Sandakan, set by the Bay of Sandakan, is a delightful blend of Malaysia’s colonial past and lush tropical beauty. Founded in 1879 by German traders, this quaint town in Sabah has welcomed travelers from far and wide, including Dutch and Chinese planters, and Arab and Indian traders. Thanks to the flourishing timber trade, today the town is a thriving market for palm oil exports. A seafood lover’s paradise, Sandakan’s fresh and rich produce features prominently in its cultural ethos and culinary traditions. Sandakan is also home to war memorials, pre-war mansions and colonial cemeteries, each with its own fascinating story, if you care to listen. Apart from interesting monuments and sights, nature lovers will delight in the nearby nesting grounds of swiftlets or enjoy relaxing moments on the meandering Kinabatangan river.
Religious relics & Colonial heritage
Forest reserve & Orang Utan Centre
Recommended Malaysia Tours
Places: Kuching (3 days) → Mulu (2) → Kinabalu (1) → Abai, Kinabatangan River (1) → Sukau, Kinabatangan River (2) → Danum Valley (3) → Kota Kinabalu Beach (3) → Kinabalu (1)
Tour Highlights: Colonial heritage, Temples & Chinatown, Busting bazaars, National Parks, UNESCO World Heritage site, Mammoth cave...