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Labuan Tourist Attraction

 

Situated at the north of Brunei Bay and facing the South China sea is the island of Labuan, an international business and financial centre. It is also Malaysia's only deep water anchorage. Labuan is one of Malaysia's three federal territories. Covering an are of 955q km, Labuan comprises the main island as well as six islets around it. Dubbed as The Pearl of Borneo Where Business and Leisure Meet, this destination provides ample facilities for incentive travel. Holiday-makers will find an array of interesting sights in Labuan, be it historical, natural or cultural. Dive sites that lay close to the shore, World War II relics, tax-free shopping and an international sea sports complex give Labuan a vibrant and world-class touristy appeal.

 

World War II Memorial

Jalan Tanjung Batu

 

The largest memorial in Malaysia, Labuan World War II Memorial is the final resting place of 3,908 war heroes from Australia, Britain, India, New Zealand as well as Malaya. It is visited regularly by war veterans and families. Every year, an elaborate ceremony called Remembrance Day is conducted in full military to honour the warriors.

~ Remembrance Day is held on 11 November or the Sunday closest to it, to honour the soldiers who lots their lives during World War II and those who perished during the Death March from Ranau to Sandakan.

 

Labuan Marine Park

 

Located 5km off the southwestern tip of Labuan. The park comprises the islets of Kuraman, Rusukan Kecil and Rusukan Besar. It is famous for the four wreck diving sites; namely the American, Australian, Blue Water and Cement wreck.

Must do:

  • Swim at the clear waters

  • Go wreck diving at the four dive sites

  • Snorkel to see the colourful reef

  • Try kayaking or island-hopping

  • Camp out to commune with nature

Visit are required to adhere to the marine park regulations at all times. Activities that are permitted include scuba diving, snorkelling, sailing, canoeing and jungle-trekking. Visitors are strictly prohibited from anchoring, fishing, polluting and carrying out other activities that can break or damage the corals and reefs.

 

Water Villages

 

Atria to Labuan would be incomplete without visiting the water villages. The main village are Kampung patau-patau 1 and Patau-patau II. There homes are built on stilts above the water and can be quite big most home have airy, cooling verandahs that are decorated with potted plants and flowers. The villages are established by Malay fishermen and traders from Brunei.

~ Labuan's water villages are among the last remaining traditional water villages in the country.

 

The Chimney

Tanjung Kubong

 

Commonly associated with Labuan, the Chimney is somewhat of a mystery. The 106-feet high structure was made from 23,000 pieces of red bricks imported from England. It was originally thought to be a ventilation stack. Recently, it was discovered that there are on traces of smoke within, thus making its purpose and xistence a puzzle. The Chimney is situated at the Chimney Historical Complex. The Information Centre here details the coal mining industry in Tanjung Kubong since 1847.

Opening hours: 8.30am - 5.00pm

~ Some say that the Chimney is an unfinished mansion. Others say that it served as lighthouse for passing ship. Until today, its existence remains a mystey.

 

Peace Park

Kampung Layang-layangan

 

Set in a beautifully landscaped area, this park serves as a memorial and a renunciation of war. It features a large raised mound with two prominent arched walls, gazebos as well as Japanese inspired bridges and ponds. Labuan was under the Japanese occupation for four years before surrendering to the Allied Forces. The Peace Park is a symbol of peace and harmony.

 

Surrender Point

Kampung Layang-layangan

 

Situted just beside the Peace Park, this spot has a great historical significance. At this very place on 10 September 1945, the 37th Japanese Southern Army surrendered to the 9th Division Australian Imperial Forces, which marked the end of World War II in Borneo. The Surrender Point overlooks the South China Sea.

~ During the Japanese occupation Labuan was known as Maidashima or Maida Island. It was named after General Maida, the Chief Commander of the Japanese forces in Borneo.

 

Beaches

 

Sun-kissed beaches and picture-postcard views are a beautiful facet of Labuan's attractions. The beaches of Layang-layangan, Pancur Hitam and Pohon Batu are famed for their warm waters and scenic views.

  • Enjoy cycling by the beach

  • Have a picnic

  • Savour the variety of local food at the stalls

  • Join team-building activites

  • Sit back and watch the sunset

~ A number of beaches in Labuan have received the COBSEA Clean Beach Award, a recognition given by the United Nations Environment Programme.

 

Labuan Marine Museum

Jalan Tanjung Purun

This museum has 16 galleries that showcase the marine heritage around the water of Labuan. Highlights include artefacts from shipwrecks, live and preserved zooplanktons, mollusks, snails, fish, reptiles, corals and aquatic plants. At the Touch Pool, visitors will get a chance to touch and feel marine inhabitants such as starfish and sea cucumbers. This museum use part of the Labuan International Sea sports Complex.

