SANTUBONG: Santubong has the potential to become a historical heritage site especially with its connection to the Chinese civilisation.
Tourism and Heritage Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg said the late Tun Lim Chong Eu, former Penang Chief Minister had even asked him to conduct a study of such nature considering that there is something in history that connects Santubong with Chinese history.
He explained that among the similarities were the Chinese who called Santubong as ‘San Dao Pong’ and of the story that said the shape of Santubong mountain was like a queen lying down.
“Here we can see the connection between the Chinese civilisation and us especially in Santubong. “This means that we can conduct studies in this field and then turn Santubong into a historical heritage site, which could have played an important role in the development of civilisation in Malaysia,” Abang Johari said when launching Borneo Tourism Alliance at Dewan Sri Santubong.
“I hope maybe Datin Fatimah can follow this matter up as a colleague; we will try to get a research going regarding the significance of Santubong, apart from the stone inscriptions from Terengganu, and the link between here and Melaka, and Melaka and China,” Abang Johri said.
“The moment you have this trail you can bring tourists here to at least enhance their knowledge on Asia’s civilisation, and Santubong can be a place of interest,” he added.
According to him, the state government has identified Santubong as an area that has the potential to provide a big impact on tourism.
Abang Johari said his ministry has allocated about RM700,000 to upgrade the infrastructure in the area this year and promised to increase the number next year.
The ministry will also add a network of roads to connect Telaga Air and Tanjung Datu to Santubong.Wan Junaidi hoped that his area would be able spearhead eco-tourism in the state.
He said Santubong has a lot of historical attractions such as the oldest Chinese temple in the state, ‘Batu Buaya’ – the site where Sultan Tengah was killed, Laksamana Cheng Ho temple and even the oldest national park in the state.
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Source: The Borneo Post, 12 Sept 2011
Pix: Joebonaventure Matius