KOTA KINABALU -- Nowdays the 'homestay' programme is getting popular in Malaysia's local tourism industry including that in Sabah which is also known as 'Land Below The Wind'.
Among the districts in Sabah that offers this programme is Kota Marudu where some 1,000 people from 12 ethnic groups are taking part in the homestay programme that began in 2008.
Sabah National Unity and Integration Department (JPNIN) officer Jessica Basat said the homestay programme in Kota Marudu can be seen as a positive move to enhance relations between the guests and hosts.
The guests who are Malaysians from the peninsula can also exchange cultures and traditions with their Sabah hosts.
"This programme is on demand by the local community and it is unique as the programme is devoid of any packages as the activities are decided by the hosts and visitors.
"We encourage the villagers to be involved in the homestay programme as Kota Marudu has the potential to be developed as a key tourist destination," she said.
HOMESTAY WITHOUT PACKAGE
The 'without package' homestay programme refers to activities that have no limits and the hosts as well as guests take part in drawing up the activities during the stay. These activities are suited to the guests needs and requests.
What is important is the understanding and experience on the culture and socio-economy of the local community which is made up from people of various ethnic groups. This helps to preserve unity among the population.
Via the integration visits organised by JPNIN, the homestay programme can act as the platform to enhance relations between the people of Sabah and those from nationwide.
The homestay programme also creates positive impact by improving the economy of the rural community in Sabah.
HOLIDAY PACKAGE IN SABAH
Meanwhile, Sabah is well known for its rich natural treasures right from the state's mountains and down to its valleys. As well as the expanse of land between its lush forests to its off-shore attractions.
Its life forms include insects as small as ants right until mammals as big as the Orang Utan and pygmy elephants.
Apart from the homestay packages in Kota Marudu, visitors can also go to Kudat, located some 190 km from Kota Kinabalu.
They can visit Tanjung Simpang Mengayau in Kudat which is known as the Tip of Borneo, the tip of land at the most extreme north in Sabah's map. It is located some 200 km from Kota Kinabalu and 30 minutes drive from Kota Marudu.
Tanjung Simpang Mengayau is formed by a 'chain' of hills that headed towards Laut Sulu. It offers breathtaking scenes during dawn and dusk.
In the language of the Rungus in Kudat, Tanjung Simpang Mengayau is called 'Tanjung Sampang Mangazo'. 'Tanjung' means cape, 'Sampang' means junction and 'Mangazo' means war.
Continue reading at: Welcome To 'Homestay Without Package' In Sabah