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Kuching Intercultural Mooncake Festival

18th Kuching Intercultural Mooncake Festival has been held started from September 6, 2019 until September 13, 2019. The event was happening from 6.00 p.m. till 11 p.m. at Carpenter Street Kuching. For your information, Carpenter street was also known as one of the oldest street in Kuching. Mooncake Festival in other name, mid-autumn festival was a harvest festival celebrated on the 15th day of the 8th month of the lunar calendar. Besides that, this festival was also known to be the longest street festival in this city.

This festival covers a few streets and you can enter the festival from any of the street entrance for free. People from every communities came and gathered here to celebrate together the Mid-Autumn Festival. Not to think about differences but to think about unity as a nation. There were so many booths that sold various types of food and beverages and souvenirs. There was also photo booth and performances by different tribe.

Some of foods and beverages that being sold were char kueh teow, german sausages, ice shake, sio bee, satay, fried squid, Kek Lapis Mooncake, sugarcane juice, freshly made bean curd and many more.

There were also fresh fruit juices. One of them was street watermelon juice. As we want to have a taste, we bought it and we drank it directly from the fruit. The fruit vendor will make a hole on the center of the watermelon and we drank the juice using straw.

Tasters are also being prepared so that customer can have a try of the Kek Lapis Mooncake. Sometimes, people only look at the cake but didn’t buy the cake. That was one of the reason why tasters were given so that people can try the Kek Lapis Mooncake and decide to buy the cake or not after tasted it. Mooncake usually can only be seen during the Mid-Autumn Festival and it always received high demand from buyers.

Sarawak is always famous for its Tuak which was homemade rice wine made by the Dayak community. Tuak is an alcoholic drink brewed from fermented rice. Usually, they use glutinous rice to produce the Tuak. However, Tuak is not only made from rice. Tuak can also be made from pineapples, ginger and sugar cane. Tuak that were sold during the Intercultural Mooncake festival were Tuak Tobuh (Tuak Tebu),Tuak Rozel (Tuak Roselle), Tuak Nanas and Tuak Apong.

Moreover, Grab Food gave out free cotton candy to people that came. However, those who want the cotton candy would have to line up. The cotton candy were given on first come first serve basis.

As we came to this festival, we were able to see Chinese ladies and men wearing Chinese Traditional costume known as Hanfu at one booth that showed Chinese Traditional Costume. Hanfu means True Chinese clothing.

Other than that, there were also live performances from different races such as Malay, Chinese and Iban. Each culture has their own stage to perform along the Carpenter Street such as Chinese Orchestra performance, Malay performance and Sape Busking.

All any visitors had to do here were just to go food hunting and experience our great Sarawak culture of our different tribe and our unity as a nation.



Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre in Sandakan, Sabah

Sepilok is a conservation centre located at Sandakan's east coast Sabah, 30 minutes drive from Sandakan town centre. The conservation centre is famous as it is one of the main tourists’ attractions and also one of eco-tourism destinations in Sabah.
Sepilok was opened since 1964 and it is the oldest orangutan recovery centre on the island of Borneo. What makes this centre more interesting is because it is located in the middle of 4,294-hectare forest reserve. It is managed by Sabah Wildlife Department, so that makes Sepilok not only the tourists centre, it is also a place for people all around the world to learn more about orangutans.
For nature lovers, it is also interesting to explore the centre as it is classified as virgin forest and protected areas. Approximately 400 species of trees were found in Sepilok area, making them the most suitable habitat for orangutans because of the easy access of fruits in the forest. Fruits are the largest diet for primate species and it was said that orangutans eat at least 200 types of fruits throughout their lifetimes and they can live up to 35 years.
Since its first opening in 1964, Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre had received and treated about 760 Bornean species of orangutans and this was recorded by the Sabah wildlife department. All the orangutans were saved from poaching activities because some people are willing to buy orangutans for pets. There were also orangutans that were rescued from logged forest areas.
The Sepilok recovery program can take a long time depending on each orangutan, which can take about 8-10 years. Studies on orangutans had proven that they had 96.4 percent similarities as human beings, so that is why their learning process can be slow or fast, which is quite similar to humans. 
Each orangutan that were brought to the centre will undergo thorough health examination, and will be quarantined for a period of time, just in case if the orangutan is carrying disease. This is to the diseases from being transmitted to others.
For young orangutans, they will spend their time in the nursery to learn essential skills needed such as finding food, climbing and also building nest. Once they are ready, they will be moved to the Outdoor Nursery, where they will have more freedom at the same time helping them to become less dependent on food and emotional support.
This outdoor nursery was opened to public viewing in 2014. It is located only a short distance from the feeding platform. At this outdoor nursery, visitors are able to see the young orangutans play and practice their swinging. 
For older orangutans, they will be released back into the wild forest as soon as they are ready. So far, the study by Sabah Wildlife Department states that at least 81 percent of the orangutan from Sepilok managed to recover and return to the wild forest.
Sepilok operates daily from 9am to 5pm. For now, the main program for visitors is to watch orangutans feeding twice daily, at 10am and 3pm.
Visitors' entrance fee is RM5 for Malaysians and RM30 for foreigners. Visitors can also bring their cameras to take photographs, though there is a RM10 fee for one camera.
If you are interested in going to Sepilok, check out our 2D1N Kinabatangan Tour, which includes visit to Sepilok and Sukau: Kinabatangan Wildlife Close Up 2D1N 

THURSDAY, MAY 31, 2018

Kaamatan Harvest Festival - Sabah

Be mesmerized by Sabah’s Kaamatan Harvest Festival when you visit Sabah at the end of May! Kaamatan or Pesta Kaamatan is a harvest festival and is one of the important and meaningful celebrations for the Kadazan Dusun community in Sabah. The word Kaamatan is a Kadazan-Dusun term for harvest. It is widely celebrated throught out Sabah. The Kaamatan or Harvest Festival is celebrated by the tribe of Kadazan/Dusun to celebrate good harvest, but the Kaamatan Festival is also celebrated by all other races in Sabah, usually celebrated throughout month of May. The highlight of the Kaamatan festival activities is the grand Unduk Ngadau (Harvest Festival Queen or better known as Miss Kaamatan), followed by the traditional dance, carnival, events and ceremonies by the Bobohizan, the Kadazan Priestess. Bobohizan plays an important role in Kaamatan because she is the one who will determines the official harvest festival date as well as officiating the Kaamatan Festival or better known by the local as Tadau Kamaatan.


However, Kaamatan is not just about celebrating the beginning of harvest. To understand more about Kaamatan Harvest Festival, there is a myth to be told. The Kadazan-Dusuns believe that in the days of yore the people suffered a great famine. It all begins with their God, Kinoingan, who took pity upon them. He sacrificed his daughter, Huminodun, by cutting her into small pieces in order to save the people from suffering. Her flesh was sown over the land and from these sprang the first rice plants. The Kadazan-Dusun believes that the spirit of Huminodun is embodied in the rice which is known as Bambarayon or Bambazon. Therefore, Kaamatan is celebrated to fulfil these five major purposes which are to welcome Bambazon to the Tangkob (a large rice storage container), to restore Bambazon that was lost during careless harvesting and processing of rice through the Magayau ritual ceremony, to feed the Bambazon with special food such as rice wine, fermented rice known as tandut, eggs, salt and feathers of a slaughtered chicken and, friendship and merry-making feast.


