Photo: White sands ahoy!

Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park

Our rating:


A short boat ride from KK, the five islands of Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park offer squeaky white sands, azure waters and hiking trails though areas of old growth forest and mangroves, with an abundance of wildlife both below and above the waters. It’s a highly recommend day trip, but you won’ t be alone. Unfortunately, much of the more accessible coral has been damaged by the ever-increasing hordes.

Help us hold our breath. Donate to Travelfish today!
Click here for more information on how you can help.

Crowds flock to the beaches daily and it gets busier weekends and holidays. For an overnight stay, most of the accommodation offered is top-range resorts, but camping is available on some of the islands (five ringgit fee per adult/two ringgit per child), with tents for hire for 35 ringgit. Daytrippers are gone by late afternoon, and you will have the island essentially to yourself.

Camp over to avoid the crowds. Photo taken in or around Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park, Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia by Sally Arnold.

Camp over to avoid the crowds. Photo: Sally Arnold

Commonly referred to as TAR Marine Park, the park was named after Malaysia’ s first prime minister. The five islands, Gaya, Manukan, Sapi, Sulug and Mamutik, all have their unique characteristics and several can be visited in one day. Boats depart daily from Jesselton Point Ferry Terminal at the northern end of Kota Kinabalu, along Jalan Fuad Stephens from 8:30-16:30, about every 20 minutes. It takes 15-20 minutes to get to the islands. The last boat back to Kota Kinabalu ... Travelfish members only (Full text is around 1,000 words.)

Get the full story.
Create an account.

Join Travelfish

Log in

Becoming a Travelfish subscriber costs A$35 for a year. Benefits include:
1) Full access to the site
2) 250+ PDF guides
3) Discount coupons
4) 50% off our travel planning service
5) And of course, our gratitude and a warm fuzzy feeling for helping us stay in business!

Popular hotels in Kota Kinabalu on Agoda

Popular attractions in Kota Kinabalu

A selection of some of our favourite sights and activities around Kota Kinabalu.

Best places to stay in Kota Kinabalu

A selection of some of our favourite places to stay in Kota Kinabalu.

What next?

 Browse our independent reviews of places to stay in and around Kota Kinabalu.
 Check prices, availability & reviews on Agoda or Booking
 Read up on where to eat on Kota Kinabalu.
 Check out our listings of things to do in and around Kota Kinabalu.
 Read up on how to get to Kota Kinabalu.
 Do you have travel insurance yet? If not, find out why you need it.
 Planning on riding a scooter in Kota Kinabalu? Please read this.
 Browse the web securely while travelling with TunnelBear. Try with a 7–day free trial.

Skip the bus station queues!
Skip the bus station queues!
Ad Book your plane, train & bus tickets
with 12Go Asia.

Read more

See below for more sights and activities in Kota Kinabalu that are listed on

Top of page

Where to next?

Where are you planning on heading to after Kota Kinabalu? Here are some spots commonly visited from here, or click here to see a full destination list for Malaysia.

Top of page