Sabah is located on the northern part of the Borneo Island, the third largest island in the world. It has a land mass of 73,619 square kilometres, which is just slightly bigger than the Washington state of USA. Two thirds of Sabah shoreline are surrounded by seas and with its long shoreline, it also comes with many tropical islands, as many as one hundred, which range from the habitable big ones to exotic tiny ones.
Last century a prize winning book called “Land Below the Wind” which was written by celebrated American writer Agnes Keith, has created a lot of interest from the Western world to explore this wonderful mysterious land. Today with avid promotion done by the state government in many developed countries and also via words of mouth, Sabah is fast becoming the popular choice for an ultimate tropical vacation.
Ten Best Destinations at West Coast, Sabah, including popular destination like Kinabalu park, the marine park and the butterfly park.
Popular open air seafood restaurant at Seri Selera, located right in the middle of the city.
Kinabatangan river, with a length of 560km, is the longest river in Sabah. It stretches, from the interior of Sabah all the way to its river mouth which opens out to the Celebes sea. The river runs eastward most of the time. The floodplain of Kinabatagan, the largest in Malaysia, is a refuge to the many wildlife in Sabah, as most parts of Kinabatangan forests have been converted to palm oil plantations. These small corridor of riverine forests are all but the only place left for the wildlife to move around. WWF, a conservation organisation, reckons this is one of the two places on earth where one can watch 10 primate species at a single place, some of these animals like Proboscis monkey and the Borneo Pygmy Elephants are endemic to the Borneo Island. Lonely planet guide book even mentions that Kinabatangan area is Malaysia’s gift to the world for its wildlife and nature. This is of no surprise that in 1920 the Johnson family from Kansas, USA came to Kinabatangan, North Borneo (now Sabah), to document and film the wildlife and native people.
An old house with a rich history at the western hill of Sandakan town.
After paying the entrance fee, and walk through a small hut that acts like a time travel portal, visitors are transported back in time to a period that resembles the British era of North Borneo from 1930 to 1950. Upon passing a small garden with its well kept lawn, a beautiful and charming British style colonial house appears and it is begging for the visitors to come in for an historical experience. This house,“Newlands”, was once occupied by the Great American writer, Agnes Keith. She even wrote her award winning book, Land Below the Wind which described her Borneo experiences, at this very house. Apart from Land Below the Wind, she also wrote two other books, namely Three Came Home, and White Man Returns. These three books help to promote Borneo and in particularly Sabah tremendously to the Western World. Restoration of the house was started in 2001 by Sabah Museum, and in 2004 the house was opened to the public. In honour of Agnes work the Malaysian government has named the house Agnes Keith House, a special tribute to this award winning American authoress.
A five days travel itinerary that will help you to explore the West Coast of Sabah.
This year Borneo International Marathon, dubbed the beautiful run, is going to be held on 11th October, 2009. Registration starts on 2nd March, 2009, contact the organiser for more information. The Borneo International Marathon is a long-distance running event with an official distance of 42 kilometres that is run as a road race.
International runners are most welcome to join the Borneo International Marathon, after the race, they are welcome to spend sometime in Sabah to enjoy Sabahan warmest hospitality. Local runners who are keen on becoming a marathon runner can take up this opportunity to try out such a race, before venturing into other marathons outside Malaysia.
Besides the Full Marathon Open Category where participants must be 18 years and above, the Borneo International Marathon is also divided into a few other categories. One of the categories is the Veteran Full Marathon for participants age 40 and above. Also in the programme are the Open Half Marathon and Veteran Half Marathon, both categories will need participants to complete a 21 kilometres run. There is also a 10 Kilometres Race for 10 years old and above, as well as a 10 Kilometres Veteran that comes with 2 hours limit time frame. Note: The Full and Half Marathon events are both sanctioned by SAAA under the IAAF Rules.
A three hours drive through picturesque padi fields and lush green forests toward the north of Kota Kinabalu, will inevitably lead one to the Tip Of Borneo, which is about 40 kilometres from Kudat. Ever since the road to the Tanjung Simpang Mengayau, the local named for Tip of Borneo, was sealed a few years back, and proper facilities like car park, cafeteria, and toilet are in place, this wilderness headland at the northwestern most tip of Borneo island has become a very popular spot for both locals and tourists alike.
From the car park a small clay paver road, dotted with many Rungus’ motifs, leads to the promontory, which is decorated by a truncated globe monument and a flagpole. The truncated globe monument seems like an eye-catching point for many visitors, as many of them are seen happily queuing up to take photos with the shorten globe for remembrance.
Located at the foothill of Mt.Kinabalu, and just a short distance from the Kundasang food and vegetable market, lies this mysterious fort called the Kundansang War Memorial. Kundasang is a small town on the edge of the Mt. Kinabalu National Park, about 70km from Kota Kinabalu City. Because of its temperate climate, Kundasang is famous for its vegetables, and there are numerous resorts and lodges that dot around the hill slopes. These resorts and lodges are great for holiday getaway and most of them command a great view of Mt. Kinabalu.
Kota Kinabalu, dub the Rainforest City, is undoubtably the most alive and active city in the whole of Borneo island. Everything is packed within 10km of the city radius. Hotels, Resorts, Malls, shopping centres are just a stone throw away from each others, and the Airport is only about 6km from the City. Nightlife in KK is definitely the finest in Borneo, Pubs, disco, cafe, restaurants lot of places for the party animals to last until the wee hours in the morning. A wide variety of foods from different cultures can be found here too, Chinese, Western, Japanese and local are a plenty. Seafood restaurants are hot venue here, night after night I see tons of Local and tourist alike willing to pack up this places and they left with a happy price tag too.