MALAYSIA WORLD HERITAGE TRAVEL SITE Rotating Header Image

Telian River

Taking a River Cruise At A Traditional Melanau Village in Sibu

Taking a River Cruise At A Traditional Melanau Village in Sibu

sibu-telian

Sibu is one of the main gateways for the central region of Sarawak, attracting locals from the surrounding areas. While he city serves as a massive trading ground for the surrounding interiors of Sarawak, I was actually quite amazed on how much culture Is found around here.

The city of Sibu is connected by flights and also using the traditional waterways using boats. In an experience I never thought I would do, I managed to catch a ferry from Kuching to Sibu, seeing how the coastal and river life still operates as if modernization ceased to exist.

sibu-telianCruising down the Telian River towards Mukah

From Kuching city, I boarded the ferry which takes almost five hours, stopping at various villages and towns along the way. This is also a common mode of transport for locals, and just to share with you that it also takes about the same time if you take a bus, only here you can relax and absorb the beautiful views.

Once in Sibu, I was introduced to a very laid back way of life in Sarawak, and visiting iconic places like the Sibu Heritage Center, Sibu Night Market and of course, the largest wet market in Malaysia, the Sibu Market. Soon after, I was on route to Lamin Dana, a traditional Melanau boutique guest house in the heartland of the Melanau people.

sibu-telian

A lone Melanau boatman going to work on his boat

Melanau People of the Telian River

It was here that I was exposed to the centuries old ways of the Melanau people. Lamin Dana is located by the Telian River or Tellian as some spell it, which is on the outskirts of Mukah, a coastal town in Sarawak.

The main Telian river runs from inland towards Mukah, and along the way, Melanau villages are built by the river here. Nearer to the coast, you will see more Melanau fishing villages and as you go upriver, you see a different type of Melanau village.

sibu-telian

Raw Sago trees cut into chunks floating in the Telian River

As I cruise down the river in a traditional Melanau wooden boat, complete with a small engine, I am captivated with how rich the river life is. Meaning that local Melanau people still use the river as a main source for everything. From cooking to washing and even Sago processing.

Sago is one of the main homegrown processes here, and along the Telian River, I saw two main Sago producers, and made a stop to see how the process was done. From the Sago tree, it is cut into chunks and processed by one family using old ways.

sibu-telianProcessing the raw Sago into little balls and baking them on a traditional fire stove

From there, the raw sago is sent to another home where it is then processed into little Sago balls and then baked with firewood. This process was done by skilled Melanau women who painstakingly do this on a daily basis. The younger generation is not seen anywhere, and asking, I was told that the parents have made sure that education was the priority and hence at school.

For me, this was truly an eye opener as I had always assumed that the the Melanau people were seafaring farmers. And little did I know that the Melanau were also found inland and by the main rivers. Asking my guide, I was told that the Telian Village is one of the few remaining traditional Melanau villages in Sarawak.

sibu-telian

The Melanau village by the Telian River known as Kampung Telian

Having experienced this, I would strongly recommend those wanting to see a different side of Sarawak to visit Sibu. Also, I would recommend taking the boat or ferry there from Kuching as it will show you a very unique and different side of Sarawak.

When you are here, do ask them about the walking tours around Kampung Telian as you will see how close the homes are, and how life is at here. My journey here was truly a fascinating and enchanting experience, and I believe it should be explored by other travelers.

___________________
Photos by David Hogan Jr

Share

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

Lamin Dana, a Melanau Heritage Waiting To Be Discovered

Lamin Dana, a Melanau Heritage Waiting To Be Discovered

Lamin Dana, a Melanau Heritage Waiting To Be Discovered

In the outskirts of Sibu in central Sarawak lies one of the interesting ethnic lodges of the Melanau tribe in Sarawak Borneo.  Called Lamin Dana, this unique lodge is located in the village of Kampung Telian, which is in the Mukah district.

Built traditionally to resemble the Melanau Tallhouse, the owners have converted this lodge into one of central Sarawak’s must-visit places. The lodge sits along the Telian River, which is in the heartland of the Melanau people.

Lamin Dana, a Melanau Heritage Waiting To Be Discovered

The Lamin Dana Lodge, based on the Melanau traditional house

Traditional homes are build along this river which serves as the main source for everything. Staying at Lamin Dana lets you experience how the Melanau people go about their daily lives along the river.

Tours include taking a wooden boat down river, visiting Sago processing homes and seeing the river life along the way.

Lamin Dana, a Melanau Heritage Waiting To Be Discovered

A view of the Melanau Village at Kampung Telian

 

Lamin Dana, a Melanau Heritage Waiting To Be Discovered

Traditional Melanau heritage inside Lamin Dana Lodge

 

Lamin Dana, a Melanau Heritage Waiting To Be Discovered

Life along the Telian River

While staying here, you will be introduced to the history and life of the Melanau people, explained by the lodge operators. Rooms are simple yet cozy, and very affordable.

As for cuisine, you will be treated to traditional Melanau food which includes the unique Sago worm as a delicacy. Definately an experience not to be missed for anyone who loves exploring different cultures and food.

___________________
Photos by David Hogan Jr

Share

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

Lamin Dana, a Melanau Heritage Waiting To Be Discovered

Lamin Dana, a Melanau Heritage Waiting To Be Discovered

Lamin Dana, a Melanau Heritage Waiting To Be Discovered

In the outskirts of Sibu in central Sarawak lies one of the interesting ethnic lodges of the Melanau tribe in Sarawak Borneo.  Called Lamin Dana, this unique lodge is located in the village of Kampung Telian, which is in the Mukah district.

Built traditionally to resemble the Melanau Tallhouse, the owners have converted this lodge into one of central Sarawak’s must-visit places. The lodge sits along the Telian River, which is in the heartland of the Melanau people.

Lamin Dana, a Melanau Heritage Waiting To Be Discovered

The Lamin Dana Lodge, based on the Melanau traditional house

Traditional homes are build along this river which serves as the main source for everything. Staying at Lamin Dana lets you experience how the Melanau people go about their daily lives along the river.

Tours include taking a wooden boat down river, visiting Sago processing homes and seeing the river life along the way.

Lamin Dana, a Melanau Heritage Waiting To Be Discovered

A view of the Melanau Village at Kampung Telian

 

Lamin Dana, a Melanau Heritage Waiting To Be Discovered

Traditional Melanau heritage inside Lamin Dana Lodge

 

Lamin Dana, a Melanau Heritage Waiting To Be Discovered

Life along the Telian River

While staying here, you will be introduced to the history and life of the Melanau people, explained by the lodge operators. Rooms are simple yet cozy, and very affordable.

As for cuisine, you will be treated to traditional Melanau food which includes the unique Sago worm as a delicacy. Definately an experience not to be missed for anyone who loves exploring different cultures and food.

___________________
Photos by David Hogan Jr

Share