Throughout the whole month of Kaamatan Harvest Festival, there are ritual stages that are important for this festival. The first one is Kumogos Ceremony. It is held before the harves begins. The Bobohizan will tie up 7 stalks of the best rice from the rice field. These stakes of rice will be harvested only after whole rice field has been completely harvested. This ceremony is important to inform the other spirits to not disturb the farmers at work. The second stage is Kumotob Ceremony. After the first stage, Bobohizan will select another 7 stalks of the best rice from the area that is not yet harvested and will tie them up together. Then, she will place them in a basket which the local called as tadang that is specially to keep rice. It will be placed there until it turned into seeds for the next planting season. The third stage is Posisip Ceremony. In this ceremony, the Bobohizan will take the 7 stalks of rice which was placed in the tadang earlier to a rice hut. She will then put the rice into a bamboo pole kept in the tangkob while reciting chants to call for Bambazon to stay in the rice hut until the next planting season. The fourth stage, which is the Magavau Ceremony is the most important ceremony throughout the harvest festival. This is where the restoration and offerings of food to Bambazon is done. The last stage is Humabot Ceremony, which is held on the last day of Kaamatan. This is where a variety of entertainment and activities are held throughout the day. The highlight of the event would be the selection of the Unduk Ngadau, also known as Miss Kaamatan as it symbolizes Huminodun.


If you plan to visit Sabah at the end of May, take the opportunity to experience Harvest Festival vibe in Sabah and feel the uniqueness! You may visit our website SarawakBorneoTour.com and check out our Sabah tour packages. Do take note that Kaamatan Festival falls on 30th and 31st of May which is considered as a Public Holiday in the entire state of Sabah. Plan your trip well and make sure you have everything you need as most of the shops will be closed.




Mari Mari Cultural Village, Sabah


Mari Mari Cultural Village is located deep in the countryside away from the modern and developing Kota Kinabalu city. The village is a 30 to 40 minutes’ drive from Kota Kinabalu city. This museum is located deep in the jungle. It is a reconstruction of the houses of each of the five indigenous tribes of Sabah where it gives you a walk through the history, culture, tradition and provides a good understanding of the tribes of Sabah. The five tribes as mentioned are the rice farmer Kadazan-Dusun, the longhouse resident Rungus, the hunters and fisherman Lundayeh, the cowboy and sea gypsy Bajau, and the famously feared headhunting tribe of Murut. It aims to share the knowledge, history, culture, and tradition of Borneo with you. Other than that, this museum is not only to preserve their ancestors’ tradition but they perform dances to give the best authentic experience for you so that you feel like you are brought back in history.


There are 3 sessions for the tour around the village which is at 10 a.m., afternoon session at 2 p.m. and evening session at 6 p.m. There will be a walking tour of the village by a guide who walks you through the area. You will get the opportunity to explore the lifestyle of how the indigenous ethnic groups of Borneo used to live back in the olden days when electricity had not yet discovered. You will be guided to each different tribe houses and learn about their different lifestyle, culture, and history. Each tribe will demonstrate on how they hunt and make fire. Basically, you will see how they live their lives in the old days. However, you also will get a first-hand experience to live their lifestyle. They will teach you to light a fire with a bamboo stick, will treat you to local food, which includes delicacies such as sago worms with rice wine. You will learn how to shoot from an air weapon such as bamboo with arrows. Not to forget, there are also food demonstrations. You will have a chance to try the drinks they used to make such as ginger tea.


Why is it a “must place to visit” when you are in Sabah? Culture and tradition is slowly fading away. It is a great place to experience the lifestyle of rural natives which not many still live in this type of condition since most live in modern houses these days. Other than that, it is a great way to escape for the hustle and bustle of big city, where you can immerse with the quiet and tranquil nature. You will get a relaxed and leisure sightseeing activity especially those with families. Besides, it is an eye opener for the major tribes in Sabah, where you can gain knowledge about their culture, how their great ancestors used to live and what their spiritual beliefs living in the jungle were. As I mentioned before, you will get the opportunity to participate and experience in a few of the demonstrations such as blowing the Murut blowpipe and many more fun activities!


Most of the performers and guides in the village are local natives that live nearby. They are more than happy to share their lifestyle. At the same time, every dollar you spend goes back towards helping the local native people preserve their ancestors’ culture and tradition. Please wear comfortable and suitable clothes for leisure walking. Only cash is accepted for entrance fee tickets. Enjoy Mari Mari Cultural Village. Go https://goo.gl/7QuB5Z to book Mari Mari Cultural Village tour with us.



Nyam be Melanau - Sago, Melanau's Traditional Food

Nyam be Melanau” generally means the taste of the Melanau people. This article is about the culture of the Melanau especially their food heritage which is Sago. Melanau is part of an ethnic group indigenous to SarawakMalaysia. In other words, Melanau is categorized into 8 divisions. They are Melanau Matu Daro, Pulau Bruit, Dalat, Oya and Melanau Mukah. The more well-known ones are the Melanau Dalat, Oya and Mukah.


The Melanau differ from most other Borneo people in one important aspect. They eat sago in preference to rice. Sago palm originally grew wild in the coastal swamps, and were eventually cultivated by the Melanau folks. The ten metre high palm tree has starch grown inside it.  It swells just before flowering and at the right time to harvest is when it fells from the tree trunk. The trunk is then split open, and the starch-bearing pith is removed. The pith is rasped to fine mash. This is soaked in long wooden trough which is Jalur in Melanau. It is then trodden on a mat to leach out the sago starch. The white sediment settles at the bottom of the jalur. It is then spread out on mats to dry. They will then be crushed into flour.


Generally sago starch is similar to starch obtained from maize, potato and wheat which can be used for making bread, biscuit, cake, noodle, crackers, cendol, pudding, chilli and tomato sauces. "Sago" and "tebaloi" biscuits are the most favourite Melanau traditional food which can be made from the sago starch.


Before this, one of our friends ever gave us their delicious sago but we could not even ask for more because it was just too delicious and not enough for everyone. She brought it from Mukah and therefore, we want to explore more for the taste of the Melanau people itself.


Recently, we went for our short trip to Sarawak Cultural Village as we thought we would be able to find something interesting about Melanau culture and walla! We found it! We found the Melanau house after a 20 minutes’ walk.


This elderly woman introduced herself as Puan Sue sat in the house cooking something that is very unusual. Before we walked in to the house, we could smell the aroma of the sago far away as the wind brought us the smell. We dig more and more information from the lady who was action cooking the sago. She managed to tell us that the Sago she currently cooks is known as Tumpik Sagu. They also called the sago as Tupik Sei, Tumpik Lemantak and Lempeng Melanau. We were really amazed with the smell.


TumpikSagu is actually the sago that has been processed with bare hands. Puan Sue also mentioned about sago that is round in shape what we usually see. But, tumpik sagu is very rare to be found elsewhere. According to Puan Sue, the tumpik sagu can be cooked in 2 different ways via in the pan or the oven. Long time ago, the indigenous cook the sagu in the human-made oven. So basically, they have to cook the sagu a little more time than using the pan.


This beautiful gastronomy of Melanau people are usually added on with some ingredients to make it tastier. As has been stated by Puan Sue, tumpik sagu generally has some salt, coconut and sugar added in. She has told us that, the indigenous itself resists to put in additional modern flavour. This is mainly because they really want to keep the originality of their food forever. Melanau people wants to maintain their culture for authenticity.


As we became curious about the other type of sago that were in front of us, Puan Sue came across to explain to us more about it. She even said that during the Japanese Era, it is hard to find rice. Therefore, they went to the jungle and found out there is another alternative to survive which the cassava that could replace rice. We were mesmerized with the personal story. Puan Sue told us that the sago in round shape is actually a lot harder to produce. She said this is because that the process to produce it involved grilling. The Melanau purposely built a small house with fully covered air space to make sure that the sago could be processed faster and better.


