Return to Kota Kinabalu

Welcome to Kota Kinabalu!

Welcome to Kota Kinabalu!

My last year’s trip to Sabah, Malaysia was for a vacation (Kota Kinabalu City Tour), now, my return is for something more physical, heart-thumping, and competitive – the Cebu Pacific Backpacker Challenge 2011!

After packing my lightest baggage ever and heading to NAIA, a welcoming committee led by Alvin Quek of Exotic Adventure Borneo greeted us at the Kota Kinabalu International Airport upon arrival.

Arriving at the Kota Kinabalu International Airport

Arriving at the Kota Kinabalu International Airport

Complete with greetings and beaded necklaces, we felt the warm welcome. Our group was composed of the 10 challengers — 8 writers from Philippine print media and 2 bloggers including Sago of LetsGoSago.net. We were also joined by Zuhaira Abas of Tourism Malaysia-Manila, MP Pestano, Michelle Eve de Guzman, and Blessie Labra Cruz, all from Cebu Pacific, and official photographer Rosemarie Razon.

Team and Alvin Quek Welcomes Philippine Media

Team and Alvin Quek Welcomes Philippine Media

Boarding the Mini Bus

Boarding the Mini Bus

We boarded a mini bus and went straight to Gaya Center Hotel to freshen-up and get ready for a dinner hosted by Sabah Tourism Board in PortView Village near Kota Kinabalu’s bay facing the South China Sea.

Gaya Center Hotel Reception / Lobby

Gaya Center Hotel Reception / Lobby

Gaya Center Hotel Accommodations & Amenities

Gaya Center Hotel Accommodations & Amenities

We met more officers and members of the Sabah Tourism Board and Malaysia Tourism at the restaurant.

A short briefing about the Cebu Pacific Backpacker Challenge Sabah Edition and simple ceremony was also held turning over event shirts, Malaysian SIM cards, and the RM1000 cash (equivalent t0 Php14200  / team of 2).

Gordon Yapp Welcoming Backpacker Adventure Challenge Participants

Gordon Yapp Welcoming Backpacker Adventure Challenge Participants

Sago + Malaysian SIM + RM1000

Sago + Malaysian SIM + RM1000

Dinner = Sabah Tourism Board + Malaysia Tourism + Philippine Media

Dinner = Philippine Media + Sabah Tourism Board + Malaysia Tourism

My team mate Joba Botana of Manila Standard Newspaper

My team mate Joba Botana of Manila Standard Newspaper

It was a quick meet-and-greet over seafood-themed Malaysian dinner in preparation for the early start of the backpacking challenge proper and send-off the next day.

No Responses

Leave a Reply