A new free walking tour introduced by Sabah Tourism Board in collaboration with Sabah Tourist Guide Association to the visitors of Kota Kinabalu is now available!
By Louise M, Carrybeans
Not many people are aware that the nature city of Kota Kinabalu has a lot of hidden treasures and places of interest. This is why Sabah Tourism Board has taken the initiative to introduce the free walking tour to visitors of the state capital.
Earlier this morning, Sabah’s Deputy Chief Minister cum State Minister of Tourism, Culture and Environment of Sabah, Christina Liew, launched the event at The Sabah Tourism Board building at Gaya Street. Being one of the oldest building in the city, it is also the meeting and starting point of the walk. Liew hopes that tourists will make full use of the building and make it a focal point.
According to Sabah Tourism, the Kota Kinabalu City Free Walking Tour concept is a relatively new way to discover cities. Fully subsidised by Sabah Tourism Board, the walking tour takes you around Kota Kinabalu city for free. It will include information on our city’s rich history and unique character. The route will cover at least ten places of interest such as Signal Hill Observatory; Atkinson Tower; Australian Place; Gaya Street; Central Market; Handicraft Market; and ends at Kadaiku, Sinsuran.
YB Christina Liew and James, the tour guide of the day, sharing a light moment during the launch
You need to register for the free walking tour by going to their office in Gaya street or online. It takes approximately 2 hours for the 3KM walk, starting at 9 am and runs once a day, three times a week on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. It is a guided tour currently in English and done by a licensed guide who is a member of Sabah Tourist Guide Association. Tour guides will wear a special pink vest because it is a striking colour and can easily be spotted in the crowd. According to Suzaini Ghani, General Manager of Sabah Tourism Board, they would like to eventually start a Chinese language walking tour sometime this year.
We ensure all our guides provide quality guiding – S.F. Chin, Hon. President of Sabah Tourist Guides Association
The free guided walking tour is open and free to both locals and foreigners with a limit of 15 participants per tour guide. Although there is no age limit, participants below 18 years old must be accompanied by an adult. The walk itself is more suitable for children 5 years and above. Since the route is not stroller-friendly, it’s best for toddlers to be in a baby carrier.
As the tour does not include food and drinks, it is advisable for you to bring your own. Bring an umbrella or wear a raincoat during light showers and slap on some sunscreen on hot, sunny days. If the weather doesn’t permit, the tour will be cancelled and participants will be informed either verbally or via email.
It’s free because we’d also like the tourists to make purchases of souvenirs and food and beverages while on the tour – Suzaini Ghani, General Manager of Sabah Tourism Board
In 2017, Sabah recorded a total of 3.6 million visitors and 52.1% of the total arrivals were Fully Independent Travellers. The walking tour is suitable for these groups, who are mostly millennial travellers. Today’s young travellers are like to sign up for these free walking tours as they have become increasingly popular in other key destinations.
Book your free guided walking tour in advance at www.freewalk.sabahtourism.com or email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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