Tag Archives: Beaufort

Firefly Eco Camp – Good Morning to Borneo monkey

Firefly Eco Camp in Klias

Proboscis Monkey is the superstar of Klias Wetland. Every evening Klias River is like a busy canal, when hundreds of tourists come to visit this peculiar monkey. One guest even said, “there were more tourists than monkey.”

Therefore, the Best Time to see Proboscis Monkey is in the morning, when there are very few tourists around. The monkey is less stressful and you can get really close to them. That’s why I spent a night Firefly Eco Camp.

Firefly Eco Camp
Pic: Firefly Eco Camp

Firefly Eco Camp is located next to Klias River. Staying there will allow you to see what other ordinary tourists miss – the starry night and misty morning over Klias River.

night safari in Klias

I checked in to the camp around 6pm. After the dinner, we started our night river cruise at 8pm to look for firefly Xmas trees and crocodile, when other tourists had left. Though we didn’t find any crocodile, we saw many “summer Xmas trees”, where hundreds of fireflies congregated and flashing in synchronized manner like heart-beating.

dining hall of Firefly Eco Camp
Hour later we returned to the activity hall next to the jetty, to enjoy a serene evening next to Klias River.

Night Fishing in Klias

Klias River is inside Peat Swamp Forest with brackish water, which looks murky all the time. The river seems lifeless, but you will know that you are wrong when you fish.

night fishing
Klias River is connected to the sea. During high tide, fishes will follow the current entering the river for feeding. If you fish during that time, you will catch something in minutes.

fishing bait
Pic: our fishing bait is hot dog LOL. But it works well!

fishing in Klias
Most of us are first-time anglers. We were so excited when it was almost effortless to catch big fish in a few minutes.

fun of fishing
Pic: one caught to make one family happy

May be you want to watch our fishing video below:

All the fishes we caught that evening was catfish (暗钉 in Chinese, means “Hidden Nail”). It is a very common fish, though edible, locals consider it a lower-grade (dirty) fish, due to the impression that it eats human dung fallen from riverside toilet. It has venomous thorns on its pelvic and dorsal fins, which can cause severe pain when poke into your skin. Be careful when you remove the fishing hook.

giant freshwater prawn (udang galah)
Actually we targeted for Giant Freshwater Prawn (Udang Galah) that night, so we released all the catfishes. It was fun anyway.

riverside camp of Firefly Eco Camp
Pic: the hut where I slept

We had a couple of beer while fishing at river side. We talked until late night. I couldn’t wait to enter my small hut as it was so cool.

room of Firefly Eco Camp
The hut may look small from outside, but it can fit two people comfortably. Though there are only bed, light and fan inside, to me it’s a “luxurious camp”. I slept really well throughout the night.

Morning River Cruise in Klias

The next day I waked up early, sat at the small balcony to enjoy the nice river view. It was quiet in the morning and I saw some movement in the canopy. The monkey had waked up earlier than I did.

balcony of Firefly Eco Camp

river cruise in the morning
After having some light breakfast, we were ready for a morning river cruise on Klias River.

misty morning of Klias River
Pic: the misty swamp forest in the morning

Klias River of Sabah
Pic: the calm river of Klias with beautiful reflection on water

female proboscis monkey
Very soon we spotted the first proboscis monkey. It’s a female with pointy nose.

Borneo proboscis monkey
Then we saw the male proboscis monkey with big nose. From their eyes, we could see that they were not quite concern about our presence, a big contrast to evening time when there were too many tourists and boats around. We were the only tourist boat on the river that morning.

yawning proboscis monkey
So we could get really close to them for a good look. One of them was so relax and even yawned. This one was just on top of our heads. I was so worry that it would poo. Our boat found about 5 to 6 herds of proboscis monkey.

silver leaf monkey
Pic: silver-leaf monkey. There were some macaques too.

mangrove of Klias River
Pic: the mangrove trees of Klias River.

river cruise in Klias River
Pic: Peat Swamp Forest is an important habitat for rare Borneo wildlife

Nibung palm in Klias
Pic: Nibung Palm, a tree that grows between swamp and dryland. Its straight and strong trunk can be used for building houses and bridges.

mangrove fruits
Pic: fruits are abundant in the swamp but no monkey eating them, probably they are poisonous.

mangrove trees in river
Pic: mangrove trees that can survive in the water during high tide.

birds in Klias
I saw some birds such as Brahminy Kite, Oriental Darter (Snake Bird), Stork-Billed Kingfisher, Hill Myna and Greater Coucal. Sometimes you can see hornbill and woodpecker around this area too.

Below is a short video of our Morning River Cruise:

How to get there

Firefly Eco Camp is about 80 Kilometers away from Kota Kinabalu (capital city). It is very accessible, just next to the road (left side) to Kuala Penyu (see location map).

entrance of Firefly Eco Camp
Pic: the signage and entrance of the camp at roadside. You won’t miss it.

activity hall of Firefly Eco Camp

riverside lodge
Pic: the dining and activity hall of Firefly Eco Camp

Below is a short video of the camp and its dining hall:

view of Firefly Eco Camp from the river
Pic: view of Firefly Eco Camp from the river

long house of Firefly Eco Camp
If you have a big group such as 20 students, you can book the long house dormitory.

long house dormitory
The room rate starts from RM68 (≈USD20, as of Aug 2013) per head per night. You also can consider a 2-day-1-night full-board tour package for RM298 (≈USD90, as of Aug 2013) per head, which includes transportation, meals, accommodation, 3 river cruises, etc. They also offer optional tour to Sands Spit Island and other places.