“We are getting used of it. The heat feels like therapy for us” – Puan Sue

She even cracked some jokes by telling us that they are now getting used to the heat while processing the sago. We noticed that, people nowadays always forget what their culture really is until we realized the beauty of gastronomy in Borneo.

If this article picks your interest to know more about sago, come over and visit us in Sarawak and get to know more not only about the Melanau tribe but also other indigenous tribes with their own unique identity.



Borneo Happy Farm - the newest attraction in Kuching

Borneo Happy Farm is the new addition to tourists' attractions in Sarawak which had recently open its door to visitors last year. The farm is located near Moyan Square,Batu Kawa-Bau which is about 45 minutes’ drive from the city center. You can easily find the location of this farm on the internet. It is recommended to use Google Map instead of Waze because Waze will direct you to a totally different location.
This place spans of over 130 acres of land that is surrounded by the greenery. Based on their website which is, borneohappyfarm.com, their concept is to create awareness of nature conservation, green ecology, local cultures, traditional foods and health regimens. Besides that, Borneo Happy Farm also focuses on agriculture, forestry, animal husbandry, aquaculture, and leisure and healthy lifestyle. The farm is a little bit far away from the main road so brace yourself with the bumpy road along the way to get there.
The big signage of Borneo Happy Farm at the main entrance welcomes you.
The best part about this place is it opens every day including public holidays from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. So, you don’t have to worry when to visit the newly opened Borneo Happy Farm. But, please take note that the ticket counter will be closed at 4:30 p.m. 
Borneo Happy Farm ticketing counter at the main entrance.
The lobby at the main entrance of Borneo Happy Farm.
Wide parking space for all Borneo Happy Farm’s visitors.
You will be given a printed map of the farm together with your entrance ticket. The map will help you to know the place better and you can use it to guide you throughout your visit. You can refer to the map, on which place to visit according to the number. Borneo Happy Farm is one of the place for you to learn about the nature and its wildlife. It is very convenience for us to learn as they have provided the first ever automated voice over system in Sarawak throughout the farm. Visitors can just press the buttons to hear explanation of the attraction in English, Bahasa Melayu or language they have selected. Besides that, they also put as much information on board for every attraction.
The map of Borneo Happy Farm (Picture credit to Borneo Happy Farm)
Other than that, you can enjoy the attraction while collecting stamps at each points. At the back of the entrance ticket, there is a space for you to stamp your point. They have a different stamp for each stop which it can be very fun especially for kids.
Stamp station at Asian Arowana attraction point.
Automated voice over system throughout the farm.
Once you have settle down with your ticket purchase, you can make your way to the lake where there are farm’s freshwater fishes that includes Silver Arowana, Red Arowana and Empurau. These fishes are rare and valuable Asian Arowana.
More information about the fishes on the board.
Binoculars are provided for visitors to see the fishes – feel free to use them.
Other than that, the next attraction in this farm is Bunny’s Farm. For those who loves rabbits, this is definitely your favourite stop in this farm. Not only they have rabbit, they also have guinea pig in the same bunny pen. You will have the chance to go inside the bunny pen to pet and feed them. However, they only allowed maximum 8 people to enter the pen.
The Do’s and Don’ts for interacting with the animals inside the pen.
One of the visitor is feeding the rabbits.
Besides that, there are tortoise and soft shell turtle at the next stop which is Longevity Village. Those are raised in the farm for educational purpose. In here, you can touch, pet and feed them but please be reminded to follow the do’s and don’ts. You also will learn about the different types of turtles and tortoises.
Information on different types of turtles.
The guide is showing the turtle to the visitors.
Longevitiy Village with the colourful painted row of turtles display.
Pitcher plant or also known as Periuk Kera at Longevity Village.
Asiatic Softshell Turtle also locally known as Labi Labi Asia. Photo credit to Borneo Happy Farm
Besides fishes, tortoise and rabbits, they also have other animals such as goats, sheep, dairy cows, calves and horses at the next stop which is Savanna. When you enter Savanna, you will be entertain by the view of Mount Serembu.
Breath-taking view of Mount Serembu.
Savanna is the place for the herbivores, where it is a green grassland paradise for them. This is where you can stumble across these animals eating the grass, if you are lucky, you can see them running around the field.
Three goats in the corner, they are a little bit scared of people.
They called him Bobby – he loves wagging its tail like a dog.
Cows can be seen on our way out of the farm.
Tapang Tree, the oldest and tallest tree can be found in Borneo Happy Farm.
There are also a place for duck, goose and chicken in the farm which is called Geese Duck Chic.  They are released freely to walk all over the area and the visitors can feed them with the food that is provided by the staff.
You also can go to Tropical Rainforest Trail which have 3 routes and is 600 meters long. Throughout the journey, you can see experience the beauty of reserved rainforest and if you are lucky, you might see wildlife along the trail. Please do ask for guide before you enter the trail as it might be dangerous to go alone without the park rangers.
The entrance of Tropical Rainforest Trail.
Notice sign next to the entrance of the trail – advisable to read them first before enter.
Do not worry about food, there is a canteen in the farm, Tropical Farm Café where you can sit and relax while enjoying your meal. The canteen is based on a self-service concept. You can order and pick up your food at the counter. They also have provided the cutlery return station. They serve variety of food, hot and cold beverages and snacks.
The cutlery return station at Tropical Farm Café.
Just next to the café, there is a Food and Handicraft Gallery where they have different type of food and handicraft of different cultures in Sarawak. You can play with the equipment display and feel free to take photos with them.
Other than that, Borneo Happy Farm is also suitable for team building activities as they have rock climbing, flying fox and more. For the safety purpose, the activities will be held according to the age of participant. 
Borneo Happy Farm is a great place to visit especially when you are coming with families. You can get the chance to interact with the animals and you can learn about the nature. There are many pretty spots to take pictures such as Dino Dino andLongevity Village.But, please keep an eye on your kids if you bring them along as it can be dangerous for them to run around with the lakes all over the place. When visiting, please watch out for your steps as the path along the farm can be very slippery. Since the farm is an outdoor environment, prepare your visit according to the weather forecast especially when it is raining season.
Dino Dino, a great place to take pictures with the beautiful colourful dinosaur statues.
The exit to the main lobby of Borneo Happy Farm.


Let's Go Bird Watching in Sarawak

If you are planning to go to Sarawak any time soon, why don’t you make time to go bird watching while you are there? Sarawak has a lot of destinations where you can do just that!

Sarawak, the legendary land of headhunters and hornbills, is the largest state in Malaysia. This state occupies the north-western portion of the great island of Borneo. Here, the ever wet rainforests reach unparalleled diversity and are home to various kind of tropical wildlife and animals.

A great portion of Borneo’s 650 bird species have been recorded in the state, including most of the island’s endemics such as the bizarre Bornean Bristlehead. Sarawak offers superb birdwatching opportunities as it holds the highest number of national parks and nature reserves in the country. These range from balmy lowlands and shorelines to cold mossy forests at the summits of the higher mountains.


Photo credit to Sarawak Tourism Board


Kuching and Surrounding Areas


Black Oriole (Photo credit to Sarawak Tourism Board)


Kuching is a logical place to begin your birding adventure in Sarawak with an international airport and good roads are being well-provided. There are numerous nature reserves within an hour drive of the city that offers you a variety of bird watching opportunities. One of the most popular park is Kubah National Park, which has beautiful lowland rainforests and has a great variety of birds. A number of endemic species for example Bornean Banded Kingfisher, Bornean Wren Babbler, and Blue-banded Pitta could be found here.


Bornean Wren Babbler (Photo credit to Sarawak Tourism Board)


Bornean Wren Banded Kingfisher (Photo credit to Sarawak Tourism Board)


Pygmy White-eye (Photo credit to Sarawak Tourism Board)


Next is Santubong National Park. It is located near the coast, with its rugged sandstone terrain and tall rainforests. This is the closest site to Kuching which offers you a chance of seeing Rhinoceros Hornbill, one of Sarawak’s most emblematic birds. It is also a protected species.

Semenggoh Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre, although better known for its population of reintroduced orangutans, is also an excellent bird watching destination that hosts many lowland birds, including the rare Long-billed Partridge. Further south, near the Indonesian border, Borneo Highlands comprises a range of forested hills culminating in Mount Penrissen at over 1300 m in elevation. This area gives you the chance to see some of Borneo’s endemic submontane birds, including Pygmy White-eye, Chestnut-crested Yuhina, Bornean Barbet, and Mountain Serpent-Eagle.


Northern Sarawak


Asian Paradise Flycatcher (Photo credit to Sarawak Tourism Board)


Other than Kuching, you could also fancy bird watching in Miri. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Gunung Mulu National Park is Sarawak’s most famous park. Mulu is incredibly biodiverse and hosts a wealth of rare flora and fauna, although being well known for its amazing limestone cave systems.

The entrance to Deer Cave is an almost guaranteed site for the Bat Hawk, especially at dusk when up to 1.8 million Wrinkle-lipped Bats emerge from the cave. Mulu has an eye-catching bird list of 262 species, which includes all eight species of Bornean hornbills, and over half of the island’s endemics such as Fruithunter, Hose’s Broadbill, and Whitehead’s Spiderhunter. Montane specialties can only be seen via a multi-day trek to the upper slopes of Mount Mulu.

Pulong Tau National Park is Sarawak’s largest reserve, comprising nearly 600 sq. km of pristine montane rainforest. This national park occupies the western flank of the Kelabit highlands. Its spectacular mountain landscapes include Mount Murud, Sarawak’s highest peak (2,424 m), and Tama Abu range.

The main villages, Bario, Ba’ Kelalan, Long Banga and Long Lellang, can be reached by flights from Miri, or alternatively, by four-wheel-drive vehicle. More than 300 species of birds are listed in this park, including the rare endemic Bulwer’s Pheasant and Black Partridge. Pulong Tau National Park has a broad altitudinal range and habitat diversity, and is home to numerous other endemic species including Bornean Whistler, Mountain Barbet, Whitehead’s Broadbill, and the enigmatic Dulit Frogmouth.


Dulit Frogmouth (Photo credit to Sarawak Tourism Board)


In the far north of Sarawak in Ulu Trusan region, the mountainous Payeh Maga IBA is one of the state’s most promising new birding destinations. You can get there by four-wheel-drive vehicle from the town of Lawas, and while day hike into the forest is possible, you should be prepared to camp in mountain shelters if you wish to spend more time at the higher elevations. Special attractions here that you could also check out include Bornean Frogmouth, Bornean Leafbird, Bare-headed Laughingthrush, and the recently rediscovered Black Oriole.


Bornean Bristlehead (Photo credit to Sarawak Tourism Board)


Coastal Areas

At the coastal areas, you could spot waders and other water birds as Sarawak offers excellent wintering grounds for those species along its extensive coastline. The globally Vulnerable Chinese Egret often congregates in significant numbers in the Bako-Buntal Bay with possibly the largest concentration of the species in Borneo.


Eurasian and Fareastern Curlews (Photo credit to Sarawak Tourism Board)


Buntal, a fishing village less than an hour’s drive from Kuching, gives access to part of this coastal region. Spectacular congregations of large waterbirds such as the Far-eastern and Eurasian Curlews are not unusual in the Bako-Buntal Bay in the wintering months, which is usually the rainy season in Sarawak. Some 55 species of water birds, including the Pacific Golden Plover (often seen in its beautiful breeding plumage) have been recorded here. You could also enjoy seafood meals while you are there in Buntal!


Rhinoceros Hornbill (Photo credit to Sarawak Tourism Board)


How about that? Are you excited to go for an adventure in Sarawak now? Check out our website for different types of great tour packages that we offer you and book your tour with us now or you can email us for a customised tour at here.

Tags: Sarawak | Bird watching | Bird | Birds | Borneo | Sightseeing | Nature | Wildlife | Malaysia | Fun | Leisure | Adventure |


A fish spa especially for your feet in Sabah

You probably have only heard about spa for your body and your face, but what about other parts of your limbs? For example, your feet. Well, Sabah might just got the thing for your precious feet.


Let me introduce to you – the Tagal Sungai Moroli Fish Spa in Sabah.


Tagal Moroli Fish Spa Sabah Malaysia

Tagal Moroli Fish Spa sign at the entrance


The Tagal Sungai Moroli in Kampung Luanti is 131 kilometers away from Kota Kinabalu. Here, you will have the chance to try out the fish massage. This fish massage is deemed to have curative effect on those who suffer from psoriasis.


Tagal Moroli Fish Spa Sabah Malaysia

How it looks like during the 'spa'


The word 'tagal' in the local kadazan-dusun dialect means 'no fishing'. The main purpose of 'tagal' is to preserve the environment as well as the ecosystem of the river for the benefit of the generations to come. The Pelian fish or the Malaysian Mahseer originates from the family of Cyprinidae.


Tagal Moroli Fish Spa Sabah Malaysia

Tagal Fish


Other than this ticklish fish nibbling activity which helps remove the dead skin from your feet, there are also several activities to be done here. You can also choose to trek in the jungle or camp here at Kampung Luanti. If you do intend to extend your stay at Kampung Luanti, there is a homestay program that you can join to learn more about the ways of life of the villagers here in Kampung Luanti and also to relax.


With so many attractions here in the Land below the Wind, there is no reason why you should not extend your stay here. Sabah is the place to go if you are a fan of all nature things that Mother Nature provides.


Tagal Moroli Fish Spa Sabah Malaysia

Experiencing the 'fish spa' can be fun, ticklish and maybe painful at the same time


The beauty of the scenery and untouched jungles and beaches are simply to die for. Accommodations in Sabah are plentiful and do not worry about not finding a place to stay. There are plenty to choose from based on your budget and convenience.


Tagal Moroli Fish Spa Sabah Malaysia

The Tagal fish statue


Check out our website for affordable holiday packages in Sabah! Just click at SarawakBorneoTour.com/ NjoyBorneoTour.com/ Cuti-CutiMalaysia.net for more information.

Tags: Kota Kinabalu | Sabah | Pakej Percutian ke Sabah | Pakej Percutian | Tagal | Fish Spa |


Bringing All Types of Dances Together at Sibu International Dance Festival (SIDF) 2017

The Sibu International Dance Festival (SIDF) is back again this year for the sixth time!


SIDF is a platform where dancers from local, regional and international level can come together to exchange ideas and showcase choreography. This year’s event has been extended to include outdoor and indoor performance, as well as street corners, in a bid to draw more people to join the festival and to be directly involved with the performers.


Photo credit to Sibu International Dance Festival official website


The 6th edition of SIDF was held on August 29 2017 to September 2 2017.


Photo credit to Sibu International Dance Festival official website


Sibu International Dance Festival (SIDF) was first organised in 2012 by the Hornland Dance Theatre in Sibu. The Dance Festival is an annual event that portrays all forms of dances, traditional or modern, for all groups of age and of all races and cultures, both locally and internationally.


