Author Archives: drizad

About drizad

A self employed General Practitioner who lives with his lovely family in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. He dedicates his spare time serving people with precious information on climbing the Majestic Mountain of the Borneo, Mt Kinabalu. Reachable at drizad(at) reached 10,000 unique visitors!!!

It took me 14 months to achieve 10,000 unique visitors. Thank you for those who have been supporting me on Mount Kinabalu The website, which is full of vital information, written with a “DIY solo travel adventure” in mind. From “Getting Here” to “Summit Trail (Night Climb)”, the website brings you step by step (in chronological order) guide on what you are going to face on your quest to the highest peak in South East Asia.

Mount Kinabalu visitor count

The website free informations, tips, secrets and guidelines will always be free, thank you to our donors, (which I also mention their names on this blog sidebar) which have made me able to fund the webhosting fees. Some of the funding also comes form our advertisers, which you can see from almost every page that you read.

I am also an Open Source and FSF supporter. As I think giving back what I have made is one of the best way to feel “the warmth of giving” inside, I also licensed this website and blog with Creative Commons. If you are not familiar with what I am talking about you can always feel free to check it out.

At this moment, Aiden and I are in a transition period. We are going to expand our website, from just providing information to travelers to providing services, especially for those who would like us to help on their trip to Kinabalu. We actually have been doing that for the past couple of months, but still under a trail and error. Hopefully, it will be materialize soon.

Firefox plugin for hardcore EPL fans!

I am an MU fan/supporter, but not a hardcore one. My brother is. I showed him how to use Firefox for his browsing activities, and he suggested this plugin for updates on EPL (English Premier League) results.

FootieFoxFootieFox is a very small plugin which will show you the real time result of ongoing football matches – worldwide (except Malaysia…). From World Cup to USA’s football (they call it soccer there) result, FootieFox can let you customized the result for your preferred team. It will even alert you if a goal is scored.

So, if you are busy blogging and don’t want to watch the team playing on Astro Channel 81, FootieFox can be a great companion while your eyes stuck on your computer screen.

You can download the plugin from Firefox Add-ons page.

Sabah Parks – The body who manage Mount Kinabalu

Sabah ParksSome of us may not know that Mount Kinabalu is managed and conserved by Sabah Parks, the trustee body which was constituted since 1962. The functions of Sabah Parks are ” To preserve for all time areas which contains significant geographical, geological, biological and historical features as a national heritage for the benefit, education, and enjoyment of the people”. Sabah Parks also support an ongoing research and conservation project in all the gazetted parks under the trustee.

For your information, there are another 6 parks apart from Kinabalu, under their trustees, i.e:

  1. Tunku Abdul Rahman Park
  2. Turtle Island Park
  3. Pulau Tiga Park
  4. Bukit Tawau Park
  5. Crocker Range National Park
  6. Tun Sakaran Marine Park

If you notice, Sipadan Island is not under Sabah Parks – yet. That is why the management of the island is some kind haywire…

More information on Sabah Park here.

Where you can refer for search engine marketing glossary

If you are a webmaster (meaning: person who have and manage their own website), you may have heard about search engine optimization and marketing. Both of the process is vital for you to make sure that your website is search engine friendly and rank well on the major search engine result page. It will make your website “visible” to the world.

For me, when I started Mount Kinabalu about 18 months ago, I knew nothing about search engine optimization and marketing. I have to work it up myself, learning from scratch and took me more than 6 months to figure out how to make sure that my website will not be buried among gazillion website that are present on the net.

If you are a one of the “budding” webmaster, you might want to check out Apogee Search, one of the 25 largest Search Engine Marketing firms in the world. They can help you with variety of proven online marketing methods that include paid search, natural search, affiliate marketing, and pay-per-call. So, you don’t have to waste 6 months of your time searching from various resources from the internet about online marketing. As an evidence, they also provide a special page which represent sample of the websites which they have achieved for their clients in the Top Google Rankings.

Personally, I like the their Search Engine Marketing Glossary. This is the first time I found out all the important glossary about search engine in one page. With that, I don’t have to use Google or Answer to get the meaning of the internet marketing jargon like ‘Google Death Penalty’ and ‘Link Condom’ that I don’t know!

This is a sponsored post.

Can Bidvertiser replace Adsense?

BidvertiserWell, we actually have an obvious answer. Adsense is the gold standard of Pay Per Click advertisement campaign for almost any website. However, I just would like to highlight few Bidvertiser features that might be attractive to you!

