Thursday, March 15, 2018

Four World War II tunnels earmarked as KotaKinabalu tourist attractions

KOTA KINABALU: Four tunnels dating back to World War II have been identified in and around the city area and are planned to be developed into tourist attractions.

The Kota Kinabalu City Hall through its tourism committee is looking for new sites with potentials to become tourism products, the latest of which are the tunnels situated behind the Kota Kinabalu Community Hall and on the hills of Kampung Kopungit.

Its director-general, Datuk Joannes Solidau, said there would be continuous effort to discover historical sites because Kota Kinabalu had not many interesting places for tourists to visit.

“These tunnels are among the ones with the most potential for development because they are not far from the city centre, so it’s quite strategic.

“Moreover, the view from Bukit Kopungit is priceless because it overlooks the city and Tanjung Aru, all the way to Penampang.

“When tourists come here, not only do they get to see the historical tunnels, they will also enjoy a magnificent view,” said Joannes, during a site inspection with the media, yesterday.

The two tunnels on Bukit Kopungit are between 50 to 60 feet long, although the path is quite challenging and needs maintenance before visitors are permitted, to ensure safety.

Joannes said the second tunnel on Bukit Kopungit was the largest of the four inspected yesterday,  large enough for people to stand in.

“These tunnels were used by the Japanese in World War II as shelter, and bigger ones even led to larger spaces where they set up underground hospitals.