Sabah’s districts are urged to embrace the creation of an immersive and comprehensive Kaamatan calendar, designed to highlight the vibrant tapestry of the region’s Kaamatan Festival.
Assistant Tourism, Culture, and Environment Minister, Datuk Joniston Bangkuai, has proposed this initiative to unveil the hidden gems of small-scale celebrations in picturesque rural villages, providing tourists with the opportunity to partake in the lively festivities during their visits to rural destinations.
The collaborative effort seeks the involvement of representatives from each district, working closely with local communities and village leaders to gather accurate information about the Kaamatan celebrations.
The calendar will encompass essential details such as dates, locations, specific cultural activities, and performances taking place in each village.
“With the availability of this calendar, tourists and tour agencies can conveniently plan their itineraries to coincide with the month-long Kaamatan celebration in May.
They can select villages that align with their interests and desired experiences,” he stated.
“Such a designated calendar will greatly facilitate the Sabah Tourism Board (STB) in its promotional efforts.”
Joniston, also the chairman of STB, emphasized that this Kaamatan Festival calendar would contribute to the equitable distribution of tourism opportunities across Sabah’s districts.
He highlighted the unfortunate tendency for larger towns and cities to receive more attention, often overshadowing the smaller villages and rural areas.
“By showcasing the Kaamatan celebrations in different villages, the calendar aims to promote a more inclusive and balanced tourism landscape.
It encourages visitors to explore lesser-known areas and supports local economies,” he added.
“This initiative aligns with the state’s sustainable tourism goals, ensuring that the economic benefits of tourism reach all corners of Sabah,” he said.