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Sarawak ~ Bintulu & Sibu


History & People Kuching Longhouse & Visits Bintulu & Sibu Sarawak National Parks Miri Mulu National Park




 

Bintulu



Geographically situated half way between Kuching and Kota Kinabalu, Bintulu was as late as 1`975 was just a fishing village. Bintulu over the years has changed a lot and is now a well-planned industrial town with a diverse cultural population of over 100,000 covering an area of about 12,500 square kilometers.

Place of interest in town and within reach from Bintulu includes:


Kampung Jepak
Take a short boatride way in the local Bot Tambang (river bus) across the Kemena River is Kampung Jepak, an interesting fishing village showcasing the traditional lifestyle of Melanau fisher­folk. Here you will see them in their daily activities such as fish drying, manufacturing of the locally renowed Bintulu Belacan (shrimps paste), Cencaluk (salted shrimps) and sago processing. The fishing village offers a glimpse of how Bintulu used to be before town planning and modernization set in.


The Markets
Pasar Utama a wet market at the esplanade, and Pasar Tamu, a wild and jungle products market, offer opportunities to mingle with the locals and savour local delicacies such as "mee jawa, rojak, laksa and cencol".

Within walking distance from most of the hotels in town, the night market at the Medan Pasar Malarn at Jalan Kampung Dagang exude a carnival- like nightly atmosphere with its pot­pourri of cheap garments, toys, electrical goods and foodstuff. With over 150 stalls, you can take a pick of the numerous cheap and affordable items as well a choice of local food, drink, vegetables and wild Borneo products.


Council Negeri Monument

This clock towers and fountain place is built around the site where centenary stone was erected to commemorate an inaugural gathering of five British officers and 16 local chiefs of various races that was convened by Charles Brooke, the second white Rajah of Sarawak in 1867 – considered as the states first and oldest state legislative assembly meeting



Places of Worship
Two places of worship that are magnificent in terms of design are the Bintulu Mosque and the Kuan Yin Temple. Landscaped with beautiful plants, the Bintulu Mosque features a unique style of architecture, and is adorned with cascading waterfalls. Situated at KM 2, Jalan Iskandar, the Kuan Yin Temple, surrounded by dragon fencing, features a rock garden courtyard and manmade waterfalls.


Taman Tumbina
Situated four kilometres from town centre, on a 12 hectare site at the Tanjung Batu Coastal Reserve, this zoological and botanical park provides both educational and recreational experiences. Sited on a hill top overlooking the South China Sea and the Bintulu Town, it has 77 species of fruits, 20 types of wild plants, numerous types of orchids and offers as well as a first hand view of the State's official bird, the Hornbill; the fearless eagles; the orang utans' the flamingos'; the only tigers and lions in Borneo; crocodiles, pythons and many more.


Other Places
Other places of interest that are within reach from Bintulu are the Similajau National Park and the Niah caves. A mere 30 minute drive (60 Km) along the coastal road from Bintulu Town is the Similajau National Park with its golden beaches and ecological richness. Further some 120 km to the North of Bintulu is the Niah National Park within which is the Niah Caves, a well known archaeological site known as one of the birthplaces of civilisation in the region



Sibu



Sibu, the second largest town in Sarawak, is situated on the confluence of the Rajang and Igan River, about 50 km upstream from the sea. Sibu, accessible to boats with a sizable draft , is the main commercial centre and port for the Rajang Basin and gateway to the mighty Rajang River and its vast hinterland.


Sibu is today a busy industrial town and trading centre for timber, pepper and rubber and home to some of Sarawak’s wealthiest families mostly timber towkays (merchants). Dominated by its bustling and crowded waterfront, it has a population of about 200,000, mostly Chinese and descendants of immigrants from the Foochow province in China.

Being a gateway to the Rejang Basin, Sibu is a paradise for purchasing native handicrafts and pottery, Good buys include woodcarvings, bean work, rattan baskets, mats and woven textiles. Local delicacies include "Million", a type of wild fern, "Kang Muan Mee", a type of noodle, and "Kong Pian", a special cookie. Wild boar meat, venison, and fresh fish are widely available in restaurants.

This old trading post has been graced with a pagoda, a couple of big hotels and a smart esplanade. The 1929 shophouses along the river are virtually all that remains of the old town. The seven storey pagoda adjacent to the Tua Pek Kong Temple said to be more beautiful than its counterparts in South-East Asia, and even Taiwan, offers panoramic views of Sibu town.


Transport

The airport is 25 Km from Sibu with regular flights to KL, Kuching and KK. The new bus terminal is about 3 Km out of town which has daily connections with Bintulu and Miri and Kuching (the capital) via Sarikei. Boats to Kuching and Sarikei dock at two wharfs, close to the centre of town.


 

 

[History & People] [Kuching] [Longhouse & Visits] [Bintulu & Sibu] [Miri] [Mulu Park] [National Parks]

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