For booking or latest info about Firefly Eco Camp, you may contact Borneo Starcruise (星程生态旅游公司) at:
E-mail: info@borneostarcruise.com / borneostarcruise@gmail.com
Website: www.borneostarcruise.com
Facebook: Click Here
Address: Ground Floor, Lot 7, Jalan Pasar Baru, Kampung Air, 88000 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia.
Tel: +60 88-212009 / +60 17-8137911 (hotline)

Photos taken in Beaufort, Sabah, Malaysia Borneo

Beaufort Mee (Beaufort Fried Noodle)

Beaufort Mee (Beaufort Fried Noodle)

Industrialization enables mass-production but it sacrifices the food quality. Luckily, some still hold the belief that human food is better made by human rather than factory machinery. That’s why food lovers really appreciate the handmade noodles from a few Sabah towns, for example, Tuaran Mee, Tamparuli Mee and Beaufort Mee (Mee means Noodle).

Beaufort Mee (Beuafort Fried Noodle)

Beaufort Mee (Beuafort Fried Noodle, “保佛炒面” in Chinese) tastes really good though it’s less famous, so it deserves to be featured here.

Restoran Beaufort (保佛饭店)

Beaufort Mee is originated from Beaufort, a town nearly 100 KM from Kota Kinabalu (KK). Fortunately, you can find one of the best Beaufort Mee in KK. Restoran Beaufort (保佛饭店) is only 6 KM from KK and very popular for its Beaufort Mee (see location map below).

View My Sabah Map in a larger map

menu of Restoran Beaufort (保佛饭店)
Above: the menu of the restaurant. You can click the photo above to see bigger picture. Each plate of Beaufort Mee costs RM6 (≈USD1.80). If you want seafood version, it’s RM9 (≈USD2.70) per plate.

Beaufort Mee (Beuafort Fried Noodle) of Restoran Beaufort
Normally Beaufort Mee is best served hot in “wet fried” style and covered in thick & gluey gravy, with green vegetable and pork (usually meat slices and roasted pork slices). The noodle is soft and “juicy”, but not oily. Yes, it does taste better than ordinary noodle. The pork is smooth, sweet and tender.

Beaufort Mee
Click photo above to enlarge it.

Beuafort Fried Noodle
You may notice that they put a lot of vegetable, so green that it might look less appetizing to carnivorous food lovers like me. But I must tell you that this vegetable is the “secret weapon” of Restoran Beaufort. It’s Chinese Mustard or Choy-Sim (甜菜心 in Chinese, Sawi Manis in Malay), the most commonly used vegetable for any type of noodles in Sabah. However, they are using organic vegetable and it makes a big difference. It is fresh, sweet and crunchy! The owner told me that they appoint farmer to plan organic vegetable for them and it costs almost twice as expensive than the organic veg from Ranau.

Restoran Beaufort (保佛饭店)

inside Restoran Beaufort (保佛饭店)
This restaurant is open daily (except Monday) from 8am-2pm and 6pm-9pm. Below is the contact:
Shop Address: Shop No.1, Ground Floor, Taman Mesra, Penampang, Sabah Malaysia
Tel: +60 13-5599789 (Mr. Lee)

Foh Chuan (伙船面粥小馆)

Ok, you don’t mind driving 1.5 hours to Beaufort to try Beaufort Mee. You can ask any local in Beaufort, all of them will recommend Foh Chuan Restaurant (大伙船). See the location map below:

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Foh Chuan (伙船面粥小馆)
Foh Chuan is just next to a mosque in Beaufort. The owner is Ah Hiong (阿雄) and Foh Chuan is the name of his father. His mobile phone number is +60 12 8392600 if you want more info.

Kedai Makan dan Minum Foh Chuan
Foh Chuan is open daily (Mon-Sat: 7am-2pm, Sun: 7am-12pm). The shop closes earlier so they can make Beaufort Mee in the afternoon. I strongly advise you to visit this restaurant in early morning b’coz their handmade Beaufort Mee is sold out fast. They only have factory-made noodle for latecomers, sad if you drive 1.5 hours for real Beaufort Mee. Sunday is not a good day too as they prepare less items that day.

close-up of Beaufort Mee (Beuafort Fried Noodle)

Beaufort Mee (Beuafort Fried Noodle)
You may click the photo above to see bigger picture.

menu of Foh Chuan (伙船面粥小馆)
Above: the menu (items & prices) of Foh Chuan. Can click to enlarge.

Besides Beaufort Mee, Foh Chuan serves other delicious food too, like the Fried Rice Noodle (see photo below). They purposely burn the roasted pork slices (焦叉烧 in Chinese) a bit so it tastes sweeter with stronger BBQ flavor.

Fried rice noodle
You may click the photo above to see bigger picture.

mixed beef soup
Above: their Ngiu Chap Soup (Mixed Beef Soup, 牛腩汤 in Chinese), only RM6 (≈USD1.80) per bowl, is great to go with your noodle. Ngiu Chap Soup is soup boiled with beef slices, tendon, tripe, belly, etc., a favorite of Sabahans.

I’m so happy now, b’coz I’ve blogged about the “Top 3 Noodles” of Sabah. You may check out other two Sabah noodles below:
Tuaran Mee (Tuaran Noodle) the gold noodle of Sabah
Tamparuli Mee (Tamparuli Fried Noodle)

Photos taken in Sabah, Malaysia Borneo