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Kota Kinabalu ~ TAR Marine Park

History & People Kota Kinabalu Kinabalu Park Kudat Sandakan Wetlands Nature Retreats
Other Places Mantanani Island Pulau Tiga Danum Valley Pulau Layang Layang Sipadan Dive Islands


Lying just 3 to 8 kilometers off the coast off Kota Kinabalu, The Tunku Abdul Rahman Park covers an area of 49 square kilometers comprises of 5 islands surrounded by coral reefs and sea. The islands are Pulau Gaya, Pulau Manukan, Pulau Mamutik, Pulau Sapi and Pulau Sulug.





Established as a marine park in 1974, it is named after the first Prime Minister of Malaysia, Tunku Abdul Rahman. The islands natural vegetation, white sandy beaches and its surrounding shallow clear waters with its underwater gardens of the coral reefs, plus the nearness and accessibility makes it a popular destination for beach beach goers, picnickers, divers and nature lovers.


The reefs lie in shallow waters with little current making it an ideal location for novice divers, however, the diverse and sometimes rare marine creatures also make it an interesting dive location for experienced divers and underwater photographers.


Amongst the sandy seabed a good variety of marine life can be found such as Scorpion fish, Blue-spotted rays, cuttlefish, mantis shrimps and the occasional green or hawksbill turtle. At some locations, rare creatures such as harlequin ghost pipefish and mandarin fish can be found especially with the help from local dive guides.

During the cooler months from November to February, plankton blooms attract krill which in turn attract whale sharks, the world's largest fish. At times, the density of the krill can be so thick in these murky conditions underwater encounters with these colossal animals can be exciting as they suddenly appear out of the gloom.



Staying There
Those wishing to stay and enjoy the coral reefs, mangrove and lowland tropical rainforest, have three great choices. Firstly, there's an international-standard resort on Gaya Island, with luxurious chalet accommodation. Second, Manukan Island offers several wooden chalets. Finally, public shelters, a restaurant and picnic tables, and a rest house are available on Mamutik Island.

 

RELATED LINKS


TAR Marine Park ~ Islands
Comprising of 5 islands - Details and information on Pulau Gaya, Pulau Manukan, Pulau Mamutik, Pulau Sapi and Pulau Sulug.

TAR Marine Park ~ Diving
Info on Diving in TAR Marine Park, description of Dive sites and map
 

 

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[K. Kinabalu - Sights I] [K. Kinabalu - Sights II] [TAR Marine Park] [Monsopiad Cultural Village] [Whitewater Rafting] [North Borneo Railway]

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