Monday, 30 September 2013

Labuan, A Hidden Gem


Who would have thought that Labuan is such a nice place to visit?

Why Labuan, you ask?
Well first, the flight tickets were quite cheap. RM150 (return)
Secondly, I always wanted to explore the East Malaysia more.
Thirdly, it is quite underrated as compared to Kota Kinabalu and Kuching.
Most underrated place offered the best things!

The trip was a super fun one because I went with Anis, a friend from college.
I had this piece of paper (written with red ink, nonetheless) listing all the must-see attractions, famous eateries and their phone numbers.
Hasil kerja keras research :D
So basically, we were quite prepared to just go and enjoy the island. 

Our flight was on Friday morning, 0720.
Two hours and twenty minutes later, we arrived at the airport.


Upon arrival, we started to look for rental cars.
There were a handful of counters at the arrival hall.
MOST of the cars are not available (weekend lor) unless you want a sedan.
With early booking, you could get a Viva for as low as RMM55/day.
But since we were quite undecided, we leave the decision on the morning itself.
Hasilnya, Perodua Viva for RM70/day 

We went to our hotel first. 
Well, a guest house to be more precise.
I read good reviews over the internet and decided to go for it.

Well, there are a few things in life that you just felt you needed to recommend and put out the good words.


Siang Guest House.
Owned by a really nice Chinese uncle.
It is a registered home stay, do not fret.
Only 2km away from the airport.
Very convenient.

Why I love it so much?
super, super clean! (daily cleanup by the maids)
spacious
secured car park [with automatic gate]
free use of the washing machine
free flow of hot drinks
free wi-fi
TV at the hall
CCTV (safety first)
air conditioned rooms
Dan sudah semestinya; murahhhh!!
We paid RM30 each. 
Oh my God!
Everything about the house is great!
I highly recommend it.
Seriously.

For more info, click here or call 013-8162198.

We got a map from the Airport earlier and make our way to the attractions, crossing off the list. 

I'm gonna grouped the activities under Attractions and Eateries.

Attractions

Since Labuan is not that big, we managed to visit nearly all of the attractions.
Alhamdulillah
From one end to the other end of the island took less 30 minutes.

The Chimney
It is located at the opposite side of the town. 
Just beside the chimney is the mini museum. 



Inside the museum.
What makes the chimney interesting is the mystery around it.
Apparently, no one knew why it was built and the function.
Many theory surfaced but none can be proven. 
Light house, part of mansion, ventilation shaft, chimney.
Until today, it is still a mystery.

Bird Park
Located just across the road to the Chimney.
Take note of the opening hour of you'll end up like us; went to the Bird Park 3 days in a row. LOL

Friday - closed
Saturday to Thursday - 10am to 4.30pm

Entry fee - RM3 (RM2 with student card)


Jumping like a little girl upon seeing the swing.
Dating with the arrogant peacock ;p
Tiong Mas
Baru sedar kekhilafan ilmu. Tiong Mas boleh ajuk suara manusia. Did ya know that?
Bertapa sekejap kat sangkar burung tu, literally melompat excited dengar burung bagi salam.
True story.

Beaches
We went to a few beaches. 
For a nice view - Pantai Pancur Hitam
Nice place to swim - in front of UMS (we swim there, at least)
The beaches are all clean.
Clap-clap.







Peace Park and Surrender Point
This park was built by the descendants of the Japanese occupying army, who wanted to show their sincere apology and remorse for their forefather's wrong doings.
Terkesan :D






Ban San Miao Temple

Tema gambar - Hijau.

Labuan Walk
This is where the weekly morning market (pasar tani) is located.
Just beside the Perbadanan Labuan building.
Do come here for the local delicacies.




 Bazar Labuan
Famous dry market in Labuan.
Kat sini lah nak cari ikan masin, belacan, sayur, buah and rumpai laut yang banyak dijual.



Dataran Labuan
Angin sepoi-sepoi bahasa.
The night before, we watched a football game.
At least, for the first 15 minutes. LOL




Patau-Patau Water Village






Ujana Kewangan
Big building in the middle of Labuan; hard to miss.
Their version of shopping mall.
Got bowling alley, tell ya.
The cheapest place to find chocolates, liquor and cigarette here (at Monegain)
Sebab Wilayah Persekutuan Labuan is famous for its duty free goods.



