Formerly known as Victoria town, today Labuan is a bustling business center with strikingly modern office and shopping complexes.
Labuan Square or Dataran Labuan is situated at the center of Labuan town. Its central focus is an open-air stage, which is a popular venue for some of the Island's major events and performances. Flags of Labuan Island and thirteen other Malaysian states flutter in a row atop tall flagpoles on this raised stage. At one end of the square is the town's football field. At the other end is a replica of the 'Chimney', Labuan's most famous landmark. It is beautifully landscaped with a variety of shrubs, fountains and waterfalls.
Downtown are pedestrian areas to relax. Wrought iron seats and ornamental lamp posts, together with flowering plants and shrubs make a pretty sight. There are many eating places which specialize in Malay, Chinese and Indian food, as well as popular fast food outlets.
The busy waterfront area is always a hive of activity. There are landing berths, as well as the Customs and Immigration departments. The barter trade is carried out in this area and glass noodles seem to be a very popular item with the Filipino barter traders.
The main thoroughfare in downtown Labuan is Jalan Merdeka. At the eastern end of this main road are the Sheraton Hotel, Waterfront Financial hotel and the soaring Financial Park Complex.
Sharing the downtown Labuan skyline is the Masjid Jamek An'nur, a huge Muslim mosque of futuristic design with two minarets reaching for the skies.