Tawau – 5 Things to do for Sabah Borneo Holidays!
Sabah Tour Package
Have you ever been to Tawau before? It is the third largest city in Sabah Borneo and it plays an important role as major producer of tobacco, cocoa, and palm oil. It is located on the south east coast of Sabah Borneo, and shares a border with North Kalimantan, Indonesia. However, most travelers will only stop by Tawau for a short trip as it is a main gateway to the fabulous world’s top diving spots of Sipadan Island, which is located in Semporna.
Although Tawau itself is not popular among tourists, it actually has many interesting destinations that no one ever notice before. So, here are 5 things you can do in Tawau after your diving activities in the islands of Semporna.
You can find the Tawau Mural Art at the town area
1) Teck Guan Cocoa Village & Cocoa Museum
Teck Guan Cocoa Village Entrance
Since Tawau is one of the biggest producer of cocoa in the world, for sure there will be a production area in Tawau, and it is known as Teck Guan Cocoa Village & Cocoa Museum. The cocoa museum was open for public in 2004, located within a village area called Tanjung Batu, which is roughly 20-30 minutes drive from Tawau City. However, an advanced booking is needed before going for a tour at the cocoa museum and it is recommended to go there in the morning. Fret not, there will be an in-house guide to show you around the museum, starting from watching a 20-minute short clip on cocoa history, to cocoa sampling kitchen, and finally to cocoa processing factory. In addition, you can also experience the nature and fresh air by going for trekking along the tropical rainforest of Cocoa Culture Spring which is about 1-2 km that will lead you to the waterfall.
2) Tawau Tanjung Market
Colorful local vegetables at the Tawau Tanjung Market
Looking for the best dried seafood in Sabah Borneo? Then, you should make a visit to Tawau Tanjung Market to purchase it. Equipped about 6000 stalls inside it, this 3-storey market is known to be the largest indoor market in Malaysia! This is because you can find everything here under one roof, as it offers almost all kinds of daily essentials and other goods, from the freshest vegetables, sea and agriculture produce, local snacks, dried seafood, handicrafts, pots and pans, toys to clothings. Apart from that, you can also find interesting products from Indonesia that are being sold there too. This is a good place for you to come as your last stop to purchase souvenirs or dried seafood before departing. Just don’t forget to haggle (even the locals do too!) when buying something from the market.
3) Eating in Tawau
Fresh Seafood can be found in Tawau!
When coming to Tawau, you should not miss out to taste the delicious food that can be found in Tawau! One of the top things that you need to do in Tawau as the food is a mix of Indonesian and Sabah fusion, due to Kalimantan Indonesia being the neighboring state to Tawau. Moreover, Tawau is also known for not only among the freshest seafood in Sabah Borneo, it is also considerably cheap too! So, if you are a foodie type of traveler, a visit to Tawau will be like a food paradise for you.
4) Gemok Hill Nature Reserve
Strap those hiking shoes and starts to explore the Gemok Hill Nature Reserve
An avid hiker? Then, you should hike and explore the untouched Borneo Jungle which can be found in Gemok Hill Nature Reserve. It is a perfect place for a day hike, where the jungle offers you with it abundance of Borneo Wildlife, interesting species of plants and the tranquility greenery environments. There are seven resting huts provided for you to catch a breath as it will be an hour plus (depending on your fitness level) in order to reach the hill. After hiking, don’t miss out to go on the amazing canopy walkway which is known to be one of the longest canopy walkway (231 meters) in Sabah Borneo. Be amazed to witness the stunning scenery of Tawau Town, the picturesque coastline and the surrounding area.
5) Tawau Hills National Park
Serene river amidst in the tropical Borneo Jungle in Tawau Hills National Park
For nature lovers, a visit to Tawau Hills National Park is a must! It is located about 20 km away from Tawau Town which takes around 30 minutes to reach the quiet and secluded park while passing by hills of oil palm plantations. This park offers many locals and travelers a place for picnic, swim at the river, camping sites and chalets. However, the main highlight activities that can be done in the park is to witness some of the world’s tallest tropical trees, hiking through the lush greenery Borneo Jungle, witness diverse species of flora and fauna, birding activities, visit the spectacular Gelas Waterfall, Sulphurous Springs, as well as climbing the Magdalena Hills(1310m).
There you go, these 5 things to do in Tawau will surely fill your Borneo Holidays with the memorable and exciting trip before or after you go to Semporna for diving activities! Spend a day or two in Tawau and you will eventually experience the unique adventure that you thirst for. Happy travels!
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