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Tawau Travel Guide, Malaysia

Tawau is no Kuala Lumpur or Kuching but it is no more the tiny fishing town it used to be in its initial stages (although it continues to be famous for its crabs, prawns and fishes). Tawau has many epithets – it is known as the ‘Gateway to the islands’, as the ‘Cocoa city of Asia’, so on and so forth, but gradually Tawau is also gaining importance as a tourism destination in its own right.

Present Tawau city is a leading industrial and research center but Tawau tourism is not mere commercial or business tourism, it is much more – people come here as much to enjoy life at the cocoa and palm-oil plantations as to relish the delectable seafood and special Malay-delicacies served at Tawau’s different eateries.

Tawau’s ethnic makeup fascinates people as does the prospects of Nature-viewing, shopping, sight-seeing and its other entertainments like golf, water-sports, etc in Tawau-surroundings. Your other bonuses in Tawau are the prospects of seeing exotic flora and fauna like the rare primate species, the Proboscis monkeys, world’s largest flowers, Rafflesia, pitcher plants and a wide variety of orchids.

The Tawau travel guide will give you adequate information about Tawau’s people, culture, economy, infrastructure, etc. so that you have at least a little awareness, supposing that you plan visiting the city in the near-future.

Tawau Travel Guide: Statistics

Area: 6125 sq km

Population: 370,800

Currency: Ringgit

Language(s): Malay & English the official languages of Malaysia and also Chinese

Tawau Travel Guide: City Planning and Architecture

Tawau is a full-fledged town with its residential quarters, shopping arcades and commercial centers agreeably punctuated by green-patches. Tawau’s basic planning divides it into three parts – while the old part of the town has the port and the central market, the governmental departments are in the Sabindo area and the Fajar area acts as the commercial hub.

Construction work is in progress at various sites in Tawau as part of the city’s expansion and development plans – some of these expansion projects are the New Tawau Town Center, Kuhara Point, the Permanent Food Park and Tawau Sports Stadium, etc.

Tawau Travel Guide: Economy and Infrastructure

Tawau is called the ‘Cocoa Capital of Asia’ and the city’s economy has long depended on Cocoa-exports; all the while, of course, Tawau would also engage in the export of tobacco and palm oil. Being a coastal settlement (with dense-wooded islands all around), Tawauns have also earned livelihood through timber-trade and fishing for quite a long time. Tawauns association with these various trades continue and even today you will find the local populace engaging in large-scale prawn farming, cocoa and palm-oil plantations, etc. But then, the present-times are seeing a change – now that attempts are on to turn Tawau into a tourism heaven, the Cocoa-trees and plants have as much become objects of interest as they are profitable mechanics.

Speaking of Tawau’s infrastructure, we must say that the city has strong Tourism infrastructure in the form of connectivity, accommodation facilities, entertainment options and active pursuits. The town acts as an entry/exit point for nearby regions and is well connected by air, water and land. As for traveling within the city, there are bus-services and local taxis. Again, there is no dearth of hotels and restaurants, night-clubs and other entertainment venues. Many high-rise new hotels are coming up in the city’s vicinity as part of Tawau’s expansion plans.

Tawau Travel Guide: People and Culture

Tawau is peopled by ethnic communities that have come here from different regions, speak different dialects, follow different customs and traditions and even have their different cookery. In spite of these basic differences, the people of Tawau are very easy-going and sociable – they get along very well among each other and even extend the tourists a very warm welcome.

Tawau’s culture is a mixed baggage of the customs and traditions of the different communities living in the city and its surroundings. This is best reflected in the local cuisine, which comprises of specialties peculiar to different ethnic-groups; besides, the people have now taken up sea-food culture by virtue of its situation. The ‘Cocoa Festival’ – a cultural extravaganza, that involves dancing, singing, a lot of fun and merry-making, is an important aspect of Tawau culture.

The Tawau travel guide is an attempt at giving a glimpse of the settlement. Hope this serves your purpose and helps you plan your Tawau-trip well in advance.

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