The Bajau community – a shared term used to depict a number of correlated indigenous groups – can loosely be defined as one of Sabah’s main aboriginal tribes. The locals earned themselves the nickname ‘sea gypsies’ due to their seafaring skills and the Bajau Fishing Village Tour is a good way to get an insider look into their everyday lifestyle. The tour takes you on a visit to a quaint and charming Bajau village where clusters of houses sit on stilts and are connected to one another by a latticework of plank walkways. Fishing boats dot this picturesque scene and the village possesses a relaxed and unhurried atmosphere totally unperturbed by the demands of urban civilisation.
The tour kicks off with a visit to Tuaran – an old-fashioned countryside hamlet set against the edges of a green forest, interspersed with rambling paddy fields, burgeoning fruit orchards and expansive plantations. Take a riverboat ride to a Bajau fishing village where a traditional tribe dwells and observe and experience their way of life and culture. The day wraps up with a scenic walk across a suspension bridge to a local pasar malam. This market is reminiscent of a rodeo-style bazaar, where locals gather to procure their weekly household goods as well as exchange updates on their families; you can obtain a plethora of products here.