Photo credit to Sibu International Dance Festival official website


The first debut concert was held in 2012 and with the acknowledgement and support of the Sibu Municipal Council. It aimed to be held as an annual event during the mid-term school holiday of the second half of the year in Malaysia and it is located in the largest town in the central zone of Sarawak, in Sibu, next to the Rejang River, which is the longest river in South-east Asia.


Photo credit to Sibu International Dance Festival official website


SIDF aims to become the world platform for artists and arts organization from local, regional and international levels to exchange dialogs, concepts, experiments, explorations and displaying the diversity of dances, and boost tourism, art and culture in this region through this event.


Photo credit to Sibu International Dance Festival official website


The five-day festival had a wide variety of local and international dance performances in its schedule. The event included dance troupes from Singapore’s SIM Dance Art, KL’s DPAC Dance Company, USA’s Cohan/Suzeau Dance Company, Ivan Chan and Sudhee Liao from Hong Kong, Thailand’s Pathum Thanee Folk Dance Group, Kishiqata from Japan, Indonesia’s Loka Art Studio, and many, many more!


Photo credit to Sibu International Dance Festival official website


Apart from that, dance enthusiasts also had the chance to take part in dance workshops held by the professional artists from 12 different groups. Dance genres included street dance, traditional dance, modern dance and more.


Photo credit to Sibu International Dance Festival official website


Take a trip down to Sibu between the end of August and early September next year, and you’ll not only get to enjoy Sarawak’s largest town in its central zone but you’ll also be able to catch the Sibu International Dance Festival.


Photo credit to Sibu International Dance Festival official website


One thing awesome about Borneo is that we always have several cultural events happening throughout the month, and going on a road trip is a cheap and easy way to de-stress for the weekend and enjoy our Sarawak scenery!


You could also take the time to check out our website for affordable holiday packages! Just click here at SarawakBorneoTour.com!

Tags: Sibu International Dance Festival | Sibu | Festival | Visit Sibu 2017 | Sarawak | Dance | International | Malaysia | Travel | Friends | Family |


Rainforest Garden Cafe, A Themed Cafe on the Rise in Kuching, Sarawak

Have you ever wonder what is it like to dine with nature? Enjoying your meal while being surrounded by the lush green and fresh nature, the singing of the birds and the sound of the water flowing… Wouldn’t that be great? Well, now you can!



There is a nature concept café in Kuching, called the Rainforest Garden Café, which is now a hot eatery spot for food-lovers as well nature-lovers. This is because, people are able to appreciate the nature that is around them while enjoying a delicious meal at this very café.



Rainforest Garden Café is located at Lot 774, Block 226, 5th Mile, Penrissen Road, 93250, Kuching, Sarawak and is also the first of its kind here in Kuching!



In the café, there are 7 kiosks selling different types of food for every type of mealtime; breakfast, lunch, dinner, and etc. The brand or kiosks include Lok Lok, Mom’s Kitchen, Claypot Box, and more. Here are the recommendations by the chef; Malicai Fried Beehoon, Popo Hakka Luicha, Kampung Fried Rice, Pattaya Fried Rice, Tomato Kueh Tiaw, Mee Mamak, Spice Fried Spaghetti and Tomato Fried Spaghetti.



For those who cannot eat pork meat, you don’t have to worry about that since this café serves no pork. It is also a self-service type of café.

The café is open on Tuesday to Sunday from 10am to 10pm and only closes on Monday, but opens if it is a public holiday as more patrons will drop by for a meal.



Furthermore, the café provides services such as outdoor seating, takeaways, and booking for parties. So, if you ever plan to host a birthday party or anything, you can just give them a call to book your date.

Contact them at 082-577963 or send them details on your event at dixonttk@gmail.com

Tags: Rainforest Garden Cafe | Themed Cafe | Kuching | Sarawak | Cafe | Food | Drinks | Party | Birthday Party | Friends | Family | Travel |

A One Day Tour at Kuching

I recently went on a day tour in Kuching with a group of retirees from Johor Bahru to Sarawak Cultural Village, Cat Museum, Dayang Salhah Cake House and more. To me, it felt like going on a trip with my own grandparents. They were very friendly and nice to me even though they have never seen me before. Hence, I was able to enjoy spending time with them the whole trip.


Billy (the one with the blue backpack) giving a brief talk to the tour group



I arrived at 56 Hotel at 8.15am to meet the group and our tour guide, Billy, at the hotel lobby. The group came down to the lobby from their room at 8.40am and Billy gave a short briefing about the day trip. At 9am, we got on a coach, which was the transport for our trip, and took off to our first destination, the Sarawak Cultural Village.

It was a long trip to Sarawak Cultural Village, taking about a bit over an hour to reach there since it is located far from the city and also due to the traffic that day. I helped in distributing mineral drinks to each of the group members as so to keep them hydrated for the day.

Once arrived at the destination, I was the last person to leave the coach and made sure all of them got off the coach safely. Billy went to the reception counter to get our tickets while I kept an eye on the group. I also helped a family to take their photos at the Rainforest Music Festival statue.

Soon enough, we entered the ‘living museum’ led by Billy.


Signage at Sarawak Cultural Village


The bamboo bridge route to get to the Bidayuh Longhouse


Our first stop was the Bidayuh Longhouse. There was two routes to get there; the normal route and the bamboo bridge route. Everyone except only 2 or 3 of them did not go for the bridge because they had pain in their legs. So, they took the normal, longer route with Billy.

At the Bidayuh Longhouse, other than objects that are of the Bidayuh culture, there was a person playing a musical instrument, similar to a flute, to entertain the visitors. The group members looked around looking fascinated and some of them even took photos with the people who wore the traditional Bidayuh costumes in the house. They also bought some souvenirs from there.

Our next stop was the Iban Longhouse. I was assigned a task by Billy to collect the stamps at each stop as a proof of the visit, while also keeping an eye on the group. In the house, there was a lady who was frying an Iban traditional snack, known as Kuih Jala, to sell to the visitors. 3 of the members bought some and shared with the others. I also got my share of it because they were so nice. The snack was sweet and pleasant, perfect for a teatime snack, in my opinion. They took photos with the people wearing Iban costume in the house before leaving the house.


The view at Sarawak Cultural Village


Then we went to the Penan Hut. There were not much to see except for the musical instrument Sape and the tools that the Penan people used for daily survival. Billy explained that the Penan people live a nomadic life and that is why they lived in a hut instead of a house.

After that, we visited the Orang Ulu Longhouse and the Melanau Tall House. Both houses are built high above the ground with sturdy wood holding them up, so it was a long walk up and down the stairs for the visitors. Billy gave a short talk about the respective cultures while the group members looked around the house and enjoyed some Orang Ulu snacks sold in the house.

Lastly, we visited the Chinese Farmhouse. The group members paid respect at the praying area and walked around to see the tools and items inside the house which were used by the Chinese people living in a farmhouse some time ago.

After the cultural houses tour, Billy led the group to the hall for a cultural show performances. The show started at 11.45am sharp and ended at 12.20 in the afternoon. The group members enjoyed the show and went to have their lunch at the cafeteria next to the hall.


The view in front of a Melanau Tall House


Our next destination was the Cat Museum. It is the World’s first Cat Museum, devoted to all things feline, is in Petra Jaya in the Kuching City North City Hall. Cat lovers will find a range of exhibits, photos, feline art and cat souvenirs; over 4,000 of them. The group members bought small souvenirs from the souvenir shop inside the museum after walking around to see all the artefacts.


