KOTA KINABALU August 7, 2011: The Tourism, Culture and Environment Ministry has great plans for Mount Kinabalu.
Its Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun disclosed this in his Facebook wall yesterday, explaining that the ministry through Sabah Parks was in the process of finalising the blueprint of adventure trail at the base of Mount Kinabalu and construction of a 40- to 50-bed hostel near Panar Laban to be operated by the park.
“The adventure trail is to provide a more challenging experience within the base of the mountain while providing a catalyst for the development of homestays at kampungs (villages) located at the foot of Mount Kinabalu.
“I believe there are many options of admiring Kinabalu, not necessarily climbing it. Thus, the idea of enjoying pristine nature of the park down below. Adventure trail could take anything from one to four days’ journey. For birders, this would be something to look forward to,” he said.
Masidi said he has been listening to the grouses of locals about the high cost of climbing Mount Kinabalu.
“I have instructed Sabah Parks two years ago to do a viability study, including environmental compliance, for the construction of a new hostel at Panar Laban to ease the financial burden of locals wanting to climb the mountain.
“The consultant is finalising the drawing to comply with our specifications and hopefully construction can commence soon,” he said.
However, Masidi warned: “Sorry, this one is not for privatisation guys! It is for the convenience of the people of Sabah.”