The Tip of Borneo residents make a living selling exquisite shells

The Tip of Borneo in Kudat

RESIDENTS of Tanjung Simpang Mengayau or better known as “The Tip of Borneo” are making full use of the natural resources found in this sea paradise for their livelihood.

Among them are Norhayati Sharifftara, 40, and husband Nolsa Nasbin, 48, who have diligently harvest sea shells found on the sandy white beach to be sold as a collection item.

The couple with five kids have been selling various types and sizes of shells in the past three years at the roadside of the entrance to the tourist attraction.

“We take the flesh because it is edible and sell the shells, but before that they need to be soaked overnight with bleach to get rid of dirt,” she told Bernama, adding that the shells are sold at between RM15 and RM30 each, and they could earn up to RM100 per day depending on the presence of tourists.

Norhayati said the next step was to dry the shells for a week before they could be displayed at the stall, set up nearby their house.

Although the COVID-19 outbreak which brought the Movement Control Order (MCO) into effect, had hindered sales, the business is picking up as local tourists are starting to swarm the place after the MCO was relaxed.

According to Norhayati, sea shells from Pulau Banggi, an island located 40 kilometres (km) northeast of Kudat, supplied by her brother who lives there, are also sold at her stall.

Meanwhile, a resident of Kampung Tiga Papan, here, Donny Antok, 44, frequently visit Tanjung Simpang Mengayau with his two friends to fish in the evening.

“We are here depending on the weather, if the weather is good we can get a good catch, but the wind here is really strong and one needs to be careful especially during high tide,” said the angling enthusiast.

Tanjung Simpang Mengayau located at the northernmost tip of Sabah and the Borneo island itself, is about 190 km from Kota Kinabalu.

The spot which also marks the meeting point of the South China Sea and the Sulu Sea, offers scenic sunrise and sunset views, and a bronze globe containing inscriptions about the place was built in 2004. -Bernama