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Ethnic & Beliefs

Traditional Food

Places of Worship

Historical Places

Historical Places in Tambunan

Snake Fruit

Tugu Peringatan Mat Salleh

The Mat Salleh memorial was opened in 1999 at the exact site where he was killed at Kampung Tibabar, Tambunan. This memorial is a tribute to remember the local hero, Datu Paduka Mat Salleh who stood up and led a rebellion against the Company’s rule during the British Colonial times.

In 1895, Mat Salleh made a complaint to the Company regarding new rules imposed on Sugut River but the Company ignored him. At the same time, the Company was unhappy with the fact that Mat Salleh was collecting taxes from the local populace. Soon after the complaint, the Company burnt down his village. In 1897, he retaliated by razing the Company’s harbor at Pulau Gaya. Immediately after the razing, he ordered a fort to be constructed in Ranau. Ranau is a town located in the West Coast Division, in the center of Sabah, east Malaysia on the island of Borneo.

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The Company tried to capture the fort but they were met with heavy resistance and failed. The confrontation ended with Mat Salleh's forces retreating into North Borneo hinterland. He was later offered peace by the Company but refused and fled to Tambunan. The Company agreed in 1899 to take over TambUnan but he resisted and was assassinated. His death essentially ended the uprising campaign by depriving it of a chief. The fort still stands at their site, which is one of the last remaining British-held fortresses in Malaysia. The British would later be given charge of TambUNan by the British.

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Location: Kampung Tibabar, Tambunan
Operating Hours: 9.00 AM - 5.00 PM


Kota Mat Sator Museum

It has been said that if you haven't visited Kota Mat Sator Museum, your journey is incomplete. You might be wondering who Mat Sator is. Mat Sator is Mat Salleh's sidekick, he fled after his fort was ruined and was also hunted by the colonists after Mat Salleh's death. Mat Sator's city was founded independently of Mat Salleh's castle. It was said that his architects were careful and sophisticated so it was impossible for the colonists to track and kill.

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Mat Sator is a fortress constructed by Mat Salleh to house women (Dang Bandang or Dayang Bandang, Mat Salleh's wife) and become the centre of matrimony. The position is very strategic since it was constructed on the banks of the Sunsuron River, which is their water supply source. After the surrounding villages had been burned, attacks on Mat Sator city were repulsed.

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Location: Jalan Kapayan Lama, 89650 Tambunan, Sabah
Operating hours: 9.00 AM - 5.00 PM
Phone: +60123456789

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Watu Tinuridong

Stop by Kampung Sunsuron to see Watu Tinuridong, also known as Tinuridong Stone Monument, one of a series of massive rocks that served as the villagers' fortress during Mat Salleh's assault on the village. This stone was discovered in the late nineteenth century, according to Kampung Sunsuron oral history. Mat Salleh was revolting against British rule at the time. Mat Salleh agreed to a cease-fire with British North Borneo in 1898 and remained in Tambunan.

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Mat Salleh, on the other hand, was hostile to Kampung Sunsuron and raided the settlement. Mat Salleh was well-armed with guns such as cannons, so Kampung Sunsuron demanded assistance from the British government. The men of Kampung Sunsuron have planned to protect themselves by digging a 40-meter-circumference circular hollowed-out field and erecting ramparts around it. The excavated field was deep enough that standing men could be hidden behind the wall. They came across this wide and flat rock when digging and figured it would make an ideal shield for a weapon. They erected the pillar in order for it to stand. Then, two priestesses (bobolian) performed a ritual to allow the spirit to live in this place.

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Location: Kampung Sunsuron, 89650 Tambunan


Rumah Bambu

Rumah Bambu, which was made entirely of natural materials. Rumah Bambu is Tambunan's oldest bamboo building, and it is still in service today. It was once a real home, but it is now empty since being named as a heritage house by the Sabah Museum. The bamboo house is supported by hardwood slits, while large river stones are often used instead. Despite the small size of the glass, the transparent nature of bamboo allows enough light to enter the home.

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The uniqueness of this house is that it was built without the use of nails at all. Rattan strips are used to connect the log, bamboo, and poles. However, some nails were applied to the frame after it underwent repair. The young girl would sleep in the attic, a small platform placed above the main cross intel of the home, for safety purposes, and her parents would remove the ladder that allows entry to the bed.

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Location: Jalan Tambunan - Kota Kinabalu, Kampung Sunsuron, 89650 Tambunan
Operating hours: 9.00 AM - 5.00 PM
Phone: +60123456789

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Batu Gong

Batu means rock in Malay, and Gong is an idiophones musical instrument. Batu Gong in Tambunan is one-of-a-kind; it consists of a few boulders that resemble natural ordinary rocks and can make seven distinct sounds, all of which are identical to the gongs of Sabah's gong culture. The discovery of Batu Gong occurred by chance; it is said that there was a Pegalan River straightening project in 1995.

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A few boulders were mined from the river and set on the river bank, and no one had ever given those rocks a second thought. The adults discovered the kids playing with boulders by beating them with stones to make a gong-like sound one day. The Batu Gong is then put inside a simple hut constructed with a zinc roof, a brick wall, and an iron fence. Visitors who wish to visit this gong stone, however, must obey the guidelines outlined by the older elders.

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Location: Jalan Batu Gong, Kampung Nambayan, 89650 Tambunan, Sabah
Operating hours: 9.00 AM - 5.00 PM (Weekdays)
Phone: +60123456789