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Kota Kinabalu to Kundesang


It was an hour and a half in a minibus in order to position ourselves for Kinabalu National Park the next day, spotting a couple of Morris Minors for sale on the way out of the city and some fine vistas of the South China Sea. It wasnt long though before we were grinding up the mountainous cloud caressed forested inclines in order to reach elevated Kundesang, passing the National park entrance on the way and reaching the what proved to be a large scattered market garden village 6Ks further on. A recommendation from Jeremy who I had met in Kuching, he had been staying there long term and as well as what he promised to be the best guesthouse in Sabah, there was also the added draw of a war memorial I had wanted to check out anyway. A couple of young Irish chicks had tagged along and so with me taking the lead, I was made to feel a tad silly when our den for the night proved to be incongruously situated and not exactly a palace either. What had Jeremy been thinking of? It sole redeeming feature would not be revealed until the morning, but it was a vote winner indeed. Hitting the one obvious restaurant around, we were plagued by hundreds of flies which were attracted by the nearby fruit and veg market, which was simply a line of stalls along the main road, offering all manner of produce which you sometimes struggled to see in the cities. In diminutive Kundesang that was about the most action you got. We took the time then to track down the one obvious attraction the war memorial, and though it was certainly alluring I wasnt the only one to be disgusted in seeing that not only was an entrance fee being charged, but there was an outrageously hiked up foreigner price. Though the kids wandered in there was no way I or the Swiss duo were going to jump on this particular bandwagon and I didnt spare any punches in telling the guy how I felt about it. For the want of alternatives we walked away down a side road presenting fantastic views of mountainous countryside peppered with agriculture and chalet like houses. We soon came across another sign demanding payment for the uninspiring right to view some of the many plants which were the basis of the economy here, and it was a brow slapping realisation to conclude that in tiny Kundesang of all places we had unexpectedly walked straight into an unbefitting tourist trap. That was rather contrasted by the village proper however, since its very ugly concrete architecture surrounding a small square was most definitely not accustomed to white faces and mustered just the barest of services. Having been commandeered by headscarved girls playing some kind of football tournament (very badly), I opted to hit a marvel in an unexpected net cafe here whilst the Swiss duo continued their stroll. Given my plans for the next couple of days it also proved to be a convenient opportunity to stock up on provisions for the next couple of days, no shops where I was going.

Posted by andyhay2 00:00 Archived in Malaysia

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