Opening hours: 8.30am - 5.00pm daily Admission is free.

 

Layang-Layang Island

 

Layang-Layang Island or 'Swallow's Reef lies about 300km north of Labuan. The seabed surrounding the rim of this location atoll drops 2,000mm, making it a great location to spot large marine life such as hammerhead sharks, white tip reef sharks, manta rays, tutles, big eye trevally and barracudas. The atoll is also a resting colony for migratory birds. Due to its distance from Labuan, layang-layang Island is more accessible from Sabah, the neighbouring state.Flights by MAS Wings leave Kota Kinabalu daily at 6.30am and the journey takes about 1 hour and 20 minutes. The 3-star Layang-Layang Island is the only accommodation on the island.

~ Layang-layang Island is hailed as the 'Big Fish' and 'Wall Diving Mecca of Shoutheast Asia'. It is one of top ten diving destinations in the world.

~ The deep waters around Layang-layang Island is he venue for the Labuan International Game Fishing Tournament (LIGFT).

 

Labuan Bird Park

Tanjung Kubong

 

Situated near the Chimney, this park houses numerous species of Borneo's birds. There are presently about 684 bird species, commonly found in rainforests, mangrove swamps, coastal area as well as the highlands. They are housed in there large dome shaped cages.

Opening hours: 10.00am - 4.30pm Closed on Friday.

 

Homestays

 

Stay in a scenic Malay Village, or live in a water village. To experience the lifestyle of the locals, visitors can participate in a homestay programme available at the following villages:

  • Patau-patau II water village

  • Bukit Kuda Village

  • Sungai Labu Billage

- Patau-patau II is the oldest water village in Malaysia and one of the few water village homestay in the country.

 

There's Much More In Labuan

Despite small size, Labuan has a number of places that would be of interest to tourists Among them are:

  • Labuan Square

  • Museum Square

  • Tanjung Kubong Tunnel

  • Papan Island

  • Jamek An'Nur Mosque

  • Chinese 'Eight Deity' Temple

  • Labuan Gurdwara Sahibi (Sikh Temple)

  • Labuan Bazaar

  • Labuan Art Gallery (situated at Kampung Layang-layangan)

  • labuan International Sea Sports Complex

 

Shopping & Dining

 

Shopping

Labuan enjoy a tax-free status that makes it the perfect place to find imported products at bargain prices. Visit this free-trade zone to choose from an assortment of perfumes, chocolate, cosmetics, liquor, cigarettes, liquor, cigarettes, textiles, leather goods, electrical appliances, electronic gadgets, pens and watches.

Among the popular shopping areas are:

  • Jalan OKK Awang Besar

  • Ferry Terminal are

  • One Stop Duty free at Victoria Point

  • Financial Park Complex

  • Labuan Weekend Tamu (A bazaar held on Saturdays and Sundays at Labuan Walk

 

Dining

Seafood is major attraction in Labuan Fresh fish, prawns, crabs, lobsters, squids and shellfish are found in abundance. Enjoy a delightful assortment of cooking styles, such as Western, Malay and Chinese. Visitors can also try some of the specialties of this island:

Coconut pudding - Unique to Labuan and rarely found anywhere else, this pudding is made from steamed coconut water and jelly.

Lamban - Akin to the Chinese rice dumplings or the Malay ketupat, lamban is sweetened stea,ed rice that is wrapped in coconut leaves. It is eaten with a peanut sauce.

Punjung - A bite - size delight, punjung is made of rice flour. It contains a jelly filling. The cone-shape dessert is wrapped in banana leaves.

Jelurut - Ideal for the sweet-toothed, this dessert is made of rice flour, sugar and coconut milk. The jellylike dessert is usually green in colour. It is sometimes flavoured with durian or yam.

 

 

Transportation

 

By Air

Labuan is well-linked by air. It is easily accessible from Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA), situated in Peninsular Malaysia. It is also accessible from Kota Kinabalu in Sabah and Miri in Sarawak. Labuan is served by Malaysia Airlines, MAS Wings as well as AirAsia.

By Sea

The Labuan International Ferry Terminal receives ferries from Sabah, Sarawak and Brunei darussalam. The Journey from Kota Kinabalu takes about 3 hours. from Brunei Darussalam, Labuan is accessible in only one hour.

Alternatively, visitors can take the speed boat or the passenger ferry (capable of accommodating vehicles) from Menumbok in sabah.

Getting Around

Getting around Labuan is relatively easy. The island's excellent road network links Labuan's main town with other parts of the island. It takes about 2 - 3 hour Call Taxi Services are availlble Car and motorbike rentals for self-drives can be arranged.

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