The Upside Down House (Rumah Terbalik) @ Tamparuli, Sabah

Written by @curiostraveller 
(Photos by

(Travelling with Mr.Oscar)

Rumah Terbalik is the first upside-down house in Malaysia. This building is situated along the main highway leading to Mount Kinabalu, Kiulu River rafting and all the districts on the east coast of Sabah (i.e Sandakan, Lahad Datu, Semporna and Tawau) in Kampung Telibong, Batu 21, Jalan Telibong, Tamparuli, district of Tuaran. Today , you will be able to view a traditional Sabah kampung house fully equipped with kitchen, living room, bedrooms, toilet, veranda and garden in a new perspective – upside down!

The upside-down kampung house is designed for all ages, nationalities and it’s wheelchair friendly. As parts of the Tuaran Craft Villages, you’ll also be able to browse in their well stocked gift shop (i.e Tamu), taste local brewed coffee and local gourmet ice-cream in our cafe (i.e Kedai Makan) and also experience the authentic traditional Sabahan cuisine at Mango Garden Restaurant.  A visit to the upside-down house guarantees is said to be one of your most memorable experiences and it is a must-see attraction on your Sabah itinerary.


If you are on an arranged tour, you will have no problem reaching this place. The same if you take the taxi. In case you choose to rent a car and become the driver then you need to navigate yourself to Tamparuli Town. Upside Down House is located just before the junction going to the Tamparuli Town. If you are a budget traveler, you can opt for the bus. Go to the bus station in front of the Asia City/Shangrila Hotel Kota Kinabalu, find a bus/mini van that is mark with the Tamparuli Sign Board. Tell the driver that you want to be dropped at the Upside Down House, simply say-Rumah Terbalik. For now, the bus fare is RM3 one way. To get back to the city, just go to the opposite direction and wait for a bus to come. For more information about Bus services from Kota Kinabalu, click HERE .


The Experience

This is how the junction going to the Upside Down looks like, there is a pretty big sign board on the left hand side. Be careful though, some people do miss this junction and keep driving. Slow down a bit after you pass by the Telibong Water Treatment Plant.

The Big Sign Board. Look at Mr Oscar. He’s happy enough carrying the travel dreams of unfortunate children in Malaysia (those diagnosed with Cancer). Kind of a little Ambassador yeah Mr Oscar!!! There are 4 attractions in this place- the Upside Down itself, The 3D Wonders Museum, Mango Restaurant and the Souvenir Shop.

Straight in we went to the Mango Restaurant as were thirsty, extremely thirsty. Mr.Oscar seemed to be pleased to have the opportunity to had his picture taken on the Mango Restaurant signboard.

This is the front of the Mango Restaurant. It looks a bit exclusive and we can actually smell the Dollar sign here right before the entrance.

The Bajau wedding traditional Pelamin or Bridal Bed is being displayed in front of the Restaurant reception hall. It comes with the Gong and Kulintangan. To learn more about the Bajau Traditional way of life, click HERE . Again, Mr.Oscar did not want to miss the opportunity having his pose taken.

On the left side of the Bajau Bridal Bed display, there is a lengthy explanation about some of the Bajau Handicrafts and Musical Tools.

Mr. Oscar, waiting for his drink.

The Beverages menu of the Mango Restaurant.

Ala Carte Menu for the Mango Restaurant.

Our intention to come into this Restaurant was to get some cold refreshing drinks. We both ordered the Iced Lemon Tea. We did not order any Ala Carte Menu as we were not hungry. So my judgement of the Mango Restaurant is solely based on this Iced Lemon Tea. We think that this Beverage can be rated as 1 out of 5 points. First, it was not cold. It had less ice, 2 small cubes to be exact. Second, the Layer Of Tea was quite ‘thin’. The drink was almost crystal clear when it is supposed to be a bit yellowish because of the Tea. Third, although there 3 slices of Lemon, we can’t actually taste the Lemon. Why? I don’t be honest. Ohhh, the staff manning the counter was also the waiter as well and he did not look friendly enough, maybe because we are local. Sorry boy, we are not white tourists as you might expected to come in. We are just local. Live with that okay.

