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“Beautiful tribute to heal a tragic past” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Kundasang War Memorial

Kundasang War Memorial
Kundasang, Malaysia
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Attraction details
Gladstone, Australia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
“Beautiful tribute to heal a tragic past”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 25, 2014

The caretaker at this deeply personalised sanctuary for the souls of the Australian soldiers who died in Borneo is a great bloke who has done a wonderful job of preserving their memory. A quiet peaceful haven set among the wild mountains and jungles of Borneo, you can truly appreciate the horrors over 2000 POWs endured there & died from in the Sandakan Death Marches. Very moving and healing experience.

Visited March 2014
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  • English first
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English first
Australia
Top Contributor
73 reviews 73 reviews
9 attraction reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
48 helpful votes 48 helpful votes
“well worth a visit”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 16, 2014

This is a very well maintained war memorial. Unfortunately the video wasn't running while we were there. We couldn't find many tours that would take you here from KK, so I suggest you hire a car or taxi and organise it yourself. We organised our own tour visiting the Memorial, Poring hot springs, Desa dairy and Mt Kinabalu Park. Very doable in one day.

Visited February 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Coffs Harbour, Australia
Top Contributor
63 reviews 63 reviews
19 attraction reviews
Reviews in 38 cities Reviews in 38 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
“Lovely gardens and memorial”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 4, 2013

We drove from Sandakan to Ranua and continually thought off the brave men that died and the six that escaped on the death march, so to visit this memorial in Kundasang was a fitting stopover for our trip back to KK. It was so moving to watch the video and listen to the few men that had survived
then wander through the different gardens and read the honour roll.This memorial is near Mt Kinabalu which is nearly always shrouded in clouds-it was the day we visited. Apparently the POWs hated the mountain but i like the Borneo myth that the souls of these men are wrapped in the mist and protected.

Visited November 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Timaru
Top Contributor
292 reviews 292 reviews
143 attraction reviews
Reviews in 101 cities Reviews in 101 cities
236 helpful votes 236 helpful votes
“Lest We Forget”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 10, 2013

This Memorial is enroute to Kinabalu National Park. There's nothing much to see around Kundasang. The town itself is rather rundown and the poshest part of Kundasang happened to be KFC?! This Memorial is well-maintained and telling a story about the Aussie soldiers who never made it back to Australia and it briefly discussed the plight of them as they were forced to march here from Sandakan, after the Allied soldiers were shifted here from Singapore after its fall and that they were forced to build a military airport at Sandakan with their bare hands. I find it incredulous that a Memorial such as this still charges MYR$2 to watch a video of the plight of the soldiers and that the video room is closed most of the time anyway. It's rather poignant to look through the Hall with names of perished soldiers and that some of them were siblings and some of them still have poppy flowers attached next to the names, an indication that many veterans are still heading this way to pay homage to their fallen comrades. There is no cemetery here but simply a Memorial with vista to boot at the top. Commendable visit if you are like me, someone who came from the Southern Hemisphere.

Visited November 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chelsea
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
12 attraction reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
“A Bittersweet Tribute to Our Aussie & English Soldiers”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 18, 2013

I am so glad we made an impromptu stop at the Kundasang War Memorial on our tour of Kinabalu National Park and Poring Hot Springs. Actually, it was the highlight of this tour, as I was not particularly taken with the Hot Springs. It was our driver who suggested the stop over, knowing that we are Australians.

This was one of the first memorials to commemorate the 2,428 brave Australian and British Prisoners of War who died in Sandakan and during the infamous death marches to Ranau during World War II.

I was not aware of the powerful story behind this memorial. There are storyboards and photographs depicting the fate of the 2,428 Australian and British POWs who died in Sandakan and also during the infamous death march to Ranau during World War II. The memorial also serves as a tribute to the many local people who risked their lives while aiding the prisoners of war. Only six Australians survived in this tragedy to tell their horror and there were no English survivors.

There are beautiful, well-tended gardens on a number of levels, and at the very top level, there is a wonderful view of the imposing Mt Kinabalu.

There is a Roll Of Honour, which states the names and ages of all soldiers who died. It was very sad to read of their plight, some being very young, and some being brothers.

A very powerful, quiet time to reflect on the fate of those who died for their country.

Visited September 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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