Higher charge for Sabah park entry

KOTA KINABALU, 26 July 2017:

The Sabah Parks (TTS) will increase entrance fees throughout Taman Tunku Abdul Rahman (TTAR) beginning next year to address the issue of overcrowding, said its director Dr Jamili Nais.

He said Sabah Parks Board of Trustees had set for the fees to be increased from RM3 to RM5 for local tourists, while foreigners will be charged from RM10 to RM20, as of 1 Jan 2018.

Jamili said the board of trustees had agreed with the fee hike to maintain the cleanliness of the environment as well as ensuring the marine park was in its best optimal condition.

“The greatest challenge is the congestion of tourists at certain times as it created other problems such as the dumping of waste, toilet hygiene and rubbish found in the surrounding water which contributes to high management costs.

“Thus, the reasonable fee hike is a suitable mechanism to control overcrowding of tourists to the marine park.”

Until this June, a total of 475,807 tourists visited TTAR,  which comprised 309,738 foreigners while 166,069 were locals, he added.

The Shark Aquarium at Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park will be opened to the public early September.

Jamili said the marine aquarium, located in Pulau Manukan, about 15 minutes from here, is the first of its kind at the park and a potential tourist draw.

He said it was built in line with the declaration of the park as a shark sanctuary with other marine parks in the state.

“This marine aquarium is a platform to educate the public on safeguarding the marine ecosystem such as coral reefs and various species of fish found in our waters, including sharks which are the main attraction.”

Jamili said the ‘Blackpit Shark’ would be the first to be brought and exhibited in the aquarium.

Meanwhile, Tunku Abdul Rahman marine park research officer Nasrulhakim Maidin said the gallery was being upgraded at a cost below RM100,000. He said the public could still visit the gallery for free until the end of the year.

– Bernama

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