Kota Kinabalu Trip 2009: Part 2

Continuing from Part 1:

Food
The first time I came over to KL, I was not used to the sun setting at 7pm. In Kuching by 6pm it’s already dark. The same happens in Sabah. By 7pm, it was pitch black already. But the rain was still pouring outside. The seafood restaurant that we want to go is a distance away near Sedco Complex and we have to go on foot. Luckily Kinabalu Backpackers provided free umbrellas.

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Wa Heng Seafood Restaurant at Sedco Square.

It is a known fact that seafood restaurants tend to slaughter tourists who don’t know the price of local food. But since we had a pretty good idea of how much to spend and how much the food will cost, we went around to find the best deal. There are about 4 restaurants at Sedco Square itself and we choose this particular restaurant in the end. It was a good thing that we brought Marzuki the Bargain King along because he can bargain better than a stingy Chinaman can.

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Seafood can’t get any fresher than this. Unless you catch it yourself.

Not wanting to get ripped off, we bargained and agreed on the price before placing our order. For every dish, he bargained the price down. And just when you think that there’s no way the price could go any lower, he managed to bargain it down some more from the lady. It was starting to look more and more like a daylight robbery. In the end, we managed to cut around RM30 off the original price. And that’s not the end of the story yet.

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Some dead red fishes. Caught on that day itself.

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We had seacucumber soup, butter prawns, chili sotong, thai fish and Sabah Choy (vege).

I’m not going to tell you how fresh it is, you have to go and try it yourself. The entire meal was immensely satisfying and due to the huge portions, it was almost impossible to finish everything. But we did anyways. The final bill came to RM93. And Marzuki went to bargain some more with the lady, requesting for RM90. But she said that was the lowest she could give us. She even showed us other customers’ receipts and insisted that she has never given anyone a lower price. But then she had to rush off to take an order so she passed us to her son to settle the bill. Her son, oblivious to the discounts that she had already given us, happily gave us the meal for RM90.

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The pasar malam along Jalan Tun Fuad Stephen. Just take a walk along the waterfront, you won’t miss it. This section sells fresh seafood, there’s another section the sells cooked ones.

Another cheap place to get fresh seafood is along Jalan Tun Fuad Stephen. Here they will “bakar” (barbecue) the fish for you. It’s a great place for an after dinner seafood snack. But unfortunately we were too full to even try a bit. Eating too much at the previous restaurant was my biggest regret. I heard that a giant tiger prawn here is RM8.

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Here you can see some foreigners enjoying their fresh seafood with bottles of beer.

Roger was kind enough to fly back from KL early so he could bring us around. He landed around 10pm and took us to Tanjung Aru beach for a view. Nothing much to see at night at the beach so we sat down for a drink and a round of pool.

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Marzuki and the very colorfully lighted up bar by the beach. Again, nice place to hang out on a Saturday night if you have no where to go in Kota Kinabalu.

The thing I love about Sabah is that the beaches are incredibly near to the city. In KL, the nearest beach is Port Dickson, and that’s like light years away compared to Kota Kinabalu’s Tanjung Aru. There’s just something about beaches that really attracts me: the sunsets, the cool breeze, the crashing of waves, the smooth white sand and the incredibly vast mass of water in front of you. It gives a soothing effect.

It was getting late and I initially planned to get up early for the sunrise at Signal Hill Observatory but the plan had to be scrapped because I fell asleep at 1:37am. I’m sure Cara must be laughing at us now because we claimed that we would be up earlier than her for the sunrise. Cara is a travel guide editor we met at the backpackers.

Next: Kota Kinabalu Trip 2009: Part 3 Continue reading