  1. Good as an alternative and maybe replacement to Adsense, if you happen to be blacklisted by Google.
  2. The pay per click cost seems to be higher in some of the selected campaign theme that is run by Bidvertiser.
  3. It pays using Paypal, and has a low payout, i.e. USD10, compared to Adsense (USD100) and they pay by check.
  4. You can know which advertiser bid the highest on the specific campaign.
  5. Higher referral program payment.

Make money from your Website or Blog with BidVertiser

Plan your next vacation with Hotel

Hotel Reservations is one of the so called “one stop center” for travelers who would like to make an online reservation bookings for their next travel vacation worldwide. They provides hotels, motels, resorts, vacation rentals, flights, cars and vacation package planner.

If you are planning your next trip to Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, why don’t you try Hotel Reservations to organize and your vacation package? Currently, they are having a great discount on world wide destinations. They are now offering a rebate up to USD100 for a 12-night booking package.

What I like about Hotel is they have a vacation package planner page, where you can just fill-in-the blanks for the type of vacation you need and the destination that you are going to. I personally tried the service, by ‘virtually’ planning our next family trip to Melbourne, Australia from Kota Kinabalu. Surprisingly, the vacation package planner work really smooth, and I could know the price I have to pay for my trip!

Well, I purposely did that as my wife has been bugging me to spend our dream holiday there. The result page for the suggested package showed all the possible hotels available in Melbourne plus the local city map! At the same time, they also stated all the package cost for different hotels. It’s a good way to adjust your budget according to the package that you can afford. That is really good.

The other nice feature of Hotel is the destination guides. Claiming to be a “world wide” destination provider, they have enormous number of all major city rough destination guides. That would be handy as most of the travelers do not know what to expect on their dream destination. In my opinion, the destination guide about Kota Kinabalu, Sabah on their page is sufficient enough to give you an idea on what expect. But, if you plan to climb Mount Kinabalu, I would still suggest you to surf Mount Kinabalu

For your information, Hotel have listed 3 hotels in Kota Kinabalu on their site, i.e. Berjaya Palace Hotel, Le Meridien Hotel and Shangri-La Tanjung Aru Resort. Choose Le Meridien Hotel if you want to stay inside the city center, Shangri-La Tanjung Aru if you want to stay close to the beach or Berjaya Palace Hotel if you want a bit further away in a secluded hill side accommodation.

This post is sponsored.

Running test – Malaysian ads for bloggers

If you notice this blog, I am currently running two advertisement for bloggers from 2 different Malaysian advertising company for bloggers. Advertlets and Nuffnang (please see the sidebar) have been serving their ads for the past 8 days on this blog.

Update: Currently, only Advertlets has shown the ads from one of the advertiser (Exabytes), but Nuffnang still shown their default Nuffnang banner. So far, only Advertlets have generated some money:


Waiting for Nuffnang to do the same…

Want a free next generation ZIP archiver?

SecureZIPI have been using an old trial version on Winzip for the past few years to take care of all my archived files until yesterday, when I came across SecureZIP – The next generation of ZIP. It attracted my attention (anything free is!) and it seems that it has an up to date file archiving capabilities, plus the ability to secure all my private data and my outgoing email. I was really surprise that they are offering this software a limited time free download promotion.

Functioning similar like other file archiver, SecureZIP is a compression and archiving program but brings an exciting new focus: data security. SecureZIP not only helps you manage your data, but SecureZIP also helps you keep it secure—on your computer, in email, and across the enterprise. By having this special security feature, SecureZIP can protect confidential personal information stored on your PCs such as tax records, bank statements, medical records, passwords, and other private data. This is important especially if you are sharing your PC with other people. You wouldn’t want your secret to be known by your roommate right?


I managed to fiddle around with SecureZIP after a smooth download and installation 3 days ago. The installation file, which is about 12MB in size, was downloaded after sending them an email requesting the file. The first thing that I notice after installation finishes was the nice and simple GUI. Extracting and compressing files were fast.

However, if you want to use the security feature of SecureZIP, you need to have a digital certificate. Luckily for me, I have my own personal digital certificate from Malaysian Tax Department when I sent my tax assessment few days back. It seems that the certificate is valid and compatible, and I can use the security feature without any problem. Oh, if you do not have one, you can get a free digital certificate from Comodo. I also managed to secure my confidential data in just a couple of minutes.

