The silver lining is that there is perhaps no better time than the present for Malaysians to visit Sabah.
1. China travel restrictions began much earlier in Sabah
It was seen as a knee jerk reaction at the time but Sabah being among the earliest to close its doors to visitors from China means the virus situation is far more controlled thus making it a safer destination to visit.
2. Less crowds and competition
The last time I went home, most tourist attractions were swarmed with visitors from China and South Korea. Think about it – all those beaches and islands for you to enjoy minus the crowds.
3. Great deals on hotels
From what I heard many hotels are offering very good rates, with some being the lowest they’ve had in years. So rather than just shacking up in the cheapest backpacker’s you can find, maybe try an actual hotel, oh budget travellers.
4. What’s more relaxing than the most chilled-out state in Malaysia?
It’s not just state pride but reality. In Sabah the locals are a lot more relaxed and less likely to throw you judgemental glances. Unlike the East Coast of West Malaysia, Sabah does not intend to impose dress codes or gender segregation. Enjoy your short skirts and alcoholic drinks without judgement or overly nosy locals.
Great food, great sights, plenty of nature activities and some of the best sea and sky views in the country — honestly every year should be Visit Sabah Year. This year if you do visit, consider it as doing so for a cause. You need a holiday, Sabahans need some respite from the low tourist traffic.
* This is the personal opinion of the columnist.malaymail
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