If you are looking for somewhere a little different to retreat from the ‘rat-race’ that is life, Gaya Island Resort is that place. This picturesque resort lies on an island within the Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park, a protected sanctuary with stunning views and an outline of Mount Kinabalu on the horizon.

The Gaya Island Resort is committed to reducing its carbon footprint and walking is encouraged.  Minimal motorised vehicles are used for operational purposes, thus contributing to its ecologically-sustainable practices. The resort’s conservation programmes are led by dedicated and passionate teams who help to preserve and protect both local wildlife and the natural environment and help to raise awareness for sustainable seafood choices. Several eco-friendly initiatives are also in place, ranging from rescue programmes to conservation through education.

Set amongst the mangroves, this beachfront resort blends seamlessly into the surrounding natural environment and offers a collection of spacious hillside villas from which to choose, all offering eco-luxury in an elegant and contemporary design.  Each of the villas provides comfortable bedding, a writing desk, complimentary WiFi, safe, flat screen tv with satellite channels, mini-bar, ceiling fan and climate control.  There is also a large open en-suite bathroom with an oversized bathtub and two vanity units, and an outdoor verandah with day beds.

Indulge in exquisite fresh seafood and delicious regional cuisine, all prepared by a team of talented chefs. You can choose to dine in one of the resorts restaurants or enjoy private dining on the verandah at your villa.

There are plenty of activities on offer from PADI snorkelling and diving programmes, to leisure or deep sea fishing excursions.  There are also two guided nature walks of varying difficulty and undertaken with the Resident Naturalist which provide an educated insight to the flora and fauna in this exceptional reserve.  The nature walks operate on limited numbers to minimise the human impact on the wildlife and their habitat. Guests will have the chance to spot the rare Proboscis Monkey from the observation platform where sightings of these beautiful primates happen mostly between April to early July.  On evening walks you may encounter Red Giant Flying Squirrels that inhabit hollow trees and artificial nesting boxes within the resort’s grounds.

A trip to the Gaya Island Resort Marine Centre is well-worth the 5 minute boat journey (or 45 minute trek!) and showcases the phenomenal research and rehabilitation of the endangered green sea turtles, and advocates Coral Reef Restoration and Conservation through education.

For the more adventurous, kayak into the 100-year-old mangrove forest.  Led by the Resident Naturalist, enjoy a unique experience of this sub-tropical habitat with occasional sightings of mangrove crabs, the oriental pied hornbill and monitor lizards.

If its relaxation and rejuvenation that you seek, you will find the Spa Village Gaya Island tucked away amongst the lush mangroves.  Here, you can indulge in a variety of spa treatments, yoga, and meditation. Combining therapeutic properties of natural ingredients, with the age-old healing practices of the area, you are sure to enjoy an uplifting and rejuvenating experience restoring balance to the body and soul.

For inspiration and to see a sample holiday itinerary featuring Gaya Island Resort click here.

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