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SARAWAK EAST MALAYSIA

Sarawak , covers an area of 124,000 square kilometer, is the largest state in Malaysia with the population of 2.5 million people, consisting of the Iban, Malay, Chinese, Melanau, Bidayuh, Orang Ulu and the Penan. The state is made up of 9 districts namely, Kuching, Sri Aman, Sibu, Miri, Limbang, Sarikei, Kapit, Samarahan and Bintulu. Sarawak has a coastline of some 800km facing the South China Sea. Lying on the northwest coast of Borneo, the third largest island in the world, Sarawak shares its boundaries with Kalimantan (Indonesia Bomeo) in the south, Brunei and Sabah in the north. Nearly three-quarters or 8.7 million hectares of Sarawaks surface area of 12.3 million hectares are covered with natural rainforest developed over a million years ago. Much of it is mixed dipterocarp forest which accounts for 7.3 million hectares stretching from the coastal lowlands to highlands of over 1,500 m. Two-thirds of its land area is still covered in jungle and the rest is a network of rivers, plains, undulating hills and rugged mountain ranges.

Most of the population have settled along its rivers and many of these live in ‘long houses’ or ‘villages’ where the entire clan lives under one roof. Each longhouse has separate rooms leading onto one long, communal veranda. Sarawak too has a good selection of National Parks worth visiting. The most popular of these are Bako, Lambir Hills, Gunung Mulu and Niah all of which give the visitor an excellent opportunity to experience the wilds of Sarawak and explore the tropical rainforest which is alive with fauna and flora.

Sarawak remains one of Malaysia’s ‘best kept’ secrets. The land of the hornbill'. Sarawak is also known as 'The land of many rivers'. The rivers provide natural means of transportation and communication. The 590km long Sungai Rejang is the longest river in the country. The rivers together with the wide spread trunk roads and well connected domestic air links make traveling to interior destinations easily accessible.


HISTORY OF SARAWAK EAST MALAYSIA

Prehistoric paintings found on the walls of Sarawaks limestone Niah Caves and the discovery of human bones, pottery shards and stone tools indicate that Neolithic man may have once roamed Borneo. However Sarawak's current borders and national status date from 1839 with the arrival of the young English adventurer, James Brooke, to Kuching, the present capital, located on the banks of the Sarawak river. Kuching in those days was called Sarawak, stemming from the Malay word serewa, meaning antimony which was widely mined in the area. Since the 15th century, Sarawak was a dependency of the Sultan of Brunei, who would appoint a Rajah to rule on his behalf. In the 19th century, some Land Dayaks and Malays living on the Sarawak river carried out a revolt and declared themselves independent in protest against the unpopular Rajah, Pengiran Mahkota. The Brunei Sultan appealed to Brooke for help in quelling the rebellion. When he successfully did so, the grateful Sultan installed him as the new Rajah in 1841. This set in motion a chain of events that saw the Brooke Dynasty establish a despotic but benevolent rule of successive White Rajahs over Sarawak for a hundred years. James Brooke's initial jurisdiction was over a small land area. When he died in 1868 his nephew, Charles Brooke became the second White Rajah. He established Kuching as the capital and expanded Sarawak to its present state boundaries. The Brooke dynasty ended in 1941 with the occupation of Sarawak by Japanese military forces during World War Two. After the defeat and surrender of the Japanese, Sarawak became a British Crown Colony in 1946. On September 16, 1963, Sarawak together with Sabah, Singapore and Malaya formed Malaysia. Singapore subsequently left and became an independent nation.



PLACES OF INTEREST IN SARAWAK EAST MALAYSIA


KUCHING


Kuching, the state capital, sits on the river bank of the Sarawak River, 32 kilometres from the sea. Sarawak Riber is the focal point of the town and features a graceful, European-style esplanade. Take a boat ride and float down the river either by day or night-the sunset is fantastic. The narrow, bustling streets near the river are crammed with ornate temples, markets, historic buildings and traditonal Chinese shophouses selling local handicrafts. Kuching also lays claim to nine museums, many within walking distance of each other.


NIAH AND MULU CAVES

The Niah and Gunung Mulu national park situated close to Brunei houses the Niah Caves containing prehistoric remains dating back 40,000 years. There are also quite a lot of National Parks scattered in Sarawak such as Bako, Similajau, Kubah, Lambir Hills, Gunung Gading, Batang Ai, Tanjung Datu and Loagan Bunut National Park.


SARAWAK MUSEUM

The Sarawak Museum, located in Jalan Tun Abang Haji Openg, is one of Asia's finest. It houses a collection of Bornean ethnological and archaeological items and an exhibition featuring a reconstruction of the great Niah Caves, with remains of the Neolithic people who lived in the Caves. Closed on Fridays and public holidays.




KUCHING SKRANG RIVER SAFARI

The safari takes you on a four-hour journey along the Skrang River, occasionally shooting the rapids, to the Iban longhouses. Their traditional ceremonies include an offering of rice wine to their guests.


PEPPER PLANTATIONS

Sarawak is Malaysia's largest exporter of pepper. Pepper plantations can be seen along the Kuching-Serian Road.


