KOTA BELUD, Dec 13 -- Rural tourism based on the community in the state is fast becoming more appealing to local and foreign tourists.
State Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Christina Liew said this was evident from success of several rural community-based eco-tourism operators who managed to generate income of more than RM1 million from the payment or fees to rural tourism centres.
She said among the popular tourist spots apart from Kadamaian are Kiulu, Tambunan and Ranau.
“It has indirectly become a source of income and provides employment for villagers,” she said when opening Kadamaian’s Pesta Badi Tamu Taginambar near here today.
In this regards, Liew who is also Sabah Deputy Chief Minister said the government via the ministry is committed to develop community-based tourism.
She said this is because tourists today love to visit rural areas to learn the traditional culture, food, handicraft and the way of living of the local community.
“I see tremendous potential in Kadamaian to be developed as a tourist centre based the community as there are beautiful environmental attractions such as rivers, forests and scenic views with Mount Kinabalu in the background,” she said.
On Pesta Badi, Liew said it is unique as it displayed the diversity of cultures of Kadamaian residents as well as helping to promote Kota Belud areas especially Kadamaian as an attractive rural tourism centre in the state.
She said her ministry had contributed RM30,000 to ensure the success of Pesta Tamu Taginambur which would be made as a annual event and would be featured in Sabah’s tourism calendar.
She said it was also part of the aspiration of Datuk Ewon Benedict as the assemblyman to create a similar annual event to identify Kadamaian, sponsored by the Sabah government.