Looking for a relaxing staycation destination? Just head off to the west coast to Kota Belud and book a stay at the Usukan Cove Lodge.
Usukan Cove is situated in the coast of Kota Belud, right next to Kampung Kuala Abai where the jetty to Mantanani Island is located. From Kota Kinabalu, the journey to Usukan Cove takes approximately one-and-half hours. Throughout the journey, you will be delighted by the wonderful sights and sceneries of the idyllic Kota Belud countryside—passing endless plains of paddy fields, undulating hills, and rustic wooden-house villages with a picturesque view of the majestic Mount Kinabalu in the background.
Nestled on one of the eight beautiful beaches in Usukan, the Usukan Cove is surrounded by neighbouring fishermen villages. While taking a walk along the stretch of golden sandy beach overlooking the Usukan Cove Lodge, visitors will be able to see clusters of houses in the neighbouring villages, with children frolicking in the water and men casting their nets for a bountiful catch.
The Usukan Cove Lodge consists of two buildings that contain 16 units of individual rooms. These rooms are modeled after European-style hostels with simple double sharing rooms as well as rooms with two bunk beds. Albeit their budget accommodation status that caters mainly to backpackers, the rooms at the lodge are clean and spiffy with haze blue painted walls, maple flooring, as well as fluffy pillows and beds covered in crisp white linens—complete with air conditioning and drinking water supply.
On a balmy evening, simply go to the beachfront where you can lie on a hammock under the shade with a good book or your iPod. For adventure seekers, opt for a leisure dive or go snorkeling to check out the plenteous natural attractions which include gorgeous coral reefs and diverse marine life. Like checking out the natural sceneries? Hop on a kayak and take yourself on a self-tour around the island. You can also opt to visit the nearby Pandan Pandan Island that is surrounded by clear blue water and sparkling white beach.
One of the most interesting activities that can be done during your trip to Usukan Cove is fishing. A fishing yacht will take visitors to the middle of the sea—20 minutes away from the mainland—to fish. Expect to be able to catch garoupas, sting rays, or even puffer fish during this fishing expedition! You can bring back your catch to be cooked for dinner; otherwise, releasing the fish back to the sea would be a good option as well.
To unwind on a lazy afternoon, take a cruise down the Kawa Kawa River where you can sit back and enjoy the amusing sights of proboscis monkeys in harems, long tailed macaques swinging from tree to tree, and spot some rare species of birds. Later, witness the breathtaking Kota Belud sunset before cruising down Abai River where, depending on the weather, visitors will be enchanted by a wonderful spectacle of fireflies that form together around the trees, appearing like a network of twinkling colourlights!