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Kota Kinabalu Travel Guide, Malaysia

Kota Kinabalu (also known as K.K. in Malaysia) happens to be the capital of West Coast Division of Sabah as well as Sabah itself; where Sabah is a state of Malaysia. Kota Kinabalu was also known as Jesselton in olden days and one must not confuse the old name and the new name to be two different cities.

As Kota Kinabalu is the capital city of Sabah, one can easily find all the state level political institutions located in the city. The city council of Kota Kinabalu is called as Dewan Bandaraya Kota Kinabalu in local language.

Kotah Kinabalu is the largest city in Sabah when it comes to urban population. Similarly, it ranks number 6th when compared nationally i.e. within Malaysia. Kota Kinabalu is surrounded by Mount Kinabalu on one side, Tunku Abdul Rahman Park (established in 1974 with two thirds of its area being sea while rest being various islands.) on the other side, and South China Sea from the third side.

Kota Kinabalu is a major tourist spot for foreign tourists and locals alike (Kinabalu National Park located around 60 km away from Kota Kinabalu is one of the many reasons) and the city is also the hub of various industries for eastern Malaysia. These two features of Kota Kinabalu have helped it to become one of the most important cities in Malaysia.

Surprisingly it was Kota Kinabalu that received its name from Mount Kinabalu and theories that point vice-versa are totally wrong.  There have been arguments among historians about various original names of Kota Kinabalu like: Api-Api (where the word Api means fire in Malay), Deasoka (which means under the coconut tree), and Singgah Mata (which means something which pleases your eyes).

Climate in Kota Kinabalu ranges from high humidity to high rainfall and then short dry season. The high humidity period sometimes does become unbearable for foreigners but the local population is well accustomed with such climates.

Population of Kota Kinabalu is well balanced with Bajaus, Kadazans, Malays, and Chinese contributing to the major portion while Animists, Sikhs, and Hindus contributing the minor portion. A respected amount of people from Philippines can also be found in the city.

Kota Kinabalu holds the rich cultures of various ethnicities and at times, foreigners might find themselves in their home city if they are able to locate a couple of familiar faces.


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