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Discover the beauty of Borneo on this North Borneo Railway journey that covers coastal landscapes, rural regions, and plenty of space between. Enjoy the nostalgia of an old steam train as you make your way through villages, ride paddies, rainforests, rubber plantations and coffee fields on this trip from Kota Kinabalu to Papar. Enjoy a complimentary tiffin lunch of rice, curry and vegetables or meat, as well as round-trip hotel transport.


  • Morning train trip aboard the North Borneo Railway
  • Enjoy the lush landscape and rural scenery of Sabah
  • Stop at Kinarut and Papar to experience the sights and sounds of rural life
  • Complimentary British tiffin lunch, including rice, curry, vegetables and meats
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off included

What You Can Expect

North Borneo Railway Train Ride from Kota Kinabalu to Papar

Nostalgic steam train ride

Experience the feelings of romance and nostalgia on this North Borneo Railway train ride from Kota Kinabalu to Papar. Travel back in time to the days when locals journeyed by steam train to Sabah. You’ll relax on a refurbished train car that’s designed to evoke the sense of stepping into the 1900s, as you make your way on the 36-mile rail trip. 

Your trip begins at Tanjung Aru Station, where you’ll board the train and head out towards the pastoral landscapes of rural Malaysia. You’ll pass the coast of Lokawi Bay where window seat travelers have access to stunning views of the South China Sea. Make a visit to the traditional trading village of Kinarut, as well as Tien Shi Temple and enjoy a bit of free time to explore tiny shops in the foothills near the temple. 

Your train ride continues through the Kawang Forest Reserve, over a steel bridge past the Papar River, finally ending in the town of Papar. Enjoy a taste of local life in the nearby wet market and engage with residents as you take in the sights, sounds and smells of this lively place. Return via train to Kota Kinabalu and savor your traditional colonial tiffin lunch en route.

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