Turtle Island (Selingan Island)
Turtle Island off the cost of Sandakan is famed for it's clear water, white sandy beaches and the tens of thousands of baby turtles released annually from the hatchery on the island. Spend a night here to witness turtles coming onto the beach to lay eggs and watch as baby hatchlings take their first steps towards the great ocean.
A trip to Turtle Island can be booked as a 2D1N overnight stay or as a 4D3N package in combination with a trip to the Kinabatangan River, hands down the best place to see wildlife in Sabah.
Turtle Island hatchery program
Aside from beautiful sandy beaches, the main draw for visitors to Turtle Island is the chance to see the magical process of turtles coming ashore to lay their eggs and new hatchlings being released into the waters around the island. The hatchery program on the island is managed by Sabah Parks, a government body responsible for the conservation of Sabah's natural resources. The peak season for turtles coming ashore to lay eggs is June to October with 20 or more turtles coming each night during this period. Incredibly, over 6000 nests are relocated to the hatchery on Turtle Island over the course of the year allowing you to experience this magical process the whole year round.
Turtle Island accommodation
There is only 1 lodge on Selingan Island, rooms are basic but comfortable with air-conditioning & ensuite bathrooms. Solo travellers will be allocated a private room which is subject to a single supplement. The maximum number of guests per room is strictly 2 adults and 1 child under 10 years old, families with a child over 10 years old or with 2 children will need to book 2 rooms.
July & August is peak season and rooms are very limited, advance bookings are essential. The boat to Turtle Island departs from Sandakan jetty at 10am and arrives back the following day at 8am, the journey takes approximately 1 hour and boat transfers may be cancelled in case of adverse weather conditions.
As there is limited space on the boat, guests are advised to pack an overnight bag and leave their main luggage in storage in Sandakan (we can arrange this for you).
With no day trips allowed at Turtle Island, this overnight package is the shortest option to witness the magic of baby turtles hatching off the coast of Sandakan and also includes a guided visit to Sepilok Orang-utan sanctuary.
From: RM1495 per person
4D3N Turtle Island & Kinabatangan river safari
Combine 1 night at Turtle Island with 2 nights on the banks of the Kinabatangan river for an amazing wildlife experience. Witness baby turtles hatching, visit the sanctuaries in Sepilok and cruise the Kinabatangan river in search of proboscis monkeys, pygmy elephants and more!
From: RM2350 per person
Similar to the package above but with higher-end accommodation at the Kinabatangan river. Start your journey at Turtle Island before continuing on to Sepilok and the award winning Sukau Rainforest Lodge on the banks of the Kinabatangan river for a luxurious river stay.
From: RM3590 per person