I went to Sabah for 4 days in April, and was lucky enough to visit Kundasang, which is located in the Ranau District of Sabah. It is a valley with a town that is 6 km
away from Kinabalu National Park (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), and 12 km from Ranau town. It has a cool climate and strategically situated at the base of the famed Mount Kinabalu, the highest peak in Malaysia.
While waiting for my luggage at the Kota Kinabalu International Airport upon arrival, I spotted two racks lined with leaflets and brochures, and to my delight, found a leaflet advertising day tours by Mizume Tours.
Before dinner, I called the number on the leaflet and Sam answered promptly. I was delighted to discover that they had a confirmed day tour to Kundasang the next day (Sunday), and a day trip to the Tunku Abdul Rahman Islands on the following day (Monday). I quickly booked my spots for the two tours. Payment would only be made when the tour van picked me up in the morning.
The van went from hotel to hotel to pick up their participants for the Kundasang day tour on Sunday morning. Even though I was staying at an apartment, they came to pick me up anyway, which was very nice of them. Two other couples came on the tour. One couple was from mainland China, but worked in Hong Kong. The other couple came from a lesser known part of China, which I cannot recall now.
The name of the tour was the ‘Kinabalu Park Tour’. The journey from Kota Kinabalu town to Kinabalu Park took 2 hours, and on the way, our first stop was Kundasang Market, where we had a grand view of Mount Kinabalu. It is said that at any time, there would be clouds over the peak, and today was no exception. The view was beautiful, and visitors took group photos and selfies with the fantastic view. The haze was polluting Kota Kinabalu town, but thankfully it disappeared when we went to Kundasang.
The market was divided into different sections. There was a proper market with stalls selling all kinds of local produce and foodstuff (shown in the photos below). Then, there were a row of shops and a long house selling all kinds of crafts and souvenirs.
I saw local delicacies like tuhau and bosou. Tuhau is pickled wild ginger, which is usually prepared in either of three ways – pickled fresh tuhau, spicy sambal tuhau, and serunding tuhau. Pickled tuhau and sambal tuhau are traditionally eaten with rice. Serunding tuhau is dried and usually comes mixed with peanuts and eaten as a snack.
Bosou is preserved fish, a delicacy made by the Kadazan-Dusun people. The most common fish used is the ikan kepayang. Sometimes, raw meat brought back from hunting expeditions is used in the preparation of this delicacy instead.
Other articles I wrote about Sabah:
- Kota Kinabalu (day 1)
- Mesilau Highland, Kundasang
- Poring Hot Spring
- Jesselton Point
- Hinava Squid Ink Pasta
- Inanam Bakery Supplies
- Kuih Lidah