Saturday, 17 July 2010

Kota Kinabalu trip – 17 Jul 10

Today our whole day activity is Padas river rafting. As agreed with Eileen from Kota Sarang Travel Tour, she would be picking us up at 8am. I was a bit worried when I didnt saw her at the lobby but she turns up a few minute later.

There are 10 people in the van, other than the 6 of us, the rest are the driver, Eileen, her friend Sherlyn and another guy who is going for the river rafting. The journey from Kota Kinabalu to Beaufort took about 2hr.
Sabah state mosque
Bridge under construction near the airport
MASwings is a wholly owned subsidiary of Malaysia Airlines which operates rural service in East Malaysia 
Kota Kinabalu control tower
DVD player inside the van

We reached a place of nowhere with the train track on one side and chinese cemetery on the otherside. Eileen told us that the train is full today hence we cant board the train at Beaufort train station but the train will be stopping here for us to board.

As I drank quite a lot of water, I needed to relieve myself but there are no toilets here. Luxiang bluffed me that he's going to do stretching but in fact he went to the bush to relieve himself and YQ also did the same. Ahhh.... I should be born as a guy in my next life. Eileen told me that there are toilets inside the train but I waited for almost 10min and yet I havent seen the train. I cant be bothered so much as I was really very very urgent. I grabbed a towel and went to a more seclude area and asked YQ to cover for me. While I was relieving, YQ told me that another caucasian girl also came to relieve herself.
The van stopped here for us to board the train
Looking for a spot to relieve themselves
Eileen from Kota Sarang Travel Tours

After waiting for about half an hour, the train finally came. There were no seats available and some even shared a seat among 3 people which was meant for 2 person. There was this lady who is from Singapore and is kind to share her seat with me. Poor YQ who had to stand for the 1hr train journey.
This is the train that we are boarding
The train is so pack
Loading river rafting equipment
Our handsome driver

North Borneo Railway operates this sole train route in Borneo. This train route is one of the most scenic ride in Borneo as it passes through the mighty Padas river. While admiring the beautiful scenary, we are also prepared on how exciting the river rafting is going to be later on.
Padas river

We alighted at Pangi station and went to a hut across the railway track for teabreak. There were lots of mosquito here and we didnt bought insect repellent at all. I guessed the mosquito were super hungry which resulted in many victims.
Pangi station
Flinstone trolley
Taking a rest
Helmets and life jackets

Biscuits and 100plus for teabreak
Getting ourselves equipped
Walking to the starting point

There were altogether 4 groups and the 6 of us were in a group with a guide. We were given safety briefing before the start of river raft. Luxiang and Ricky sat at the front followed by Chew Hiang and Chew Yen in the middle; YQ and I sat at the back with a guide at the last. It was drizzling hence weather was quite cool. We went through quite a number of rapids such as Merry-Go-Round Rapid, Break Point Rapid, Scooby Doo Rapid, Cobra Rapid, Curve Rapid, Lambada Rapid and Head Hunter Rapid. All of them fell into the river except me and Chew Hiang. However at one point, our raft was stucked between a rock and the rapid which resulted the raft to be tilted. Luxiang, Ricky, YQ and Chew Yen fell into the river. We managed to pull Chew Yen up but our raft was still stucked no matter how the guide tried to paddle away. In the end, the guide asked us to jump into the river. I was a quite scared initially when I jumped into the river. I followed the instruction by lying flat facing the sky to avoid my legs being knocked by the rocks. After a while, our guide managed to find us and pull us up onto the raft and we continued our rafting to catch up with the guys who are saved by other group. I realised how tough it is to be seated at the front paddling, phew....
Challenges waiting for us ahead
Our team of 6 & guide
Able to spot 4 rafts here?
One of the raft capsize but it's not us
Another challenge ahead

After more than 2hrs of rafting, we rafted to a riverbank where speedboats were waiting for us to ferry us to Halogilat to catch the train. When we reached Halogilat, there were trays of food on the bench which is our lunch for today.
Luckily I finished my lunch before the train departed as the train only stopped for a while. Those who havent finished their lunch bought the lunch packet onboard. The train was quite dirty with lots of rubbish on the floor. This is the dirtiest train that I have ever took.
Train back to Beaufort
One of the stop in the middle of forest???
I'm so wet!!!
Calmer Padas river
Inside the train

After almost 1hr train journey, we reached Beaufort and we took a van back to Kota Kinabalu which took another 1hr.
Beaufort station

We reached Lavender Lodge at around 6pm and washed up before heading out for dinner at 7plus. Eileen told me that she would be dropped by tomorrow to pass us the photos which she took using her camera. I asked her to leave it at the reception since we will be going to Gaya Street Sunday Market tomorrow morning.

Our dinner today is Bak Kut Teh at Syarikat Yu Kee. Address: 74 Jalan Gaya, Kota Kinabalu, Opening hours: 4.30pm - 11pm, Closed on alternate Monday. The coffeeshop is full house and we managed to find a seat. We ordered pork ribs, pork belly, pork stomach, pork intestine, pork liver, pork kidney, tau pok, you tiao, mushroom and vegetables. Each dish was served in a small bowl and we ordered you tiao and meat balls for another round. The soup has a herbal flavour compared to the pepper flavour in Singapore. This meal costed RM70 ~ S$30.
Yu Kee Bak Kut Teh
Our dinner

On our way back, we passed by a foot reflexology shop and we went in to take a look at the package. Everyone of us had a one hour foot massage which costed RM40 ~ S$17.
Gaya Reflexology
Enjoying the foot massage
BB cafe at Gaya street
Is this Singapore Five Star Chicken Rice Franchise?

On the way back to Lavender Lodge, we walked pass a cinema and Ricky suggested watching a movie. We thought he is serious so we crossed the road and walked towards the cinema. It's only at the ticket counter that he told us that he's just joking. There were only 3 movies - The Twilight saga: Eclipse, Predators and Inception. YQ and I wanted to watch Inception but the next slot is 11pm which was quite late. Hence we settled on Predators at 9.30pm. The cinema ticket here are cheap by Singapore standard, only RM7.50 ~ S$3. Since there is a bit of time, we went back to Lavender Lodge to grab our jacket. We didnt know that there is a cinema within 5min from Lavender Lodge until today.
Mega Pavilion Cinema

By the time the movie ended, it's already 11plus and we returned to Lavender Lodge.


adriansabah said...

I really enjoyed reading about your trip to Kota Kinabalu, it is informative, and very interesting to see K.K. from a visitor's viewpoint. Glad you enjoyed your trip. I am sure it is a lot different from Singapore. I've spent 8 years there but that was a long, long time ago.

adriansabah said...

I have a group on facebook called 365 Things To Do In Sabah. Do drop in when you can.

Rovdyr said...

Very interesting. Did you see a famous proboscis monkeys?

Jerlin Tan said...

Hi Rovdyr,

Nope the famous proboscis monkey is at Sandakan.