Since getting malaria (My strain was called "p.vivax"), I have taken the anti-malaria meds so I didnt get the other strains in my travels. I had no significant side effects.
Trust me, you do not want to get malaria. If that army doc hadn't happened along, it coulda killed me and it was seriously unpleasant unlike something like the flu which is merely a discomfort.
I did get mine in the jungle of Belize. Before my trip, I inquired of the local health dept what I should take and they never mentioned malaria. Later, they told me they thought i was going to some resort on the coast and not wandering in the jungle looking for caves.
However, I see that the type of skeeters that cause p. vivax can also be found on the coast.
The med side effects are minimal. the disease is a killer.