While many have heard of the Land Below the Wind and Kota Kinabalu, this article highlights the Best Places to Visit in Sabah for 2015. This year is also Malaysia Year of Festivals 2015 and the entire nation will be celebrating this event throughout the year and Sabah over in East Malaysia has some pretty amazing places to visit for MyFest2015. While Sabah offers multiple areas for tourism, you should plan your trip in order to make the best of your Sabah visit.
|Sandakan City Panoramic Photo (Click to see large)|
|Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Center in Sandakan|
|The new Sepilok Nursery|
|The oldest stone church in Sabah here in Sandakan|
A heritage city walk is available for those interested in the history of Sandakan while everyday life in the city is a must experience, especially the Sandakan Wet Market which is divided into the dry section and the fish market. This also one of the best places to buy fresh seafood in Sandakan.
Food in Sandakan is easily available around the main town area and also at Mile 4 area. Local hawker food is found around the main town area and seafood restaurants are popular around Mile 4. A notable place to explore is the Prima Square Area at Mile 4 in Sandakan which is the latest development here. A lot of cafes, restaurants and bars are found here. A recommended place is called SS2 Prima. For additional information, you can also read my previous article on 10 Things to do in Sandakan.
|Teck Guan Cocoa Museum in Sandakan|
|Salt Fish at the Tawau Market|
There are a few areas where the seafood restaurants in Tawau are located at. For foodies, you must also try the famous Pisang Cheese in Tawau or the Banana Fritters with Cheese as this is one of the local unique foods here.
Tawau was once known as the cocoa empire, and today, the farmers are still producing this. One of the forefathers of Cocoa can be seen at the Teck Guan Cocoa Factory here. A visit to this interesting museum will open your eyes to the cocoa world. Among other interesting and fun attractions around Tawau is the Lost World of Sabah or Maliau Basin, where it is a shorter route here compared to Kota Kinabalu. Maliau Basin is a highly protected conservation area where serious hikers, trekkers and nature lovers should visit. It's the rainforest of rainforest, the best Sabah has to offer.
|Tawau Seafood choices, some unique dishes available|
|Tabin Wildlife Resort, Lahat Datu|
|Danum Valley Canopy Walk|
Another very special place in Sabah is also Danum Valley which is 70 kilometres west of Lahad Datu. Called the Danum Valley Conservation Area, this is also one of the highlighted nature and wildlife places in Sabah having being known as the only luxury resort in the middle of the rainforest. When I say luxury, this is of course the international standards of luxury and not your usual luxury resorts.
Getting here overland will easily take you 3-4 hours via four wheel drive and it is well worth the journey as you will pass pristine rainforest spotting a variety of wildlife, flora and birds. A must-visit place if you love all things nature, wildlife and birds.
The star attraction here is the very unique Canopy Walk at Danum Valley which stretches from tree to tree and where one can spend the whole morning observing nature and of course the many birds found here. Many bird watchers are known to come here to spot a number of the endemic birds found in Borneo.
|Mabul Island, off Semporna|
To get here, one needs to fly into Tawau and take a taxi to the laid back seaside town of Semporna and then a 30 minute boat ride here. Attractions on Mabul Island are the lodges and resorts built over the waters and also the luxurious water bungalows give you the feel of being in the Maldives. The island is so small, it takes only 20 minutes to walk from one end to the other. Islanders or the Sea Bajaus make this island home therefore you will have the opportunity to witness the local lifestyle here.
|A Green Turtle seen around Mabul Island|
|Maliau Basin in Sabah|
|Maliau Basin, Sabah|
A trip to Maliau Basin is usually booked through specialized tour agents in Kota Kinabalu. You can also find Maliau Basin Packages from recommended online sites from Malaysia too.
Again, a reminder that this place is not recommended for those with any medical condition and moreover, there are no clinics, shops or restaurants here, while the nearest village is hours away.
The time it takes to get to the entrance of Maliau Basin from KK is about 3-4 hours while from Tawau, it is about 2.5 to 3 hours. From the entrance to the base camp is another one to two hours off road drive on the former logging roads.
Kota Kinabalu City
|Kota Kinabalu City, vibrant and exciting|
|Gaya Street Market on Sunday|
Apart from the city, one can do a some nature walks at the KK Wetlands or even at the Sabah Museum Botanical Gardens. For an amazing view of the city, visitors can trek up to Signal Hill Observation Point in town during the evening to photograph the much talked about amazing KK sunsets. This is one of the recommended places to see KK city and the sunsets.
|Hard Rock Cafe Kota Kinabalu Rock Shop|
Other notable places in the city include KK times Square and the existing KK Waterfront. Food is also a popular must-have while here as there are numerous seafood restaurants found around the city. A great place to explore for food is around the Gaya Street area too.
|Mount Kinabalu Peak seen from the Kinabalu Park|
|A mountain squirrel|
Around the entrance area, you can also visit the Kinabalu Park Museum which has some interesting information of flora and fauna. Bird Watching is also a very popular hobby here too so don't be surprised if you see a number of people with huge telephoto lenses walking around the park.
Most pre-arranged trips via tour and travel agents will take you to Kinabalu Park and also to Poring Hot Springs, and if you're lucky, to spot the world famous Rafflesia flower, if it's in bloom.
Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park (TAR Park)
|Manukan Island, Sabah|
The most popular island here would be Manukan Island followed by Mamutik Island where day trips here will let the traveler experience the natural island beauty complete with a lunch before returning back to the mainland in the afternoon. Among the unique activities here, visitors can go trekking or bird-watching while for those wanting to stay here, there is also a resort available. Food is easily available from the many restaurants and cafes on the island while for water sports, there are shops that offer equipment rentals.
|Coral Flyer Island Zipline in KK - Image from www.voicewithin4me.blogspot.com|
|Mount Kinabalu and KK view from Manukan Island|
You can also read an interesting article about Why I Keep re-visiting Sabah featured on popular news website MalaysiaKini. This article was written by me based on my actual experiences at all of the places mentioned in the Best Places to Visit in Sabah for 2015.
Nobody can resist the tranquil sea and white sandy beach of tropical island. Sabah, as a “Maldives of South East Asia”, has dozens of islands open for tourists. Below is the list of Top 10 Islands in Sabah. Each island has its own features and beauty, you may click the Island Name to know more about them.
Your vote and comment will perfect the list, so please feel free to contribute to this open list.
You are welcome to add new item to this list too. However, please allow me to remove item that is irrelevant or unfit for this category. Thank You~
Other Islands of Sabah
There are nearly 400 islands in Sabah, but only some of them are developed for tourism purpose. Below is a list of other islands that travellers can visit.