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Lahad Datu is a town and district located in Tawau Division, in the east of Sabah, Malaysia on the island of Borneo. It occupies the peninsula on the north side of Darvel Bay. Its population was estimated to be around 199,830 in 2010. Lahad Datu is surrounded by stretches of cocoa and oil palm plantations. It is also an important timber exporting port. The town has an airport for domestic flights.HistoryA settlement is believed to have existed here in the 15th century, as excavations have unearthed Ming dynasty Chinese ceramics. Just east of Lahad Datu is the village of Tunku, a notorious base for pirates and slave traders in the 19th century.Based on a jawi manuscript in the Idahan language dated 1408 A.D, it is believed that Islam was first introduced to Malaysia in Sabah. The jawi manuscript gives an account of an Ida'an man named Abdullah in Darvel Bay who embraced Islam.Filipino intrusionOn 23 September 1985, 15-20 armed foreign pirates landed on this town, killing at least 21 people and injuring 11 others.On 11 February 2013, several armed Filipino supporters of the Sultanate of Sulu, calling themselves the Royal Security Forces of the Sultanate of Sulu and North Borneo, arrived in Lahad Datu district and occupied the village of Tanduo. They were sent by Jamalul Kiram III, a claimant to the throne of the sultanate. His stated goal is to assert the Philippine territorial claim to eastern Sabah as part of the North Borneo dispute. In response, Malaysian security forces surrounded the village. Lahad Datu is in Sabah. In the build up to your vacation in Lahad Datu, plan trip itinerary minutiae using the visitor reviews, staff write-ups, and custom search fields on our Malaysia itinerary maker app .
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Top Lahad Datu tours
Private Full Day Gomantong Cave and Kinabatangan River Cruise with Lunch BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $88
Duration: 9 hours
2-Night Danum Valley Borneo Rainforest Lodge Hiking and Wildlife Adventure BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $1,275
Duration: 3 days
3-Day Adventure in Tabin Wildlife Reserve BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $738
Duration: 3 days
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2 days in Sabah BY A USER FROM INDIA February, popular sights PREFERENCES: February ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 1 day in Lahad Datu BY A USER FROM MALAYSIA January, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: January, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 2 days in Lahad Datu & Tawau Division BY A USER FROM MALAYSIA January, culture, popular sights PREFERENCES: January, culture ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 60 days in Sabah BY A USER FROM SINGAPORE January, kids, popular sights PREFERENCES: January, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 11 days in Sabah BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM April, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: April ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 12 days in Sabah BY A USER FROM SINGAPORE January, popular sights PREFERENCES: January ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium