Malaysia Travel Guide

Seeing Kuching City on Foot

Seeing Kuching City on Foot

For the visitor to Kuching, the best way to explore this unique city is by foot.  This means, you simply need a pair of good walking shoes and you can walk around the old part of Kuching to see some of its tourist sites.

Kuching City is usually the main gateway into Sarawak as the main airport is located about 20 minutes from the city. Often called Cat City, because Kuching translates from Malay to cat, you will easily spot multiple cat structures which are also great for photo stops.

I would also like to share with you that Kuching city is a morning city, which means this place is best explored in the mornings when it is not too hot and humid. Most of the businesses close by 5.00PM and by 7.00PM, everything comes to a standstill here.

Seeing Kuching City on Foot

Tua Pek Kong Temple along Jalan Main Bazaar

Where to start in Kuching?

The best place to start your walking tours are from the Main Bazaar area where the Kuching Waterfront is located. I started in the morning about 9.00 AM and found that this is a great place to walk around, where I visited the Chinese History Museum and the prominent Chinese Temple called Tua Pek Kong.

Seeing Kuching City on Foot

Kuching’s vibrant Main Bazaar

From these two landmarks, just walk along the Main Bazaar where you will pass through a series of shops that sell ethnic Sarawakian antiques, collectibles and souvenir. This is probably the best place to get your souvenirs for Sarawak.

Along the Main Bazaar, you can spot some decades old businesses that are still trading goods like pepper, rice and so on. Once you reach the end, look across the road and you will see the Kuching Waterfront Bazaar, where you can find more authentic souvenirs.

Seeing Kuching City on Foot

The new Darul Hana Bridge across the Sarawak River on the left

Crossing the New Darul Hana Bridge

From there, you can either take the newly opened 335m-long S-shaped bridge called Darul Hana Bridge that goes over the Sarawak River that links Pangkalan Batu and Pangkalan Sapi.

Visitors can now walk over to the Old State Legislative Assembly building passing through Botanic Gardens and Orchid Garden and also to the iconic Fort Margherita.

After this, head back across the Darul Hana Bridge and walk towards the Brooke Monument for a photo moment. This is also where the old Court House is located at. Walk into Jalan Barrack and you will find the entrance to India Street.

Seeing Kuching City on Foot

India Street and the covered walkway

Called the India Street Pedestrian Mall, this old area has been given a beautiful makeover and is now a covered walkway. Traders are seen on both sides of the street selling all sorts of wares as I walk through and exit at Japan Power.

From the exit, keep walking along Jalan Market to see the old Kuching trading and business communities. While walking around here, do look out for some of the well known local eateries or coffee shops.

Seeing Kuching City on Foot

Carpenter Street in Kuching

After I explored this part of the city, I headed back to Carpenter Street which is just behind the Main Bazaar. I selected this because by the time I was done, it was lunch time and at Carpenter Street, there is a great place to try which is the Temple Food Court. It is located just opposite the Hiang Thian Siang Ti Temple.

Seeing Kuching City on Foot

Hiang Thian Siang Ti Temple at the end of Carpenter Street in Kuching

After lunch, I continued along Carpenter Street towards the end where I ended my walking tour of Kuching. This I where you will find the Hong San Si Temple, which is one of the most beautiful temples in Kuching.

In general, you can see this interesting part of Kuching in just under four hours on foot and very suitable for anyone who has half a day free in Kuching.

Photos by David Hogan Jr

Malaysia Travel Guide

Sarawak Regatta 2016

Sarawak Regatta 2016

The Kuching Waterfront has been thronged with so many people for two weeks by having the International Dragon Boat 2016 and Sarawak Regatta 2016, from 11 – 13th, 18 – 20th November!  This event is only open for countries in the Borneo islands, which has such a long history of 145 years, started from 1872 under the rule of the James Brooke. What is the difference between Dragon Boat and Regatta? Dragon Boat is a race of 800m, and Regatta is either 1000 or 1500m. Also, Dragon Boat consists of 12 members including 1 drummer per team, and Regatta, 7, 10, 15, 20, 30 paddlers with no dreamer.  Although we were caught in a heavy rain halfway, the paddlers still performed greatly together with no flinching, and that exactly embodied “The Race for Harmony”, the theme of the event. This year’s Raja Sungai (The King of the River) is Cahaya Zen!

At first, we were only thinking of taking pictures and videos of the race from the bank of Sarawak River but actually, the staff were kind enough to let us do it on the motor boat which was very close to the race! Lucky for us! It was much more exciting than watching from the river bank. The performance of paddlers rowing a boat was really powerful with good team spirit. Moreover, they invited us to join one of the boats which then formed a line at the starting point. It was just a few minutes before the race begun, it demonstrated the broad-mindedness of the paddlers. We would love to come again to watch another great race next year!  Thanks to all teams, event organizers, and everyone who came to watch Sarawak Regatta 2016 and see you in 2017!