THE SARAWAK CULTURAL VILLAGE AND HERITAGE CENTRE

A living museum located at Santubong, the Sarawak Cultural Village conserves and portrays the multi-faceted cultures and customs of ethnic groups such as the Ibans, Bidayuhs, and Melanaus. The Heritage Centre is an integral part of the cultural village, which offers traditional arts of Sarawakians.
Opening hours: 9.00am -5.00pm. Cultural Show: 2.00pm-3.00pm. Fees: Adults:RM45; Children (6-12 years) - RM22.50. Below 6 - Free.


SANTUBONG FISHING VILLAGE

Santubong is attractive not only because of its good beach resort; it has also captured the interest of archaeologists who have discovered Hindu and Buddhist influences around the Santubong River estuary. Also, history reveals that the discovery of gold made it an important trading center during the "golden" era of the seventh and thirteenth century AD.


CORAL REEFS

Just 30 minutes off the coastline of Miri, there are several diving spots where natural reefs provide diverse marine life. You can explore old shipwrecks and spectacular coral reefs. South Luconia Shoals, Eve's Garden, Anemore Garden, Royal Charlotte Atoll Grouper Patch Reef, Sri Gadong and Atago Mari Wrecks are just some of the newest attraction for diving enthusiasts.



OTHER PLACES OF INTEREST IN SARAWAK

Other places of interest worth visiting includes Fort Margherita, a magnificent whitewashed colonial building built in 1841, it houses weapons and life-sized dioramas of figures from important military conflicts, the Main Bazaar where you can find some of the oldest Chinese shophouses in the country, Sarawak Craft Council, The Sunday Open Market offers vast variety of handicraft, woodcarvings, beadwork, bamboo and rattan products, and woven cloth, hats, baskets, sleeping mats and pottery, all created in the distinctive designs peculiar to each ethnic group, Damai Beach, Islamic Museum, Living Museum, Longhouses, Kuching Waterfront, Sarawak Handicraft, Semenggoh Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre, Sibu, The Pinnnacles, National Parks such as Bako National Park, Mulu National Park, Niah National Park, river safaris such as The Lemanak River Safari and The Skrang River Safari.


ACCOMMODATIONS

Accommodation facilities available in the state of Sarawak includes Somerset Gateway Kuching, Sarawak, Regency Pelagus Resort, Regency Bintulu and Regency Rajah Court.


CLIMATE


Sarawak has a tropical climate. It is hot and humid throughout the year with a mean daily temperature ranging from 23 deg.C to 32 deg.C. It experiences two monsoon changes. The north-east monsoon brings heavy rainfall from November to February. The south-west monsoon is usually dry and less wet. Except for monsoon changes, the climate remains fairly stable throughout the year. Annual rainfall varies between 330 cm to 460 cm for the greater part of the country.



GETTING TO SARAWAK EAST MALAYSIA

The national air carrier Malaysia Airlines has daily flights from Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Johor Bharu, Kota Kinabalu and Miri into the Kuching International Airport. There are also direct flights from Brunei, Singapore and Hong Kong into Kuching.

Other types of local public transportation depending on budget available includes buses, taxis, air charters, car-hire, etc.



MALAYSIA HOTELS DOT CC

Malaysia Hotels Dot CC, brings you some of the best hotels in the state of Sarawak, East Malaysia. We bring to you Somerset Gateway Kuching, Sarawak, Regency Pelagus Resort, Regency Bintulu and Regency Rajah Court. We present them here comprehensively with factual information on all our participating hotels and resorts in the state of Sarawak, East Malaysia.

Welcome Malaysia Hotels Dot CC



THE MULU CAVES

THE ROYAL MULU RESORT
Designed in the style of ethnic longhouses, this relaxing Resort was built on wooden stilts, three metres above the ground. Linked by a series of wooden walkways, the Resort stands on the banks of the Melinau River, in the midst of a beautiful natural environment. CLICK HERE



PANDAWAN

THE BORNEO HIGHLANDS RESORT
Welcome to Borneo Highlands Resort, one of the most exciting and unique eco-friendly resort and accommodations development in the region. It is just within and hour drive from Kuching City, the capitol of Sarawak. CLICK HERE



KUCHING

REGAL COURT
A 42 rooms 3 star and boutique hotel strategically located within the prime commercial area of Kuching Sarawak has the old charm of Sarawak, yet offers every modern amenity such as electronic room safe, IDD telephone, voice mail service, air conditioning and TV. CLICK HERE



HARBOUR VIEW HOTEL KUCHING SARAWAK
245 newly appointed rooms overlooking the spectacular Kuching's Waterfront with its modern decor and latest technology, making it a perfect home for both business and holiday travelers. CLICK HERE



KINGSWOOD HOTEL KUCHING
Located within the sprawling Kuching city center, the hotel is close to major shopping centers, that can be reached on foot. It's only a 5-minute drive to the main commercial center, historical sites and tourist attractions like the Sarawak river premenade while Kuching International Airport is a mere 20-minute drive from the hotel.CLICK HERE


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