Malaysia My Destination : Info about Tourist Attraction and Destination Guide
Kuala Lumpur : Malaysia Capital - Tourist Attraction and Destination Guide
Putrajaya : Federal Territory - Malaysia
Selangor : Central Region Of Peninsular Malaysia - Tourist Attraction and Destination Guide
 
Terengganu : East Coast Region Of Peninsular Malaysia - Tourist Attraction and Destination Guide
Kelantan : East Coast Region Of Peninsular Malaysia - Tourist Attraction and Destination Guide
Pahang : East Coast Region Of Peninsular Malaysia - Tourist Attraction and Destination Guide
 
Johor / Johore : Southern Region Of Peninsular Malaysia - Tourist Attraction and Destination Guide
Malacca / Melaka : Southern Region Of Peninsular Malaysia - Tourist Attraction and Destination Guide
Negeri Sembilan / The Nine State : Southern Region Of Peninsular Malaysia - Tourist Attraction and Destination Guide
 
Kedah (Langkawi) : Northern Region Of Peninsular Malaysia - Tourist Attraction and Destination Guide
Penang / Pulau Pinang : Northern Region Of Peninsular Malaysia - Tourist Attraction and Destination Guide
Perak : Northern Region Of Peninsular Malaysia - Tourist Attraction and Destination Guide
Perlis : Northern Region Of Peninsular Malaysia - Tourist Attraction and Destination Guide
 
Sabah : East Malaysia / Malaysian Borneo - Tourist Attraction and Destination Guide
Labuan (Federal Territory) : East Malaysia / Malaysian Borneo - Tourist Attraction and Destination Guide
Sarawak : East Malaysia / Malaysian Borneo - Tourist Attraction and Destination Guide
 
  Welcome
  Sarawak Tourism
  Getting There & Around
 
  Sarawak Map 1
  Sarawak Map 2
 
  PEOPLE & ETHNIC GROUP:
 
  General Info
  Bidayuh (Land Dayak's)
  Iban (Sea Dayak's)
  Melanau
  Orang Ulu
 
  Iban Longhouse Visit
 
  ARTS & CRAFTS:
  General Info
  Pua Kumbu, Pua Sungkit & Pua Karap
   
  Eating Out, Nightlife & Local Delicacy
 
  PLACES OF INTEREST :
 
  Adventure Nature & Wildlife
  National Parks & Wildlife Conservation
   
  KUCHING (STATE CAPITAL):
 
  General Info
  Bus Service / Transportation
  Map
 
  History & People
  Dining & Entertainment
  Nightlife
  Shopping
 
  Recreation & Sports
  Spa Retreats
 
  TOURIST ATTRACTION
  City Centre
  Kuching On Foot
  Heritage Trails
  Historical Buildings
  Museums
  Handicrafts
  Street Life
 
  Nature & National Parks
  Bako National Park
  Batang Ai National Park
  Gunung Gading National Park
  Kubah National Park
  Kuching Wetlands National park
  Matang Wildlife Centre
  Semenggoh Nature Reserve
  Talang Satang National Park
  Tanjung Datu National Park
 
  Santubong & Damai Beach
  General Info
  Irrawady Dolphin
  Sarawak Cultural Village
 
  Kuching Southwest
  Tourist Destination
  Teluk Melano & Sematan
 
  Sibu
  General Info
  Dining & Entertainment
  Shopping & Accommodation
 
  TOURIST ATTRACTION
  City Centre
  Bawang Assan Iban Longhouse
 
  Melanau's Heartland:
  Mukah Town
  Dalat Town
 
  Up Rejang River:
  General Info
  Kanowit, Song & Belaga
  Kapit
 
  Down Rejang River:
  General Info
 
  Miri
  General Info
  City Map
  In & Around Miri Map
 
  Lifestyle & Nightlife
  Shopping
 
  TOURIST ATTRACTION
  Must Visit Places
  Bario & Ba?kelalan
 
  Gunung Mulu National Park
  Lambir Hills National Park
  Loagan Bunut National Park
  Niah National Park
  Similajau National Park
 