On the positive side, we found this brochure that invites people to participate in the Ethnic Cooking Class. If you are fond of cooking and wanting to learn some ethnic way of cooking style, attend this class.

More about the Ethnic Cooking Class. There is the number that you can call to ask for more details.

There is this interesting Hand Wash Corner outside The Mango Restaurant. It is more to the Traditional Asian way of washing hand.

@joehairie gave one good example to the non Asian readers, on how to wash your hand with this ‘equipment’. Try it and have your picture taken.

Muslim visitors, no worries, there is a Surau here for both genders.

There is another Cafe cum the Tamu or Souvenir Shop inside the Ticketed area. You can get cheaper drinks here and buy some souvenirs for friends and family members back home. The not so refreshing Iced Lemon Tea at the Mango Restaurant cost us RM14 where as we can actually buy some can drinks for a mere RM3 each.

@joehairie-looking and posing in front of the Upside Down House. He’s probably thinking on how to get into that house through that upside down door hahaha!!!

Mr.Oscar and @joehairie posing in front of the Upside Down Car.

This is the fee entrance. You can opt to go into the Upside Down House or 3D Museum or both. Each option comes with a different set of price and note that Malaysian and Non Malaysian pays different entrance fees.

What does it looks inside the Upside Down House?

Unfortunately, the owner of this place prohibited visitors to take pictures inside the Upside Down House. We think it is for making those who have never been inside, curious and want to visit this place. However, if you still need to see some example of pictures inside that house, feel free to visit Husliaw Blog, click HERE . For copyright reason, we can’t insert the pictures showing the inside of this Upside Down House. Do visit and make your own judgment.

What does it looks inside the 3D Wonders Museum?

The Official Website stated that:

Housed within the same compound as the architectural marvel known as Rumah Terbalik, one of only five upside-down houses in the world and the first of its kind in Malaysia, the all-new 3D Wonders Museum promises you yet another unique glimpse into a side of Sabah you’ve never seen.Get ready to experience Sabah’s beloved customs, traditions, and landscapes in reality-bending ways! Thanks to a special art technique which transforms two-dimensional images into immersive 3D environments, rubbing shoulders with indigenous tribal headhunters, scaling Mount Kinabalu, and observing myriad wildlife in their natural habitats are just some of the many adventures you can embark on all in the safety and comfort of the museum.

Built and curated around the topic of conservation, the 3D Wonders Museum is not only the largest 3D art exhibition in East Malaysia, but also the first and only one that is dedicated to educating the public about the importance of protecting biodiversity, ecosystems, and natural resources against careless human activities. So, even as you let your hair down for a crazy afternoon of camera-happy fun, do take the time to learn about the little ways you can help save the planet!

Examples of pictures inside this 3D Wonders Museum can be seen in the website. Here is the precise link (click it, you will be directed to the page)

Our Rating

Products (2.75/5)

Products:Upside Down House-3/5
Products:3D Museum-3/5
Products:Mango Restaurant-2/5
Products:Tamu/Souvenir Shop-3/5
Service (2/5)
Staff(s) Working Attitude/skills-2/5
Common Facilities (5/5)
Washrooms, Parking, Accessible for visitors on wheel chairs and Surau facilities-5/5
Entrance fee worth the total experience?-2/5
Total Score: 2.94/5 (Average)


Is this place worth visiting?

5.00-4.00 Excellent:Highly Recommended/Must Visit
3.99-3.00:Good: Recommended
2.99-2.50:Average: You may skip if you want
2.49-1.50:Bad: Please skip! 
1.49-0.00:Worst: AVOID!

As Sabahans, we do recommend this place if you have not been into any of Upside Down House in any part of this world. If you have been to same type of attraction somewhere else, you may skip this place. Do visit if you still curious to know more and need to feel the experience. If you happen to be on your way to Kundasang/Ranau, not a sin to drop by here at this place. The only thing that still bothering us is the price of the entrance fees which we think are just too much even for the foreign visitors.

Rumah Terbalik/Upside Down House
Batu 21, Jalan Telibong-Tamparuli, Tuaran Sabah

Telehone: + 60 88 783 911
Facebook : CLICK HERE


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s