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  • Day31

    Kuching- Kota Kinabalu - Sandakan

    August 12, 2017 in Malaysia ⋅ ⛅ 27 °C

    It's 14.07 and we are currently making the descent to land in Sandakan! I am looking out the window at pure jungle - it looks incredible and we can't wait!

    Tomorrow we will actually see orangutans !!!! I can't even believe it.

    We have just flown from Kota Kinabalu. It's been a pretty long day, as we left Kuching at 6.05 am and landed in KK at 7.15 am and then had a 6 hour wait before our 1.15 pm flight from KK to Sandakan. However a direct flight was around 3 times the price, and it's not been too much of a hassle. We ended up leaving the airport and going to Tanjung Aru beach for a couple of hours. It's a popular local beach, and is just 10 minutes from the airport so we thought it was worth having a look to kill some time. The actual sand on the beach wasn't great. And the beach did smell a bit, and was a bit dirty. However - the sea was beautiful! It had lovely turquoise clear water and was very shallow. We stayed there for a couple of hours (however I later realised I had sat in poo so it was a nightmare having to clean everything!!!). When we got back to the airport we had a mcdonalds.

    We are staying in Sepilok Nature Forest Edge today, which looks so great! It is also located next door to the Orangutang rehabilitation centre which is very exciting!
    Oh my goodness this jungle is insane !!! I have to enjoy this one second.


    We landed in Sandakan, and got a taxi for 30 MR (approximately £5.50) to the resort. We stopped at a mini market on the way and got lots of new toiletries which was well needed! The resort was amazing -thanks to Hope as she booked it on Hostel World. It is very big, and even has a small pool. We checked in, then had our welcome drink (I think it was cinnamon iced tea) and had some food. The food was amazing - we had the garlic pok Choy which was so good! Only bad thing is that the room only has a fan - and it is absolutely BOILING! It is so humid here that you are sweating after a minute of walking, so it's very difficult!

    Considering we had been up since 3.30 and had no sleep, we were lasting pretty well! However by 8 we were shattered and went to sleep. I had to be up early as I had a jungle tour booked.
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  • Day35

    Island Hopping

    August 16, 2017 in Malaysia ⋅ ⛅ 29 °C

    Firstly I will start with last night, as yesterday's blog post was very detailed about Sandakan, so makes more sense to write here.

    So we landed in Kota Kinabalu, and got an airport taxi to our hotel; Hotel Victoria where we had a private room. The hotel room was fine, however the location was not particularly great! It was very local so we were STARED at when we arrived, and when we went out the room.

    We got to the room at around 4 pm and chilled for a couple of hours before getting an uber (uber is SO MUCH cheaper than local taxis) to Breeze Beach Club. Sadly it was too cloudy to see the sunset, however the sky did look absolutely beautiful once the sun had set. It was the most gorgeous shade of deep blue!

    We stayed at the beach club for an hour/ hour and a half ish and had a couple of drinks each. It was lovely there!

    We got some hummus and bread, but the food was very average and also very expensive with very limited choice so we googled a nice restaurant and got an uber there.

    The restaurant, El Centro, was beautiful! We had vegetable fajitas and vegetable quesadillas -it was gorgeous! We had a cocktail each and chilled out.

    Kota Kinabalu is nice, and drinks are not too expensive, however it is not the sort of place we would want to have too much to drink in. The amount of people who were staring at us, we just wanted to have dinner and get a taxi back.

    It was a lovely evening though! And it was nice to wake up a fresh for island hopping - boats are not the one when you're hungover!!!!

    ****** Now ********

    It's 13.45, and we are sat by the 'Borneo Divers Sabah' building on Mamutik island. We are leaving back to mainland in 15 minutes, so just sat down chilling out.

    We've been island hopping today, but unfortunately due to bad weather conditions, we were only able to visit 2 islands which aren't too far from Kota Kinabalu mainland; Manukan island and Mamutik island.

    We got up and ready at 9 and got a taxi to Jesselton Ferry port not long before 10. We used '' and paid 40 ringgits each for a return to both island (7/8 pounds). The boat left mainland to Manukan island at just gone 10 am, and took around 15 minutes. It was so bumpy and the boat repeatedly smacked into the water making it quite uncomfortable. However it was funny, and so short that we did care.

    Manukan island is very pretty - but so so so touristy! It is FULL of Chinese and Korean tourists who are taking numerous selfies and photos everywhere, and shouting very loudly. We got some chips from a cafe, then went and sat on a beach further away to try and avoid the tourists .... but they all came over.
    The water was so clear so I rented a snorkel, but didn't actually end up snorkelling as we only had about 45 minutes as the next boat was leaving at 12 to the other island (as due to the bad weather the last boat had to leave at 2 today instead of 4.30 so we had limited time), so we just lay on the beach for that time. The sun was starting to make its way through so it was quite hot!

    At 12, we got the boat to Mamutik island. This island is a lot smaller, so sadly it's easier to notice all of the tourists. There isn't actually any a la carte restaurants either, just a couple of big buffet restaurants full of Chinese tourists on their 'island hopping' tours. Unfortunately the weather got worse, so there's been a bit of rain and it's been quite chilly so I haven't fancied snorkelling. So we came and sat on a small bench and got an ice cream and a drink here.

    It's 13.54 so we are going to go and get the boat back to mainland!

    14.31 and we have just got off the boat. Wow that was hilarious! Despite feeling like we have broken our backs from all the jumps, it was pretty hilarious! We're now standing in the rain waiting for our uber to arrive (much cheaper to use under here)


    I'm writing rather often today haha

    It's 15.54 and we are sat in the laundry shop waiting for our clothes to wash. It's only 20 minutes wash and 20 minutes dry so we shouldn't be here too long!

    16.39 .... okay wow ..... we have made one of the machines go absolutely mad .... OMG.... we may have put almost half the detergent in Hope's machine by mistake (it all fell out)!! It was fine when she used it but the person using it straight after has now got a machine that is so full of bubble and is leaking everywhere !!!! Awkward !!! Hopefully it wasn't us ... Hope is trying her hardest not to laugh out loud ahahaha as the man who works here is on the phone to someone asking for help whilst trying to hold the machine door shut and stop anymore water coming out. Ooooooooops !!!!


    After our washing, we had a 'quick 20 minute nap' that of course ended up being a 2 and a half hour nap and we woke up at 8.50 pm hahaha! Hope thought it was the middle of the night!! We got a taxi to Waterfront where there is a number of different restaurants, but we ended up in Hard Rock Cafe. Hope just got a home made lemonade, but I got some chips, garlic bread and mac and cheese (all side dishes so was only cheap).

    After dinner we got an uber back to the hotel!
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