Local traditions and culture in State of Sabah

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Most Viewed Local Customs in State of Sabah

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    Two hands please!!

    by SanguiniA Written Nov 1, 2004

    4 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    It is polite here to give and receive items with both hands (and sometimes an ever so slight bow ... or so I noticed).

    Just observe who does it and mimic! It does get a little bit getting used to though, especially handing over money over a shop counter, it feels ridiculous holding a money note with both hands!

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    Sukau market

    by ayesh Written Sep 12, 2003

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    Once a month on Sunday people from all around Sabah will go the the market in Sukau (along the Kinabatangan river). Fruit, clothes, meat, drinks, old medicine, stereos, watches.. anything will be sold there. But the main reason for the locals to go is to mingle. People dress up a bit and come by boat. We were definitely the orang putih (western folks) (which we heard being whispered all around when we passed), but that was exactly what made the market so special. It was unspoiled and pure.

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    Additional State Holidays 2007 - Sabah

    by SLLiew Updated Jan 16, 2007

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    Sabah was obtained by the North Borneo Company from the Sultanate of Sulu (Philippines). Hence there are no hereditary kings.

    Sabah joined Malaysia not on Merdeka Day August 31, 1957 but later on September 16, 1963 called Malaysia Day.

    Sabah has a large Christian community and hence Good Friday is observed as a State holiday.

    The State Governor is appointed to serve as the Head of State.

    6 April 2007 Friday
    Good Friday (Sabah, Sarawak only)

    30 & 31 May 2007 Wedesday & Thursday
    Keamatan Festival (Labuan, Sabah only)

    16 September 2007 Sunday
    Malaysia Day & Birthday of Sabah State Governor

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    Eco friendly shower

    by kyoub Written Mar 21, 2009

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    You will not find this type bathroom just in Sabah but all over Asia.
    The first time we had one, we kept going in the small bathroom, coming out shaking our heads. There was no shower that we could see.

    After further investigation we did see a shower attached to the wall. We also so a small box that must be the water heater. We turned it on and we had hot water and a shower.
    There was a hole in the floor for the water to drain out.

    Water heater is very small and hangs on the wall, thereby saving you valuable floor space.

    Related to:
    • Eco-Tourism

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    Karaoke

    by Pieter11 Written Jun 3, 2006

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    Everywhere in Asia karoake is extremely popular. Malaysia is not different from that. In any CD-shop you will find lots of karoake-CD's. Some of them in English, but most of them in Malay. It's nice to sing along with the English songs, but it's even much more of a challenge to try to follow the Malay songs.

    Related to:
    • Music

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    Tiger Beer

    by Pieter11 Written Jun 3, 2006

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    A big part of the inhabitants of Sabah are Muslims, and so they don't drink alcohol. But another big part are Christians, and when you see them having a party it seems like they drink for two!

    The local beer of Malaysia is Tiger Beer and it is the biggest Asian beer brand. At a night of partying with the Christian part of the Sabahans, many liters of the beer is consumed.

    Related to:
    • Beer Tasting

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    Food Parties

    by Pieter11 Written Jun 4, 2006

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    If you are invited to a party in Sabah, make sure you go there with a very empty stomach, because a party here is basically about only one thing: food! It doesn't matter if you get there at 18:00 or at 23:00, the food will always be there, ready to be eaten.

    The food is served in a buffet, you can take whatever you like, but make sure that you try everything. And only one full plate of food is never enough! Be prepared that you are expected to eat at least two rounds, but even better three or four!

    After those four rounds it's time for some quality talks or karaoke of course...

    Related to:
    • Food and Dining

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    Point with your thumb

    by Firestar24 Written Nov 28, 2005

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    Apparently, in most of Malaysia - including Eastern Malaysia, it's considered rude to point with your forefinger and instead you should refer to things with your thumb. It's quite easy once you get used to it and Jonathan and I continued to do this for about two weeks after we came home. We asked a friend in KL why pointing with your forefinger was considered rude and he muttered something vague about ' the finger that points at a person has four pointing at himself'.... still a mystery then! Anyone care to help me out?

    Also beware of pointing at things with your feet, which is considered extremely bad manners - seems silly to mention until you think of it - if goods were displayed at ground level and something catches your eye...... It could happen!

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    Friendly People

    by gnh Written Mar 29, 2006

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    You can most assuredly get friendly responses to your queries for directions etc.

    Taxi drivers, bus drivers, hotel staff, restaurant waitresses are of a different category altogether when compared to those of West Malaysia, especially the larger cities of similar size.

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    Snap it if you can!

    by hamgu77 Written Aug 1, 2011

    This info is more of suggesting of photography.
    after the airplane took off, depend on which side you sit, look out of the window.. check if you can see this picture (see my attached photo) .. this 'smiling face' are the 3 islands that you hopped during the snorkeling !

    Related to:
    • Backpacking
    • Photography
    • Water Sports

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    Shake Hands

    by denna Written Aug 19, 2007

    I think Sabah people like to shake hands..when you meet them AND when you leave them.Hug and a kiss is acceptable only if you are close with them-normally among relatives and close friends.

    SOME muslims don't shake hands especially the ladies but don't feel offended by it.

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    Party

    by denna Written Sep 20, 2007

    It's part of the kadazan culture to drink whenever there's a party. Drinks can be the local wine- few of them,wine, beer,whisky or brandy. If somebody offer you a drink, just drink a sip if you don't normally drink. It's not polite not to take what is being offered to you. But if you really must decline, do it politely or ask somebody to help you to drink.

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    Culture Dance

    by sarawakgirl Written Dec 22, 2003

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    That night was so lively. They had culture dance, singing.. and I was so tired after my island trip..but it was fun!

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    Wedding

    by sarawakgirl Updated Mar 19, 2004

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    Attending a friend's wedding. It was a grand wedding held at Sutera Harbour. The guest of honour was the Chief Minister of Sabah.

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    Wedding Photo

    by sarawakgirl Written Dec 22, 2003

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Picture with the couple. From left, her parents, my friend and her husband, my best friend, me and the groom parents.

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