Learning to paint in Kota Kinabalu

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Kota Kinabalu. Come on, say it out loud. Don’t you just love the way the exotic sounding name trips off your tongue?

Kota Kinabalu is a city in Sabah on the island of Borneo in Malaysia. Alan and I visited the area on a Regent cruise when we sailed from Sydney, Australia to Hong Kong.

Learning to paint in Kota Kinabalu
Not bad?

In remote destinations, we opt for one of the ship’s excursions. “Borneo Extravaganza” provided a brief glimpse of Kota Kinabalu’s gleaming new buildings before concentrating on a day of exploration. We rode a bamboo raft through the mangroves, fished for crabs, practiced batik painting skills, dipped our toes in the South China Sea, then viewed Monosopiad’s (a famous headhunter) collection at House of Skulls. In the cultural village named after Monosopiad, performers entertained us with regional dances; and, later we sampled fermented rice wine. The very brave opted for the distilled version. Um, that would not be me.

river travel
River travel

Want to visit Kota Kinabalu? In 2009, the Dawn Princess and Holland America’s Volendam will be paying a call. Or, for a truly luxurious adventure, book a cabin on Seabourn’s new ship, Odyssey, in 2010. And, what about Regent and Silversea? Kota Kinabalu is not listed on their 2009 itineraries but perhaps you’ll see it when they release their 2010 sailings.

For baby boomer travelers, visiting an out-of-the way destination doesn’t have to be intimidating or uncomfortable. Hop aboard a cruise ship for a journey to regions of the world that you might never discover on your own.

Have you been to Kota Kinabalu? Join the conversation at the My Itchy Travel Feet page on Facebook or send us an email to ask a question or share your experience.

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