The entrance of the Cat Museum at Dewan Bandaraya Kuching Utara (DBKU)


Then, we went to Dayang Salhah’s Cake House. Billy and the group members all tried the tester prepared by the place’s owner, filling their tummy with the sweet delicacies. Some of the group members even bought the cakes they tasted.

Our last stop for the day was Sin Piao. The group members went on a shopping frenzy at the shop. They bought a lot of Borneo spices and snacks, some even bought in boxes, to bring home to their families and friends. They were clearly happy and satisfied with the last stop and we headed back to the hotel to end the day trip. The group members thanked Billy and me for the day before going back up to their rooms.

Tags: Kuching Day Trip | Sarawak Cultural Village | Kampung Budaya | Cat Museum |


A Memorable Trip to Sabah with My University Friends

On 18 to 22 March 2017, I went on a 5 days 4 nights class trip with fellow Uni-mates to Sabah, accompanied by our subject lecturer, Encik Yaziz Kasim, for educational purposes. Among the attractions that we had visited in Sabah were Desa Cattle Dairy Farm, Poring Hot Springs, ‘Fish Spa’ in Tagal Moroli, Philippine Market and more. We had our itinerary all planned out months before the trip.

On the first day, we went on a City Tour, with the tour guides being amongst ourselves after doing some individual research about the places that we were going to visit. We went to interesting spots in Kota Kinabalu, such as the Double Six Monument, Merdeka Field Kota Kinabalu, Signal Hill Observatory Tower, Aquarium & Marine Museum at Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) and more. The main purpose of the day was to get to know more about Sabah and learning about their history.

Kota Kinabalu Waterfront

Group photo at Kota Kinabalu Waterfront



A baby turtle swimming in the UMS aquarium




The next day, we got a bit adventurous and went to explore the Gaya Street Sunday Market, the Monsopiad Cultural Village, the Upside Down House and the 3D Museum. The Gaya Street Sunday Market was packed with people including both locals and foreign tourists, as expected, since the market is only opened on Sundays and the goods sold are interesting and most of them represent the culture in Sabah. That day, I put my Korean language skills to test as I got the chance to converse with a Korean family. Despite being nervous, the family praised me for it.

At the Monsopiad Cultural Village, we learnt a bit about Monsopiad culture from the friendly tour guides there, which included learning to make a fire manually using woods and sticks, learning the traditional dance and music, and the historical headhunting culture. Meanwhile at the Upside Down House and 3D Museum, we gained fun and exciting memories as we took photos with the interesting arts and crafts.

Just 'hanging around' on the ceiling of the bathroom




There is even an 'upside down' car! And it's a Kancil!




Fighting bare hands with a man with weapon? It's okay, it's just a 3D art!




A photo at the end of the 3D Museum in Sabah



On the third day, we woke up as early as 4.30 in the morning to get ready for the day trip to Kundasang. We had our breakfasts at the nearby café at 6AM and then split into two groups before taking off with two vans at 7am.

After about two hours, we arrived at our first destination, the Desa Cattle Dairy Farm. The weather was rather nice and cool that day so we were able to enjoy the beautiful scenery at the site, which is also known as the Little New Zealand at Sabah. I also got the chance to feed the cows and goats at the feeding area at a low price. Then, we went to Tagal Moroli ‘Fish Spa’ to allow dead cells on our skin to be nibbled off by the Tagal fishes. It was a fun experience despite feeling a tiny bit of pain from being ‘kissed’ by the fishes. Next we went to Poring Hot Springs as our last destination for the day to relax our mind and body before going back to Kota Kinabalu at around 6pm.

Enjoying a warm dip at Poring Hot Springs



On Day 4 four, our main focus was on Corportate Social Responsinily-related activities. We went to Rumah Amal Kasih, an orphanage home in Kota Kinabalu, to help the owners of the home and create fun memories with the children raised there. We helped to clean and organize the house with the lead from the owner and also took our time to celebrate the birthday of one of the children there. The owner was grateful with our help and hoped to see us again soon. Then, we went to UiTM Sabah for Cultural Exchange Program and met up with our fellow diploma students and lecturers there.

On the last day of the trip, we went to check out the Philippine Market in the afternoon since our flight was at 6pm. Noticeably, the market was packed with foreign tourists coming from all over the world and it was very interesting to see the sight and sound. We bought a little souvenir and local snacks, such as Kuih Cincin, keropok, ikan manis a and more. Here is a tip that you could apply; When buying seafoods at the market, remember to bargain the price especially when the price were marked up very high. to bring back home to our families and friends. Thankfully, we arrived in Kuching safely and went home with happy memories.

Tags: Kota Kinabalu | Sabah | Pakej Percutian ke Sabah | Pakej Percutian | Kundasang | Poring Hot Spring | Tamparuli | Tagal | Fish Spa | Holiday Package | Student | Student trip | University trip to Sabah | Double Six Monument | Merdeka Field Kota Kinabalu | Pasar Filipino |


Mulu WhiteWater Rafting

Are you heading to Mulu for a few days of fun, tour and adventure?

If you are heading to Mulu National Park, then you might as well join our WhiteWater Rafting at Sungai Tutoh. This is the latest list of activities organised by Benarat Lodge.


It is a 2 hours adventure for the thrill seeker along the Tutoh River, Add in the fun into your itinerary, as you tour the Caves, witness the 5 million bats coming out from the caves and onwards to see the Penan Settlement.






The Whitewater Rafting package includes safety jacket, trainer to guide you and off you go!

Rate per person: RM150 per person


To know more information, please email us at: Ask@SarawakBorneoTour.com




The annual Padawan Raft Safari 2016

Padawan Raft Safari is a fun water sport held annually since 2004 right here in Sarawak. In this rafting competition, each team needs to build their bamboo raft before the date for it to be used in the race. True to its meaning, this Raft Safari is a great competition, where competitors get to admire wildlife and birds in the wild, passing through the dense jungle with their friends and families and at the same time paddling to the finish line.




The Raft Safari offered RM24,500 worth of prizes up for grabs. Besides rafting and kayaking, there were many side activities such as cultural dance, songs and local traditional cuisine.

A total of 138 competitors signed up for this competition. Depending on the categories that they had signed up for, the participants will be flagged-off from 7:00 a.m to 9:00 a.m, from 3 different villages namely; Annah Rais village, Temurang village and Danu. The finishing line would be at Git village where the closing ceremony will be held at 3:00 p.m.


Image credit to Sarawak Tourism Board website


There were several rafting categories during the competition. For the Rafting Expert and Kayaking Category, the distance from the starting point was approximately 40 km. The approximate distance for Men’s Open Rafting was 26 km while the Women, Government Departments, and Hotels & Tour Agencies Rafting were 22 km.  

In the Expert category, Kampung Sungan’s ‘Puncak Mutiara Tebedu’ finished the course in four hours and 57 minutes, snatching the first place and winning RM3,000 prize money and championship trophy. Finishing close at second place, Saati/SUPP Kampung Biya Jaber clocked four hours and 59 minutes, while Lanting Sadong placed third with a time of five hours and 12 minutes.

In kayaking category, first place was crowned to Eco Adventure Team that had completed the race with the fastest time of four hours and 14 minutes. The second and third place were won by Perkesa B and Perkesa A respectively.

In Men’s Open category, first place goes to Kelab Rekreasi Lingga, while Tebakang won the Women’s Open winning title. Bunan Gega health Clinic emerged the best among the teams competing in government agencies event, while in the tourism agencies and hotel category, the top prize went to BHR 4 Sekawan.

As it is an annual event, we hope to see more of the raft safari in the near future. This is a new tourism product and hopefully as it progresses, we are able to have more international team joining in.



