Kudat is one of the few places in Malaysian Borneo where one can get hauled. The small city is a friendly place with dozens of small restaurants and seemingly almost as many small Chinese run hardware stores. The nearby golf club is extremely cruiser friendly and cruisers recommend it as a great place to eat within walking distance of the boatyard.
Location 06° 53.5'N, 116° 51.45'E.
Clearance can be done here and all the offices are within walking distance.
The Immigration and Customs offices are on the waterfront, between the Milimewa store and the Police Wharf. In April 2013 Immigration for visiting yachts was managed from a white demountable building within the Police Wharf, just next to Customs. The Jabatan Laut (Harbourmaster) is located on the second floor of a building just behind the Chinese Temple – locals will point it out for you. Very helpful.
Note the new update to the restrictions on visas. See Malaysia/Immigration.
No clearance charges reported.
Last updated July 2013.
It is best to enter in the morning before the swell builds up as there are reefs each side of the entrance. This is a good place to leave a boat ashore.
In Kudat there are two possible anchorages.
1: Anchorage Basin with Marina
One, is a small anchorage basin with excellent shelter, inside a wall with a small marina facility. The marina has pontoons for 30-40 boats up to a maximum of 12-13 metres. Once free of charge, this marina is now managed and costs approx. 30RMY/day. There are no facilities and cruisers report that some of the pontoons are unstable, especially during very low tide.
Alternatively anchor stern-to the wall and use as long a chain as you can.
There is a hotel close by ("Marina Hotel") with a restaurant and bar and Wi-Fi. Penuwasa boat yard with a travelift for up to 150T (Tel: 60 88 614325) is also in the basin. Dinghies can be parked at the floating army dock in the southern corner – there is a permanent army camp there, so it is reasonably secure. There is a new building with the Marina but the purpose is not known yet.
2: Anchoring opposite Town
The other anchorage is opposite the town. You can drop West of the main jetty (N 06-52-674 and E 116-50-582) and leave your dinghy near the ferry terminal anchoring it from the stern. This jetty is walking distance to the market, supermarket etc. In good conditions anchoring off the town Esplanade is possible.
There are however many fishing boats near the ferry terminal which make the access with a dinghy difficult. It may be preferable to go for the W side of the main jetty which has an access with stairs, making the dinghy's access easy with the tides. (2+m). Furthermore the main jetty is controlled by Police which makes it very safe.
An alternative anchorage is to drop on the same latitude but E 116-51-293. This anchorage is better protected against the fresh SW wind and is near the "waterfront" where there are good seafood restaurants. Again, walking distance from banks, shopping etc.
Thefts and boardings have been reported from boats anchored off the town in August 2011. If leaving your boat unattended on the hard, be aware that thefts were reported from boats here in August 2011 and again in February 2013.
Last updated November 2013.