Tag Archives: Kota Kinabalu

The old and the new of Kota Kinabalu

I received emails from Mr. Anthony Catherall, served in North Borneo May – November 1960 with 11 Independent Field Squadron RE. He shared with me his extensive writings and vintage photos on some part of Kota Kinabalu in one of his friend’s website. It’s really nice to see those old photos, and I hope you can gain some information from it too!

I hope you are very well today.

Some of you may know I and my great pals served in ‘Malaya’ (Malaysia) in the late 1950’s and early sixties.

We all loved it there, the climate was and is most pleasing even to European skin.
We were very fortunate to serve in a unique unit there ’11 Independent Field Squadron Royal Engineers’, both on mainland Malaya and in North Borneo (Sabah) during May – November 1960. Some of our officers went on to reach Army Generals later in their careers.

I was inspired to write something down to try and record an important time in many peoples lives. I started off by writing some factual articles with plenty of photographs, followed later by some stories of mine. M good friend Hank who served a little later at Malacca has placed on his website.
If such a thing may interest you and you care to read them, you will certainly have a good insight into the still wonderful country of Malaysia and how it was all those years ago.

One called ‘Shangri-La in the Coconut Grove’ is all about the camp we lived in at Butterworth from 1959, with an interesting history dating back to the early 1940’s.

Another called ‘An Enlightening Ride on the Railway Tracks of Malaya’ tells the story of our long rail journey from Singapore to Prai.

Then we have, ‘Sunsets Never Change – Awang’s Story – my own fiction tale, some based on fact all about the Island of Penang from the middle 1930’s.

Click on the link below to take you to direct to the section (Malaya/Malaysia Past Present).

You never know, you may even take a holiday there one day?
Happy reading.
Sincere wishes

Anthony Catherall

Good morning Dr Ruhaizad Daud
Thank you for looking and reading some of my articles ( I’m sure you haven’t got through them all in one day) in the a link that I sent you.
Hopefully I will do another on our time in North Borneo During 1960. Then a lot of your countrymen will through you, be able to see and understand what it was like in those far off days.
Yes by all means share the material on your Blog, I will send you an up to date photograph of my self that you may want to include as a header so to speak, I will do that today, so wait for it.
Also on Hanks website, Is a photograph I took at the National Arboretum Memorial in Staffordshire, of our lost Colleagues messes Hall & Cooper who were drowned at Tamparuli.
I am still hoping go come back to KK before too long and we can meet.
Let me say also how sorry I was go hear about the recent earthquake you experience recently.
I was also disgusted with the behavior of the group who took their clothes off at the top of Mount Kinabalu. In my opinion your Judge was a little lenient with them in the sentencing.
Okay listen out for me later in the day with the photograph.

Warm wishes Tony

Eco Village Challenge trail run in Kota Kinabalu

For hardcore trail runners, nature lovers and charity seekers – this event maybe suitable for you. Habitat For Humanity Malaysia, Kota Kinabalu Sabah affiliate will be organizing its first Eco Village Challenge on the 1st September 2013, to raise funds for families in Sabah in need of decent homes.

Eco Village Challenge

The day-long Charity Run is 15-km route inside a beautiful and pristine nature reserved called Kasalagan Park in Kampung Natai which includes tour around Kampung Borombon and Kampung Bongkud.

Teams of four, will have an extensive back-to-nature adventure experience as they visit three kampungs (villages) where they will take part in three native sports, traverse seven rivers and streams, a waterfall and trek through jungle trails, valleys and ridges.

The journey is a salute to the traditional community practice of villagers traveling long distances to visit another village to celebrate together the important occasions such as religious festivals and weddings.

Non-existence of roads in these three villages is a great privilege for the Eco Village Challenge to link them using these villagers’ existing trails.

In order to participate, you need a group of 4 people, (at least one male and one female). The entry fee is RM1,200 ($400 USD) for Malaysians and RM2,000 ($665 USD) for non-Malaysians. The entry fee includes a free t-shirt, water, and support along the run.

Prizes will be awarded for the fastest teams!

