Sabah, is still considered as one of the hidden gems in Malaysia despite by nature it has such breathtaking and amazing sightseeing you would remember your whole lifetime. Historically, Sabah obtained its name from the early human civilisation who planted many ‘Saba plantations’ which is a type of banana plant near to the beach area as a source of living.
Sabah, is part of East Malaysia and located on the northern part of Borneo Island. It is the second largest state in Malaysia sharing the coastlines with Sarawak, Brunei and also the Kalimantan part of Indonesia.
It would be an amazing discovery if you have a chance to visit Sabah because of its nature diversity which includes crystal clear water on most of the beaches witnessing stunning sunsets, a definite tropical paradise for beach lovers with a relatively secluded feeling.
One of the top 10 dive sites in the world is also located in Sabah, the world class Sipadan Island. We would recommend Dive junkie to include Sipadan in their dive list but yet, as it is a special place to dive, the numbers of dives per day is also permitted to a maximum of 120 dives only based on the permits that each diver has to book in advance. This is due to the extinction of sea turtles and we would like to preserve the areas for these sea turtles roam freely and not to feel endangered in the sea. Unfortunately, there are only a few places in the world that have such concentration of sea turtles.
See up close and personal with Orang Utans or even Proboscis Monkeys. Unfortunately, due to the inconsiderate thinking of development of deforestration in Borneo in the past, most of the amazing animals in the world are slowly extincting from our lonely planet. It would be nice to come and visit the Sepilok Orang Utan Rehabilitation centre as well as the Kinabatangan River to see these animals. You will definitely have a different feeling because one is in the rehab centre while the other is spotting the wildlife while cruising the river in a boat.
For those cultural lovers, stop by at the Marimari Cultural Village to be entertained with 5 different tribes in 1 village. Learn the lifestyles, cultures and history about the early Borneo life. You will not be bored as there will be nice performance and even slots to try the lunch, tea or dinner routine food by these tribes. We can assure you that this is not a common experience elsewhere.
We had to wait until the last for the best before introducing you to the famous Mount Kinabalu as well as the Kinabalu Park. A place that has been in the eyes of the world for many years without knowing its location which is part of Malaysia. Mount Kinabalu is the highest mountain in Malaysia which includes the montane alpine meadows similar to the Alps. The summit heights at 4,095 metres above sea level and has been awarded as UNESCO World Heritage status. Try out hiking here as they have numbers of hiking terrain from the easiesr to the most difficult paths.
Before heading back home, the most famous souvenir which is a must buy in Sabah would be the Sabah Pearls. 2 types of pearls that are commonly sold most of the places in Sabah including the Filipino Market in Kota Kinabalu would be the cultured pearls obtained from oysters bred in freshwaters and the Marine pearls obtained from oysters that grows in the sea. Just a reminder, be weary of the imitation and fake pearls out there.
Hope that during the visit to Sabah, you will not miss delicious food including the freshest and cheapest seafood as Sabah is sorrounded by the sea eventually. Other than the best seafood, try out the varities of noodles here such as the Tuaran Noodle, beef noodle, latok (a type of seaweed) or even be adventurous to eat the butod, a type of sago worm which can be eaten both cooked or live while it is still squirming. Unfortunately, we are not brave enough to eat a worm though. Hahaha…
Finally, the best time in our opinion to visit Sabah east coast beaches would be August and September before they turn into a rainy pot. But alternatively, October and November would be an ideal time to be in Kota Kinabalu as it is much drier during this time of the year.