【Sarawak Regatta 2016】

クチンのウォーターフロントでは、11月11~13日のサラワク・インターナショナル・ドラゴンボートレースに引き続き、18~20日はサラワク・レガッタが開催されました!こちらの大会は、ボルネオ島内の国のチームのみの参加となっており、なんとホワイトラジャの支配下にあった1872年から145年も続いている歴史ある大会です。ドラゴンボートとの違いは何なのでしょう?ドラゴンボートは距離が800メートルなのに対し、レガッタは1キロまたは1.5キロの距離を競争します。また、ドラゴンボートは1人のドラマーを含めた12人構成で、レガッタはドラマー抜きの、7,10,15,20,30人と様々な構成があります。途中豪雨に見舞われることもありましたが、それにも負けずに息の合ったパフォーマンスを見せる選手たちの姿は、まさにテーマである”レース・フォー・ハーモニー”を体現化してくれました!今年のラジャ・スンガイ(キング・オブ・ザ・リバー)はチームCahaya Zen!






Written by

Kazumi Matsuo
Kanon Ushio
Japanese Intern in Sarawak Tourism Board


Article source:

Tourism Malaysia

The purr-fect town

We’ve reached Kuching! Finishi­­­ng off with the amazing #RWMF last week, and learning about the wonders of Sarawak the week prior, we finally got to rest our tired feet in Sarawak’s capital city; Kuching.

Balanced with a combination of historical buildings and modern infrastructures, it is no wonder Kuching has been listed numerous times as one of the most attractive cities in Southeast Asia.

Better than we imagined! Waterfront, Kuching, Sarawak

Better than we imagined! Waterfront, Kuching, Sarawak

There are multiple versions of how Kuching got its name, but the two most popular theories are;– The name Kuching is derived from the Chinese word kochin, meaning “harbour”, which makes sense because the town is erected by the Sarawak River.
– Kuching, being a literal translation of Cats in Bahasa Malaysia, also mata kucing which literally translates to Cats Eye, a fruit which grows in abundance around the area.

No matter how this charming town got its quirky name, Kuching is very much well preserved and we love it all the same!


Old but Gold. Fort Margherita, Kuching, Sarawak

Rich in its culture, while travelling through town we saw plenty of eye-catching sights like oriental styled Chinese temples, grand golden domed mosques and colonial-styled buildings. It truly highlights the harmony of the multiracial country of Malaysia.

We must say, right of the bat, Kuching managed to warm us with its quirky charms and cat statues that’s scattered around town.


We hit a goldmine! Waterfront, Kuching, Sarawak

Cat statues? You read right. True to its name, you’ll be happy to note that walking around the city, we found so much happiness at the sight of wonderful statues of cats being erected everywhere in the city. But! The best part was definitely the dedicated cat museum! It is the purr-fect city for cat lovers all around!


Being the centre of Sarawak, Kuching is a melting pot for all the cultures of the land. You know what that means? They have all sorts of different kinds of scrumptious local delicacies from the 27 ethnic groups in Sarawak. So it’s no surprise when we say we went there to get a taste of Sarawak. Pun intended, we went on a food trail!

We tried prized local dishes like Sarawak Laksa, Kolo mee and a vast array of seafood (which is very cheap in these parts of Malaysia), you can see what we ate in our Taming Borneo episodes.

You might be enticed to go on your own food trail during your adventure, but what food should you be looking out for? Well, through our travels, here are 5 dishes you absolutely need to try:

  1. Sarawak Laksa

The Sarawak Laksa is a staple dish of the state, vermicelli noodles cooked in a shrimp-based broth that is thickened with coconut milk.  This dish is served with a generous handful of crunchy bean sprouts, boiled prawns and garnished with shredded chicken and slivers of egg omelet.  If you can handle some spice, a thick sambal (chili) paste is usually served on the side and to complement it, a slice of lime to add some tang to your palette.

  1. Kolo Mee

A bowl of piping hot Kolo Mee (Kolok Mee) is just the thing to kick start your day. This dish of light yellow egg noodles consists of lard, char siew (barbecued pork) sauce and black vinegar.  A common enough dish found in Sarawak, Kolo Mee is available for breakfast, lunch and even supper!  (Note: Halal version is also available at Malay stalls)

  1. Kek Lapis Sarawak

Sarawak Kek Lapis is considered one of the ‘art-food’ introduced by the old generations of Sarawak. It is not only delicious, but also pleasant to look at with intricate multi-coloured cake layers. Domestic travellers usually buy these as souvenirs to give to family members so as to bring home a piece of their travels.

