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Travelling around Sabah is not difficult, one can do some planning before hand, this can help to avoid stress as well as saving time on the journey. For instance, Kota Kinabalu has four bus terminals, therefore knowing which one to go is very important if travellers don't want to miss their destinations. Three of the bus terminals are located in the city and there are all within walking distance. These bus terminals are namely Wawasan Terminal, Padang Terminal, and City Park Terminal. The Northern Bus Terminal is about 10 km away from the city at the Inanam industrial area, one would need to take a bus or taxi to reach there.
[The price guides below are a good estimate during the time of published, new pricing system should come into force starting from the middle of 2011.]
The Wawasan Terminal on Jalan Kemajuan is located at the southern end of the city, and it is opposite to the Wawasan Shopping centre. Many bus companies are found here and they provide internal bus services towards different parts of the city and its outskirts. Local suburbs like Inanam, KK Airports, Kepayan, Likas, Luyang, Penampang, Putatan, One Borneo, and Tanjung Aru, can be reached from here. Tickets to these suburbs should cost less that RM 2 one way. On the north route the buses here reach as far as Sepangar Bay, while going down south the furthest is Papar. Bus tickets to these towns should be less than RM4.
Padang Terminal as the name implies is located near the old field (padang) below the Signal hill. The buses here commuted to places in the interior and northern part of Sabah. The northern towns include places like Tamparuli, Tuaran, Kota Belud, Kota Marudu, Kudat, and Pitas. Buses and mini buses to the interior of Sabah will travel to destinations like Kundasang, Ranau, Tambunan, Keningau, and Tenom. Keningau is the main transportation hub for mini buses to places like Sook, Nambawan, and Sapulut.
Padang Terminal is also the bus station for mini buses to Kinarut, Kimanis, Bongawan, and Membakut. All these are small towns along the west coast of Sabah. Tourists who wish to visit the Kinabalu Park can travel with the buses to Kundasang or Ranau, and ask the driver to stop at the entrance to Kinabalu Park. The best time to catch a bus to these destinations is in the early morning when many buses are scheduled to leave between 7am and 10am. Some buses do leave in the afternoon but the frequencies then would be much lesser compared with those in the morning.
|KK - Kota Belud||75 km||2 hours||RM 8|
|KK - Kota Marudu||113 km||2.5 hours||RM 15|
|KK - Kudat||190 km||3 hours||RM 25|
|KK - Pitas||179 km||3 hours||RM 30|
Interior (South-east Bound):
|KK - Kundasang||96 km||1.5 hours||RM 20|
|KK - Ranau||109 km||2 hours||RM 20|
|KK - Tambunan||111 km||1.5 hours||RM 16|
|KK - Keningau||131 km||2 hours||RM 15|
|KK - Tenom||173 km||3 hours||RM 20|
Counters At Padang Terminal:
mobile: +6013 898 32 66
City Park Terminal
City Park Terminal on Beach Street is located opposite the Court House, and this bus station is one of the oldest in town. It is also situated at the heart of the city. The buses and coaches here are mostly south bound to destinations like Beaufort, Kuala Penyu, Menumbok, and Sipitang. Bus schedules to these places are between 7am and 1pm. Menumbok is where one can catch a ferry to Labuan Island. There is no direct bus to Kuala Penyu, one would have to take the Menumbok bus. The Menumbok bus would drop the passengers at the roundabout to Kuala Penyu, and from there passenger would have to take a mini-bus to Kuala Penyu. Long distance destinations outside Sabah include Lawas, Limbang, Brunei, and Miri, also have their operators station here. The journey to Miri can take up to ten hours. Bus operations to these destinations are mostly scheduled as early as 7am. There is only one coach leaving daily at this time.
South Bound within Sabah
|KK - Beaufort||97 km||2 hours||RM 10|
|KK - Menumbok||155 km||2 hours||RM 14|
|KK - Kuala Penyu||114 km||2 hours||RM 12|
|KK - Sipitang||125 km||3 hours||RM 12|
South Bound to Brunei and Sarawak
|KK - Lawas||184 km||4 hours||RM 40|
|KK - Limbang||230 km||6 hours||RM 50|
|KK - Brunei||252 km||8 hours||RM 100|
|KK - Miri||402 km||10 hours||RM 120|
Counter at City Park Terminal:
mobile: +6013 893 88 11 / +6012 830 77 22
mobile: +6016 836 00 09 / +6012 622 97 22
Northern Bus Terminal
The Northern Bus Terminal at Inanam is the largest bus station in Kota Kinabalu, and it has proper facilities like ticket counters, small sundry shops and washrooms. There are also many eateries and a few budget hotels around the area. Coaches here generally travel to destinations in the east coast of Sabah, which include Telupid, Sandakan, Lahad Datu, Kunak, Semporna and Tawau. Coach schedules are throughout the whole day. There are also coaches travelling at night, where one can sleep and reach the destination the next day. These modern coaches are all equipped with comfortable seats and air conditions, some even have built in toilets.
Tourists do take note, especially females and seniors, do watch out for young boys or young men who pester for sales of bus tickets at the entrance. Some time as many as ten of them can be seen rushing and crowding around the tourists, and these boys can be very persistent and a nuisance too. The best method to get them out of the way is to tell them you have already bought your tickets. Hopefully this will be enough to convince them.
|KK - Sandakan||335 km||6 hours||RM 30|
|KK - Lahad Datu||404 km||7 hours||RM 50|
|KK - Kunak||475 km||8 hours||RM 58|
|KK - Semporna||565 km||9 hours||RM 75*|
|KK - Tawau||555 km||9 hours||RM 55*|
*During low season price to Semporna from KK can go down to RM 45.00, and KK to Tawau for RM 50.
Counters at Northern Bus Terminal:
tel: +6088 389 997 (6:00 am to 7:30 pm)
mobile: +6016 831 65 65
Tung Ma Express
tel: +6088 381 190 / +6088 380 190
mobile: +6019 810 92 39