Floating village of Kota Kinabalu

I have been to many floating villages, offices and markets of Thailand, Philippines and Cambodia and perhaps I’ve written about it elsewhere. Today I speak about floating villages in Malaysia !

Sabah is in northern corner of the island of Borneo and its capital is Kota Kinabalu. Known locally as ‘KK’, the city has arguably one of the most beautiful locales of all cities in Malaysia. Its harbour is protected by a chain of beautiful islands while it faces the emerald-coloured South China Sea.


Photo : VelvetScape

KK is full to the brim with exotic beaches and great culture to soak in. The most important place to visit in Kota Kinabalu is, of course, the trek to Mount Kinabalu, which in itself is quite a fulfilling tour, weather permitting.

This is one of the few things you can’t miss when you circle to land in the city. It appears as though you will just skim the rim of the mountain range.

Another thing which you may see, again weather permitting, are the famous floating villages! Rows and Rows of boats and houses on stilts, of many colors moored close to the sea shore. It appeared beautiful from this far. The other side of the narrow land plays host to the harbor.

After all this research, I still could not find much material on the village. I was surprised. How come? Every other place I went, this used to be advertised well and were all part of the tourist circuit. Be it Top 10 things to do in KK or top 36 things to do in KK, the floating village did not find mention.
Eventually I found that the village was one big living garbage dump. Maybe notorious, not famous, is the right word. The area is apparently inhabited by illegal immigrants and the authorities are trying to clean up the place to build modern structures. There is, however, another floating village near Kota Kinabalu, which is not much touched by the tourism, maybe because it is not so easily accessible. Are there anymore?

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7 thoughts on “Floating village of Kota Kinabalu

  1. Wow! Thatz amazing! I have never been to a floating village. I would love to see something like this. And trek to Mt Kinabalu must be exciting.

  2. Kusum,
    Floating villages have a different tale. They are interesting and thought provoking too.

    Trekking to Kinabalu is a tough one. Be warned. 😛

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