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
  Irrawaddy 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
SIBU : UP REJANG RIVER - General Info
 
 

UP REJANG RIVER

SIBU DISTRICT

 

The Rejang, Malaysia?s longest river at over 530km, is a unique travel experience. The river and its tributaries are lined by thousands of villages wooden longhouses, home to a cultural kaleidoscope of ethnic groups, each with their own distinct culture. A journey up the Rejang introduces the visitor a different side of Sarawak - a glimpse of raw Borneo, of a rugged landscape and a river that is constantly alive with boats and people. For adventurous travellers, this is what Borneo is all about. Most travellers begin their journey in Sibu, using express boats to travel upriver to Kapit or other small towns along the way. These unique torpedoshaped craft thunder upriver at quire remarkable speeds of 30 knots (55km/h) or more. From the window you can see the wide variety of traffic on river - from small dugout canoes to barges weighing hundreds of tons - as well as dozens of modern and traditional longhouses, surrounded by spectacular jungle scenery.

 
 
THE PEOPLE
 

Chinese belonging to various dialect groups (mostly Foochow and Hokkien) are found in all the towns and riverine settlements of the Rejang. However once you leave the major towns, the bulk of the Rejang?s population are indigenous. The lower Rejang (Sibu to Kapit) and its tributaries are Iban territory. The Iban, formerly known as Sea Dayaks, are famous for their head-hunting past, their massive ironwood longhouses, their ornate body tattooing, their wonderful weaving skills, and of course their potent rice wine, tuak, which is always offered to visitors. Above Kapit and the Pelagus Rapids, the people are mostly Orang Ulu (literally "upriver people"), the collective name for a number of smaller groups including the Kayan, Kenyah, Kajang, Lahanan, Ukit and Punan. Also former-head-hunters, they live in even more imposing longhouses than the Iban.

 

However their arts and crafts are very different; they are famous for woodcarving and beadwork, spectacular keliring or totem poles, and the music of a haunting, mandolin-like instrument - the sape. Tattooing and body ornamentation are prominent; older orang ulu ladies can be recognised by the brass rings hanging from their extended earlobes, and from the dense black tattoos on their arms and legs, although the practice is sadly disappearing amongst the younger generation.

 

Further upriver, visitors may occasionally encounter small groups of nomadic Penan, hunter-gatherers and occasional farmers who live deep in the heart of the forest, moving their temporary settlements according to the seasonal availability of food and the forest products that they trade with the longhouse dwellers. The sheer variety of different communities makes the Rejang a real cultural kaleidoscope. Its people take great pride on their arts, traditions and culture, and are very happy to receive visitors; it is never a question of which longhouse to visit, but how many.

 
 
 
VISITING LONGHOUSES
 

A longhouse is basically a terraced street of separate dwellings covered by one roof, under the authority of a headman, or tuai rumah. Each family lives in its separate apartment, or bilik, and communal activities take place outside on the verandah, or ruai. This is also where male visitors spend the night. Female visitors will be invited to stay inside the bilik with the family. Most longhouses are busy, modern farming communities, and people wear practical clothes like jeans and T-shirts when they are at work. Traditional costumes and head-dresses are usually only worn for special festivals like Gawai Dayak (the Dayak harvest festival, 1st & 2nd of June), and weddings.

 

If you want to see traditional rituals, customs and dances, then unless you are very lucky it is best to go with a guide or organised tour group. Visitors are very welcome at most longhouses, but only if they are expected or have an invitation from a resident. A list of longhouse dos and don?ts is available on the Kapit Resident?s Office website (see Kapit).

 
 
 
 
SIBU : UP REJANG RIVER - General Info
SARAWAK - EAST MALAYSIA / MALAYSIA BORNEO