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"Kudat may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you go backpacking in Malaysian Borneo. However, it is a place in Sabah where I have had great experiences and got to know the real pristine Borneo.
When we arrived in Kudat after 3 hours, the English owner -and former rugby player- Howard was ready with his pick- up to pick us up and take us to his 'resort'. About 30 kilometers away. I say "resort" because it is not a luxury place at all. Rather, it is a place where you go back-2-basics completely and become one with the beauty of nature.
Once there, we were immediately amazed how beautiful this place is (Tampat Do Aman, literally translated: a place for rest ). Howard first told us a few things about this special lodge and his other projects.
For example, he said that there is a lot of recycling in order to harm the local community as little as possible. An example: there is a lot of wood on the beaches that has washed up from the sea. This is used to make furniture such as tables and chairs. Locals often help him with this, he creates jobs for them, as it were."

Kudat is Sabah's northernmost city. The population was estimated to be around 30,000. It is located on the Kudat Peninsula about 190 kilometers north of Kota Kinabalu. Kudat is a quiet town and devoid of the hectic city life. This city remains a destination that few will visit, despite the improved infrastructure, which provided better accessibility and hotels. You can still see older Rungus people in traditional attire. The restaurants and coffee shops offer good food and seafood is not expensive.
The city is best known to tourists for the ferry to Pulau Banggi. There is even talk of a roll-on / roll-off ferry service coming to the Philippines. For the time being this plan is canceled due to the disturbances in the south of the Philippines.
The market is highly recommended. As you walk across this morning market, your eyes and ears will be short. You can taste local vegetables, fruits and other delicacies here. You can also try the dried fish and edible seaweed that the Kudat market is famous for. There are also stalls with locally produced handicrafts, such as clothes, baskets and bags.

It is the largest city in the heart of the Rungus people. An important ethnic group in Borneo.
Many Chinese belong to the Hakka community. It is also notable for being one of the first parts of Sabah to be inhabited by Chinese Malays.
They traditionally lived inland in longhouses to stay out of the reach of the pirates who plundered the coastal settlements. The people of Kudat are still home to a significant Hakka Chinese minority.

The small but important tourist industry in the town of Kudat largely revolves around the relaxed atmosphere in the town with the proximity to the sea and beautiful beaches. The tourist attractions in the city include Fuk Tek Kung Temple, Sidek Esplanade, Central Market and Fish Market.
Kudat is famous for its beaches, which are among the most pristine in Sabah. Some of the more famous beaches are Bak Bak, Pasir Putih, Kalampunian and Torungkungan. Kudat is also notable for its proximity to Tanjung Simpang Mengayau, a headland, which is the northernmost point of the island of Borneo.
Despite the isolation of Kudat, which the city had in the past, it has retained much of its original charm and tradition itself and the region. This makes Kudat loved and unique by many today.


Many travelers, who want to discover a little more of Malaysia, make the crossing with the ferry from Kudat to Pulau Banggi (island). The residents are still surprised when a Western tourist comes to their island. Staying overnight is of course also possible on this island, but don't expect any three star accommodation.
Ferries to Banggi Island depart from Kudat daily at 9:00 AM and 2:30 PM and return from Banggi at 8:00 AM and 2:00 PM daily. Prices range from 20 to 50 Ringgit. Business class seats are recommended during the crossing. The ferry takes about an hour and a half for the 35 kilometers journey.
The ticket office in Kudat is at Jalan Lo Thien Chok, near the port, is open daily from 7:30 AM to 4:30 PM. The ticket office in Banggi is located on the wharf and is open about an hour before departure. You need your passport and it is best to buy tickets early.

How do you get to Kudat?

  • By car/ taxi. Kudat is the northern terminus of the Pan-Borneo Highway . This is the highway between Kudat in the north and Sarawak in the south. The journey by car from Kota Kinabalu to Kudat (190 km northeast of Kota Kinabalu) takes approximately 3 hours. You will pass rice fields and picturesque villages.

  • By bus.Buses depart all day from the bus station in front of Centrepoint Complex in Kota Kinabalu. You may need to change trains at Kota Belud.
    In Kudat, buses to Kota Kinabalu leave next to the Telekoms office, opposite the clothing market at Hotel Sunrise.

  • By PlaneKudat has a small airport and it is located north of the city center. From Kudat Airport there are frequent flights to Kota Kinabalu and Sandakan. These flights are operated by MASWings, a subsidiary of Malaysia Airlines. Flights to Kota Kinabalu take 40 minutes, while flights to Sandakan take 50 minutes.

Don't forget to visit in or near Kudat:

Ferry to Banggi



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9 Huts on a Hill

If what you're looking for is a conveniently located hotel in Kudat, look no further than 9 Huts on a Hill. From here, guests can enjoy easy access to all that the lively city has to offer. With its convenient location, the hotel offers easy access to the city's must-see destinations.
At 9 Huts on a Hill, the excellent service and superior facilities make for an unforgettable stay. The hotel provides daily housekeeping, taxi service, car park, room service, airport transfer to ensure our guests the greatest comfort.
The hotel features 9 beautifully appointed guest rooms, many of which include clothes rack, linens, non smoking rooms, air conditioning, wake-up service. Throughout the day you can enjoy the relaxing atmosphere of the hiking trails, yoga room, snorkeling, fitness center, golf course (within 3 km). Whatever your reason for visiting Kudat, the 9 Huts on a Hill is the perfect venue for an exhilarating and exciting break away.

More information and photos: 9 Huts on a Hill |click now|




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