Location : Kudat, Sabah, Malaysia.
The town of Kudat , originally called Tomborungan by the Rungus locals, has always been synonymous with the ‘Tip of Borneo’ due to its close proximity. What most people do not know is that it was once a upon a time the capital of Sabah or to be more exact the ‘British North Borneo’ as it was known way back then in 1880s . The capital status was short lived though, losing out to Jesselton or present day Kota Kinabalu 190km away. The British generously paved the way for Christian Hakkas via the entry point of Kudat not for gold but to kickstart coconut and rice plantations. It is interesting to note the contrast of the 2 different groups of Hakkas that came to Borneo island, one to the west and the other to the north east. On the western side, the Hakkas were invited by the Sultan of Sambas for gold mining while on the opposite side the Christian Hakkas were invited by the British to help plant coconut and rice. Almost a 130 year difference with the Sambas around 1750’s and Kudat in 1881.
Kudat is a nice quiet town, clean esplanade overlooking the Celebes Sea and with cheap seafood (in the raw form!) compared to other towns of Sabah.
To observe the local lifestyle we chose to have breakfast at the foodcourt above the market. Not much variety here with mostly basic Hakka food but interesting to watch the different races here come and go.
Scenic drive through Kota Belud and a laid back Kudat attracts local golfers to drive all the way here to play golf at its colonial course. 2016 could be the turning point for Kudat when the much hyped roll on roll off ferry service to Palawan Island (Philippines) takes off. Busier days ahead for Kudat, that is for sure. I would be more than excited to test that long awaited route. Mabuhay!