VIVACITY Megamall, the newest and largest shopping mall in Kuching

Shopping malls had increased these past few years in Kuching. One after another opens up their doors to welcome people from all over Kuching, even from all over Sarawak to their mall. The newly opened VIVACITY Megamall, the newest addition to malls in Kuching, had just opened its doors to visitors last December 2015.

The mall was designed by Archicentre, the same team that designed Setia City Mall in Shah Alam. There are also hundreds s of condominiums and suites, called The Jazz Suites @ VIVACITY on top of the mall. It is currently the biggest shopping mall in Kuching, and the carpark has about 3,800 parking bays at basement, podium and roof levels, each with its own dedicated entrance and exit.

The four-level shopping mall is currently buzzing with activities. Almost all shop lots had tenants. On lower ground there are supermarket, specialty food, essentials and services, while on the ground floor, they have international fashion, jewellery & timepieces, cosmetics & skincare and alfresco & cafés such as Nando’s; the first branch in Kuching, the first Tony Roma’s in Borneo, Burger King, The Library, Quiznos Cafe, Secret Recipe and many more.

Besides several newly opened branches of restaurants in Kuching, there are also many firsts of their respective brands or chains opened here in Vivacity. You can find Tokyo Station on Level 2, where you can find lots of Japanese stuff such as groceries, snacks, household products, skincare range, stationery items, luggage and home furnishings. This is the first of its chains in Malaysia. You can even see the “ransel”, a firm-sided backpack made of stitched firm leather or leather-like synthetic material, most commonly used in Japan by elementary schoolchildren sold at the shop. Customers get to purchase Hokkaido Matcha Milk, never-before-seen KitKat flavours such as Cheese Cake, Pumpkin and Sweet Potato, and many other stuff that you may never encounter in our local shops.

Visitors can also visit Sports Direct, the UK’s leading sports retailer, selling varieties of internationally recognised sports and leisure brands; Calliope, an Italian interpretation of the latest fashion trends and the first of its chains in Malaysia; Samba, an Ipanema, Zaxy, Ryder & Grendha Concept Stores from Brazil of which opening ceremony was graced by the “Samba Queen” from Singapore, Farah Dawood De Morais; KAISON, the decoration and gift retailer, focusing on selling affordable yet well designed products; Seoul Garden, an authentic Korean-styled BBQ Buffet restaurant; and so much more!

For those who are not familiar with the roads in Kuching, the mall is located at Jalan Wan Alwi, Tabuan Jaya Baru 2. From city centre, it will take about 20 minutes’ drive.

So, what are you waiting for? Let’s head over to Vivacity Megamall now and check out this new mall!

Tags: Vivacity Megamall | Kuching |


'Lan Berambeh', an annual event for Sarawakians in Peninsula Malaysia

Lan Berambeh, which translates to “Let’s Stay Over” in Sarawak language, had been gaining popularity among Sarawakians in Peninsula Malaysia, especially in Kuala Lumpur.

In the recently held event on 24th of October 2015, it had gathered about 10,000 Sarawakians attending the dinner. The dinner was graced by Yang di-Pertua Negeri Tun Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud and his wife Tok Puan Datuk Patinggi Raghad Kurdi Taib.


Image credit to The Borneo Post


This event was held to support the Sarawakians studying, working and living in Peninsula Malaysia, as well as somewhat healing the homesickness of their home and family.

Tun Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud had launched the dinner that night and a short video titled “Kamek Anak Sarawak” was shown afterwards.



Apart from the dinner, a carnival was held at Putra World Trade Centre from 9 am to 11 pm on the same day. This carnival welcomed everyone who wanted to know more about Sarawak and not only Sarawakians. The carnival had managed to show the uniqueness of Sarawak and the culture to Peninsula Malaysians who attended the carnival. The stalls selling Sarawak products such as food and handicrafts were erected on that day.


Image credit to The Borneo Post


There were also convention sessions for Sarawakian students in the afternoon. There were 4 sessions in total; Education by Yang Berhormat Liwan Lagang, Socio Economy by Datuk Seri Richard Riot, Rural Development by Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah and Politics by Hajah Nancy Shukri.

The annual event which was open to the public, was a platform for Malaysians to familiarise themselves with Sarawak culture. The first ‘Lan Berambeh’ was held on 2008, and by then it was only a dinner gathering for Sarawakians. Over the years, it has become a platform to exhibit Sarawak’s unique culture and craft work while reuniting ‘anak Sarawak’ in Peninsula Malaysia.

Hopefully, this joyous event will continue in foreseeable future so that people from Peninsula Malaysia will get to know Sarawak better.



Bravo Riung Kuring Restaurant, Kuching

The food that we Malaysians eat, or rather should I say the Malay, Chinese and Indian food that has been at the forefront of most of our meals would have been Chicken rice, Nasi Lemak, Laksa, wantan mee, kampua mee, kolok mee, roti canai and many others. However, Malaysia being a hot pot of many other nationalities coming to Malaysia to work, marry or start a new life here has also seen Sundanese food getting popular here. Sundanese tribe from Indonesia has had a strong following in Malaysia.

In Kuching, the popular Sundanese food can be found at Riung Kuring Restaurant. Riung Kuring restaurant is located at No, 97, Jalan Dagok, Off Jln Kulas Utara Satu, 93400 Kuching, Sarawak.



We checked out the restaurant recently and here is our review. The restaurant is located not very far from RHB Bank at Jln Kulas Utara main road but if you did not know about the restaurant, you would never drive in ( turn left) into this small road. We managed to locate the restaurant. It was located at a house that has been converted into a nice little quaint restaurant. They have the outdoor (non aircond) which is actually the car park that has been designed into the sitting area for tables and chairs. Then there is the living room that is air-conditioned.



We browsed the menu and didn’t know what to order as everything looks good. In the end, we settled for Nasi Ayam Bakar Madu and Nasi goreng ayam special. I also ordered a glass of The C Peng Pandan Special and ice lemon tea.

When the food arrived, the food presentation was inviting. The rice was wrapped in banana leaf, served with a piece of grilled chicken thigh which had been slathered with honey. There were a piece of fried tofu, tempe (an Indonesian soy patty), some ulam raja, slices of cucumber and cabbage, a bowl of sourly soup and a small plate of sambal. The soup was quite tasty despite its appearance as the combination of sweet and sour was pretty good. The chicken was so delicious and succulent.



Something new to us. Every meal has the special Sundanese chilli sauce. It tasted a bit like nasi lemak sambal to me. If you ask me, the chilli sauce could double as nasi lemak sambal as well. It was spicy and it actually warmed up my stomach for the whole afternoon after the meal.

My nasi goreng ayam kampung was tasty as it should be. Stir fried with anchovies, put in some cut chilli, dressed with a fried egg on top of the rice, some sliced cucumber, fried chicken wing and of course their signature chilli sauce, home made by them.



The only thing that is not satisfactory is that the anchovies are not crispy enough. They must have heated up the wok, fried the egg, and the poured in the rice and other ingredients together with the anchovies. They should I think fried the anchovies until crispy, then separate it out from the wok. Fried the other ingredients in as well as the rice, and then pour back the anchovies when almost done. That way, not only do we have a tasty nasi goreng, but we will also bite in into the crispiness of the anchovies instead of having a anchovies taste but not crispy. However, despite that, the meal is still wholesome and wonderfully delicious.

The Pandan drink was good. Felt like drinking cendol, the taste that is.



On the whole, we love the food here and will recommend it to anyone who loves spicy, Asian food. Well done Riung Kuring! Keep it up and improve where you can.



