Longhouse homestay and local life-style,
native longboats, Batu Punggul climb, Tinahas Caves exploration,
3d/2n full board
Rates - 4 or more participants
Rates - 2 or 3 participants
RM 2188 per person
RM 2688 per person
This trip is an adventurous journey into the heart of the Murut
country. The Murut are reputedly the last tribe in Sabah to have
renounced headhunting! They are most formidable hosts, and well known
for their week-long wedding celebrations during which cassava beer or
wine in ancient jars is served. This trip is not for the faint-hearted,
but for those who can rough it out for a couple of days and immerse
themselves into an environment and life as old as human kind itself…
this trip is a bridge between cultures, where you will be able to mingle
with the locals and learn more about their life in the jungle of Borneo.
Day 1 0800 hrs pick up from your hotel/resort in Kota Kinabalu
and leisurely drive over the
Crocker Range to
Keningau. Stopover at the
Rafflesia Conservation area near
Tambunan in search of the world’s largest flower.
With some luck you will be able to see one of those amazing blooms!
Lunch in Keningau, at a local restaurant, then onward journey to the Matiku Junction. From this point onwards we will leave the sealed roads
and venture deeper into the interior of Sabah on gravelled roads, which
will change into abandoned logging tracks. The condition of the roads
depend very much on weather. During dry conditions it will take us
around one hour to reach Labang or Tataluan; during rain it might well
be three hours of exciting off-roading! When we arrive at the longhouse
we will be greeted by the headman of the house, or his representative,
and we will be given our sleeping quarters: travellers to longhouses are
accommodated in the gallery of the house, a time honoured custom, and to
sleep on the host provides intricately woven rattan mats. Dinner will be
served during the early evening, followed by story telling and maybe a
couple of sips of tapai (cassava wine) from jars.
Meals: lunch, dinner (local)
Day 2 0900 hrs – The early morning in the village has an
especially invigorating action on one’s soul, but this is for early
birds only: watch as the sun rises gradually over the steaming jungle
and disperses the morning mists. To-day we will take a boat to Batu
Punggul. Here again, the duration of the boat ride depends very much on
the weather. During dry conditions and low water levels there will be a
lot of punting and even dragging of the longboat over the shallow river.
As we approach Batu Punggul we will see this limestone outcrop towering
some 70 meters above the forest canopy. Good weather conditions
permitting we can climb the rock, but caution is needed and good foot
wear. This is a limestone pinnacle with very sharp cracks and needles;
however, when we reach the top we have an exhilarating view of wide
expanses of jungle. After the climb of Batu Punggul we can explore the
cave system under the Tinahas Caves, a rocky outcrop adjacent to Batu
Punggul. The Murut collect birds nests from the caves, where there are
also three endemic species of bats that exist nowhere else in the world.
Later in the afternoon we return to the longhouse for late lunch,
relaxing in the river, more story telling and finally lunch and again
overnight in the longhouse.
Meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner (local)
Day 3 0900 hrs – we will have to say good-bye to the hospitable
Murut. The road will again take us over Matiku to Keningau, from where
we will take the Kimanis road over the Crocker Range. In the late
afternoon we arrive back in Kota Kinabalu.
Meals: breakfast and lunch
What to expect: warm and
friendly people throughout, but only very simple accommodation (in the
longhouse gallery); breathtaking jungle in the Batu Punggul Reserve and
adventurous caving – yet nothing that demands special skills; the climb
of Batu Punggul is subject to weather conditions and fitness of
participants: it is a very demanding climb!
Related features on this site:
Punggul is a limestone outcrop in Sabah's interior
A Murut lady harvesting the famous 'hill rice'
A Murut girl looking out of her longhouse
The gallery of a Murut longhouse prepared for a