Try this 140km historical walking tour in Sabah on your next holiday


The Sandakan-Ranau Death March walking tour gives you an insight into the death marches that took place during World War II, involving Allied forces. — TYK Adventure Tours

Did you know that you can also go on a walking holiday in Malaysia? Head to Sabah to join The Sandakan-Ranau Death March tour, a 140km journey that follows part of the Sandakan Death Marches trail.

The Sandakan Death Marches occurred during World War II, between January and August 1945. It is regarded as one of the worst atrocities ever suffered by Australian and British Allied forces in Borneo. The march resulted in the deaths of 2,434 Allied prisoners-of-war, who were held captive by Japan at the Sandakan POW Camp in North Borneo (now Sabah).

Only six Australians survived the ordeal.

The actual distance of the march is known to be 260km, but the tour follows only the last 140km of the route, as some of the original paths have since been covered in either overgrowth or modern development. It is said that this stretch is also the most interesting, challenging and scenic, too.

You can do the trail – which was previously only open to members of armed forces, groups comprising the descendants of the fallen Australian and British servicemen, researchers and the media – either by trekking or cycling, but you would need to engage a licenced tour company or guide as some historical POW sites may not be accessible to the public, unless there is a guide present.

For more information, head to the Sandakan-Ranau Death March website (sandakandeathmarch.com).

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