Category Archives: Discover Sabah

New airline service the Borneo Island – FlyAsianXpress

I read the local newspaper today, The Borneo Post and found out that there is a new airline coming up to service the public, especially for people in the Island of Borneo. FlyAsianXpress is appointed by AirAsia Bhd as a sub-contractor to handle turboprop operations, which previously handled the rural air services in Sabah and Sarawak. Just like AirAsia’s tagline ‘Now everyone can fly’, those living in remote areas in Sabah and Sarawak can start ‘flying’ from 1 Aug 2006.

They will be using lower capacity propeller aircraft such as the Fokker 50 (50 seats) and Twin Otters (19 seats).

So, for those who like to fly around the smaller cities that they service like Kudat (The Tip of Borneo), Lahad Datu, Sandakan (Sukau and orang utan) and Tawau, you can try their services. www.flyasianxpress.com. Oh yes, they fly most of Sarawak interior village also!

My advice is: Do not confused with the fare that they wrote on the website. The fare does not include the airport tax and fuel surcharge. So, if it says RM9.99, it is just the tickets. And, as it is similar to AirAsia, its free seating!

Simple step-by-step guide to the summit of Borneo

I always received emails from my fellow mountaineers about how to plan and budget their trip to the summit of Borneo. After few months collecting informations, I can summarized the guide for you to follow. First, do some homework. Decide on few of these things:

  1. How many people are going for the climb? How many adults and children? Children may have a different rate and fee for the climb.
  2. How many days are you going for the climb? You can choose either a 3D2N or 2D1N climbing package. This is important for you to decide, because for both of the packages will involve different places to stay and totally differrent transport arrangement.
  3. What is your budget range for the trip? I mean, what type of place would you like to stay in? Hostel or hotel? If you are going to climb Mount Kinabalu as a family, it might be wise for you to choose backpackers or travelers lodge.

Second, proceed to the booking of the place to stay during the climb with Sutera Sanctuary Lodges (Kinabalu Park HQ and Laban Rata).

  1. If you choose to spend 3D2N for the climb, then book a place to stay in Kinabalu Park HQ on the first night and Laban Rata on the second night.
  2. If you choose to spend only 2D1N, you just have to book a place in Laban Rata for the second night. You have to choose wether to stay in Kota Kinabalu or Kundasang on the first night.

Third, find a place to stay in Kota Kinabalu for your convenience before and after the climb, regardless of which climbing package that you planned for.

Fourth, buy your airline tickets for the trip. If you are an international traveler, make sure you come to Kota Kinabalu via Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA). Then you will have to choose between AirAsia or Malaysia Airline System (MAS) to get to Kota Kinabalu.

Fifth, prepare your body for the vigorous activity. Do some exercise, at least 20 minutes of jogging, swimming or any cardio activity daily, 3 times a week. Be fit at least a month before the climb.

Sixth, prepare your climbing equipment. There are no specialize equipment to climb Mount Kinabalu, but by preparing early, it will make your climbing smooth.

Seventh, for transport to Kinabalu Park from Kota Kinabalu. This particular steps is a bit difficult to pre-planned, as it is a bit difficult to book a public transport before you go. It is either book it with a travel operator, or let it be until you come to Kota Kinabalu.

There are a lot of climbing options provided by the travel operator for you on the net However, none of them provide you with this kind of information. They might loose a lot of their clients if they tell you this D-I-Y climbing package.

Oh, please remember that there are differences between Malaysian and non-Malaysian for the rate and fees for the climb. Just clarify with Sutera Sanctuary Lodges and Sabah Park.

Must visit places around Mount Kinabalu

When visiting the Kinabalu Park and Poring Hot Springs, do take the opportunity to visit the many places of interests along the way…

Kundasang

Kundasang is 6 km (4 miles) from the Kinabalu Park HQ, renowned for temperate vegetables. A long row of wooden stalls ‘gerai’ bustling with vegetable whole-sellere. Pick-up trucks fully laden with vegetables from farms around the valley deliver and unload their goods at the stalls. Bulk-buyers come from all over Sabah, even Sarawak and Brunei. Passing travelers also stop to purchase. Nearby are few rows of shops, seemingly sleepy except on Fridays, the weekly Tamu, market day.

Kundasang War Memorial and Gardens is like a fort on a hill, located immediately behind the rows of shops.

Kundasang War Memorial

Major G.S. Carter, D.S.O. (Toby Carter) a New Zealander employed with Shell Oil Co. (Borneo) initiated the building of the Memorial to remember 2,428 Australian and British prisoners of war who died during World War 2 at Sandakan POW Camp, the 3 infamous forced death marches from Sandakan to Ranau, adn as tribute to the many local people who risked their lives to help prisoners of war. Only six Australians survived to tell the horror. There were no English survivors.

Australia Garden

The ‘fort-like’ design of the Memorial was by local resident architect, J.C. Robinson. It has 4 interlocking but separate Gardens to represent the homelands of those who died: ad Australian Garden, a frmal Englisg Garden of roses, a Borneo Garden with wild flowers of Kinabalu and at the top level is the “Contemplation Garden” with a reflection pool and pergola.

Kundasang War Memorial

To commemorate the 60th Anniversary of the end of WW2, the Memorial was and beautifully restored in 2005 privately. The Gardens now replanted with flowers, roses and rare orchids including the much sought and valuable Rothchilds slipper orchids. ANZAC memorialService and private Memorial Services are welcome with prior arrangements. The memorial is open to visitors with minimal entrance fee charged.

Agro T Nursery is situated just a few meters from the Kundasang War Memorial on the left. At a small fee, it is possible to tour the nursery’s gardens of flowers, such as roses, orchids, hybrid hibiscus, tomatoes and other vegetables.

Discover Eco-Treasures In Sabah, Borneo

Deep in our hearts, we all dream of a tropical heaven. Pure, Green, pristine. At the same time, unspoilt and untouched by the problems of modern life still.

Welcome to Sabah, the land of eco-treasures. Where you can climb to the awesome peak of the highest mountain in the region. Play with the orang utan, “the wild man of Borneo”, in the largest such sanctuary in the world.

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Admire the rafflesia, the largest flower in the world in rainforests that are millions of years old. Dive into some of the world’s best underwater wonderlands.Where you also meet some of the friendliest, warmest people in the world. And join their colorful festivals and traditions that will take you back centuries.

If you yearn for the exhilirating sense of adventure, Sabah is the perfect place for jungle trekking, cave exploration, white-water rafting, mountain climbing or deep sea diving. Your taste for exotic culture will be more than sated by the numerous ethnic customs and celebrations which include living in longhouses and the potent rice wine called “lihiing”. You can of course just laze all day on a secluded beach or tee off in a championship golf course in any of the many world-renowned holiday resorts.

So why dream of eco-treasures when you can experience the wonders of it all. In Sabah, Malaysian Borneo.