Vege Hut, a vegetarian restaurant in Kuching

We visited Vege Hut today. Vege Hut is the newer of the several vegetarian restaurants located at 3rd mile Kuching. Its address is at 2659, Jalan Rock, Central Park Commercial Centre, 93200 Kuching, Sarawak, opposite Timberland Hospital.


It was not packed when we arrived and the restaurant is clean which is a must for us. The restaurant is divided into air-cond and cooling fan section.


They sure have a wide selections ranging from porridge to Chinese dishes and even Indian food like Roti canai of all variety, Thosai, and others.


We decided to try the Indian dishes this time around. We ordered roti canai susu, thosai, vegetable rolls and some drinks.


I have always been fond of Thosai and I have to say that today, I was not disappointed. The Thosai was prepared by an Indian person who works in a Chinese vegetarian restaurant. The Thosai was crispy the way I like it and it was even a little sour like how a Thosai should taste like. I was given a small bowl of curry gravy and a small bowl of curry potatoes, though I much prefer chutney, and dhal. It cost me RM2.20.



Thosai: 9/10

Curry Gravy: 6/10

Portion for money: 8/10


My colleague ordered 2 pieces of Roti Canai susu which was RM2 each. The roti canai when served was sweet because of the condensed milk, and firm. She likes the roti as it is a bit crunchy on the outside, and gooey on the inside. Though, 2 pieces of roti canai susu is a bit overkill since it makes her full for the whole day.



Roti Canai susu: 8/10

Curry Gravy: 6/10

Portion for money: 7/10


Then our vegetable rolls were served. I swear that if you just change the wrapping and use a McDonald’s wrapping paper, anyone would agree that this must be the latest menu from McDonald’s. Food was good.



Vegetable roll: 7/10

Portion for money: 8/10


We ordered Lassi and ngo mee thing (Chinese herb drink that is supposed to cool the body system). Having tasted better, the latter was nothing to shout about. I would give it a 5/10. The lassi is quite nice; foamy, sweet and a bit sour like any other lassi.


Overall, we would give the restaurant 7 out of 10. We like the interior and the cleanliness of the restaurant. Compared to the other restaurants in the area, we like this one the best. The price is also reasonable, and the staffs are friendly. 

Tags: Vege Hut | Vegetarian restaurant in Kuching | Kuching Restaurant |

TUESDAY, JUNE 23, 2015

Refreshing lunch break at Uncle Bean Cafe, Kuching

After a refreshing stroll along Carpenter Street, why don’t you stop by at Uncle Bean Café for lunch ? The café is opened daily from 7:00am to 10:00pm.
The café does not serve pork and they do not use lard in their cooking. The air-conditioning was also perfect after the exhausting stroll under the sun. We also like the interior design of the café. It is decorated with vibrant wallpaper, colourful chairs and the table has abstract design all over it.

Interior at Uncle Bean Cafe
Browsing through the thick menu, there is a variety of Malaysian food available. You can order their fried noodles, fried rice, nasi ayam penyet, curry noodle, and even toast for breakfast.

Uncle Bean's Nasi Ayam Penyet
My friend decided to try their Set Meal, which includes rice, one of their chicken dishes, vegetables and a glass of soft drink. I ordered a glass of ice green tea and a bowl of Sarawak Laksa, since I am on a quest to find the most delicious Sarawak Laksa in Kuching.
After a while, our drinks were served. Along with it, they gave us our cutleries on top of cute paper napkins. When I take a sip of my green tea, it tasted normal. 
Not long after that, my laksa was delivered. I was surprised to see that the bowl was quite big, considering the price was only RM6.00. However, there was a thick layer of oil on top of the laksa. There were also strips of chicken, eggs, bean sprouts and prawns. After squeezing lime and adding sambal belacan into the laksa, I slurped the noodle and was amazed by the taste. It actually tasted good despite the oily gravy. The gravy is not that spicy, a bit sour (because of the lime) and it was seasoned well. Because of that, I finished the laksa contently, just leaving traces of oil at the bottom of the bowl. Actually, I practically almost licked the bowl up. 

Laksa Sarawak
My friend enjoyed her rice with ayam goreng rempah (spice fried chicken?) and a small plate of baby kailan with oyster sauce. In fact, it was the second time that she ordered the fried chicken since she liked it very much when she tried the dish during her first visit at the café. At that time she also ordered a cup of café latte and from the photos that she took, it looks amazing.

Cafe Latte at Uncle Bean Cafe
Cafe Latte at Uncle Bean Cafe
The café also serve cakes and coffees, but when we came in, there were no cakes on display so we didn’t get to try them.
Overall, I gave their laksa 8 out of 10. I wished their gravy was not that oily, or else I would give them a 9. The laksa was delicious and I put it on the third place of my personal Laksa Sarawak ranking. 
I look forward to taste their nasi ayam penyet next, and hope I will not be disappointed. Compliments to the chef! 


Review of Saigon Fusion Vietnamese Restaurant, Kuching

It was on Mother’s Day that I brought my mother to try out this little Saigon Vietnam fusion restaurant at a small lane off Carpenter Street Kuching.




Just a few shops away from the popular pub for tourists lay this little gem. The place was decorated with some Vietnamese painting, an aquarium greeting you at the entrance and some small cloth toys at the counter, which I  imagined is for sale. Some wood painting decorated the wall, and dim light with wooden furniture all combined to create a urban oriental feel, though I felt that the furniture was a bit large for a small restaurant, as it occupied more space than necessary.




The restaurant is not very big, and there were a few diners already having their dinner when we arrived but the staff there was very busy taking orders and helping out at the kitchen. The ambience stayed lively with many tourists flocking in.




The food variety was not many, and there were some Vietnamese coffee and soft drinks at RM4 a can. We were greeted with cold wheatgrass drink each upon sitting down. Menu was simple, the usual ever popular spring rolls consisting of sliced prawn, vegetables and a slice of meat and beef noodles.



Spring Rolls


It being a Mother’s Day, we ordered some spring rolls at RM18 a plate, baked crabs with special Vietnam sauce ( 3 small crabs at RM42), some vermicelli with pork chop, and vermicelli with prawns stuffed over lemongrass stick.


Baked Crabs with special sauce

Baked crabs with special Vietnam sauce


We find the spring rolls a bit bland but perhaps that is how Vietnam spring rolls are like and the dish that we liked the best was the baked crab. It was a bit sweet and yet tasty. When I asked for a shell breaker to break open the crab shell, they gave me a piece of paper and the shell breaker. That was great because usually when you pound down on the crab shell, the juices from within the shell or the broken pieces of the shell would fly away and may landon your face which could be rather embarrassing. So with the paper, I wrapped it over the crab before I pounded down on it. Nice, neat and no mess except when you have to diligently pull out the broken shell from the flesh, which was also fun in eating crab meat.


Vermicelli with prawn stick

Vermicelli with prawns stuffed over lemongrass stick


After that, our Mango Sticky Rice dessert arrived. It cost RM25 a plate. It was not exactly what I expected. I remembered tasting them in Thailand, and the sticky rice with the sauce which is actually made up of coconut cream is a bit salty. Here, the sauce is sweet only, and not salty like the Thai mango sticky rice dessert. Again, perhaps this Is their own version of a Vietnam Mango Sticky Rice dessert. My brother however enjoyed the sticky rice, as he found it cooked just nice and tender. As novices about Vietnamese food, we were not sure what to expect but the simple menu and the delicious baked crab was satisfying enough and it was a very fulfilling dinner for my whole family.

Tags: Vietnam Saigon Restaurant | Vietnamese food Kuching | |