A few minutes of boat ride brought us to an Island named ‘Bohey Dulang’. This Island is a mountainous island formed by a remnants of an ancient volcano.
It is famous for hiking to a great panoramic view from its peak. That’s exactly what we were told we could do.
So when our boatman, Mr Black told us that we could do some hike for RM 10 which is not included in our package, to see really great view which he truly recommend, all of us, yes, the whole of tourist in our boat decided to go for it! We look at each other and was like, why not?
We were told to register at the counter first then pay RM 10 and wait for a guide. Yep, we will be guided.
On our way to the entrance, we had to walk the long jetty that oversees the charming and gorgeous water. The crystalline water of the sea and oceans glimmer and shine like a celebrity on stage, except that it needs no voice for attention.
I was with Fatima, one of the tour agency staff who had tagged along to alight at Sibuan later. Fatima is from Philippines who had come to Sabah for work and she joined us for the hike.
While waiting for the guide to brief us, all of us loiter around the area reading some info, looking at the maps of the Tun Sakaran Marine Park (TSMP), watch the breeding aquarium where there are stingrays, fishes, clams and a few other sea creatures.
Hiking Bohey Dulang
Then the guide came and briefly tell us how high it is, to be careful, watch our steps and always keep close to the group. It was a short briefing and poof! In a few minutes, we started our little hike.
We have to ascend about 600 m to its peak and it’s ideal for beginners. The hike takes about 30 minutes or less, depending on your speed. It’s like climbing to the summit of Mt Kinabalu. That little hike got me smiling from ear to ear with every step I take as I reminisce back to the times I climbed Mt. Kinabalu in 2005 and 2014, a few days ago prior to this trip.
I was one of the last person to go up because Fatima told me that she is not use to hike up and that she is quite slow. So I accompanied her at the back. While passing by the toilet, the guide told us that we can use it before we start. None of us needed it at that moment so we go ahead. Then Fatima told me she needed the toilet, so I accompanied her and since the guide was further infront, I just inform the last person. It took a while before we started to hike
By then the whole group was out of sight. We keep going using the visible path, me leading while Fatima follow slowly behind me. Before we could reached 1/4 of it, Fatima was out of breath and she couldn’t take it anymore. We rested a few minutes and I told her to take it slow. She tried again but was too exhausted. Luckily we were not alone. A pair of Malaysian forest police also known as “Polis hutan” in Malay was at the back and she recognised one of them as someone she knew. So when they reached closer, I asked her if it’s alright for me to go ahead first while she stay with her friend and try to go up slowly. She agreed. I told her friend that I’m leaving her in his hands and that I’m going to catch up with the group. And he too was ok. So pooof! I went off alone.
You’ll be hiking via soil and rocks, with minimal support of handrails, steps of stairs and ropes. So be ready to get your shoes dirty especially after a rainy day. Most of us in the group are wearing slippers and sandals and we made it without having any of our footwear getting torn or split.
All along, I was totally alone in the forest up till halfway, near to a big cave like stone, I saw a snake. A very slim shiny silvery snake crossing over right ahead of me. I nearly freaked out but I tried my best to stay calm. The worst part? It actually stopped gliding and looked at me! I remembered how cool I was though I was shocked at that time. I whispered to it, “Please, I’m just passing by, not to harm you or anything. If you need to go, just keep going and don’t do anything to me please.”
The snake took almost 3 seconds before it turn back and continue gliding to the other side of the path. Once its tail was finally out of sight, I took a flashing step forward and continued without looking back. After what seems like forever, I finally caught a glimpse of the last few people in my group. And noticed that I’m already at the 600 m mark! Which means we are already nearing the peak and I’ve reach the top along with the rest of the group which was way further ahead of me earlier on. Not too bad huh. *Patted my back*
The picturesque sea view shows a bird eye view of 3 Islands, Bodgaya Island (the biggest Island in the Tun Sakaran Marine Park), Bohey Dulang and Tetagan Island. From where I was standing, to my right, I could see the opening to Celebes Sea.
The short hike and surprising encounter I had earlier on was worth it. You can see the different wonderful blue shades of the ocean and be mesmerized by it. A great thing to do here was definitely stretching your arms wide open, with your head hung back and breathe in deep to the fresh air of the Sea, and of course, with the most satisfying feeling ever.
We spent more than 20 minutes admiring these wonderful view. Then Fatima appear with the 2 Polis Hutan. There was 1 local man who suddenly appear. I’m not sure where he was from but he was friendly and not scary at all. He told me that ‘Bohey’ means ‘water’ in Bajau and I can’t recall what he says about ‘Dulang’. But most info on the net say ‘Pool of Depression’, which I don’t think I heard him say that. Anyway, Bohey Dulang has got many other names such as ‘Pulau Susu’, ‘Pulau Mutiara’, and can be spelled as Boheydulong, Bohaydulong, Bohidulong and Bohaidulang.
Bohey Dulang aka Pulau Mutiara
He goes on to share with me that this Island used to be a place where Pearls was first discovered during the Japanese time and that there was once a successful Pearl farmer. As I listen to his story, the more I get intrigued by this piece of Island. I found the best info on the history he shared where you can read it here. That’s where the name “Pulau Mutiara” which means “Pearl Island” comes from.
Legend of Bohey Dulang
I was told that the legend of this Island is about a Princess who was hidden by her family there to avoid a forced marriage from a Sultan in the southern Philippines. Unfortunately after a few days, she vanished and believed to be hidden by the spirits of the island and turned into a fairy. I’m not sure how true this is, but if you google up everywhere, it says the same thing with what this local uncle is telling me.
Alright, enough of the info for now, here’s some photos! I forgot to take pictures using my GoPro *what a bummer I am*
Getting down was faster but always be careful and watch your steps just like how you take care of yourself while getting to the top. I went down with the Italian Lady, talking about her travel experiences and how she manage to keep fit even at that age.
Going back to the Jetty means we’ll be passing by the military men who are mostly from Tawau, Sandakan and there are quite a number of them on duty in this Island. They are all armed with weapons and have friendly smile but with a firm attitude.
We had lunch at the Jetty, set up by Joe, our guide with our lunch meals neatly prepared on the table. Some of us continue snorkeling around the Island and the coral reefs are still lively.
I’d like to thank everyone here for being a great and such sporting group members. It’s been great knowing you guys. Here’s some momentos;
Love what you see? Please leave your comments or like it to keep me going!