Top 5 Places in Sabah to See Stars
One particular good spot for viewing the night sky and astro photography is Silam Coast Conservation Area and Felda Sahabat 16, Tambisan. This coastal town also has many other attractions. Besides several markets – a dried fish market, a vegetable and fruit market, a chicken market and a fish market – there is the nearby Danum Valley Conservation Area, where you can go jungle-trekking, swim in the rivers, go bird-watching, and enjoy night jungle tours. At the Tabin Wildlife Reserve, you can go on jungle treks, view wildlife, and do filming and photography.
Check out the skies at Taman Bukit Tawau (Tawau Hills Park), which offers picnic areas, camping sites, and chalets. This park has a rugged volcanic landscape, with a hot spring and majestic waterfalls. Its highest point is Gunung Magdalena. To the locals, this park is also known as Table, National Park, Taman Negara, Abacca or No.4 Gudang.
This third largest city in Sabah offers an old-world charm and many tourist attractions, such as the Tanjung Markets, Bell Tower, Japanese War Cemetery, Confrontation Memorial, Teck Guan Cocoa Museum, Ulu Kalumpang Forest Reserve, Maliau Basin Conservation Area, and Taman Bukit Gemok (Bukit Gemok Park).
To view spectacular night skies, head to Tanjung Simpang Mengayau (Tip of Borneo), Kampung Marang Parang, Tindakon Dazang Beach, Terongkongan Beach and Kulambu Beach.
Kudat, situated north of the capital Kota Kinabalu, was originally inhabited by the Rungus, part of the Kadazan indigenous people who traditionally lived in longhouse communities inland. In fact, the name Kudat comes from the Rungus word kutad, which refers to the coarse grass that grows abundantly in the location.
The coastal town is famous for some of the most pristine beaches in the state, including Pasir Putih, Bak Bak and Kalampunian. It is also famous for its fresh seafood. Besides experiencing the Rungus culture, other tourist attractions include the central market, fish market, Sidek Esplanade and Kudat Golf Club.
Be one with the stars at Kampung Sangkir and Melangkap. Along the Kota Belud-Ranau Bypass, there is another good spot. Head on to Kampung Tambatuon, which is located in the foothills of Mount Kinabalu, next to the Kedamaian River.
Located on the west coast of Sabah, Kota Belud is known as the unofficial capital of the indigenous Bajau (Nomads) people. It is famous for its Sunday tamu (open air market) where you can see buyers and sellers haggling over prices. But in October, the tamu is held on a larger and more vibrant scale, and this is known as the tamu besar (grand market).
Another interesting sight is the golden mosque on the hill. Kota Belud can be a stopover en route to Kudat, Mantanani and Manana Beach
Look skywards at Bundu Tuhan. (In the Dusun language, Bundu refers to a type of fruit tree, and Tuhan means landslide or felled.) Located in the Ranau district, Kundasang is the closest town to Mount Kinabalu, and offers a breathtaking view of the mountain. It is also close to Kinabalu National Park, Malaysia’s first Unesco World Heritage Site.
Kundasang is famous for its vegetable market (open daily), and is inhabited by the native Dusun who work as farmers, park rangers, mountain guides or porters in Kinabalu National Park.
Other tourist attractions in the area include the Kundasang War Memorial and Gardens, and Kundasang Golf Course.
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