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Kuching Caving | Gua Sireh & Broken Jar

Located in Serian, Kota Samarahan Division near Bantang Village, Kuching, Serian road.

Gua Sireh is an important archaeological site in South Western Sarawak.  Excavation works have recovered pottery shreds and food debris as animal bones and shellfish.  The cave could have been occupied as early as 20.000 years ago.  Pottery was produced around 4.000 years ago.  At the same time domesticated animals (dogs and pigs) and plants (rice) were introduced.  One shred with rice temper was dated to around 3500 BP, which is a comparatively early found for rice cultivation in island Southeast Asia.

According to our guide Mr. James and supported by local guide from Bantang Village, Mr. Ekol, human burials with heads and iron objects were placed in the cave about 2.000 years ago.  The cave was used as refuge site and for birds nesting activities in recent time where birds nest collecting tools still can be seen.  Ancient charcoal drawing which is mostly found at the cave entrance, depicting human and animal motifs were drawn on 36 lineal meters of the interior walls.

The cave entrance are also used as place to cremated the warrior bodies, that why the above part of the cave entrance are blackish color (singed of burning activities).

The excavation area and cave painting at the cave entrance is blocked (fencing) and locked by Museum Department.  According to Mr. James, the key need to be retained from them because the padlock has been changed.

ITINERARY :

0840hrs – Pick up from STB headquarter lobby by KISTours Sdn Bhd. Using 2 4X4 vehicle to the caving venue. Along the way, Mr. James telling us brief history about Jalan Keretapi which is now known as Jalan Tun Zaidi Adruce. He’s also pointing to us some potential caving area that need to be explore along the way, starting from 12th miles to 10th miles Kuching – Serian road.

0915hrs – Stop for briefing at KISTours Sdn Bhd office at 10th miles bazaar.

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You will need the right equipment, trousers, boots, towels and shirts.

1030hrs – Depart 10th miles bazaar. On the way to caving location, our guide sharing with on the potential caving area.

1115hrs – Making a quick stop to purchase our ration (snacks drinks) at Taiee Bazaar.

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1130hrs – Reached caving location near Bantang Village.

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1140hrs – Moving in to the jungle path leading to the Gua Sireh.  It takes about 5 minutes walk from jungle path starting point to the wooden plank staircase, than 15 minutes to claim the staircase up to Gua Sireh entrance.

Kuching Caving

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Plants found along the path.

 

Staircase leading to cave entrance

Staircase leading to cave entrance.

1200hrs – Journey to darkness begin…going into the cave.

About 20.000 years old painting

About 20.000 years old painting.

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Cave Swiftlet

Cave Swiftlet

There are difference kind of creatures living in the cave, such as snake – Cave Racer Snake, bats, insects, catfish and etc.

Batu Raja

Batu Raja

The White Princess

The White Princess

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1425hrs – Our caving stop at “The Rapid”, which take us 2 hours 25 minutes to reached there.  We had our snack break here, before turn back to cave entrance.

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Kuching Caving-Gua Sireh9

1450hrs – Depart The Rapid for cave entrance.

1540hrs – Reached cave entrance (going back is faster).

1600hrs2nd Cave – “Broken Jar”

The cave is relatively smaller chamber than the Gua Sireh.  This is where we were required to submerge ourselves in the water.  At some point, the water level was higher than my height and can be difficult even for good swimmer, but James and Mr. Ekol were very encouraging. They were really determined to provide us with an unforgettable caving experience hence despite acquiring Noise-induced hearing loss from my loud screaming, they still helped us go deeper into the cave.  James literally had to bring/carry us in to “inner room”.  The Chamber was short, only about 250 meters.  After seeing the inner room, we an option to either take the dry route to come out, or to go back using the same way we came in.

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Walking to the ‘Broken Jar’ cave.

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Entrance to thr ‘Broken Jar’

1745hrs – Depart to Kpg Bantang.  We return the equipment to our base (KISTours Sdn Bhd) at 10th Mile Bazaar after caving and finish with dinner at the local restaurant nearby (served no pork).

The attractiveness level of Gua Sireh caving is beyond expectation. The product have a very high potential to market as a adventure tourism product and because of close proximity to Kuching city, highly recommended for short adventure holiday destination seekers.

The overall organizing is good and the efforts concerning safety such as providing helmet, socks, boots and rope by the service provider are excellent.  The safety and comfort of land transport to the location was good too.  The involvement of local people is good, because the tours will bring us closer to the local community and the product nature.  This what the eco-tourism all about… giving back to the local community in the area and preserving the nature.

Prepared by:

Deckson Bundak
Tourist Coordinator, VIC Kuching, Sarawak Tourism Board

Article source: http://sarawaktourism.com/blog/feed/

Travel: Kuala Gandah Elephant Sanctuary, Pahang

The Department of Wildlife and National Parks established
Kuala Gandah Elephant Conservation Centre in 1989. The centre is a base for the
Elephant Relocation Team, which began the elephant translocation programme in
1974.


The only one of its kind in Malaysia, the team is dedicated
to locating, subduing and then translocating problem elephants from areas where
their habitats are constantly being encroached by plantations.

The centre also strives to educate the public about the
importance of habitat and environmental preservation. visitors are encouraged
to view a video on elephant translocation and special programme can be arranged
for school groups.

Getting There:

From Kuala Lumpur, take the Karak Highway to Lanchang,
passing Karak along the way. At Lanchang, turn left into the road just before
the BP station, then follow the ample direction signage towards the Elephant
Sanctuary. You will pass by an Orang Asli settlement before  reaching the Kuala Gandah Elephant Sanctuary.
The journey takes about 2 to 2 ½ hours (roughly 160km from Kuala Lumpur).

Opening Hours:

The centre is open from 8.00 p.m. to 4.30 p.m. daily but
activities mostly begin from 2.00 p.m. onwards. Entrance is free. Please be
reminded that despite some advise from certain quarters (websites
notwithstanding) that the centre needs donations from visitors, this is not
necessary as the centre has ample financial allocations for its upkeep. The
centre can get busy during the weekends, so it it would be better for you to
visit it on weekdays.

Note: Please come early because if the quota for elephant
ride is full (120 persons per day), you may be issued with a red pass instead
of the coveted yellow pass, which only allows for viewing, hence, no elephant
rides.

Facilities:

A visitor information centre provides information and video
presentation on the centre’s elephant conservation efforts. Visitors can
participate in daily activities, like feeding and grooming the elephants and
helping with the bathing of each animal in the nearby stream. There is no
accommodation at the centre but you may want to stay overnight at Temerloh or
Mentakab.

Activities:

In the morning, visitors can view the exhibition and a video
presentation on elephant translocation before proceeding to watch the elephants
in their enclosure. Elephant feeding, rides and bathing start after 2 p.m.
There is a small warung (cafe)  run by a
local where you can get drinks and local food. Public toilets and showers for
those who want to have a wash after bathing in the river with the elephants.

Contact:

Jabatan Perhilitan

Kuala Gandah

28500 Lanchang

Pahang Darul Makmur,

Malaysia.

Tel    : 09-279 0391

Office hours:

Monday – Sunday:

 8.00 a.m. – 1.00 p.m.

 2.30 p.m.  – 4.30 p.m.

Friday:

 8.00 a.m. – 12.30
p.m.

Article source: http://www.gomelaka.my/author/admin/feed/