Tuesday, September 13, 2016

The Eight Hills of Bukit Bongol, Kota Belud Sabah

One fine day, as I was lounging at my parents house, watching a series of Tiny Houses on TV, my sister asked me if I wanted to go climb some hill nearby. I immediately said YES! Because for the many years I've lived in Kota Belud and the many times I came home for the holidays, I never did anything adventurous except stay home and watch TV. Hahaha. I presumably became a successful couch potato at this rate.

So there... we planned to hike on a Sunday morning, right after Subuh prayers with hopes to catch some sunrise. I was briefed that the climb would take 3 hours to and from for the extremely fit people. Since I was on hiatus mode from hiking for two months already (yeah, fasting month and raya month.. argh!), I wasn't sure of my current fitness level.

A friend came to pick my two sisters and I in the wee Sunday morning from our house. I didn't prepare much and wore only sandals while my sisters wore shoes. I didn't even brought a daypack to put in water supplies and food.

I was ill-prepared.

We were brought to the foot of the hill situated somewhere in Kpg. Pirasan, near a construction site. The beginning of the trail was a visibly dirt path heading upwards. I was the least fittest person in the group and was stopping almost every few hills. Haha. It was a wake-up call that I should resume my fitness regime as soon as I get back to Kuala Lumpur.

My sisters and I on top of Bukit Bongol, Kota Belud

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Buffet Ramadan RM20 - RM30 ++ Around Klang Valley

We are halfway through Ramadan and I've personally have dined in several Ramadan buffets around Klang Valley which consists of Shah Alam and Kuala Lumpur. In terms of taste, I loved all of them. Haha! Here are the THREE places I've dined-in so far.

1. Shah Alam Convention Center - SACC : RM38

My friend has this habit of hunting good Ramadan Buffet deals online before the holy month itself. Prices per person could get as low as 50% from the normal price. We managed to grab this Groupon Deal for SACC Ramadan Buffet at only RM38 (normal price is RM88) !!!

More info on menu here
Review : 

Dishes : Nice variety of food with over 100 Minang dishes, a full barbecued goat, ice cream and local kuih-muih.
Negative side : It's a huge place and can cater up to 2000 people at a time. TOO MANY! The queue could get annoyingly long and takes almost half an hour just to get your food! I hope the management does something about this. 
Bonus Tip : Love the meatballs. There are food stalls inside the main hall and there weren't many people lining up for that! So do check them out too!

2. Restoran Dapur Matahari, Kampung Bharu Kuala Lumpur - RM29

My office-mates planned an iftar outside with a budget under Rm30 per person and we found this place at Kampung Bharu Kuala Lumpur. Am not quite sure of its name but it has matahari in it. Haha.

Food was aplenty and they even have "kambing bakar" and ice kacang which was very nice. They have all kinds of seafood dishes and chicken cooked in various spices. I ate like a queen! 

The place? Needs reservation first as it caters only around 200 people. Just nice and short queue to take food.I love that part the most! And it only costs you RM29!

Dishes at Restoran Matahari Kg Bharu
3. Restoran Nelayan Gombak - RM35

Wanting something different? How about breaking fast with steamboat? The restaurant is a little bit out of town and away from the hustle bustle of the city. Located near UIA, it could cater for small private events and also has a large parking area. No worries in getting a parking space!

If that's the case, you should most definitely try Restoran Nelayan Gombak! You could also add a little more to have "kambing bakar" on the menu. I've tried this place and the steamboat could almost surpass those dined in Seoul's Garden! Only cheaper! Hehe.

Buffet Ramadan costs only RM35 per person.

 So there's my list for under Rm40. Hope you guys get to try em before Raya. Hehe. Happy fasting!

Friday, June 17, 2016

Hiking Mt Merapi via Selo - 2930 masl

"Hey Jard, can we climb Mt Merbabu and Mt. Merapi in three days and two nights?" a guy asked ne via private message on Facebook a few days back. I immediately answered, "YES!".

Me pictured on top of Mt. Merapi. 
For people who has a very tight schedule, you can actually compress these two mountains in just two days and one night. Both mountains can be climbed in a day if, of course you got the stamina to do it. AND.. you doing it via Selo. Hehe. But I highly recommend setting camp as it is quite peaceful beautiful sleeping under a sky full of stars. With luck, you'll get to see milky way! :)

Monday, May 30, 2016

Hiking Mt. Merbabu via Selo - 3142 masl

As of all the mountains I've climbed, they'll be shrouded by some mystic tale. As for Mt Merbabu, which means "Meru" for mountain and "Babu", for woman, the Woman Mountain, there are two such stories about it.

Legend has it that a very famous Javanese empire called Mataram Kuno disappeared or was swallowed up between Mt. Merbabu and Mt Merapi and another says that it was once a market place called "devil's market" where locals come to sell or buy their demonic possessions. Thankfully, the only scary thing I've encountered during my hike was being fart bombed by my hiking mates. :P

South view from the peak of Merbabu. Seen here is Sabana I, Sabana II and Mt Merapi.