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Places to Visit in Kota Kinabalu – Paradise in Malaysia

By Swathi - July 16, 2020
Kota Kinabalu

Malaysia doesn’t need an introduction. It becomes one of the first few places to tick off your bucket list due to its uniqueness. Apart from witnessing the majestic Petronas Towers, there are many other experiences and places to visit in Malaysia. Some of these offbeat places which you should include in your itinerary are Ipoh, Tioman Island and Kota Kinabalu. Kota Kinabalu is located in Borneo Island in Malaysia. It is a coastal town by itself and is bound by rainforests and beaches. Here is a list of some of the best places to visit in Kota Kinabalu for a great Malaysian vacation.

Places to Visit in Kota Kinabalu City

  1. Mantanani Island
  2. Poring Hot Springs
  3. Mount Kinabalu
  4. Gaya Street Sunday Market
  5. Kota Kinabalu City Mosque
  6. Kokol Hill
  7. Layang-Layang Island
  8. Sapi Island

1. Mantanani Island

With Kota Kinabalu flanked by rainforests, you can imagine the kind of beautiful sceneries that will surround you. Mantanani Island is one of the best places to visit in Kota Kinabalu. You should definitely visit this island if you are on your honeymoon as it has a number of isolated islands. Apart from island hopping you can go on enchanting sunset cruises with your partner. Any island destination is incomplete without visiting the beaches. The pristine white beaches and turquoise blue waters will invite you to spend the day basking under the sun.

Also read: Top 10 Best Beaches In Malaysia You Wouldn’t want to Miss

Mantanani Island
Image source: Google Images

2. Poring Hot Springs

Poring Hot Springs are located slightly further away from the main city of Kota Kinabalu. Not only is this place a hit among the locals but is also visited by a large number of tourists. The healing properties of the waters in the Hot Springs make it one of the best places to visit in Kota Kinabalu for a rejuvenating feel. The minerals which are prevalent in the water will help your muscles relax and unravel knots if any. The entry fee to Poring Hot Springs is around RM 15 and it is open from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Other places which you can visit in the vicinity include the Poring Orchid Conservation Centre and Butterfly Farm.

Also read: The Top 10 Things to Do in Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia

Poring Hot Springs
Image source: Wikimedia Commons

3. Mount Kinabalu

Get ready to witness the tallest mountain in Malaysia! Mount Kinabalu in Kota Kinabalu is every trekking enthusiast’s dream. It is one of the tallest peaks in Southeast Asia and a top place to visit in Kota Kinabalu. As you trek above this mountain, you will witness a variety of flora and fauna indigenous to Southeast Asian alpine regions. It is an easy trek to surpass and the views you will be in for at the summit cannot be explained in words. Poring Hot Springs is located close to Mount Kinabalu and so you can probably combine a visit to both these attractions in your Malaysia itinerary.

Mount Kinabalu
Image source: Unsplash

4. Gaya Street Sunday Market

Sunday Markets across the globe are fun spots to visit. Gaya Street Sunday Market is no different. If you want to experience the local culture, this is one of the best places to visit in Kota Kinabalu. The history of this market dates back to almost a hundred years when it used to be a trading hub. You can purchase Malaysian artwork or food items when you visit this market. The centrally located Gaya Street Sunday Market proves to be the ideal weekend getaway in Kota Kinabalu. You can also visit this place to shop for some authentic Malaysian souvenirs to take back home.

Also read: Top Authentic Delicacies of Malaysia – A Must Try For All Tourists!

Gaya Street Sunday Market
Image source: Wikimedia Commons

5. Kota Kinabalu City Mosque

When you mention about the places to visit in Kota Kinabalu, Kota Kinabalu City Mosque will certainly top the list. The architecture of the mosque will leave you awestruck as it is a perfect blend of modern and Islamic style of architecture. The vicinity of Kota Kinabalu City Mosque is filled with man-made lagoons. When the mosque lights up in the evening, the reflection of the mosque in the waters is a sight to behold. As a tourist attraction, you can visit this mosque from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day except Fridays.

Kota Kinabalu City Mosque
Image source: Unsplash

6. Kokol Hill

Located in close proximity to Mount Kinabalu, Kokol Hill is the ideal place to unwind. If you are with your better half, this is the perfect place to witness a mesmerizing sunset. The otherwise bustling city life and beach getaways might tire you out and this is the place where you can regain all of your lost energy. Away from the flurry of city life, there are also homestay options available in Kokol Hill, making it a unique accommodation when compared to luxurious hotels. When you are able to delve into nature’s bounty, Kokol Hill definitely makes it to the top of the list of best places to visit in Kota Kinabalu.

Kokol Hill near Kota Kinabalu
Image source: Google Images

7. Layang-Layang Island

Layang-Layang Island in Borneo is one of the most beautiful places to visit in Kota Kinabalu. There are various restricted areas located on this island due to which the marine life has been protected to a large extent. Nevertheless, there are some beautiful zones within this island which will leave you in awe of the underwater kingdom. The reefs around Layang-Layang Island serve as perfect scuba diving spots where you might come across hammerhead sharks and other aquatic creatures. Make sure you add this as a must-visit place in your Malaysia trip.

Also read: Must-visit places in Borneo in 2021 which will leave you awestruck!

Marine life in Layang-Layang Island
Image source: Pixabay

8. Sapi Island

Sapi Island is a place where you can look forward to thrilling adventures in Malaysia. The variety that this island offers to you will leave you craving for more. When in an island, the instant thought that pops up in your head will be of water activities like snorkelling and scuba diving to witness the exotic sea life. The sandy beaches with Palm trees ever so elegant, make Sapi Island a winner among the places to visit in Kota Kinabalu. Make sure you also take up adrenaline-filled coral zip lining activities which will give you panoramic views of all islands surrounding Sapi Island.

Also read: Top Things To Do In Malaysia- What We Recommend

Sapi Island
Image source: Wikimedia Commons

These were some of the best places to visit in Kota Kinabalu. The list is endless and you can plan a whole week’s vacation to this unique paradise in Malaysia. After all, offbeat travel is the in thing right now. Speaking of vacations, you can count on Pickyourtrail to help you with some great Malaysia tour packages. Please leave WhatsApp enquiry if you require more assistance and also download the Pickyourtrail app for Android and iOS. Happy travelling!

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