 
 
 
SARAWAK - EAST MALAYSIA / MALAYSIA BORNEO

KUCHING : History & People

 
 

HISTORY - THE WHITE RAJA'S

 

Kuching?s history is also Sarawak?s; the kind of adventure story that would be unbelievable if it were not true. Local bookshops are crammed with volumes old and new describing the reign of the White Rajahs in great detail. What follows is a brief summary. At the beginning of the 19th century, Sarawak was a typical Malay principality, under the control of the Sultan of Brunei. Apart from occasional piracy on the coast and headhunting in the interior, Sarawak was peaceful. All of this changed when the Sultan of Brunei appointed a hugely unpopular Governor.

 

The Malays and Bidayuhs of the Sarawak River revolted in 1836 and declared independence. An ugly guerrilla war ensued, which continued until 1839, when James Brooke, a young, wealthy Englishman arrived on the scene in his well-armed yacht, The Royalist. Brooke set himself up as a freelance adventurer and the Sultan?s uncle immediately asked him to help put down the rebellion. Brooke readily agreed. The spears and muskets of the rebels were no match for a modern warship, and the conflict soon ended. As a reward, the grateful Sultan made Brooke the Rajah of Sarawak in 1841.

 

Brooke was not content to rule over a small riverside town, and set out to pacify his new kingdom, with the help of the British Navy. At the time of his death in 1868, Sarawak was a relatively peaceful territory covering the area between Tanjung Datu (which is now the Indonesian border) and Kuching.

 

James Brooke?s nephew Charles, who succeeded him, was no adventurer like his uncle, but an excellent administrator and politician. He set up a proper system of government, gradually expanding his area of control until it formed the present day Sarawak. His legacy is everywhere in Kuching. It was he who built the Astana, Fort Margherita, the Courthouse, the Sarawak Museum and many other fine buildings. Charles Brooke died in 1917, and was succeeded by his son, Charles Vyner Brooke, who built on his father?s achievements and improved the general administration of the state. In 1941 he set up a State Council to oversee the passing of new laws, bringing the first stirrings of democracy to Sarawak. The rule of the State Council was short-lived, as the Japanese invaded at the end of the same year. When the Japanese surrendered in September 1945, Sarawak came under Australian military administration. Vyner Brooke felt the state would be better off as a colony and ceded it to Britain. This move was very unpopular and resulted in the assassination of the Governor, Duncan Stewart, in 1949. Order was eventually restored and the colonial administration concentrated on preparing Sarawak for independence. In 1963, Sarawak and Sabah gained independence by joining with Malaya to form the new nation of Malaysia.

 
 
 

THE PEOPLE OF KUCHING

 

 

Kuching is a cosmopolitan city, and this is reflected in the faces on the streets. Whilst the population is predominantly Chinese and Malay, Kuching is home to people from virtually all of Sarawak?s 26-plus ethnic groups. As well as Bidayuhs (formerly known as Land Dayaks) and Ibans (Sea Dayaks), you are sure to encounter Melanaus from the coastal areas and Orang Ulu (literally "upriver people"), the collective name given to the smaller indigenous groups, including Kayan, Kenyah, Kelabit, Berawan, Lun Bawang, Penan, etc. All are thoroughly modern Malaysians nowadays, but many of the rural people still live in longhouse communities.

 

This rich and varied cultural heritage makes Kuching a great place to buy native handicrafts, as all of Sarawak?s ethnic groups produce excellent craftsmen and women. The variety of goods on offer is simply enormous. Kuching is also the ideal base for visiting longhouses. Local travel agents have a variety of tours, ranging from half-day trips to nearby Bidayuh longhouses, to week-long safaris to Iban longhouses on the Skrang, Lemanak, Batang Ai and Rejang rivers. Longhouse visits are always interesting and invariably great fun.

 
 
 
 
KUCHING : History & People
SARAWAK - EAST MALAYSIA / MALAYSIA BORNEO