  1. Umai – Umai (Umei)

This would be the Malaysian equivalent of Ceviche. Umai is traditionally a standard lunch dish for the Melanau fishermen.  Usually served cold, it incorporates thin slivers of raw fresh fish, thinly sliced onions, chili, salt and juice from sour fruits like lime or Assam. A bowl of toasted sago pearls usually complements this dish and is sure to tickle your taste buds.

  1. Ayam Pansuh

Also commonly known as Manok Pansoh, this is a unique Iban dish cooked in a bamboo shoot. Ingredients like cut chicken, lemongrass, and tapioca leaves are stuffed into bamboo shoots before it is cooked over an open fire, for a smoky flavour. Besides that, this method would also ensure that all the flavours are sealed in the bamboo shoot and would result in juicy and tender chicken with gravy perfumed by the lemongrass and bamboo shoot.


While we only visited Kuching during our Taming Borneo trip, there are also other great towns around Sarawak worth noting down when planning your own Taming Borneo adventure.


Miri is a coastal city next to Kuching and is the second largest city in Sarawak. It is the birthplace of the petroleum industry in Malaysia.

Miri is a popular shopping destination for both Malaysians and neighbouring Bruneians alike for its modern shopping malls, food haven and traditional handicraft centre at the Miri Handicraft Market. The annual Miri International Jazz Festival is also a huge attraction for music lovers.

Lastly, one of the major attractions for nature lovers travelling to Miri is the Niah Caves. Dating back to 40,000 years, the oldest human remains in Southeast Asia can also be found here.  Here you can also visit the Painted Cave, named after the prehistoric paintings on the cave walls.


Sibu town is mainly populated by the Foochow settlers originally from the Fujian Province in China. Sibu’s seven storey pagoda is one of the historical Chinese buildings that symbolizes the Foochow influence in its unique design.

In Sibu, the hand painted Sarawak fine pottery make very popular souvenirs with tourists. At the Lembangan Market, don’t miss the unique opportunity to go shopping at around 700 stalls in the area. Vendors sell some pretty fascinating items, ranging from jungle produce, including flying foxes, squirrels, snakes, turtles, snails, edible jungle fruits and ferns. Not only that, vendors also sell a variety of garments, toys, electrical goods and foodstuff at a price everyone can afford. At night, the atmosphere is thick with a carnival-like feeling.

If you have more questions regarding our Taming Borneo adventure, please do leave a comment in the comment section below, or start a discussion; tell us your personal Taming Borneo experience!

Also do follow along our adventure on our social media platforms:

Instagram: @MyTourismChannel or #tamingborneo

Catch up on the latest episodes by clicking on the thumbnails below!

Sarawak: EP7

Sarawak: EP7

Sarawak: EP8

Sarawak: EP8

Sarawak: EP9

Sarawak: EP9

Article source:

Tourism Malaysia

Sarawak Regatta

Sarawak Regatta has been a premier eventuality with a graphic chronological and informative significant. It was hold as early as before 1872 and was orderly as an annual eventuality holding place during a New Year. Sarawak Gazette had available in 1872, that a annual Regatta that year was held, on 29th Feb 1872 during a Sarawak River infront of a Astana. The European village in Sarawak and in a adjacent countries were invited to a Astana – for breakfast – before a race. Keen foe were also available for a Rajah Cup.

The vessel ‘Sri Matu’ built and manned by a Melanaus, was reported as a winning boat. The Gazette annals supposing a denote that Regatta had been an critical amicable eventuality orderly annually for amicable formation and goodwill for a people of Sarawak. Prominent Political figure, a late Tan Sri Datuk Amar Ong Kee Hui, available that Raja Charles Brooke used to send his yacht “Maimunah1 to outstation to move in a several “Tuan Residents” to join in a amicable event.

The tradition of holding a annual Regatta in a Sarawak River continued by a Colonial duration and into a post-Malaysia period. During these durations a Regatta was orderly by Resident and District Office with supports from a Government while a rest of a account was lifted by open donations.

The day programme embody races for normal longboats, dragon boats and other activities, like a using of totolizers, climbing greasing poles, throwing ducks and “pillow fights”. Racing boats from outstations done it a grand eventuality and also a good arise for families from outward a State Capital to revisit Kuching town.

The 2011 eventuality is done some-more poignant as a regatta concides with a Malaysia Day Celebration; 16th September, a day when Sarawak and Sabah came together with a states of Malaya to form a Federation of Malaysia.

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