This is the Tenom Travel Guide you need in 2024! Follow SabahTravel to explore the top places to visit in Tenom and Keningau, as well as the best things to do in Tenom and Keningau! Our trip kicked off on a sunny Thursday morning, setting out from Kota Kinabalu city via Kimanis Road.
Along the way, we made some fantastic pit stops, and the first one was Taman Arnab Batu 19 Kimanis. Situated at an elevation of 800m asl, this child-friendly heaven is not only home to adorable rabbits but also features other animals like geese and ducks, all set against an epic backdrop of lush greenery.
We also stopped by Cinammon Park, located in the Crocker Range on the Kimanis road. We were welcomed by the breathtaking panoramic views of the valley, and even get a glimpse of the town of Keningau. We all enjoyed the cool and peaceful atmosphere away from the hustle and bustle of the city.
Where to eat in Keningau
Then, we went to Sabindo Khin Sang Springs Water Resort, where they've got a restaurant that's just perfect for a cozy date night or a good ol' family gathering. They've got paddle boating and live music performance for some extra fun. Do take note that the restaurant is only open in the afternoon and evening, with opening hours from 3 pm to 11 pm daily.
When it was time for lunch, we stopped at Wee Kee Food Centre and treated our taste buds to some local delicacies like Ngiu Chap (mixed beef noodle).
Fresh dairy milk at Eco Yap Farm
After lunch, we hopped over to Eco Yap Farm in Keningau, a massive 300-acre dairy farm! Here, you'll encounter a wide array of creatures, from cows and deer to crocs and goats. We also tried their freshly harvested milk, it was unbelievably creamy! Just remember, to ensure a seamless visit, advanced booking is a must.
Tasting 3 types of dragon fruits
If you're a fan of dragon fruit, make sure you drop by the Chin's Orchard. There are over a thousand dragon fruit trees here, and the best time to swing by is in the evening when you can enjoy the sunset and the orchard all lit up.
We savoured 3 different dragon fruit varieties and their handmade dragon fruit juice, made without adding a single drop of water! If you've got plenty of time to spare, make sure you catch a glimpse of those dragon fruit flowers blooming between 8:30 and 9:30 pm – a pretty rare sight!
Overnight stay at Naluyan Jungle Lodge
Finally, we checked into our rooms at Naluyan Jungle Lodge, a rustic wooden chalets nestled in Tenom rainforest with stunning views of the Crocker Range. Here, we had the wonderful opportunity to rejuvenate surrounded by the lush rainforest. The rooms provided exceptional comfort, complete with thoughtful amenities like dental kits, hair dryers, towels, and complimentary Wi-Fi.
To wrap up our eventful first day, we dug into a hearty dinner at the Naluyan Falls Cafe & Bar and had a fantastic conversation with the Lodge's owners, Gerald and Georgina!
Rise and shine! We kicked the second day off with a delicious breakfast at Naluyan Falls Cafe & Bar to fuel up to energise for the adventures ahead.
Following our breakfast, we took a leisurely stroll to the natural swimming pool, fed by a waterfall. The sensation of being enveloped by mountains and nestled in the breathtaking pristine environment is truly therapeutic!
After checking out, we visited Tenom Valley, a suitable accommodation for family vacations due to its serene countryside-like atmosphere. It was constructed by a local architect who has beautifully landscaped the area with a variety of lovely trees.
Tenom Valley offers a range of activities, from swimming and ATV riding to leisurely balcony strolls, guided walks to two nearby waterfalls, and the option for self-cooking and BBQ.
Moving right along, we headed to Padas Farmstay and checked out their key limes, passion fruits, and coffee plantations.
But it's not just about farming here – Padas Farmstay also serves as a homestay for international students who want to experience local culture and rural life through educational and community programs. These programs provide them with an opportunity to lend a hand and get involved in local community charity work.
Must-try local food in Tenom
At noontime, we filled up our bellies at Double Happiness, a classic kopitiam that's been dishing out goodies since way back in 1973! It's got that charming, old-school vibe that really elevate the experience.
We indulged in their signature dishes: char siu and roasted pork fried noodles along with a side of meat egg rolls soup!
See the largest 3D map in Sabah, Malaysia
We made our way to Yong Farmstay after lunch. As soon as we got here, we settled into our cozy container rooms and snapped a group photo in front of the largest 3D Sabah map in the whole of Malaysia, measuring a whopping 40' x 24'! 📸🗺️
We started with the Hakka heritage tour which allowed us to delve into the rich cultural history of the region. We learned about the traditions, customs, and way of life of the Hakka people, gaining a deeper understanding of the local culture.
Slingshot smashing and archery shooting was our favourite activities there! We had a blast trying to aim for the bullseye - a great way to challenge our focus!
We also explored the mini zoo, the suspension bridge, the glass bridge, and of course, the impressive 360-story-high rainbow stairways!
The only restaurant with AC in Tenom
For dinner, we hit up Yit Foh Robusta Café to indulge in its extensive selection of Asian and Western cuisines. What truly set this place apart is the live entertainment they featured every Wednesday and Saturday, transforming our evening into a delightful mix of great food and music. Oh, and here's a fun fact for you: it's the only restaurant in Tenom with air conditioning!
It's our last day in Tenom, and we started the day right with a fulfilling local breakfast at Tenom old town!
Tasting famous local Tenom Coffee at Yit Foh
We paid a visit to Yit Foh Coffee, a proudly Sabahan coffee brand that has been serving since its establishment in 1960. We joined the guided tour to the coffee factory, immersing ourselves in the firsthand coffee-making process and savouring the rich flavour of Yit Foh's freshly roasted black coffee.
The director of Yit Foh Coffee Factory, Mr Chee, generously presented us with Yit Foh coffee gift packs as souvenirs for our trip.
Coffee with a view - Fatt Choi Coffee
After that, we made our way to Fatt Choi Coffee to explore more coffee delights – we ordered iced latte and mocha!
The primary attractions at Fatt Choi Coffee include the observation platform offering stunning views of Tenom town and the Padas River, as well as another large Sabah tourism map (this one was built on a hill)!
Colourful umbrellas garden in Tenom
When it came to our final meal in Tenom, we couldn't resist returning to Yit Foh Robusta Café, thanks to its incredibly satisfying food. Before departing, we captured a few photos in the "A Sky of Colourful Umbrellas" garden, and they turned out quite Instagram-worthy with the natural lighting!
Afterward, we immersed ourselves in the rich history and culture of the Murut people at the Murut Cultural Centre, where we had the chance to witness their traditional costumes, traditional musical instruments, and even try our hands at playing their traditional game. It was the perfect way to conclude our Tenom adventure with an enlightening and interactive experience.
As the sun set, it was time to say our goodbyes to Tenom. En route to Kota Kinabalu, we made a delightful pit stop at Gunung Alab for some afternoon tea, experiencing the refreshing air and cooler temperatures.
Tenom has shown us its beauty, culture, and charm, and we've had a blast. Until next time, happy travels with SabahTravel.com!