Thursday, April 14, 2011

The Legend of Mount Kinabalu

Posted by Norazo at 2:15 PM

I just read about Mount Kinabalu from wikipedia. I know the mountain pretty well since i myself came from Borneo and Sabah (where the mountain located) is my 2nd home. I've been seen the mountain right before my eyes since i was 6 yrs old! The mountain is located in Kundasang, Sabah and a must visit place whenever you come to Sabah, Malaysia. It is a very beautiful place with nice weather (since Malaysia average temp. is 28 deg. celcius). For those who don't know, Mount Kinabalu is the highest peak in South East Asia of 4,095 metres (13,435 ft) above sea level and the 20th tallest mountain in the world!

What i want to share here today is the legend behind the gigantic mountain. i just knew this side of the story today after reading wikipedia hahaha.. so catchy oh the story... it's a tale by the local people and it's kinda sad though..

"The name "Kinabalu" actually means "Cina Balu" (which would fully mean "A Chinese Widow"). Due to the lingual influence among the Kadazan Dusun of Sabah, the pronunciation for the word "cina" (chee-na) was changed to "Kina" (kee-na).

It was told that a Chinese prince, was cast away to Borneo when his ship sank in the middle of the South China Sea. He was subsequently rescued by the natives from a nearby village. As he recovered, he was slowly accepted as one of the people of the village. Eventually, he fell in love with a local woman, and married her. Years went by, and he started to feel homesick. So he asked permission from his newly-found family to go back to China to visit his parents (the Emperor and Empress of China). To his wife, he promised that as soon as he was done with his family duties in China, he would come back to Borneo to take her and their children back to China.

When he made his return to China, he was given a grand welcome by his family. However, to his dismay, his parents disagreed with him about taking his Bornean wife back to China. Worse, they told him that he was already betrothed to a princess of a neighbouring kingdom. Having no choice (due to high respect towards his parents), he obeyed with a heavy heart.

Meanwhile, back in Borneo, his wife grew more and more anxious. Eventually, she decided that she will wait for her husband's ship. However, since the village was situated far away from the coast, she couldn't afford to come to the shore and wait for him daily. Instead she decided to climb to the top of the highest mountain near her village, so that she could have a better view of the ships sailing in the South China Sea. Thus, she was then seen climbing up the mountain at every sunrise, returning only at night to attend to her growing children.

Eventually her efforts took their toll. She fell ill, and died at the top of the cold mountain while waiting for her husband. The spirit of the mountain, having observed her for years, was extremely touched by her loyalty towards her husband. Out of admiration for this woman, the spirit of the mountain turned her into a stone. Her face was made to face the South China Sea, so that she could wait forever for her dear husband's return.

The people in her hometown who heard about this were also gravely touched by this. Thus, they decided to name the mountain "Kinabalu" in remembrance of her. To them, the mountain is a symbol of the everlasting love and loyalty that should be taken as a good example by women.

Local legend among the people of Ranau, a district in Sabah, has it that St. John's Peak was the stone which her body was turned into."


here goes the pictures everyone!

St. John Peak! if u look closely, it's a face of a woman facing South China Sea!

view from the plane !

morning view!

Top view!

Almost covered by clouds!

Covered 90% by clouds! picture taken at 10.00am

If you wish to see the mountain clearly, it is better for you to go to Kundasang, Ranau at 7.00am then you can see the whole mountain from below. If later than that, the mountain will be covered by clouds. Journey from Kota Kinabalu to Kundasang takes 1 hr and 30 minutes. So people get up early ok!

*pictures credit to google and wikipedia except the last picture coz it's taken by me May 2010.

p/s i haven't climb the mountain yet as i am afraid of them hehe



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