Back to Malaysia

Trip Start Mar 17, 2007
Trip End Sep 22, 2007

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Saturday, September 1, 2007

I arrived in Kota Kinabalu and was quite impressed at how civilised it was compared to the Philippines.  As has happened to me a few times on this trip it just happened that I arrived on one of the busiest nights of the year so finding a hotel room turned out to be quite a challenge. 

After spending the one day doing a "city and countryside tour" which was a real let down I organised to go on a whitewater rafting trip.  After spending an hour and a half in a bus and another hour an half on a train/ rollercoaster we arrived at the base were we were briefed about safety etc before hitting the river.  I was in a raft with a Spanish couple, a couple of girls from Japan and an English bloke.  As it turned out the Japanese girls weren't very good swimmers and gave us all sorts of entertainment as they screamed and shrieked on our way down the river.  This wasn't help by our guide who steered us towards the largest sections of the rapids on our way down.  He also got great joy out of throwing the Japanese girls in the River.  At one point he asked if a few of us who were more confident swimmers wanted to tackle some of the rapids without the boat.  Although it was a struggle to get a breath a few times this ended up being the most fun part of the day.

A couple of days later my mate from the UK Greg and his friend Lyndsay arrived in town.  We quickly came up with a plan to hire a car and drive to Mount Kinabalu and Sandakan.  ?Unfortunately the weather was really bad on the way there and we weren't able to the mountain.  After visiting the hot springs we ended up getting to Sandakan at about 7 pm that night.When we arrived we had a drive around town and were a little disappointed at the apparent lack of nightlife. Greg and I decided to go to a quiet bar near the hotel for a few drinks.  Here I was come on to by a gay guy which Greg found very amusing.  When the band had finished up one of the girls in the band said she was having a birthday and invited Greg and I out with the rest of the bar staff to a nightclub in a part of town we had missed altogether.  We ended up having an absolutely huge night and didn't make it back to the hotel until early the next morning. 

After getting a couple of hours sleep Lyndsay woke me to go to the Orang Utan sanctuary just outside of town.  She said she had tried to wake Greg wasn't able to get him out of bed.  Unfortunately by the time we got there we had missed feeding time.  Luckily though we got to see a juvenile Orang Utan on the jungle walk we did there.

After returning from the sanctuary we decided to leave to go back to Kota Kinabalu as it didn't seem that there was too much else to do in Sandakan.  On the way back the weather was much better and I was able to get a look at the impressive Mt Kinabalu. 

After arriving back in Kinabalu it was unfortunately time for my holiday to finish.  After leaving Kinabalu I spent a few days in Singapore. which is a good place to get acclimatised to being in a rich Western country again.
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