Mantanani Islands

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Mantanani Islands
Mantanani Islands is located in Borneo Topography
Mantanani Islands
Mantanani Islands
Coordinates: 6°42′30″N 116°20′45″E / 6.70833°N 116.34583°E / 6.70833; 116.34583
Country Malaysia
State Sabah

The Mantanani Islands form a small group of three islands off the north-west coast of the state of Sabah, Malaysia, opposite the town of Kota Belud, in northern Borneo. The largest island is Mantanani Besar; the other two are Mantanani Kecil and Lungisan. It is a popular site for recreational diving as there are three nearby dive wrecks dating from the Second World War, as well as being known for its dugongs.[1]


For birdwatchers, the Mantanani group is good for seeing birds that usually nest on islands, because of their relative lack of terrestrial predators, and are rarely or unpredictably seen on the mainland. Mantanani Besar is the only place in Sabah to see the Mantanani scops owl. Other island specialists include the pied imperial, grey imperial and Nicobar pigeons, and the Philippine megapode. The blue-naped parrot is locally extinct. Lungisan Island has a nesting cave colony of German's swiftlets and is an important roost for frigatebirds.[2]


The islands are accessible by a one-hour speedboat journey from Kuala Abai jetty, Kota Belud, 80 km north-east of Kota Kinabalu, the capital of Sabah. Mantanani Besar contains a small resort, catering mainly to scuba divers, and Mantanani Kechil a small dive lodge.



  1. ^ van Wijnen.
  2. ^ Phillipps & Phillipps (2009), p.326.


  • Phillipps, Quentin; & Phillipps, Karen. Phillipps’ Field Guide to the Birds of Borneo. Oxford: Beaufoy Books. ISBN 978-1-906780-10-4. 
  • "Pulau Mantanani". Ben van Wijnen. Retrieved 23 April 2010. 

Coordinates: 6°42′30″N 116°20′45″E / 6.70833°N 116.34583°E / 6.70833; 116.34583