An Indonesian newbie AOW inspired by foreign cave divers/rescuers in Thailand

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Before corona, how difficult was it to get to Kota Kinabalu? Cheap diving can be down there.

Sipadan (in Malaysia, which makes Indonesian’s unhappy I’ve heard) also must be not far from you distance-wise, but is maybe difficult to get to. The closest airport is Semporna. The diving is incredible, but not cheap.

You made me more ashamed and guilty for not having passport before covid era lol. I did consider going to koh tao (dive with Tham Luang cave rescue heroes) or anywhere in Thailand (with passport) so I can dive and maybe also visit Tham Luang cave in Chiang Rai, but ended up still went to Bali. Before covid era I'm not aware of any route from my PKY cilik riwut airport to kinabalu, maybe need a few transit.

Will definitely look out for deals and travel restrictions in the future, so I can explore other sites near borneo.

It was NOT a diving trip to Samarinda, a short river journey up the Mahakam river. It was brown water all the way but I have the best and freshest nangka I ever tasted. Villages built on stilt, reburial of the deceased(celebration party atmosphere). Remind me of the Toraja funeral.

You have one of the best in the world so do not waste your opportunity.
Have fun.

I don't like eating nangka as a fruit but definitely love it when cooked as a veggie stew (some people in Java called it sayur Gori). I'm more of a cempedak and maybe a bit of durian.

I'm not aware of authentic dayak culture in samarinda but deep in the forest away from samarinda, there must be some of my long distance brothers there. Samarinda is more known for having urang Banjar (People speaking in Banjarmasin dialect).

I'll definitely look out for that Derawan diving trip or maybe in Sulawesi. Let's see what kind of travel bargain I'll have by the end of the year. If covid still a thing by then, I'll dive my local pond with a snorkel lmao


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Hong Kong
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Koh Tao is NOT that difficult to get to but you do need a passport first. But the diving is very very ordinary except two sites. Unless you really want to meet your hero there is no reason for any Indonesian going there for diving ONLY.
Thailand has very good transportation system and linking Koh Tao and Tham Luang cave(Ching Rai) is NOT expensive by any standard but the overland trip is long and a bit tedious.
It was a 3 days river and land trip from Sarmarinda. There was nothing in that port city.
Tarakan in Northern Kalimantan is the gateway to Derawan or Tawau(for Sipadan). Indonesian probably can take the ferry between Tarakan and Tawau.
Pulau Weh in the Northern tip of Sumatra is cheap.

Happy diving and travelling. Keep safe.

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