals”. The campaign was
deemed to be highly successful as Malaysia recorded 7.4 million tourist
arrivals compared to 4.8 million in 1989.
Meanwhile, the logo was very 90s with the Sultan Abdul Samad
building against a ribbon-sun hybrid silhouette and a colourful firework resembling
a tree. The tagline read: “You’ll be fascinated.”
This was also the year Wira the Orang Utan mascot and the “To know Malaysia is to love Malaysia” song were introduced.
Visit Malaysia Year 1994
Spurred by the success of VMY 1990, Visit Malaysia Year 1994
was created with the theme “Fascinating Malaysia. Naturally More.”
This time, the logo was a scaled down version of the 1990
logo. It featured the same Sultan Abdul Samad building against a darker red ribbon-sun
silhouette with no tagline and no firework tree.
Visit Malaysia Year 2007
It took more than a decade – 13 years, in fact- for the next
VMY logo to appear. This time, the Visit Malaysia Year 2007 logo was launched
in conjunction with the 50th Independence Anniversary.
This 2007 logo was simple and colourful with the words “Visit
Malaysia 2007” boldly emblazoned across a white background alongside a
multi-coloured hibiscus flower. As it was also 50 years since merdeka,
the theme of the year “Celebrating 50 years of Nationhood” was included in the
The 2007 tourism campaign included the “The time is now. The
place is Malaysia” slogan together with the iconic “Malaysia Truly Asia” slogan.
Visit Malaysia Year 2014
2014 marked the year of a new avatar of the VMY logo. This time,
the Visit Malaysia Year 2014 campaign was themed “Celebrating 1Malaysia Truly
Asia” to reflect the diversity in unity of Malaysians.
The 2014 logo was cleaner, modern and kinda abstract featuring a 14-point star and the iconic “Truly Asia” tagline.
Wira the Orang Utan was retired and a Proboscis Monkey was chosen
as the mascot.
Visit Malaysia Year 2020- Part 1
Ah, who can forget this eyesore? The first Visit Malaysia Year 2020 was unveiled in 2018 to much, much MUCH criticism for the clip-art style graphics of the Petronas Twin Towers and sunglasses wearing orangutan, proboscis monkey and turtle.
The logo was revealed to be a part of the 2020 Tourism Malaysia theme, “Travel. Enjoy. Respect”.
However, a lot of people hated it. A LOT.
— Peace pollinator ✳️ (@epul2kyu) February 1, 2018
There was even a petition with over 13,000 supporters for Tourism Malaysia to stop using the design. It seemed like it worked because we got a new logo….
Visit Malaysia Year 2020- Part 2
Aaaaaaaaand the mistake has been rectified!
Extremely aware of the unpopularity of the previous VMY 2020
design, Tourism Malaysia introduced a brand-new logo centred around the theme
of The Sustainability of Tourism, Arts and Culture.
This batik-inspired logo was picked out of hundreds of entries after Tourism Malaysia announced a Visit Malaysia 2020 logo competition earlier this year.
The rhinoceros hornbill represents the fauna and
eco-adventures in Malaysia. A red hibiscus flower reflects a celebration of
cultural diversity in Malaysia, playing on the English translation of “bunga
raya” as “flower of celebration”. The paku pakis represents the uniqueness of Malaysian
BONUS: Malaysia Truly Asia
Every single one of us knows the “Malaysia Truly Asia” tune
and slogan. It’s what we secretly sing in our heads when showing around Mat
Salleh friends or not-so-secretly yell at our brothers across the Causeway down
However, “Malaysia Truly Asia” was never an official Visit
Malaysia Year logo. It was just a very nice, very successful tourism marketing campaign
that was launched worldwide in 1999.
Due to its success in luring in curious tourists and perfectly
capturing the essence of Malaysia, the slogan has remained a mainstay in
Malaysia’s promotional efforts ever since.
There you have it. Now you know a little bit about Negaraku’s tourism past.
She puts the pun in Punjabi. With a background in healthcare, lifestyle writing and memes, this lady's articles walk a fine line between pun-dai and pun-ishing.