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Nunukan Tunon Taka port.
Gedung Amalia in Nunukan.

Nunukan [1] is a busy town on an island of the same name in North Kalimantan, bordering Tawau in Sabah, Malaysia. It serves as a main transit point to Tawau. Nunukan regency has 9 sub-districts: Krayan, Krayan Selatan, Lumbis, Sembakung, Nunukan, Nunukan Selatan, Sebatik, Sebatik Barat and Sebuku.

Get in[edit]


For visa requirements when entering Indonesia, see the Indonesia | Get in section. Note that Nunukan is not listed as a visa-on-arrival entry point. Visas need to be obtained before hand. Citizens of countries not needing visa to enter Indonesia can freely enter via this checkpoint.

Nunukan's Immigration office (Kantor Imigrasi) is about 200m from the port on Jalan Pelabuhan into town and opens at 8am.

By boat[edit]

To Tawau: Ferries link Nunukan to Tawau in the southeastern corner of Sabah, Malaysia. Tickets cost 200,000 IDR (March 2017, Update: 250,000 IDR now!) for one way. One departure scheduled daily at 9:00am (no ferry on Sundays!). The ferries operating are M.V. Tawindo Express, M.V. Mid East Express, M.V Labuan Express, M.V Mega Express', M.V Nunukan Express, and M.V Purnama Express, M.V Francis Express,M.V Malindo. There is a port tax of 15,000 IDR (March 2017, Update: rate remains the same) per person collected before departure. Journey time is about one hour. Ticket booths are opposite the port building. Be at the port one hour before the scheduled departure for immigration clearance. Be prepared to undergo a cursory health inspection on the Malaysian side and have some extra rupees ready for an additional baggage fee - your bags get weighed and everything over 10 kg costs extra (about 2 MYR / 7,000 IDR per kg).

To Tarakan: There is a Kalstar flight every two days (15 minutes, around 500,000 IDR), and numerous daily boats (3 hours, 260,000 IDR) at 9.00 a.m. (There might be an afternoon departure as well, but this could not be verified).

To/from other parts of Indonesia: Pelni [2] boats such as KM AWU,KM THALIA,KM BUKIT SIGUNTUNG KM UMSINI, KM DOBONSOLO and KM TIDAR,KM TILONGKABILA pass by Nunukan from cities in Nusa Tenggara, Bali, Sulawesi, Java and Kalimantan. Check with Pelni office in Nunukan (Add: Jalan. A. Yani 11, Tel: 0556-21309, 0556-21170, Fax: 0556-21029) for ticketing and departure time tables matters.

Get around[edit]

By mikrolet[edit]

The cheapest way to travel around Nunukan is by mikrolet. These small minibuses running a fairly standard route and picking up and dropping off passengers anywhere along the way. You can get almost anywhere for Rp. 3.000 (Update: Been told 7,000 IDR nowadays but never tried, you try it out and confirm and update please :))

See[edit][add listing]

  • Batu Lamampu beach at Sebatik sub-district.
  • Kayan Mentarang national park at Krayan sub-district.
  • Enching (also known as Firdaus) beach at Nunukan sub-district, about 8km from city center.
  • Binusan waterfall at Nunukan sub-district, about 7km from city center.
  • Sedadap beach at Nunukan sub-district, about 5km from city center.
  • Mambunut zoo at Nunukan sub-district, about 7km from city center.
  • Fishing village at Nunukan Selatan and pass your mineral water bottles (1500ml ones) to them and they need them as buoys (you can see when entering the waters of Nunukan, and redefining (recycling for a good purpose) the use of the empty bottles) for their nets.

Eat[edit][add listing]

  • Dessy Bakery & cafe - As the pioneer of Bakery industry in Nunukan Dessy Bakery provide you with Bakery & Cake Product , Customers also can dine in our shop for chilling out during you activity , we provide you with bistro cafe menu .
  • Wong Solo mie ayam near the square in Alun-Alun (to the left row of shops from Bandara direction).
  • Satay and rice dumpling at the sharp corner up the hill to the square (again from Bandara).
  • Potato crisps and Tempe crisps (highly recommended very crispy and tasty) night market stall opposite the satay (and rice dumpling warung) and just by the square.
  • Second Warung (to the left of Hotel Gita) which sells Ayam and Ikan Panggang (Grilled chicken and fish called Bandeng (milkfish) a type of farmed fish) as well as Es that are typical in Nunukan.

Drink[edit][add listing]

  • ES Cendol Baper with real fruits as extra flavour at night market next to the square (the stall is facing the shoplots where Wong Solo Warung is one of them).
  • Super market (Karang Market) by the road leading to Alun-Alun (from Bandara direction) very convenient especially when you need chilled mineral water (in the hot sun) at very good price.
  • Fruit stall by the road at Bandara which is leading to Sedadap. Get yourself a watermelon and quench your thirst and refresh yourself in the hot sun again!

Sleep[edit][add listing]

  • Hotel Idabus at No. 37 Jalan Pelabuhan Baru (Tel: 0556-21245).
  • Hotel Nunukan at Jalan Jend. A. Yani (Tel: 0556-21111).
  • neo fortuna (fortune hotel), jl. ahmad yani. new hotel at the south of the central park (known as alun-alun)  edit
  • Hotel Gita at the port, rooms from 75,000 IDR (Standard, a very small, box-like room without windows) to 350,000 IDR (Eksekutif, larger room with squat toilet and A/C).

Get out[edit]

  • Tarakan, 100 km south from of Nunukan, an island in the East Kalimantan, Indonesia. It is a marshy island situated in the eastern Celebes Sea, off the northeastern coast of Borneo.
  • Tawau, 30 km north of Nunukan, entry point to Malaysia.

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