1st place – RM$5,000

2nd place – RM$3,000

3rd place – RM$2,000

There is only room for 50 teams, so head to Kota Kinabalu’s website to register today!


Weather issue: When is the best time to go to Mount Kinabalu?

I received at least 3 emails asking about the weather on Kinabalu each week. I think I better write this post and lead the inquirer about the issue here. It will save me a lot of time, answering the same emails over and over again.

After doing some research, I managed to find a good climate details of Kota Kinabalu:

To make your life easy, the higher the precipitation, the higher the amount of rainfall. If you look closely at the table (climate for Kota Kinabalu is for the year 2007), January to April are the driest months where the precipitation are the lowest (i.e. below 150mm per month). This is the best time to come here and climb Mount Kinabalu. However, seasonal variations can occur in any year.

Rain can occur at any time of the year. In Sabah the main rainy seasons are from October to January when the rains come with the north east monsoon, and from May to July, with the south west monsoon.

Mornings are usually clear at any season. Sabah lies below the typhoon (hurricane) belt, though the tail-ends can cause strong winds and rain during the typhoon season.

At Kinabalu Park Headquarters (1,560m a.s.l) the mean monthly temperature is approximately 20 ºC, with a daily fluctuations of 7 – 9 ºC. Mean annual rainfall at this location is 2,380mm.

A common climatic feature to the park are bright early mornings, followed quickly by clouding mid-morning, which obscures the mountains by mid-day. Showers usually occur on the upper slopes in the afternoon.

Although they say ‘the driest time’, a good raincoat is a must. Otherwise, you may get wet when it rains while on the way up to Laban Rata, at the slopes of Kinabalu.

Got raincoat?

Raincoat Adult – 1

Kota Kinabalu backpackers list (as of August 2008)

Whooaaaa…. When I started this website and blog about Kinabalu 3 years ago, there were only about 8 backpackers / travelers lodges around Kota Kinabalu. I put a booking page for the lodges through Hostelbookers, in which received quite a number of visitors who booked their stay through the booking system.

I did an update on the page in 17th November 2006, in which I added another 13 hostels to it, to give more options for travelers to choose the place that they think is best for them.

Yesterday I went to Sabah Tourism office to look for any new updates on Sabah’s tourism industry and found out that they have an update list of backpackers for the whole Sabah. With the number that they presented, it seems that Sabah is a “heaven for backpackers”!

According to the resource, there are now 23 registered backpackers lodges here inside the Kota Kinabalu city center. The number does not include non-star, 1 & 2 star rated hotels that are abundant here apparently. All the lodges are situated around 5-20 minutes walk to all the major important places (like banks, bus station, ferry station, market and shopping complexes), in which you don’t have to worry too much on the transportation.

I will try to list the backpackers in Kota Kinabalu according to the area that the lodges are situated:

Australia Place
Lucy’s Homestay
Tropicana Lodge
Traveller’s Light Lodge Backpacker
Kinabalu Backpackers
Borneo Backpackers Sdn. Bhd.

Jalan Gaya (Gaya Street) & Jalan Pantai
North Borneo Cabin
Planet Kinabalu Backpackers
X-Plorer Backpackers
Summer Lodge
Red Palm Hostel
Akinabalu Youth Hostel
Stay-In Lodge
Globetrotters Lodge
Asia Adventure Lodge
The Beach Lodge
Trekkers Lodge

Bandaran Berjaya
Velvet Lodge & Lounge

Sadong Jaya/Karamunsing Warehouse
Borneo Rafflesia Lodge
Borneo Global Backpackers
(These 2 lodges are the furthermost place to stay from the city center. You may have to walk 20-30 minutes from there to get to the heart of Kota Kinabalu city)

Asia City
Hamin Lodge

Kampung Ayer
Borneo Adventure Center & Lodge

Hotel Kota Jaya & Backpackers
Step-In Lodge Sdn. Bhd.

You can book your hostel here:
*Make sure you choose “Malaysia” as the country and “Kota Kinabalu” as the city. It will open in a new window.