Sabah Harvest Festival (Kaamatan 2008)

This is the 4th time I go to Pesta Kaamatan (Harvest Festival) grand finale, which is held annually in Hongkod Koisaan (KDCA Penampang) from May 30 to 31. Just love it. It’s the best time for us to understand why everyone says Sabah is a melting pot of different cultures. We have over 30 indigenous groups in Sabah and each of them can look so different (traditional costumes) to one another.


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Last year they had “cute” theme. This year I guessed they had “hat” theme. Only the hood alone, you already could find four types on that day. The weather was so hot on first day, I should have wore a hat. In 2 days only, I saw almost all the photographers I knew in KK.


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The Ganna girls from Keningau got the most colourful headgear (see photo below). Their booth was the most crowded. Many tourists wanted to take their photos. They are also very sociable and invite the guess to minum-minum (drinking local wine). Sadly, the culture of Ganna is phasing out quickly due to modernisation. For example, the Ganna men used the fur of “Harimau Bintang” (a wild cat that likes to eat Durian. Believe me) as clothing. Now they can’t do it anymore coz this cat is a protected species by law.


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Even men have interesting headgears, some made of feathers, some look like horn. Most of them are hand-made. If you think hand-made item is cheap, you are wrong. Bcoz it is quite labor intensive and time consuming to make, a full set of traditional costume with complete accessories can cost a few thousands dollars.


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Some even plant something on their hat? Since I don’t like to wash hair, my head should be “fertile” enough to grow paddy. As there is food shortage everywhere, I don’t mind to plant some, just don’t harvest my head.


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Look at the headgears below and see whether you can tell which ethnic groups they belong to.


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Photos of Unduk Ngadau? Oh ya, almost forgotten. Here you go. Below are the photos of Unduk Ngadau from Nescafe and Maggi districts. OK, Job Done.

Just kidding. I had done too many coverage on Unduk Ngadau in year 2006 and 2007. This year I decided to skip them and focused more on beautiful traditional costumes. If you want to look at the good photos of Unduk Ngadau, please go here (Thanks to George for sharing his excellent photos).

Photos taken in Penampang, Sabah, Malaysia Borneo

Related Photo Galleries:
Pesta Kaamatan 2007
Pesta Kaamatan 2006
Pesta Kaamatan 2005

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