Discover Turtle Islands National Park - Kota Kinabalu
One very unique way to get to know a country’s culture is by visiting its national park. Although it might not be as flashy as the popular beaches, or as social as the city’s bustling markets, seeing the “greener” side of a nation awakens a person’s sense of environmental responsibility, and at the same time come face-to-face with the various flora and fauna that call the attraction their home. In Malaysia’s easternmost state of Sabah, there is one place wherein travelers can experience Mother Nature at work. About 40km north of Sandakan, the Turtle Islands National Park is found and it is the place where green turtles and hawksbill turtles lay their eggs.
Everyone knows about the state of turtles today. Because of its many uses – be it ancient or modern – its numbers have been dwindling for a long period of time. Without the places like Turtle Islands, the fate of the turtles could have been far worse than what they are experiencing today. Do not criticize the park for putting these animals under the spotlight, because after all, the turtles are the site’s main attraction. By generating enough popularity, visitors from all over the world will come to their doorstep just to see these beautiful creatures lay their egg. It is the best and most efficient way to educate the world about turtles and the situations they are currently facing
Travelers are allowed to come face-to-face with these turtles, but only at a certain distance. Turtles are sensitive and delicate creatures, and if the environment is not to their liking, they will not lay eggs. Trip Guru would like to remind future visitors to follow the park’s rules and regulations to a tee, so avoid disturbing the turtles. However, you are allowed to visit the hatcheries, and during the day, see newly born turtles scurry through the sands and charge their way towards the waves of the deep blue sea.
To get to the Turtle Islands from Kota Kinabalu, you need to take a plane and head down to Sandakan. From there, you can take a boat to the National Park. The best time to visit the Turtle Islands is between July and October, where the sea is calmer, and more turtles come ashore. Admissions fee costs around 60 MYR for non-Malaysian adults and 30 MYR for the locals. For non-Malaysian children it is around 30 MYR and 20 MYR for Malaysian children.