Manukan Island in Sabah is one of the most visited islands in the Land Below the Wind. While you may think why, it is simply be cause the island is only a 15 minute boat ride from the city of Kota Kinabalu or simply known as KK here. As I was visiting KK town in early May 2013 together with a group of media from West Malaysia, we were taken to many popular tourist places here and Manukan Island was one of them where we spent the morning there before heading back to the mainland for lunch.
Manukan Island is actually part of the Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park or TAR Park which consist of five islands which are Manukan, Mamutik, Sapi, Sulug and Gaya Island where each of the islands is only a mere couple of minutes boat ride from each other. Among these islands, tourist usually visit Manukan, Mamutik and Sapi Island for activities and day trips. The beauty about the group of islands here is that you can visit it in the morning and be back in town after lunch therefore this place is one of the top tourist spots in Sabah.
How to go to Manukan Island
There are two main areas where you can get to Manukan Island, one at Jesselton Pier in KK town while the other is at Sutera Harbor Jetty, a 5 minute drive from town. Usually hotels and tour companies sell day trips to the islands here. Prices range anywhere from RM100 to RM150 per person, depending on your package. Some packages includes island hopping while others are for one single island You can book these packages at any tour counters or companies in KK town or hotel lobbies. Some ready made Sabah Packages would already have this in the itinerary too. The deal would usually include;
* Pick up from your hotel and back
* Boat transfer to the island and back
* Island entrance fees
* A lunch (normal or BBQ) on the island
* Free snorkeling
However, you should note that any other additional activities are charged on the spot there. This includes;
* Scuba Diving
* Water Sports Activities
* Sea Walking
* Rental of equipment
* Restaurant/Cafe food and drinks
Best Time to visit Manukan Island
Since I have been there many times (eight times in the last 3 years), I have seen the busy and also quiet period. It is recommended that the best time to visit here is during the weekday and also off peak season. If it is the local School Holidays or any public holiday, the place is sure to be jam-packed and this may result in you not having a great time there.
I would personally recommend you that you go there as early as possible, before 10.00am as the crowd usually comes in about 11.00am onwards. By lunch the place can get crowded so go early to secure a nice spot on the beach.
Continue reading (Incl. Pics) at: Manukan Island.