Kota Kinabalu Trip


I’ve been to China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Thailand, even Vietnam and Australia. Yet, I’ve never been to East Malaysia. Would you believe it? It’s really a shame. So it comes to the yearly trip Ann, Susan, Chin and me started couple years back, we’ve decided to go local-support Malaysia economy and reduce carbon footprint and what not, and go to the idyllic city of Kota Kinabalu at Sabah, East Malaysia.

So on 18 August, which is also the birthday of Susan, we happily got on to the cab to LCCT. On the way to airport though, I had a really bad tummy ache. To put it very ungracefully my shit is literally at the door and it has to come out NOW. The 30mins drive to LCCT is really excruciating and gruesome for me. Hah!

On the flight, it seems that the air stewardess is not prepared for the food serving. There’s the nasi lemak promotion that comes with a teh tarik and naturally most people will order it. Ann has to wait for 15mins before the food is heated – overheated actually and served.

Well, the KK airport is nothing to shout about and we immediately took a cab to the hotel – Best Western Kota Kinabalu Daya Hotel. A tad run down, but it’s centrally located and close to all amenities like 7-11 and KFC. Actually, KK is a very small city with well planned roads. This is not to say that the drivers are not driving as recklessly as KL’s!

For lunch, we stop by a local restaurant and have the best organic choy sam. It has less fiber and lots of juice in the stem, making it really crunchy and has a sweet taste.

So, first pit stop is Klias River, Beaufort to see proboscis monkeys and fireflies. Klias River is located on the Klias Wetland, a mangrove Forest Reserve which is 100km south of Kota Kinabalu, a mere 2-hour drive. It is a must to get a local guide to because the drive there is seriously tiring and you have a make a dangerous turn to reach the pier!

We got on to a double deck boat and it’s already filled with people. You can easily see families of Proboscis monkeys going on with their daily life from the banks of the river. They have huge and long nose – to attract the female species, and heavily promoting CK underwear that comes with a long tail.

When the sun sets, it is time to see the fireflies. As it just finished raining, there are not much fireflies but it is enough to take our breath away. They are simply awesome. However, due to development on the river banks there are lesser and lesser fireflies nowadays. Maybe if you go there 5 years later there will be none left.

By the way, don’t bother taking pictures with or without flash. It is simply not possible to capture the lovely image of fireflies dotting the tree like fairy lights unless you have a super duper ultra mega hyper sensitive camera.

I’m not trying to be prejudice here, but Taiwan tourists are LOUD! On the quiet river where one is supposed to admire the peace and beauty of fireflies, all I can hear was ‘WHOAAA!! Here got fireflies!!!” “WHOAAAA!! So beautiful” “WHOAA!!!” “WHOAAA!!” “WHOAAA!!!”. Very annoying. I’m very happy to see the back of them when we got back to our own little van.

Another 2 hour drive and we’re back to KK and thus conclude Day 1 of Kota Kinabalu trip.

Photos uploaded here! http://paganchee.com/photos/

*just click on the thumbnails and it’ll link you to the full album.


  1. Qing says:

    I said the same thing too..~Ashame!!hahah…

Balloons theme by