Things to do in Sabah

Covered in dense jungle and surrounded by ocean, Borneo's enduring reputation for danger repels many would-be visitors, but also adds to its mystique. Sabah occupies the northern part of the island and its many natural splendours will speak to nature lovers. Hikers, divers and extreme sports fanatics will find lots to do, and animal lovers can enjoy the region's incredible biodiversity.

Sabah's list of attractions includes the Sepilok Orangutan Sanctuary, where visitors can watch and sometimes interact with the loveable animals in their natural habitat. The Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park comprises five gorgeous islands, which offer white beaches, coral reefs and jungle hikes. Sipadan Island is touted as the best dive site in the world, and is a bucket list item for any serious scuba diver. Sabah is also home to Malaysia's highest mountain: the impressive Mount Kinabalu. The two-day hike to the summit is one of the most popular activities in Malaysia.

Apart from its wealth of parks, reserves, and sanctuaries, Sabah has a number of interesting cultural attractions. Village tours and treks to tribal settlements in the rainforest are fascinating. The North Borneo Steam Railway offers a round-trip from Kota Kinabalu, which takes passengers through the Sabah landscape, and back in time, as the experience is distinctly colonial. Travellers who are interested in World War II history should visit the extremely moving Sandakan Prison Camp Memorial. It delves into the experiences of prisoners of war and the Sandakan death marches.