- Kapalai Island - between Sipadan and Mabul. It is actually a sand bar that sits upon a stretch of reefs, called the ‘Ligitan Reefs’.
- Lankayan - located in the Sulu Sea North West of Sandakan
- Layang Layang - an island off the west coast that offers spectacular diving.
- Mabul - one of the world's best muck diving locations
- Mantanani - an archipelago of three quiet islands North West of Kota Belud, a mere one-hour’s drive away from Kota Kinabalu
- Mataking - located 40 minutes away from Semporna and 45 minutes from Sipadan
- Sipadan - one of the world's best dive spots with lots of large pelagic species (sea turtles, sharks, rays
- Pulau Tiga - first season of ‘Survivor’ the TV series was shot on this little island
- Turtle Islands - in the Sulu Sea off the coast of Sandakan where you can see turtle conservation at work.
- Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park - Coral islands just off the coast of Kota Kinabalu.
- Tanjung Aru - 30 minutes (11 km) away from Kudat Town.
- Kudat Peninsula - 30 minute (10 kilometres) speedboat ride from Kota Kinabalu.
- Mount Kinabalu - This has to be the top of the list as far as reasons for visiting Sabah go. The 4,095m mountain is the highest in Southeast Asia (outside Papua, which is regarded as part of Oceania), but is probably one of the easiest to climb as no mountaineering experience is needed, just a lot of stamina. The surrounding National Park is also home to many plants and animals.
- Poring Hot Springs - Soak in pools of natural hot water to cure your muscle aches after you assault on Mount Kinabalu
- Sepilok - The world-famouns Sepilok Orang Utan Sanctuary near Sandakan is home to orphaned or captured orang utans where they are slowly readapted to the jungle environment.
- Danum Valley - See the tropical rain forest near Tawau at its most prestine state.
- Monsopiad Cultural Village - Located near Kota Kinabalu, it tells the story of Monsopiad, a warrior of the Kadazan ethnic group who lived some 300 years ago and slew 42 of his enemies. The skulls of these 42 are on exhibit in the Hall of Skulls.
- Proboscis monkeys - You will be able to see them in the wild in the Sukau and Kinabatangan areas near Sandakan and the Klias Wetlands area.
- Rafflesia flowers - The world's largest flowers, nearly 1m in diameter, can be seen in the Crocker Range.
- Kota Kinabalu - capital city of Sabah and the largest city in East Malaysia.
- Sandakan - a town located in the east of Sabah and was formerly the capital of Sabah prior to WWII.
- Semporna - a town located on the east coast, main hopping off points to the dive islands
- Tawau - major town located at the southeast corner of the state, entry point from Indonesia
- Tenom - main city in the interior of the state