Tawau is one of the most fun cities to explore in Sabah and has a lot to offer, from its diverse cuisine to its many festivals and activities. The city is also home to some of Malaysia’s best beaches. So if you’re looking for an adventure while on vacation, you should check out Tawau.
Teck Guan Cocoa Village is quietly nestled in Quion Hill and is approximately half an hour away from Tawau City. Visitors can hike towards the Cocoa Cultural Spring in the village and admire the majestic 75-feet waterfall. The village itself holds one more distinction: it’s one of few places worldwide where you’ll see columnar basalt rocks, which is extremely rare.
It is also home to Teck Guan Cocoa Museum whereby a guide will walk guests through different stations to learn more about how these delicious treats are created from scratch. Towards the end of the guided tour, visitors can participate in the tasting session of different types or flavours of chocolate. Apart from chocolate treats, handwashes made from pure chocolate are also sold here.
If you’re looking for the best dried seafood, be sure to head to Pasar Tanjung Tawau. This 3-storey market has multiple stalls inside that sell almost anything, from fresh vegetables and sea produce to some exciting toy boats. Apart from the variety of things sold here, the unbeatable bargain prices ensure that you can get almost anything for a good deal here.
Al-Kauthar Mosque is one of the most beautiful and largest mosques in Sabah, with a capacity to accommodate 17,000 worshipers at once. The architecture of this grand mosque will give a warm feeling to visitors, as the lush green landscapes symbolise life and spiritual growth. Apart from a prayer hall, this mosque also comes equipped with a library, seminar hall and administrative office.
You can’t say that you have seen Tawau until you’ve enjoyed a panoramic view of the city from The Peaks Observation Deck. Surrounded by forest reserves and palm oil plantations, this spot offers an opportunity for you to be close to nature while enjoying the city from a bird’s eye view. If that is not enough, you can appreciate all of this while having a good meal or pretty delicious ice cream.
While the day view might be pretty nice, it is nothing compared to the view during the night, where it is particularly fascinating with all the twinkling lights from Tawau City. If you choose to go during the night, you should be extra careful during your drive there as the road can be pretty long and narrow.
Tawau Hills Park is one of the must-visit Tawau attractions for nature lovers. This 27,972-hectare park offers a perfect break from the bustling city life, as it features excellent camping sites with hiking trails, as well numerous flora and fauna to explore. The highlight of this place is that it is home to the second tallest tree globally, towering at 1,312 metres.
If you are looking to explore this place thoroughly, be sure to hire a guide as they know everything that this fantastic forest has to offer. For those who would prefer not to exert yourself physically, you can choose to enjoy a good picnic under the shady and sturdy palm tree groves.
Not only that, you will be able to find the Table Waterfall in this park. Also known as “Glass Hill Waterfall”, it is mainly frequented for its view from above, which resembles broken glass pieces being thrown into waterfalls. Before entering this natural wonderland, you should pay extra attention to the slippery rocks to prevent yourself from slipping.
For those that love nature and hiking, Bukit Gemok Forest Reserve is the place for you. Apart from being surrounded by giant trees, the hiking trail also comes with washrooms and rest huts if you need time to recuperate. At the end of the trail, you will be greeted by one of the longest canopy walkways in Sabah at 231 metres which will provide you with stunning sceneries of the city and its surrounding areas when you are on it.
The Tawau Japanese War Memorial is a former Japanese cemetery used by the Japanese community as a burial site. How this community came about can be traced back to the Anglo-Japanese Treaty of 1902, which led to the settlement of many Japanese business people in this area. It has now been beautifully transformed into an inspiring memorial park located in the west of the Tawau golf course.
If you are looking for a place to relax, you should check out Sankina Hotspring Park. With multiple pools with different heat levels from 30-60 degrees celsius available here as well as fresh oxygen around tropical plants in abundance, you will feel rejuvenated by the end of the day. Apart from the hot spring, there is also a water park, tea farm and dining lounge in this recreational park.
With so much beauty and culture, you will not want to miss what Tawau has to offer. From the beautiful nature in Tawau Hills Park to the delicious chocolate in Teck Guan Cocoa Museum, it will make any trip here a wonderful experience.