Travel Postcard: 48 hours in Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia

Fri May 15, 2009 7:14am EDT
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By Ajay Kamalakaran

KOTA KINABALU, Malaysia (Reuters Life!) - Got 48 hours to explore Kota Kinabalu, a seaside city that also boasts a tropical jungle and an impressive mountain park nearby?

Reuters correspondents with local knowledge help visitors get the most from a short stay in the capital of Malaysia's Sabah state, on the island of Borneo.


7 a.m. - Start off with a typical local breakfast of spicy nasi lemak, a dish featuring rice, small dried anchovies, peanuts, hard boiled egg and hot sambal sauce, at the famous Sri Yakim Cafe in downtown. For those seeking less fiery fare, treat yourself to peanut-filled pancakes at the equally renowned Pancake King nearby. Stay cool with fresh fruit juices.

8 a.m. - A three-hour drive through the lush green Sabahan countryside gets you to the Mount Kinabalu National Park. The park, which is Malaysia's first UNESCO World Heritage site has an impressive collection of flora and fauna. Mount Kinabalu, at 4,095 meters (13,430 ft) above sea level, is the highest mountain between New Guinea and the Himalayas.

2 p.m. - A walk in the Bornean jungle can work up quite an appetite. Enjoy a pan-Asian lunch at the Mount Kinabalu Heritage Resort & Spa's Tinompok restaurant.

4 p.m. - Still in the mood for adventure? Head down the Canopy Walkway. This series of hanging bridges that are suspended from trees are not for the faint at heart, but at 40 meters (131 ft) above the jungle, the views are fantastic.

5 p.m. - Time to soak away all the day's adventures at Poring Hot Springs, which date back to the days when the island was under Japanese occupation. Let the sulphurous water relax your tired body.   Continued...

<p>A view of Mount Kinabalu located in Kinabalu National Park, March 27, 2009. REUTERS/Ajay Kamalakaran</p>