Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Superb KK Trip (Part I) - Padas White Water Rafting

This is the 2nd time I go for a trip with Mei Ru, Michelle and Chee Hong (the last one we went together is Taman Negara). This is a long trip as we are staying 8 days at Kota Kinabalu in Sabah.

We arrive at KK flying AirAsia on 25 July 2005 9:35 AM flight (the 2-way air tix only cost us RM 200 as we booked 3 months ahead in non-peak season). The flight took 2.5 hours and it was pretty pleasant, except that the seats are a bit small for my size. We were picked up from the Airport to Lucy's Homestay, where our guide is there to meet us. Allen, our guide, is a plump and cute person. He looks like Doraemon and Andy Lau (刘德华) in 瘦身男女. 4 of us are stuck in a 3-bed room, sucks. Lucy was pretty uneasy with our complaints, and soon we settle for the unpleasant arrangement. Allen brought us for breakfast at a nearby shop and treats us coffee + tea mixture (鴛鴦) drink at the Museum Kopitiam (this is a pretty cool place to hang out). He explains what would happen in the next few days and we asked a lot of question. Today is free and easy, so we decide to go to The Beach waterfront to play pool. Since the table is occupied, we end up at Happy Hours drinking beer and chit chatting. It was raining heavily then, definitely not a good sign for our outdor activity. Anyway, we cheers for our second trip together. After Happy Hours, we look for a seafood restaurant for dinner. We end up at 不夜天 seafood restaurant, where we saw a lot of people eat lobster. We are tempted to order abundance of seafood, but I think it is pretty pricey and we could find better bargain else where, so we ordered a few normal dishes and a dish of Elephant Trunk Clam (it was pretty good). We went to CentrePoint to pick up some stuff after dinner before going back to Lucy's Homestay. The room is pretty cool due to the rain, but it is pretty noisy as we can hear people talk when they go to the bathroom in the middle of the night and early morning. This is the 1st time we stay at a backpacker's lodge as well, quite an experience. You can see a lot of foreigner, and everyone is friendly.

Mei Ru and Michelle in Museum Kopitiam (Upstairs with WWII soldier helmet)

Me and Chee Hong

We woke up early the next day, and Lucy prepared some simple breakfast, which consist of bread and bananas. Allen came in on time to pick us up, and we depart to Padas River for White Water Rafting. We are transported to another bigger bus, when we join up with a few Hong Kong friends and some hotels' guess. A guide named Terry welcomed us, and the journey took about 2 hours and we try to take some nap. We arrive at an old train station at Beauford town, where we took a train into the jungle. A lot of locals is on the train with a lot of fruits and ironing board (perhaps there is some sales going on), and there are quite a number of people selling food and drinks on board the train. The train is very slow, noisy and shaky. The train journey took us another 2 hours, passing through a lot of bus stop like train stop. We arrive at the ending point of the water-rafting path to change and drop our bags. We are given 5 minutes before we hop on the train again towards the starting point. We were served with watermelon and mineral water, while Terry gave us a quick guide on water rafting. We wore a floating vest and helmet. I remembered a small-sized guide named Param and a Chinese look alike guide named Ma Chai. The 4 of us get on a small raft with 2 guide and started our journey. At first it was a pretty easy stream, and we jump in the river to do some body rafting. Since I don't know how to swim, so it is pretty difficult to control my direction. But it was a lot of fun. We hop in the raft again and started our exiting journey of 4.5 km of water rafting. The water stream is getting rougher and stronger, and some people start falling into the water. Our raft capsized in one of the larger wave (I suspect the guide purposely capsized us), so I was trap under the raft. I try to get myself out and somehow manage to see some light and drank a lot of yellowish river water. Capsizing is definitely an experience of a lifetime; it was scary but memorable (thank you Ma Chai). We rafted further before jumping into the water again for body rafting towards the ending point. We took a bath and have our so-called BBQ lunch. The sad thing is we didn't manage to capture any picture during our rafting activity. We took some picture before taking the same train and bus home. They are a lof of Hong Kong people on the train, where the guys usually are tan and the girls are fair with red blushes. We were home happy, and we get of know the 1st 3 Hong Kong friend in my life, Christine Lau, Terrence Chu and Joanne Cheuk. Christine wanted to climb Mt. KK with us the next day, but the arrangement was not quite possible. It would be nice to have her along, as she have a very pleasant personality and very fun. We have smoked chicken and stewed beef rice for dinner at Museum Kopitiam before heading back to Lucy's place for the night again.

Mei Ru and Michelle in the "slow, noisy and shaky" train

Me after water rafting (too bad no photo taken during rafting). Some Padas White Water Rafting photo is available here.

Coming up next is Mt. KK and Tiga Island.


Travel Video

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