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Monday October 3rd 2011

Festivals and Scuba Diving In Sabah

Scuba Diving In Mantanani, Sabah
Hooked On Scuba Diving In Mantanani, Sabah

Festivals In Sabah

The months of August and September are filled with festivals and activities. The start of August was also the start of the Muslims’ Fasting month.

Hari Raya came at the end of August, which coincided with Malaysia’s National Day. The end of August was also the school holidays.

As always, in the run up to any major festivals, it is always hectic at work. At times like this, I am really glad that I work from home. Since it was the school holidays, we spent quite a bit of time in the shopping malls.

chicken satayAs usual, festivals are celebrated with food and lots of it. If you come to Sabah on a holiday, do try the chicken satay with peanut sauce. It is great for a snack or a main course.

I went for an entire month without roti canai, the Malay bread. Since they were fasting during the day, the food stalls and coffee shops are closed during the day. So we missed quite a bit of Malay food which is really tasty and aromatic.

There was a guy who went on the air and said that he gained 9kg during the Hari Raya celebrations. We love Open Houses but even that is over-doing it by mile.

Selamat Hari Raya
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Getting Hooked On Scuba Diving

The guys and girls over at BorneoDream.com released their newsletter today. Check out some of the activities they have to offer. The following is reprinted with their permission.

New to Sabah – Fast RIB Rides!!
Fast RIB rides are already popular attractions in countries such as England, Scotland, Wales, Australia and USA. The Borneo Dream team thought it was time that visitors coming to Sabah could experience the adventure, fun and adrenalin rush of fast RIB rides from Kota Kinabalu – a first for Sabah (and possibly Malaysia).

RIB rides are often described as the ultimate ‘rollercoaster on water’ experience. Take a seat on a double jockey seat (specially designed for safety and comfort) and hold on tight while the RIB accelerates to speeds of between 30 knots – 50 knots depending on sea state and how much we want to make you scream.

Billy, a RYA MCA endorsed Skipper will be your Captain for our fast RIB Rides. In open areas (with limited boat traffic), he is free to safely get creative with a series of manoeuvring twists and turns, at times tilting the vessel 45 degrees towards the water!
Choose from our two RIB ride experiences:

  • Three island tour – Our most popular ride, a 45 minute round trip (to and from a designated island in Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park, or Jesselton Point jetty in central Kota Kinabalu).
  • Five island tour – Our longer 90 minute exhilarating speedboat experience delivers all that the ‘Three Island Tour’ has to offer and will propel you faster for longer seeing the five islands in Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park.
Fast RIB Rides With Borneo Team in Sabah
Fast RIB Rides With Borneo Dream

A great alternative to banana boat rides, jet skis or paragliding. Join the ultimate, one of a kind, adrenalin packed high speedboat experience in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah!

A Summer of Scuba Diving Madness at Mantanani
The Borneo Dream is now back in Kota Kinabalu after several weeks of running PADI scuba diving courses for Camp Borneo Students staying at Camp Mantanani during July and August.

I visited the Borneo Dream Team at Mantanani for a few days and was pleasantly surprised by the how stunning the diving conditions were for the Camp Borneo students – pretty, shallow coral reefs with visibility typically between 20m – 30m. What a way to learn to dive!

Scuba Diving In Mantanani, Sabah
Hooked On Scuba Diving In Mantanani, Sabah

Nat Geo Presenter Matt Wright Comes Diving with Borneo Dream

Nat Geo Presenter Matt Wright
Nat Geo Presenter Matt Wright
Matt Wright is the new face of Nat Geo Wild – National Geographics US based wildlife channel. Matt was on his second visit to Sabah this year, from his native Australia, to film footage and get shots of some of the wildlife found in Borneo.

Matt, and his friends, decided to end their most recent trip here by enjoying some scuba diving and snorkeling in Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park. Matt chose Borneo Dream for his diving needs in Kota Kinabalu after a recommendation by Simon Enderby from Scubazoo (thanks Simon!).

Matt joined us for leisure diving and enjoyed diving from our RIB in the morning. His friends joined in a PADI Discover Scuba Diving Experience and started the day completing their confined skills session and a morning leisure dive at Sapi House Reef. In the afternoon they all dived together. The weather was beautiful – with blue skies and a calm breeze, and the diving was chilled out. A perfect way to end a busy visit to Sabah.

We wish Matt all the best in his new role with National Geographic TV and hope to see him next time he visits Sabah.

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