Introduction to Sandakan, Borneo
On the North East Coast of Borneo, you find Sandakan, which is the second-largest city in Sabah.
During the British Colonial time, Sandakan served as the capital of the then, British North Borneo. Today Sandakan is famous as the gateway for eco-tourism destinations in Sabah, such as the Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre, the Selingan “Turtle” Island Park, Lankayan Island and the mighty Kinabatangan River. Kinabatangan River can be accessed from the areas Sukau, Abai, and Bilit, where you can experience some of the best wildlife in Asia.
The Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre followed by a visit to the Kinabatangan River, are must-visit destinations when you are in Borneo. Usually, most travellers will stay in Sandakan and Kinabatangan areas for 3 to 5 days.
There are mainly 2 areas to stay in Sandakan. You can stay in the city, or the more recommended way for travellers interested in nature, in the Sepilok area. Sepilok is a forest area 25 kilometres from Sandakan town, where you find a few accommodations. Sepilok is also home to the Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre, Sun Bear Conservation Centre, and the Rainforest Discovery Centre. An hour from Sepilok area you also find Labuk Bay Proboscis Monkey Sanctuary.
From Sandakan, you have daily flight connections to Kuala Lumpur and Kota Kinabalu.
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