The capital of the district of the same name, Kota Belud lies in Malaysia’s West Coast Division of Sabah. The small but vibrant town provides an ideal base for exploring Mantanani or Kudat, and is also home to a beautiful gold mosque standing tall on a hilltop.

A bustling, colourful market, held every Sunday, is the perfect place to buy some traditional souvenirs, converse with the locals, and try some mouth-watering authentic cuisine.

Once a year, the market balloons into an enormous version of itself and becomes the Tamu Besar or Grand Market, offering a similar buzz on a much larger scale.