Monday, March 29, 2010

Mabul - Boat scenes

Boat making in mabul.

Sabah Day 4 - Mabul and Kapalai

Approaching Mabul Island..lying 15km north of Sipadan, this reef is at the edge of of the continental shelf and separated from Sipadan by a very deep sea.

One of the homes of Sea Bajau..they said that these people get dizzy if they are on land for too long..

We went off snorkeling at what appeared to be the edge of a reef and were lucky enough to see a turtle swimming nearby. Then we were on the boat to see Kapalai. It's actually a resort built on a reef. Scary but yet an exciting place to visit, you have to ask the security's permission but the sea was too rough for the boat to get near Kapalai. So we were off to another snorkeling spot. This 2nd place was much more shallower than the first one but we could not really balanced ourselves when standing on one of the tougher reef rocks. Come to think of it..some of us did feel a current of cold water while snorkeling. (We only knew of the tsunami in Chile when we stopped at a restaurant on the way back to Tawau. Though we did noticed an airplane flying low and police marine boats on the way back to Semporna).

Sabah Day 4: Off snorkeling in Mabul

Early morning at Semporna's waterfront. We were off by boat to go snorkeling in Mabul and Kapalai islands...part of the 3 famous islands off Semporna, Sabah. Sipadan is too far to cover in a one-day visit..

Kampung Air..houses on water are common sight in Semporna and surrounding islands.

In the middle of the ocean, the boat had to slow down for these shallow waters..

Off in the distance, you'll get to see these floating white things that goes a long way..the boatman was kind enough to detour the boat so that we can see clearly what they are..

Seaweed farming..a good way to recycle empty water bottles..

Sabah Day4: Mabul's shopping

If you are a shell collector, you can find all these for sale.

It's hard to resist not to come again when you are leaving the island with a view like this...clear water and white sands.. Maybe this time with an underwater camera in tow..hehehe

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Sabah Day 3 - Shopping

Back at the inn after dinner, we stopped at nearby souvenir shop..
As I waited for the others to make their buying and having my coffee, I looked at this decoration of hanging seashells..It dawned to me that it was supposed to imitate the school of small fishes in the ocean which is what Sipadan and the surrounding islands are famous for..

Shopping for crystals..I think the shop owner must had made lots of money that night..
I just got myself some magnets and lots of these photos. While the others were busy bargaining, the two of us were busy taking pictures.

Sabah Day 3 - Seafood dinner in Semporna

The dinner place..
Lemon sirap and extras..

Tomyam..very sweet..

Buttered prawns

Fried crabs..not a very good meal choice for crab

Sabah veggies

Steamed fish..

The lobster for dinner..


Nobody wants me?...crab..

Lobster shell, anyone?

The bill..lucky it was included in the budget..the lobster was a dinner treat. Thanks, N!

Sabah Day 3 - Semporna

In the afternoon, we left for Semporna. At the last kampung, we stopped for some very good durians and langsat. Here, wild dogs just love scavenging for durian leftover!

Once arriving in Semporna, we checked into Dragon Inn. Nice place..a floating hotel at Semporna's waterfront. A busy place for water taxis!
As part of our hotel package, we got free entrance to the sea aquarium nearby. This is such a weird-looking fish and very, very shy..

That night, we were joined by a local friend who would show us where we could have seafood for dinner..

Sabah: Day 3 - Sunrise

Sunrise pictures from DVFC Observation Tower at early morning on day 3.

When we were at the canteen for breakfast, the other visitors were saying that there was an orang utan nearby having his meals of long beans.. See if you can spot it..

What was left of the bean..

Sabah Day 2: Danum Valley

Early morning at Danum Valley Field Centre. This is not a place to stay around in bed till afternoon. If you get lucky, you can get a glimpse of some animals during the early morning hours.

My second time here at DVFC. This time there were not many scientists/researchers around. The others that stayed here were visitors like us, except they were foreigners. Love to see the camera gears that they brought along with them.
View of Segama River from the hanging bridge.

Danum Valley Field Centre from the bridge. It's a dry season.

The hanging bridge across Segama River.

Late morning we set out for Borneo Rainforest Lodge, another 2 hours away from DVFC. Just before reaching BRL, we stopped at this canopy walkway. Beautiful setting..

View looking down from one of the observation decks at the canopy walkway..

The canopy was set up upon menggaris trees and seraya aka tualang..

The trunk of the menggaris tree feels and looks like a cement..

Seraya tree aka tualang as part of the last tree base of the canopy walkway..

At BRL, off we go a wandering..

Some of us who decided not to trek to the coffin area, waited here..

What was left of the coffins..these people believed that the higher they were buried, the easier it was to get to the life after..

What was left of the bones..

You can see BRL from the viewpoint, just a little short distance uphill from the coffin place.
Menggaris trees..prominent features among the jungles surrounding Danum Valley.

Jacuzzi pool, where we had our packed lunch of nasi goreng and a piece of fried chicken. We were joined by a group of European tourists staying at BRL. They had a special spread of local fruits and pisang goreng, brought out from BRL which was finished by us..Never refused a free food being offered.. I think the staff wanted a lighter load on his way back.
Late afternoon, two of us went up this 120 feet observation deck nearby DVFC. Looking up from the observation deck..a woodpecker was busy pecking on a distance tree somewhere. My binocular is too small to be able to see any birds or orang utan..
No idea how long we stayed up there..after a few photos, it was time to go down the ladder again to join the others at the bottom.
On the way back to DVFC, we found this little woodpecker dropped out of nowhere and injured himself. The guide, Gerald went on to nurse this little guy while the rest of us went on for a swim at Segama Beach.
After the swim, nearby our hostel, we saw these two deers hanging around. Towards evening, you could see many more of them lurking around the buildings, happily grazing on grasses and leaves.
Later that night, it was time for a night safari. More little red and black broadbill (a species of bird) sleeping on a branch oblivious to our spotlights, an owl..