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“Lovely gardens and memorial”

Kundasang War Memorial
Ranked #36 of 194 things to do in Sabah
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Coffs Harbour, Australia
Level Contributor
114 reviews
31 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
“Lovely gardens and memorial”
Reviewed December 3, 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
1 Thank crawfords37
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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123 reviews from our community

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  • Chinese (Simplified) first
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English first
Level Contributor
551 reviews
261 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 329 helpful votes
“Lest We Forget”
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
1 Thank wiredfrog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
33 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“A Bittersweet Tribute to Our Aussie & English Soldiers”
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
4 Thank Seagulls5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Croydon, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
264 reviews
79 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 159 helpful votes
“Lest we Forget”
Reviewed October 15, 2013

This a particularly poignant memorial to over 2000, predominantly Australian, and English servicemen who lost their lives during WW2 at the hands of the japanese during enforced marches from sandakan to ranau at the end and, particularly brutally, shortly after the end of the war. Also here is a memorial garden in honour of the people of Borneo who were caught up in these terrible events and punished for helping the servicemen. 30 rm admission to the well kept gardens for a chance to pay your respects. A timely reminder of mans inhumanity to fellow man.
Don't be tempted to skip the video presentation which is a feature from an Australian TV news channel. It tells the story very well.
A must do if you are in the area (Kinabalu / poring hot springs)

Visited October 2013
2 Thank KathIan999
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
62 reviews
45 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Best view of Mt Kinabalu and an important memorial”
Reviewed September 29, 2013

We asked our driver to stop here on our day trip to Mt Kinabalu and Poring Hot Springs. He said "You must be Australians. Australians always want to stop." Yes we are and yes they should. This memorial is a beautiful place to remember the fallen POW's of the Death Marches and the locals who tried to help them. The Sandakan Memorial is newer and has more information but this has the honour roll of names. It was so humbling to read the names and sometimes family connections of the dead. Father and son, several sets of brothers all lost.
The view of Mt Kinabalu was the best we had had all day.

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

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