Planning your trip

East Malaysia the most memorable feature around Pulau Layang-Layang is a 200m see wall; the oceanic position means that sharks and pelagic fish are common Tunku Abdul Rahman Park includes five pristine islands Gaya, Sapi, manukan, mamutik and Sulug. The beaches are excellent and the coral and marine life good they are also the most easily accessible dive spots of quality from Kota Klnabalu, lying about20 mins by boat from the state capital. Accommodation is available on two of the island mutik and Manukan. Pulau Mantanani is a group of islands off sabah’s west coast of which Pulau Mantanani is the largest. Sharks and large pelagic fishes the area is also a renowned fishing location. Pulau Mengalum is 70km west of kota kinabalu and fish include marlin and sail fish along with the more usual grouper, wrasse and snapper.

Pulau Tiga dive spot comprises three islands that Iie within the boundaries of a 15,864 hectare park gazetted in 1978, 50km southwest of Kota Kinabalu. Marine life includes turtles, tuna, dolphin and stingrays The island themselves support populations of monkeys and monitor lizards, as well as a mw volcano . The park is primarily a research area for naturalists and so tourist facilities are intentionally kept to a minimum. Camping is allowed, hut visitor need to bring their own food. Turtle Islands National Park was created in 1977 and encompasses three islands: Pulau Selingaan, Gulisan and Bakkungan Kecil. As the popular name of the park suggests, it was gazetted to protect the rare green aw hawksbill turtles. The peak period for egg laying is August to October for the green turtle and February to April for the hawksbill. Pulau Selingaan is the only island with accommodation.

The duty free Island of Labuan is a good base for visiting surrounding islands and dive spots. Because Labuan was a focus of military activity during the Second World War, there are a number of wrecks here including Japanese and US warships (the latter probably the US Salute). Sipadan is probably the best-known dive site in east Malaysia because of its stunning 700m sea wall Because Sipadan is an oceanic island, fish such as manta rays and large schools barracuda are commonly seen here while they are rare elsewhere.

Other popular activities include rafting, which is becoming increasingly popular. especially in East Malaysia, and cultural tours. Again, East Malaysia offers the greatest possibilities, trips to explore longhouses in upriver settlements are your best bet.

Finding out more
A good source of information is the internet; for websites on Malaysia and Southeast Asia, For a list of tourist boards overseas, see box on page 22; see also bon embassies and consulates,


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