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4D3N Sabah Itinerary: Exploring Kota Kinabalu and Kundasang

This article is published by Travelog.
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Home to the country’s highest peak – Mount Kinabalu, Sabah in the northern part of Malaysian Borneo is also famous for its dense rainforest, spectacular islands, pristine beaches, rich wildlife and fresh seafood. It is a lovely destination made for adventurers where hiking, trekking, snorkelling and diving are just one of many top activities we can do here. Four days in Sabah may not be enough, but this itinerary will be a good introductory trip for first-timers, covering both Kota Kinabalu and Kundasang. Read on to learn how to plan your Sabah trip.

Contents:
Day 1: Yee Fung Laksa – Masjid Bandaraya Kota Kinabalu – Kundasang
Day 2: Sosodikon Hill – Desa Dairy Farm – Poring Hot Spring – Kota Kinabalu
Day 3: Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park – Signal Hill Observatory Tower – I Love KK – Marlin Statue – Todak Waterfront Hawker Center
Day 4: Gaya Street Sunday Market – Filipino Market – Craft Market

Day 1: Yee Fung Laksa – Masjid Bandaraya Kota Kinabalu – Kundasang

After picking up your rental car, treat yourself a hearty lunch at Yee Fung Laksa. Enjoy a bowl of flavourful Sabahan curry laksa serves with yellow noodle, fresh prawn, shredded chicken, egg slices and tofu pok.

Yee Fung Laksa
Address: 127, Jalan Gaya, Pusat Bandar Kota Kinabalu, 88000 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. (Google Maps)
Opening Hours: Monday – Friday 6.30am – 6pm; Saturday – Sunday 6.30am – 4pm

Next, stop by at the most famous floating mosque in Malaysia, Masjid Bandaraya Kota Kinabalu, while on your way to Kundasang. Overlooking the South China Sea, this majestic white mosque is a fine example of contemporary Islamic architecture. It looks particularly amazing to photograph during sunset. Just to remind, you are required to dress appropriately no matter you are visiting outside or inside the mosque.

Masjid Bandaraya Kota Kinabalu
Address: Jalan Pasir, Jalan Teluk Likas, Kampung Likas, 88400 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. (Google Maps)

You will finally reach Kundasang after 2-hour drive from Kota Kinabalu, then check-in at our recommended homestay, Culvert View. The best selling-point of the homestay is the breathtaking and iconic Mount Kinabalu view. There are also several Instagram-worthy spots here where you can take some cool photos.

Click here to book your stay at Culvert View with Travelog now.

Day 2: Sosodikon Hill – Desa Dairy Farm – Poring Hot Spring – Kota Kinabalu

Hiking the Mount Kinabalu may not be part of your plan, but an easy hike up the Sosodikon Hill to view the magnificent Mount Kinabalu is one of the best things you should not miss doing in Kundasang. It will only take 10 to 15 minutes to reach the top (1465m), even a small kid can manage it. However, if you are looking for a more challenging track, we recommend you to try the Maragang Hill, which takes about 1.5 hour to reach the summit.

Sosodikon Hill
Address:
Kg, Jalan Kundasang Kauluan, 89308 Kundasang, Sabah. (Google Maps)

Later, drive for 10 minutes to Desa Dairy Farm, also known as the Little New Zealand in Sabah. Beautifully set at the foot of Mount Kinabalu, the 199-hectare farm is a free-roaming ground to the lovely Holstein Friesian cattle. It has become a popular tourist spot in recent years due to its close relevance to an iconic New Zealand farm. It is definitely worth a visit especially for those who have not been to New Zealand yet. Make sure to also try the delicious yogurt ice cream before you leave.

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🥛🍦🐄

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Desa Dairy Farm
Address: 89308 Kundasang, Sabah. (Google Maps)
Opening Hours: Daily 8am – 5pm

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Hellow Sunday…🏊🏊 @frinceray @gatuhkacah

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After that, swing by Poring Hot Spring in Ranau, which is about 40 minutes drive further down from Kundasang. It will be the best detour that helps you to relax your body and mind. Other than the natural hot spring here, you can also visit the butterfly farm, orchid conservation centre, tropical garden and canopy walkway. If you are lucky, you may even see the world’s largest flower – rafflesia here.

