04 April 2018

BUDGET FAMILY TRIP TO SABAH


I finally have the time to write about this trip after months! Well, I bet most of you are already used to it now since this year I haven't been really productive in blogging. Anyways, this Sabah trip was planned early this year and we went during the 2nd week of Raya. My husband was the mastermind of it since my family wanted to go because my cousin got married to a Sabahan and had a ceremony there. We didn't get to attend the ceremony but we managed to visit their home after a day of the ceremony. Our main agenda was actually to explore Sabah since none of us has been there before, so here is our 5 days 4 nights trip breakdown to Sabah.



Our trip to Sabah was a budget one, my husband managed to get cheap flights during the Air Asia sale for a 2 way trip about RM200 per person. At first, I was not really interested to go since I was worried I may not have enough money to do so but with proper planning, it turned out well. 7 people from my family agreed to go, my mum, my grandma, my uncle and 2 of my aunts, of course, my husband included as well since he planned the thing. Our plan was to land at Sandakan and visit my cousins' husbands family and stay 2 nights there before we head down to Kundasang and stay another 2 nights and before going back to KL from Kota Kinabalu.

Just after we landed, my cousins' husband fetched us at Sandakan airport with the van we rented. Since he was a Sabahan it was easier for us but we still hired a driver for the days we were there to explore Sandakan. Our first stop was the home of my cousins' husband, his grandmas' house since the ceremony was held there and my grandma was the one who really wanted to go to meet the family. We were welcomed gracefully by their family and was served a generous amount of traditional dishes by the Sabahan which most of them was fresh seafood. Too bad I didn't think of taking a picture of all the dishes served since all we wanted to do that time was to dig in. We had fish, crab, fresh greens and I can't remember the rest. There were too many and we all had double servings of rice each, except my husband who had 4. LOL

We got to know the family and was there about 2 hours before we headed to our homestay. We were excited about the homestay because my husband managed to find a really good deal. Check out our homestay HERE. When we reached there all of us were pleased, it was worth the money and made us feel at home. Since it was blazing hot at Sandakan that time, we all wanted some rest so we only went out for dinner after that. We were kinda shocked with the big time difference in Sabah where at 4pm it looked liked dawn already and 6pm was already like night. After a good rest, we went out for dinner around 4pm if I'm not mistaken and the driver brought us to this small stall which sold 'ikan bakar' and various traditional dishes. I can't really remember since it was so long ago. I keep on regretting I didn't take pictures of food and the small stuff so I could post it here.

Anyways dinner was fantastic, my grandma discovered 'anggur laut' and came to like it. Its a greeny thing from the sea which looks like small grapes, I don't know what it's called in English. After dinner, we bought their famous dessert called 'Terang Bulan' which is almost similar to the 'apam balik' we have here in KL, but the texture and the taste is kinda different which 'Terang Bulan' surely wins. We spent a lot of time indoors in Sandakan because of the blazing hot weather, most of us couldn't stand the heat and I was already 4 months pregnant at that time, so it bothered me as well. The ones that really had no problem was my mum and my husband only, which I'm thankful for because, without them, we might have nothing to do at all at Sandakan.

We went to their big wet market near the sea to buy fish, but since we went when the sun was up, the prices are not as cheap but to us, it's still considered cheap. Our driver, a Sabahan there said if we went to the market around 3am, fresh fish are sold cheaply by the fishermen and it's just been taken out from the sea. Once they go inside the wet market, the price raises but according to my mum and husband who were the ones that went fish shopping it was still cheaper than KL and they surely had no control over what they bought. I'm gonna be honest here but I didn't even step foot in the wet market, I was moody and uncomfortable so I waited in the van, while the most excited person was my husband and my mum. LOL... Seriously when they came back with what they bought, my husband was the most satisfied one. My mum seems so happy too, I didn't seem to understand the feeling until it was all cooked. HAHA...

Thank goodness, my aunt which is the greatest cook in the family came along as it was now her task to cook. She didn't mind because my husband booked a great homestay which had a nice clean kitchen with all the basic needs provided. My aunt and my mum kinda made the kitchen like their own as well and for dinner that night, the table was filled with food. Crabs, fish, prawns, and etc. I can't remember but there was a lot of food and we had dinner at 6pm. It was already dark there and no one seems interested to leave the house either, but we did hang outside the porch which was massive and had some family bonding inhaling fresh Sandakan night air.

The next morning we were so ready to leave Sandakan for Kundasang, a cooler place. LOL... Honestly, the heat was killing us and thank goodness we didn't stick to the original plan to stay Kundasang longer. We just visited a few places here including the 'orangutans' place which wasn't really good as well since the 'orangutans' were only seen from afar and we had to walk a long way for it. My grandma gave up halfway. Anyways, we were all glad to leave the blaze in Sandakan and ready for the chillness in Kundasang. We were dropped by our driver at their main bus station heading towards KK. The fare was almost RM40 per person, I can't remember anymore but the bus was cosy and clean. The trip took about half a day since we departed in the morning and reached Kundasang in the afternoon.

