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Wednesday 15 February 2012

Tenyok Rimba Reserve of Long Bedian

Not far from Long Bedian, there’s a forest reserve called Tenyok Rimba and the caretakers are from Long Bedian itself.  Though small, but this reserve has almost all one looks for in a jungle setting : beautiful waterfalls, clear water river, lush forest, jungle trails and variety of bird species watching!

The reserve is for picnic outing and for those who really wants to enjoy the forest; several challenging jungle trails can be explored within the area.  Its genuine shooting sound of the forest…without doubt, the real food for the soul & mind ;-)

Wish to spend few days in the reserve?  No problem – stay at Tenyok Rimba Resort and the price is reasonable too.  However, before you enter Tenyok Rimba – please obtain permission & reservation are to be made in advance via the Long Bedian community.  Need their contacts?  Just let us know...

Tenyok Rimba Resort
The Nawan Waterfall (picture courtesy of Ms Noni of BP)
Picnic prepared by our Tour Guide Mr Kenneth (picture courtesy of Ms Noni of BP)

Author: Visitor Information Centre Miri

Tuesday 14 February 2012

Bario Highland, Baram, Miri

Bario means ‘Wind’ in Kelabit language (the correct pronunciation is ‘Bariew’).  Lying at an altitude of between 3400 to 6000 feet above sea level in the north-eastern corner of Sarawak is the famous Bario Highland, a Kelabit territory, one of the minority Orang Ulu tribe of Sarawak.  As it is in the highland, the weather is different from the low land, here it is colder at night & hotter during the day time as compared to the low land weather.  There are about 13 villages located in & around Bario area, while Kampung Bario Asal is the original village of Bario.  

Bario village

Recommended tour:  

Visit the Bario Asal village longhouse, Bario Market/handcraft, Bario Village Museum located at SK Bario, taste the famous Bario pineapple plus visit the farm and Bario Rice (or locally known as Adan Rice).

Getting there:
  • Daily flight departure from Miri to Bario via MASWings Twin Otter & about 45 mins flight.
  • By 4WD will take you on rugged logging road along the terrains from Miri to the Highlands & journey approximately 10-14 hours (depends on the road condition & weather).

Friday 3 February 2012

Souvenir from Sarikei

If you cannot find Pineapple for your friends after your visit to Sarikei, just stop by at Sarikei Waterfront next to Sarikei Bus station, you will find a row of souvenir shop selling a variety of items there..
Author: Visitor Information Centre Sibu 

Wednesday 1 February 2012

Journey to Melanau Heartland

Mukah is the 10th Division in Sarawak and have been declared as a Division on 1st March 2003. Usually visitors like myself prefer to use express boat or speed boat via Dalat rather than by bus or car to Mukah. It is because of its unique and interesting scenery along much of the way.

The journey to Dalat from the embarkation point of Sibu, takes about 2 hours by speedboat and about 2 ½ hours by land. The speedboat cost to Dalat town costs about RM 20.00 per person and only when it is filled with required number of passengers. From Dalat town to Mukah town by land, the ride takes another 45 minutes.

( Speedboat or Express Boat is the one of the main transport to Mukah )

Near Retus river, we stopped at Tugau Memorial Park which was about 60km from Sibu town. According to the local legend, Tugau was a Melanau warrior and it was he who created the laws for the Melanau people at that time. He lived for five centuries and he ordered the Melanau people at that time to build the tall house so that they can prevent the Iban people from attacking their home. Thus, my conclusion, Tugau was the father of Melanau civilization because most of the Melanau people culture is based on Tugau legend. Tugau Memorial was a significant place to visit because it was the starting point of the Melanau heartland experience.

(One of the remenant of Tugau settlement)
We arrived at Dalat and noticed that there was an old cemetary, 100 meters from the jetty. It was an old Chinese cemetary where some of the tombstones dated back to 18th century and some of the tombstones were written in Japanese characters.

(The Old Cemetery in Dalat town )
After that we visited the 'Jerunei' post near Taman Bulatan Dalat. 'Jerunai' is one of the remains of the ancient Melanau. Jerunai was used as the burial place of the Melanau aristocrats or royalists, nobles, dignitaries and merchants who were philanthropists. It was made from large, fully-matured 'Berlian' as the wood is long-lasting and can withstand heat and torrential rain for hundreds of years. Two or three holes were bored into the Berlian pillars whereby the bottom and middle openings were meant for the bones of the dead person and valuables needed in the other world.
( One the Jerunei that is still standing in Mukah)

From Dalat town to Mukah town, it was about half an hour road journey. On the way to Mukah, we stopped at Kueh Sepit cookies cottage outlet of Kpg Judan, Mukah. We learn how to make their version of Kueh Sepit which is very popular with Sarawakians. They are made with fresh sago powder and coconut milk. Besides Kuih Sepit outlet, we also stopped at a 'Tebaloi' factory in Mukah. It was located at Kampung Tutus Hilir that was about 3-km from Mukah town. This traditional Sarawak snack, made of sago, is a delicacy of the Melanau people of Sarawak. It is taken as a snack and served to guests with tea and coffee. The unique taste of 'Tebaloi' is a very popular snack for all races in Sarawak and is widely available at commercial outlets.

