Sabah Tourism

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Adventure | Hills & Valleys 

Sabah Travel Essentials



Ideal duration: 3 - 4 days

Best Time: January - April Read More

Major Airports: Kota Kinabalu International Airport

"A Tropical Paradise"

Sabah, Malaysia

Sabah is a state in Borneo Island of Malaysia. Being an island state, it has a lot to offer to its adventurous travellers. The state is packed with rugged surface, lush green rainforests, diverse flora and fauna, magnificent mountains and a trove for divers and is well-suited for eco-tourism. Sabah is a perfect place to visit for nature and adventure lovers. It is home to Mount Kinabalu, second highest peak in Southeast Asia.

Majority of the state is forest land. The prime destination of Sabah is Mount Kinabalu - the highest mountain in Malaysia, and Tunku Abdul Rahman Park which includes five islands with prominent marine life. Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre is one of the world’s famous places to catch sight of the Orangutans in their natural habitat. Turtle Islands, a group of three islands- Selingaan, Little Bakkungan and Gulisaan can be easily reached by a boat from Sandakan. Danum Valley Conservation Area is an ideal place for the adventurous hearted for trekking, birdwatching, river swimming and jungle treks. Beach-lovers can visit Pulau Sipadan and snorkel and dive at.

Sabah is diverse in terms of culture, ethnicity and language. There are about 42 different ethnic groups and over 200 dialects but Malay is the main language spoken by the natives. Sabah is famous for its unique musical instrument called Sompoton. The culture of Sabah is diverse due to its diverse ethnicity. This shows itself in the different architecture of the houses of different ethnic groups like Bisaya house, Bijau house, Dusun Longhouse and Illanun house. If you wish to experience Sabah’s Culture, you can visit the Borneo Cultural Village which gives an insight into Sabhan Culture with its cultural performances, food and way of living. The state also observes several festivals and is the only state to declare Kaamatan as a public holiday. Some major festivals celebrated are: Borneo Eco Film Festival, Borneo Bird Festival, Kota Kinabalu Food Fest and Bon Odori Festival.

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Need to Know

  • There are separate immigration rules and restrictions for Sabah with the state’s autonomy. Tourists are suggested to read about the immigration rules for Sabah. Even the Malaysians and Non-Sabahans are expected to show identity cards and are not allowed to stay in the state for more than 90 days at a time. 
  • If going to Mount Kinabalu, pre-book your permits for the climb due to a fixed number of permits being allotted per day. It is mandatory to hire a professional guide while climbing Mount Kinabalu.
  • There are several ATMs throughout the state especially in major cities. The ATMs are Mastercard and Visa compatible. Do carry enough cash for day to day expenditure. 
  • Pickpocketing and petty crimes are common in the state of Sabah. Make sure that you don't leave your belongings unattended. 

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