Our van in Kundasang was already waiting for us when we went down from the bus and the faces of everyone where delighted since they could feel the chilly weather already. Since I was pregnant, I just felt normal but it was way better than Sandakan. Our first stop was to our homestay and it was kinda disappointing when we reached there because we thought the house was big but it turned out to be a cottage with a really big land outside so it was really tight for the 9 of us even though it had 3 rooms which were really small. I was unsatisfied and felt like being cheated with the price with paid and wanted to complain, but my family are really nice people so I couldn't speak up, even my husband didn't let me, so okay then. We put our luggage in the house and went out for dinner, the great thing was that the van was nice and air-conditioned and the driver was always ready for us. So that's a good service then.

The town was so near to our homestay and we saw KFC, and just needed it that time. LOL... KL people can't run away from fast food, can they? Somehow it was more than finger licking good, haha... we were all so hungry after sitting on the bus for so long. Since it was getting dark after we finished eating, we bought snacks and headed back to our homestay to rest before starting our journey exploring Kundasang the next day. Everyone was so happy on our way back though, tummies were full, the weather was cold and the view was spectacular. My family were crazy, making jokes and laughing loudly, and could still tease our driver, thank goodness he was okay with it as well. He dropped us at our homestay and promised to be here early morning. That night is when the drama happened, well I was the drama queen actually.

I was so pissed with the homestay owner, which seems to live next door of the cottage, I didn't personally meet him, it was all my husband and he has a soft spot, while I was burning! Why, we specifically mentioned that we are a group of 9 people, does the house fit and he says yes. So okay we booked the house since in the pictures it seems clean and cosy, but we were not sure of the size since the had a really big yard outside, we thought that it would be big enough. Turns out it didn't! My husband, cousins husband didn't have a place to sleep, so we asked for extra mattresses so we could put it in the hall which was freaking small combined with the kitchen as well, there wasn't enough space. Then when night came, I became more furious because my mum wasn't comfortable on the bed since we were sharing 3 people and it was really tight, so she wanted to sleep on the cold floor. I told my husband to get another mattress but they only have queen sized and there wasn't enough space to put it anywhere! I almost lost it when my husband accidentally spilt out that he actually paid for the extra mattress!

WTF!! Seriously and it wasn't cheap just to rent a stupid mattress which wasn't even in good condition. Supposedly the owner should have not charged us since he knows beforehand that we were coming in a group of 9 and he could have expected that there was not enough space to sleep as well! Did he think we're goats in a cage? I was furious which caused me unable to sleep that night because of the rage and my pregnancy hormones were not helping. I was that close barging next door to spill out my unsatisfaction since we paid so much for something that it's not worth it but as I said, my family is the so nice one, don't complain, leave it, we can manage. Erghhh... It got me more frustrated that we are being treated like this, but I didn't want my family to feel uncomfortable, even my husband said the same thing as well cause I know he wasn't satisfied as well but he kept it in. I'm sure if it was just the 2 of us, he'll speak up about it already. It wasn't only that though, there were a few other reasons why I was so angry but this post will be so long if I keep on. So fullstop, lets proceed to our trip.

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And then I took another 2 months to continue this part. Lol

Anyways, the first destination we wanted to go at Kundasang was, of course, the famous dairy farm. I've been seeing friends posting about this place on social media a lot and I couldn't wait to try out their products especially their frozen yoghurt. Luckily the place was just nearby our homestay so we managed to arrive there early giving us the perks of a breathtaking view uncrowded. 











Hey guys, just imagine how long I took to write this post that my uncle that went along on this trip recently passed away. I don't think I'll continue writing about my trip now since it was his very last trip, it's saddening to think about it since it was only last year he was in good health and happy. Suddenly he just became critical and came to his deathbed. Alhamdulillah, he passed away easily surrounded by his family and friends. It's just heartbreaking to remember such a good trip with memories of our loved ones that are no longer here. I can't even read the intro I wrote above so this will do. I'm just posting this to remember that we had an awesome trip with our family and we always hoped we could go on more future trips like this.

Till then peeps.

4 comments:

  1. Hai sis, welcome to sabah, please come again to visit another part of sabah. sorry to hear about your homestay.

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  2. takziah for your uncle..dah lama teringin nak ke Sabah. kena penuhkan tabung dulu! hehe

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  3. Salam sis, congrats for being in the Top 22 Malaysian Beauty Bloggers at Candybar.co! Takziah for the passing of your uncle and sorry to read about the small cottage - you could share the name of the place so that we all can take heed. That's why I usually just take day-trip to Kundasang - the accommodations are quite expensive. The affordable & good ones are usually fully-booked.

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