Kota Kinabalu (KK) is a fast-growing coastal city on the island of Borneo, Malaysia. Its city centre is a vibrant mix of progress and heritage. Although the name Kota Kinabalu is relatively new, the region itself boasts a colourful history. We recommend a sweep of the Atkinson Clock Tower, Sabah State Museum, Double Six Monument, and the waterfront City Mosque to truly appreciate the city. At night, explore the night market for some great finds.
The real adventure though lies on the outskirts of the city. Pristine beaches, lush jungles, and Southeast Asia’s highest peak (Mount Kinabalu) await adrenaline junkies. If you’re planning on a hike, make sure to reserve a slot early as only 185 people are allowed to start their climb daily. The hike itself takes at least 2 days.
Air Asia normally offers the cheapest fares from Kuala Lumpur to Kota Kinabalu, with ticket prices from 287 MYR ($61). Other carriers you can choose from are Malaysia Airlines and Malindo Air. A flight takes about 2.5 hours.
From Kota Kinabalu Airport to the city centre, you can take either a bus or a taxi.
Airport buses depart every hour from 07:30 to 20:30, with tickets from 5 MYR ($1.05). It takes you up to Merdeka Square where you can easily hop on another form of transport to your hotel, if necessary.
A more convenient option is to take a taxi. Prepaid taxis are available at the airport, just pay your fixed fare at the booth and then show your coupon to the taxi driver. This way, you won’t have to worry about being overcharged. Taxi fares from the airport to the city centre start from 30 MYR ($6).
If you want your taxi to be ready as soon as you arrive at the airport, you can also pre-book one with Klook. Their rates start from 36 MYR ($7.50).