Accommodations is always the major issue when planning to travel or having a vacation. You can chose from hotel, apartment, chalet, hostel or home-stay, whatever decision you made, I’m pretty sure it will not be only about the cost alone, but it will also involve facilities and location. Any traveller likes having a clean place, equipped with basic facilities together with great view and a good deal. The choice was not easy for us when we planned our visit to Kundasang. In the end, Hounon Ridge Farmstay and Camping was my choice.
Usually, when I plan a holiday, I do a bit of research about the place to stay. It has to be nice, comfortable and worth my penny. Hounon Ridge Farmstay and Camping, opened to public in 2012, was a great choice I did not regret, both because the place fulfilled all accommodation requirement stated above, but also because it gave me a chance to experience first hand a night stay in one of the coolest areas of Sabah: Kundasang.
I discovered Hounon Ridge Farmstay and Camping thanks to a tip from my university friend who hails from Sabah. The pictures were enough to convince me the place as beautiful and out of the ordinary, so I discussed it with my team and we all agreed. I called the resort to do the booking, told them I needed a room that could accommodate 7 people, and ended up booking 2 rooms: a standard quad room and a standard double room.
The traveling day came; we reached Kundasang, spent the day exploring and sightseeing, and drove to the area where Hounon Ridge Farmstay and Camping is located. The road was not in the best condition, and it was quite downhill, so the drive was a bit rough. On top of that, the car GPS was not working so we had to stop a few times to ask local villagers direction to the hotel. Thanks mainly to them, we managed to get to Hounon Ridge Farmstay and Camping before night fall.
My first impression was more than positive: the place looked much better and more pleasant in reality than in the pictures. The surrounding area is vast and gave us excellent views of the whole of Kundasang and of the majestic Mount Kinabalu in the background.
We were so exhausted, yet we were excited to be there, and I started to understand why most people endure the uncomfortable journey to get here. We checked in fast and walked around the area to feel the cool breeze, take pictures and breathe the clean air. And while walking, I realised that Hounon Ridge Farmstay and Camping is also a great place to escape for those who work in an office or are overloaded with work and need some rest and peace and relaxation.
But, you may ask, what does Hounon mean? According to the manager, the name Hounon in local language means ‘covered by mist’. And the name really suits the area, as during every morning and every evening I was there, the place was filled with a mist so thick you cannot even see the highest mountain in South East Asia.
There were more things that make Hounon Ridge Farmstay and Camping special: it is nestled in a tropical rainforest ecosystem, it boasts a tropical lush green environment, and in the night it has a sky literally covered in glittering stars.
Hounon Ridge Farmstay and Camping has different types of room: family room, standard room, dormitory, camping site; accommodation prices depends on time of booking and day of booking. Rates are lower on weekdays. Dormitory goes for RM 35 per person, while the Standard Quad Room we stayed in cost us RM 210 and the Standard Double Room RM 110. An extra mattress in the room costs you RM 25. Facilities include a kitchen for cooking, BBQ site and also conference room. Check in is from 2 pm and check out is 11 am.
HOW TO GET THERE
Hounon Ridge Farmstay and Camping is located at Kampung Himbaan, Bundu Tuhan, Ranau. The farm-stay is 9 kilometres from Puncak Borneo Resort, 11 kilometres from Kinabalu Park, 16 kilometres from Kundasang and 100 kilometres from Kota Kinabalu. To get to there you have to turn at the junction to Bundu Tuhan on the way to Kundasang. The road will take you to Kampung Bundu Tuhan, passing by Don Bosco Children Home, Kampung Himbaan and St. Valentine Chapel. From there, you can ask the villagers for directions. The easiest way is to have a working GPS ! If you rent a car and drive yourself, make sure the car in good condition, and since you will be going downhill a lot, do use low gear in order to prevent the brakes to overheat.
For more information on packages, contact Mr. John at +60 138506463 or log in to their Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/hounonridge/
Mr. John is a very friendly man and he will be available for information and booking from 8 am to 8 pm.
Bring with you mosquito repellent, socks and warm clothes, food to eat (no food available there), shower kit and, not to forget, your camera!