Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park

Kota Kinabalu Travel Blog

 › entry 101 of 121 › view all entries

No more narcolepsy, no more let offs.  I realised I’d well and truly rode my luck, and then rode it a little more.  I was making a sensible decision/lifestyle choice to lift the awareness ten-fold for the rest of the trip.  I stood no chance as, let’s call it, scatty Matty disease was my nemesis.


I bought a snorkel and mask after some breakfast and we had agreed to visit Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park for the day as it was just a few kilometres boat ride away. 


The park has four main islands: Gaya; Mamutik; Sapi; Sulug; and Manukan, we chose Manukan as it is biggest, though all of them have nice beaches, clear water, some coral, and a wealth of tropical fish.  It was said that Mamutik is the pick of the bunch for snorkelling as it has the richest coral, but I was happy enough when we docked and I could see the amount and variation of fish where we were.  Buying the mask and snorkel proved to be a good decision, and I was straight into the sea to have a look around.  I first found a flat fish and an abundance of sea cucumbers, but it wasn’t long before I started to find a bigger range of fish. 


The nutrient rich water is very shallow, maybe knee to waist deep, so you can go quite far out from the island and even walk to the neighbouring islands. 


I got out after an hour or so to do a bit of bathing, but it started to rain, so had to take shelter for a little while instead.  Once the rain subsided, the sky was quickly clear again and you see Mt Kinabalu in the distance towering over all its brother and sister mountains.  It really is a pretty place on these islands.  I chose to get back in the sea for one last look around, but nibbling fish put a premature end to that, and instead I read a little bit whilst waiting for the boat to arrive.


Back on the mainland we found a really cheap and brilliant Indian restaurant and such a good meal for about a pound sterling!  It was lovely.  I tried Roti Chanai for the first time, and that was it, I was instantly addicted.


In the evening, another Tber had messaged me saying she was in Kota Kinabalu, so I had agreed to meet up for a drink or two.  I invited Andy and Justin to join us and they accepted.  I found Jennifer (from Sweden) pretty easily, and she was sat with two other guys she had met, Simon (from the UK - Leicester) and Mack (from America – San Francisco).  We all got chatting for a while and it turned out Mack was really keen to climb Mt Kinabalu as well, so I suggested we all go to the park together and those who want to climb can.  I was pleased to formed a bit of a team as in truth, I really wanted to do it, but wasn’t overly confident of going alone.


After a few drinks, Andy and Justin suggest we try a bar they had found earlier called Black Lounge, so we all did.  It was karaoke bar and we all thought that might be fun, but on entry, it was immediately weird.  Very dark and dingy, and all eyes were straight on us.

  We were shuffled into a corner whilst a microphone was being passed around mainly fat Chinese guys accompanied by young girls!  I suspected we were in a brother and so finished my drink off a little quicker than I would have otherwise done.  I told everyone I’d see them tomorrow, but everyone decided to leave as well unsurprisingly. 

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