Kota Kinabalu a Seafood Paradise

Sabah, also known as The Land Below The Wind, is the northern most state of Malaysia. Situated at the northern part of the Borneo Island, two third of Sabah’s border is made up of coastal land. The west coast of Sabah is washed by the waters of South China Sea, and the north-Sulu Sea and while the east coast-the Celebes Sea. With its unique geographical location and the many islands surrounding Sabah, corals and a vast ecosystem of wetlands have enriched it surrounding with abundant of marine life. With all this natural element in place, fishermen in Sabah are constantly supplying the local markets with plenty of fresh seafood.

Kota Kinabalu is the capitol city of Sabah, and also the most well connected city in Borneo with its international airport and sea port. Live sea creatures from Kudat, Sandakan, and Tawau have to pass through Kota Kinabalu before they are exported to Hong Kong and Taipei, two major cities of this region. With the major seafood suppliers in Kota Kinabalu, restaurant owners have made use of this opportunity to set up many seafood restaurants in the past decades. Today it is not surprised that seafood is one of the most popular food in Kota Kinabalu.

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Vegas Bar & Grill

vegas bar & grill interior

A warm and relaxed atmosphere are what one feels the moment one steps into Vegas Bar & Grill. It has a simple but well planned interior, that used warm lights and rattans chair with red ribbon to brighten up the main section of the room. While the window tables and seats adopted a different setting from the main section, and two tables are located at the corner for those who need a bit of privacy.

prawn cocktail

Western cuisine is the main fare on the menu at Vegas Bar & Grill. Beef, chicken, fish and lamb are the few selection for one to choose from. Salads, soups, appetizers, burgers, and sandwiches, are served here. There are also some hawker style cooking like fried noodle and fried rice.

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Little Italy Pasta and Pizza Corner

little italy front entrance

Without a doubt, Little Italy is the most popular Italian restaurant in Kota Kinabalu. Come lunch and dinner time Little Italy is always packed with KKlites and tourists alike. The pasta and pizza here are so delicious that customers always comeback for more.

gamberi fettuccine with prawn

Located on the ground floor of Capital Hotel, and situated at a corner of one of KK city most busy traffic lights, Little Italy does have a very strategic position. While the others two corners are occupied by Wisma Merdeka and Wisma Sabah, both places are popular shopping centres and offices. Take a seat at the veranda of Little Italy and get a glimpse of life in Kota Kinabalu City, where people walk up and down going about with their businesses.

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Gayang Seafood Restaurant

“kim hiong” fried crabs

“Kim Hiong” is a wonderful sauce that cooked with a mixture of ingredients, like curry powder, curry leaf, grounded dry shrimp and eggs. “Kim Hiong” sauce can be used to fry prawns and fish. Here we have Kim Hiong sauce on fried crabs, the out come is finger licking good, yummy.

gayang seafood restaurant entrance

Gayang Seafood Restaurant is another popular venue for kklites to enjoy great seafood dinner with friends and family. Spacious and open air dinner hall is the landmark of Gayang Seafood Restaurant, and this is another reasonable price seafood restaurant. To get here, travel north on Jalan Sulaman, and turn in at the next junction on the left after passing Salut Seafood Restaurant. The journey takes about 25 minutes from Kota Kinabalu City.

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Nyuk Pau Kopitiam

ngau chap be hon

Mention about Menggatal town, many kklites will start thinking of Nyuk Pau Kopitiam. This Kopitiam serves mouth watering Ngau Chap and especially the Ngau Chap soup which is very tasty. For Ngau Chap lovers, this shop is highly recommended.

Menggatal is about 20 minutes drive from Kota Kinabalu City, two roads lead to the destination, Jalan Sulaman or Tuaran Road. There are only about 10 to 15 blocks of shoplot in this small town. The shops here are nothing to shout about, most of these shops supplying daily commodities for the surrounding consumers.

to fu with mince beef

Tofu with minced beef is one of Nyuk Pau Kopitiam specials. There are not many places to find Tofu with minced beef, as most people make Tofu stuffs with pork meat or fish meat. Therefore Tofu with minced beef can be considered as a kind of rarity. Well Nyuk Pau Kopitiam is the only one that has Tofu with minced beef in their menu, that I know about. One must give this Tofu with minced beef a try if one ever ventures to Menggatal township.

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Deep Fried Chicken and Roasted Pork

deep fried chicken & roasted pork

This hugely popular chicken & roasted pork rice kopitiam is always packed with people during lunch hours. The deep fried chicken, roasted pork, roasted ribs and the ever delicious “sau nyuk”, are all sold out every day. Come early if “sau nyuk” is the main order, to avoid any disappointment.

ho kee’s chicken & roasted pork rice

“Ho Kee” is just a small store operating within Kedai Kopi Gunung Emas, and the business hours is from 11am to 2pm. Many people come for the take away too, and also be prepared to wait for a seat whenever one decides to come for a treat at “Ho Kee”. The location of this kopitiam is at Bornion Commercial Centre, at the back of Milimewa Supermarket, about 10 minutes drive from Kota Kinabalu City along Jalan Kolam.

“sau nyuk”

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New Gaya Seafood Restuarant

butter prawn

Butter Prawn in dry or wet sauce is a hugely popular dish for seafood lovers in Kota Kinabalu. Dip the prawn into the butter garvy, and this makes the prawn taste so delicious. Another popular prawn dish is the simple and tasty Steamed Fresh Prawns.


Lives flowers lobsters, elephant trunks, and clams, are ready to be order and make into wonderful dishes to satisfy our taste bud. There are also live fish for sale here.

new gaya seafood restaurant

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