A 15 minute boat ride from the bustling Kota Kinabalu brought us to Manukan Island, a private island resort. The beaches are open to the public during the day but there are still areas reserved only for residents. In the evenings and early mornings we had the island to ourselves.
As the boat approached the jetty the staff greeted us with a friendly wave.
Our luggage was whisked away and we were given cold towels while we checked in.
Wandering around the island I discovered gorgeous sandy beaches and a selection of water sport activities. The beaches were fairly busy during the day but started to quieten down at around 4pm.
We had fabulous accommodation overlooking the beach with a comfortable lounge area and a huge bed. The air conditioning was essential. Our fridge wasn’t very cold for the all important beer collection but I made a call to the restaurant and someone brought us a bucket of ice. Stuart was a happy man again.
The first evening we had dinner in the restaurant. We were virtually the only people there and were serenaded by a lovely musical trio.
On the second night the staff had set up tables on the beach for us and provided us with a delicious BBQ. It was a magical experience with twinkling lights and the sound of the waves lapping on the shore and of course, my favourite musical trio for entertainment.
I may not be the greatest sportswoman to ever walk the earth but I love swimming and snorkelling. My exceptional buoyancy comes in extremely handy on a snorkelling trip but this also means that SPF50 is essential on the derriere. Stuart is more of a land lover so kept guard on the boat as we all bobbed around in the water.
The boat was a little on the rustic side but our guide was fantastic and really helped all the first time snorkelers. We went to 3 different spots during the day and whilst there wasn’t a great deal to see, there was enough to keep us entertained.
My favourite time of the day was the morning before everybody was up and about. I had the entire island to myself when I got up early to see the sunrise. It was magical.
Breakfast was served to the residents before the general public arrived at the island. There was a big selection of food to chose from and it provided a relaxing start to the day.