Logistics and Budget
  • Flight (return) - RM150
  • Kereta - Viva RM70 (one day)
  • Kereta - Swift Alto RM100 (one and a half day)
  • Hotel - Siang Guest House RM30/person
  • Hotel - RK Cahaya RM60/person
Souvenirs
  • Ikan Terubuk Masin saiz besar - RM15 each
  • Belacan Labuan - RM1 per stick
  • Kisses Chocolate - RM 15 per packet
  • Australian Cadbury - RM8.50
Tak beli banyak chocolates pun because not really a big fan.
Cuma beli sikit-sikit untuk mak.
T shirt 'I Love Labuan' bagai tu memang tak beli langsung.


Cerita pasal kereta sewa. 
The second day we tried to look for cheaper alternative and got a number from the net.
 Sangat recommend abang ni.
Baik bangat !
016-5870877 [kereta sewa Labuan]

Alto auto, 1 setengah hari mana nak dapat RM100?
Sebenarnya RM90 je tapi kiteorang bagi je sebab minyak banyak masa die serah kereta :D

Perihal hotel, the weekend everywhere was full.
Siang Guest House tu cuma kosong untuk sehari. Memang dah tahu dari awal dah.
We end up in RK Cahaya.
Di tengah-tengah bandar.
It was supposed to be only RM80 per night.
Tapi sebab checkout lambat, kena bayar lagi RM40.
[Maklumlah, flight balik pukul 1640] LOL


Eateries
I love eating almost as much as I love travelling, if not more.
So, nak pergi Labuan dah ada list makanan tradisi yang MESTI rasa and also must-try restaurant.

Kalau dah sebut Labuan, memang tak sah la kalau tak pergi .... 

Anjung Ketam.
Sumpah serius famous tempat nie.

Tempatnya di Tanjung Aru.
Restoran atas air.
Ada empat gerai yang semua jual fresh crab.



Nampak ketam tu macam sikit je, macam biasa je.
Jangan tertipuuuuu.

Sekilo ketam fresh + masak = RM30
Sekilo je dah 4 ekor ketam yang isinya padat dan gemok-gemok.
We ordered Ketam Telur Masin and sotong goreng tepung.
Memang terbaik.

Sampai tapau bawak balik sebab kenyang sangat tak mampu nak habiskan.
Buat sarapan esok paginya.
LOL

Satu je tak berkenan, they will serve you with a plate of watermelon and nuts.
Automatic masuk bill okay RM12.

Coconut Pudding
Katanya local delicacies. Tapi lebih banyak di Sabah.
Melilau cari sampai jumpa!!
Sold at Restoran Pulau Labuan, kat dalam Hotel Pulau Labuan 2 (branch)
Tapi kat sini mahal gila RM12.
[Dengar cerita ada dijual kat Fisherman's Wharf juge]

Berbaloi sebab sedapppp!
Thanks Mr Google
Beli bawok lari makan tepi laut
Chicken Wings
Speciality Labuan and we seek for the best on the island!
Di depan persimpangan Taman Sintee.




Sangat-sangat lain from the one in Peninsular.
Two thumbs up!
Delicious!
Beli, bawak balik bilik makan sambil tengok Mya kat Projek 3R. Hahaha

Teh Madras


A version of teh tarik, only better!
Tarak muak punye.
Had this twice.
Itching for more.

Traditional Delicacies
Jelurut
[credit small time traveler]
Lamban
[credit small time traveler]
Antara restoran terkenal yang we did go.

Restoran Manja Rasa - Buffet style restaurant  [dah tutup. we tried coming here]
Choice Restaurant - Authentic Indian delicacies. Had chapati here. Nice!
Kari Kepala Ikan Warisan - Bad soto. Bad. More like mee hoon soup.
Kedai Kopi Ceria - Katanya the best Soto in town.
Mawilla Seafood - Nice view. Only had fried rice here since they're out of seafood. Slow service.  [2pm]
Deepsea Seafood Restaurant - Had lunch here. Nasi campur with fresh seafood. Harga berpatutan :D
Island Tomyam - Very fast service. Nice Thai food. Dap dap!

Okay, nak cari apa-apa guna Waze je yer .. 
Teheeee

At Mawilla Seafood
We planned to go to Papan Island on Saturday but no operator would sent us there due to bad weather.
The island is 30 minutes away via speed boat.
Bimbang ribut so, they wouldn't take any risk. 

Another thing, Labuan people drive SLOWLY.
And I meant it.
Slowly.

Dan, boleh nampak abang-abang oil and gas berkeliaran di mana-mana.
It's their turf, people.

The shops are closed pretty early.
Clubs and karaoke lounges rule the night.

We were surprised to see a mini cinema.
Agak tersorok.
Like, really small but twas comfy.
We watched Two Guns there.
RM10/ ticket.

Also, we had reflexology massage on the last night.
Best!

So with that, I hope I had promote Labuan enough.
Teheee!!

A good place to relax and chill.



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