Introducing Kota Kinabalu
We realise you almost certainly didn't come to Sabah for the urban scene, but you have to book permits somewhere, you gotta sleep after climbing Mt Kinabalu/diving in Sipadan/exploring the jungle etc, and you need some place to connect to onward travel, and KK, as everyone calls it, is a good place (sometimes the only place) to do all of the above. The centre is walkable. The population is a spicy mix of expats, Chinese, indigenous Kadazan and of course, Malays. The food is good – surprisingly good, given you’re in Malaysia’s hinterlands. Nightlife is fun, a testament to Sabah’s laid-back approach to life; there aren't a lot of bars. The downside is out of control construction; KK desperately seems to want to answer the question, ‘How many empty malls can we build in one city?’ but past this one demerit, it’s hard not to love this town.
Best places to stay in Kota Kinabalu
Kota Kinabalu destination guides
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