(Up : The old lady preparing 'Kuih Sepit' in Kpg Judan.
Down : One of the family preparing Tebaloi in Kpg Tutus Hilir)

For visitors who want to experience a Melanau tall house, they can stay in Lamin Dana Cultural Boutique and Handicraft Centre. 'Lamin Dana' means traditional house in archaic Melanau dialect is a home that welcome guests and visitors. It was built in 1999 and to date, Lamin Dana has received guests from all over the world. Besides being a tall-house homestay tourist project, Lamin Dana represents an effort to preserve or re-create a culture which is on the brink of disappearing forever. It is a live museum where visitors can learn anything about Melanau culture from dances, crafts, costumes and musical instruments. Lamin Dana is a must-visit for any visitor to Mukah.

( Lamin Dana Cultural Boutique can be find at Kpg Telian)

At night, we went to Nibong Seafood Restaurant to have some Mukah local food such as Sago Worms, 'Umai Sambal', 'Umai Jep' (raw fish steeped in lime), 'Ikan Terubok' (a shad species) and Sago Pellet (Tumpi). Nibong Seafood Restaurant is located 5km away from Mukah town. They serve delicious and fresh seafood cuisine...Melanau style naturally.

( Some of the dishes served in Nibong Seafood Restaurant )
(Clockwise from top left : 'Umai', 'Tumpi', Fried terubok with lemon and fried sago worm, )

The next day, our group went for river cruise along Sg Tellian. We stopped by at sago processing factory and a traditional sago pellet processing factory. One can also witness how sago logs are floated to factories for processing. From Sg Tellian, we proceeded our journey to Mukah by speedboat.

( Some of the local activity that happen along Telian River in Mukah )

In Mukah town, we stopped at Tanjung Pedada Mangrove Walk just opposite the bank of the Mukah river. A short boat trip is required to reach there from town proper. The wooden trail at Tanjung Pedada Mangrove Walk was a 1-km long wooden plankwalk. The best time to visit this place is after sunset when fireflies can be seen.

(Up : Tanjung Pedada Mangrove Walk *picture from
(Down : Some activity that happen in Fish Market in Mukah Town )

The fish market is also a must-visit if you are in Mukah town. One cannot miss the mounds of freshly sliced fishes ready to be made into 'Umai' the delicacy of the Melanaus.  Mukah is the great place to visit because it is rich in culture and history. The best period to visit Mukah is during Mukah Kaul Festival held in the fourth week of April every year.

You may want to get in touch with these guys for a great travel experience.

Written by: Mohd Hisyamudin - Tourist Officer
Visitor Information Center Sibu

Homestay Experience - Sarawak Style!!

Some visitors ask us ‘what is the best way to see & experience the real Sarawak culture?’  Easy… try HOMESTAY!

What is homestay?  Well, our Ministry of Tourism Malaysia has come out with this superb program called ‘Homestay’.  It’s actually a program where visitor can have the opportunity to stay with a local family especially in the village or kampongs.  This is where visitors can experience 1st hand of their culture (from food, attire, custom, taboo, house & many more) and some village activities such as going to the paddy farm, visit the fruit orchard, fishing and the list goes on.  AND at the same time, by supporting the Homestay program, you are also helping the local economies and environment!

Ok, back to the question…why homestay in Sarawak?  Now this is the BEST thing about Sarawak!  Staying a few nights with the Iban or Kedayan or Kayan or Kenyah or Lun Bawang or Kelabit, can you imagine what will be the emotion later???
1)  Observe their old houses, their golden paddy field (during harvesting season), be charm by the people….
2)  Feel their beautiful culture, their colourful costume, their legacy tattoos/earlobes, their prevailing taboos…
3)  Snoop into their ancient stories and what make them the fiercest Headhunters in Borneo those days…

Well, am not going to spill out all the excitement cos, we need you to experience it yourselves.  Oh ya…when you stay at any of our homestay later, don’t forget to do it style – definitely Sarawak style!! Oooooooohhhhaaaaaaaa…..!!

In Sarawak Northern Region, there are 8 registered kampongs for the Homestay program:
Homestay Rumah Patrick Libau, Niah (Miri)
Homestay Kedayan, Sibuti (Miri)
Homestay Kampung Kuala Sibuti (Miri)
Homestay Rumah Hillary Tawan, Marudi (Miri)
Homestay Narum, Marudi (Miri)
Homestay Bario, Baram (Miri)
Homestay Ba’Kelalan, Lawas (Limbang)
Homestay Sungai Assap, Belaga (Bintulu)

For more information on Homestay in Sarawak, visit

Homestay Sungai Assap, Belaga
a visitor watching a Kayan elder weaving a rattan mat while she observe her beautiful traditional tattoos!
Kayan cemetery. Beautiful tribal carving.