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Kota Kinabalu ⚐ You can’t put a price on local knowledge backed up with years of experience. Too often we go places and whilst on a budget we do activities and visit places on our own and rely heavily on Google searches to fill in the gaps in knowledge. You don’t always do it justice, and you never get the whole story, which can often make you feel like you’ve missed out on important details. We had the privilege of being offered a tour of, amongst other things, the Mount Kinabalu National Park whilst in Kota Kinabalu. What a difference it makes having someone present that can point out the smallest of details, such as microscopic orchids which we would normally walk past, and tell you the story behind them. It’s hard to pick out just one highlight from our time in Kota Kinabalu because it completely exceeded expectations, but having a guided tour for the day was definitely one of them. If you haven’t already, then visiting Borneo is an absolute must 🤙🏻 ✈︎ ☀︎ Thank you to Pauline & Aldrin from @borneoexcursions for a fun and educational experience ✈︎ ☀︎ To see the raw unedited version of this picture and some footage on location then watch our Instagram stories ✈︎ ☀︎ To be part of the Wander In Two community then remember to tag all your travel photos with @wanderintwo and use our hashtag #wanderintwo By tagging us you are joining our close circle of real and relatable like minded travellers that we love to engage with. You also run the chance of having your post feature on our Sunday shoutout 🤙🏻 ✈︎ ☀︎ ✈︎ ☀︎ #travelsabah #traveltoborneo #borneoexcursions #kotakinabalu #kotakinabalusabah #kkcity #travelmalaysia #instamalaysia #sabah #trulyasia #travel_drops #travellers #travelinspo #travelbug #poringhotspring #poring #canopywalk #jungle #mydestinationguide #stayandwander #wanderlust #travelblogger #travelcouple #goexplore #travelcommunity #bestplacestogo #traveldeeper #traveladdict #travel

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Poring Hot Spring
Address: 89300 Ranau, Sabah. (Google Maps)
Opening Hours: Daily 7am – 6pm

Since you will be leaving for Kota Kinabalu today, please make sure to depart from Ranau earlier before the sky gets dark. It is safer to drive during the day.

Day 3: Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park – Signal Hill Observatory Tower – I Love KK – Marlin Statue – Todak Waterfront Hawker Center

Arrive at the Jesselton Point Ferry Terminal early in the morning and get ready to replenish your “Vitamin Sea” today! From the terminal you can buy the boat ticket and choose to visit one island or multiple islands within the Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park. Upon arrival at the first destination you will have to pay an environmental conservation fee of RM3 (Malaysian) or RM10 (Non-Malaysian) per person, which only valid for a day.

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I lost my heart to the ocean 💙

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Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park is famed for its crystal clear blue water and beautiful beaches. It comprises of 5 forested islets, which includes Manukan, Gaya, Sapi, Mamutik, and Sulug islands. Besides diving and snorkelling, there are also plenty of exciting beach and water activities awaiting you, such as kayaking, sea parasailing, jet ski and banana boat. Furthermore, you can also go for jungle trekking in Gaya Island or try the zip-lining from Gaya Island to Sapi Island.

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Jesselton Point Ferry Terminal
Address: 4th Floor, Wisma Perkasa, Jalan Gaya, 88200 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. (Google Maps)
Opening Hours: Daily 6am – 5pm

Head back to the land in the mid afternoon and get changed at your hotel before doing more sightseeing. Afterwards, drive up to the Signal Hill and visit the well-known Observatory Tower in Kota Kinabalu. Without additional charges, you can take in the panoramic view of the city up there.

Signal Hill Observatory Tower
Address: 78, Jalan Asrama, signal hills, 88400 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. (Google Maps)
Opening Hours: Daily 9am – 11pm

In the evening, you may watch the sunset at the waterfront near the iconic I Love KK and Marlin Statue. Anyone who visits Kota Kinabalu should at least take a photo with these two attractions.

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I Love KK & Marlin Statue
Address: alan Tun Fuad Stephen, Pusat Bandar Kota Kinabalu, 88000 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah.

Tonight, enjoy a fabulous seafood feast at Todak Waterfront Hawker Center. This is the best place to dig in fresh seafood at an affordable price. There are also plenty of stalls you can choose from. After deciding the stall, just pick your seafood and have it cooked according to your preferred flavours.

Todak Waterfront Hawker Center
Address: Jalan Tun Fuad Stephen, Pusat Bandar Kota Kinabalu, 88000 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. (Google Maps)
Opening Hours: Daily 5pm – 12am; Friday & Sunday 12am – 12pm & 5pm – 12am

Day 4: Gaya Street Sunday Market – Filipino Market – Craft Market

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S U N D A Y morning walk

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Gaya Street Sunday Market is always ranked as first when it comes to local shopping in Kota Kinabalu. It is the best place to experience the unique culture and the lives of the Sabahan families. You can shop for almost anything here like batik sarongs, arts, crafts, antiques, souvenirs, pearl jewelleries, cakes, herbs, fruits, flowers and more. You may also want to try some fantastic local breakfast here.

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Gaya Street Sunday Market
Address: Jalan Gaya, 88000 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. (Google Maps)
Opening Hours: Sunday 6.30am – 1pm

Then, move on to the next shopping hotspot – Handicraft Market. The items sold here are pretty similar to the Gaya Street, but they have more stalls and varieties when compared.

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알록달록✌️색깔맛집

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Handicraft Market
Address: Jalan Tun Fuad Stephen, Pusat Bandar Kota Kinabalu, 88000 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. (Google Maps)
Opening Hours: Daily 10am – 6pm

Sabah is a huge state in Malaysia. Therefore, a 4 days trip can only cover a very small area of Sabah. There are many other amazing places you should consider visiting next time, such as Sandakan, Semporna and Tawau, or you can just extend your trip to add these places in it.

NOTE: All the above information is correct at the date of publication. If you come across any changes or updates, please let us know by email and we will update the information accordingly. Thank you!

This article is published by Travelog.
For more Sabah travel deals, click here for more information!

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