After 3 days test run, SecureZIP has fulfill its promise to serve as a good archiving with security feature software. These are the other features of SecureZIP:

  1. Secure your email with Outlook.
  2. Secure your body email.
  3. Secure your desktop storage.
  4. Use it with a digital certificate to encrypt and signing emails.
  5. Use it with your antivirus software.
  6. Use it for group file sharing.

So, what are you waiting for? having limited time free download promotion!

How to choose a good hiking sandals for your trip to Kinabalu

Men’s Teva SandalsOne of my fellow traveler ask me this question: Can we wear sandals to climb Mount Kinabalu? Well, I would answer YES and NO. Yes, if you choose the correct sandals and use it during your day climb (first phase of the climb) and NO, if you choose the wrong one and using it during your night climb. Huh? Isn’t that obvious? The truth is, choosing sandals for trekking/hiking/backpacking up Mount Kinabalu is not as easy as it looks like. I will tell you the secret…

I did several trips up the mountain and I do not have a good experience of wearing trekking boots – on my earlier attempt. Why? Because boots injured my toes, especially during the descend, as the weight of my body seems to fall on my ball of foot, and indirectly pressed the toes. The pain was there for several days after the climb. However, during my last trip up, I used a good sandals. The injuries were reduced.

Practically, not every sandals on the market is suitable for you to wear during your climb. Highly specialize sandals that is made for trekking/hiking/backpacking from most of the known brand is generally suitable for you. Oh, it is elegant for you too. Active Sandals have a lot of various choices on selection of sandals that you can choose and do your shopping online. I would suggest you look on Teva Sandals and Keen Sandals, as they are the specialize producer of these kind of sandals. Active Sandals are a top rated Yahoo! store (5 stars out of 5) for top customer service.

But, how do we choose the best that suits our need? These are some practical tips for you to consider while choosing your good sandals:

  1. Choose either nylon or leather straps, look for arch support, heel shock pad and cushioning midsole.
  2. Look for anti-pronation plugs in the midsole.
  3. Outsole should be sufficiently cleated to offer grip on rough terrain.
  4. Sandal construction integrity and longevity essential – look for straps that are continuous and cannot pull out – failure of the sandals in some remote part of the world could be serious.
  5. Arch support and padded straps and posts are also important for comfort.
  6. Ensure light weight – you don’t want to carry kilos of footwear around with you!
  7. Don’t use leather or synthetic leather footbeds – they cannot take continuous wear over weeks.
  8. Have a pair of leather sandals, or thongs, for casual use.
  9. Make sure you wear a pair of cotton socks with your sandals to minimize blisters.

Oh, the best time to use the sandals on your day climb is during dry season. Your feet can be be a bit cold if you use it during rainy season. You can also use the sandals during your sightseeing trip in Kota Kinabalu city or maybe rafting in Padas River!

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Rafflesia – Kinabalu’s biggest flower in the world

Rafflesia is perhaps one of the two groups of plants that are associated with Kinabalu more than any others, besides orchids. The spectacular Rafflesia grows wild in these forests as well. A parasite, Rafflesia has no stem or leaves of its own and gets its nourishment from thread-like filaments spreading through the roots and stem of its host forest vines.

Rafflesia keithiiThe buds appear as small knobs covered in dark brown bracts on the stem of the vine and take about nine months to develop to the size of a cabbage before they open. The flowers are notorious for their bad smell, but this has been exaggerated and in any case lasts three to four days. Two species have been found on Kinabalu, the huge Rafflesia keithii, which really is a giant, growing up to a whopping 94 centimeters (37 inches) across and the smaller R. pricei, about 30 centimeters (12 inches across).

If you want to see Rafflesia, Tambunan Rafflesia Center is the best place for you to go. It is located an hour’s drive from Kota Kinabalu city.

Trekking should be prepared and a moderate level of fitness is needed. The trek can be slippery during the rainy season. A guide will lead you along the way to point out any sightings of the elusive Rafflesia (usually snuggled between tree trunks) in full bloom or in bud.

The Centre is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays and from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Sunday and public holidays. The entrance fee is RM20 (for single person or per group, maximum 6 people), inclusive of a guide.

To obtain further details on the whether there are any Rafflesia in bloom at the Tambunan Rafflesia Centre, Sabah Tourism Board at +6088-212121 or Sri Pelancongan Sabah at +6088-232121. Otherwise, you can contact me to help you plan your next trip there!