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
  Sarawak Tourism
  Getting There & Around
  Sarawak Map 1
  Sarawak Map 2
  General Info
  Bidayuh (Land Dayak's)
  Iban (Sea Dayak's)
  Orang Ulu
  Iban Longhouse Visit
  General Info
  Pua Kumbu, Pua Sungkit & Pua Karap
  Eating Out, Nightlife & Local Delicacy
  Adventure Nature & Wildlife
  National Parks & Wildlife Conservation
  General Info
  Bus Service / Transportation
  History & People
  Dining & Entertainment
  Recreation & Sports
  Spa Retreats
  City Centre
  Kuching On Foot
  Heritage Trails
  Historical Buildings
  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
  General Info
  Dining & Entertainment
  Shopping & Accommodation
  City Centre
  Bawang Assan Iban Longhouse
  Melanau's Heartland:
  Mukah Town
  Dalat Town
  Up Rejang River:
  General Info
  Kanowit, Song & Belaga
  Down Rejang River:
  General Info
  General Info
  City Map
  In & Around Miri Map
  Lifestyle & Nightlife
  Must Visit Places
  Bario & Ba?kelalan
  Gunung Mulu National Park
  Lambir Hills National Park
  Loagan Bunut National Park
  Niah National Park
  Similajau National Park
WELCOME TO SARAWAK - The Land Of Hornbills

Kuching - Sarawak Capital


Situated on the north-western coast of Borneo, the land of hornbills, intricate rivers and pepper beckons the visitor with its rich rainforests and the diverse lifestyles of its indigenous people. Sarawak shares its boundaries with Kalimantan in the south and Brunei and Sabah in the north. Sarawak is Malaysia?s largest state, covering an area of 124,450sq km and is divided into nine Divisions with the city of Kuching as its capital. Two-thirds of its land is under rainforest and its population of 1.7 million is made up of 23 ethnic groups. Sarawak is best known for its natural and cultural wonders. The hornbill, a protected bird, is the state emblem.


Ethnic Culture - Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo

Sarawak is a land of colourful cultures boasting 27 ethnic groups, 45 languages and dialects who call Sarawak home. Be charmed and mesmerised by their cultural festivals and celebrations. Let the romance of Sarawak ?s rich cultural diversity set the stage for your perfect holiday!


The Ibans and Chinese each make up a third of the population. The Malays are third in number followed by the Bidayuh, Melanau and Orang Ulu. The Ibans depend on fishing, hunting and farming for a living. The Malays are mostly farmers and fisher folk, and live in the coastal areas. The Bidayuhs were coastal settlers who had been driven inland by sea pirates. Considered the original settlers of Sarawak, the Melanaus are fisher folk. Many of these ethnic groups dwell along the great rivers. They live in longhouses, where the entire population of a village virtually live under one roof. They are very hospitable to travellers and many visitors stay overnight in a long house during their visit.


Sarawak ethnic dancers - Malaysian Borneo


Archaeological finds at Santubong peninsula showed that the Chinese came to trade during the Tang, Sung, and Yuan dynasties from A.D. 618 to 1368. Little is known about its later history except that at some point Sarawak came under the suzerainty of the sultan of Brunei. Inhabited by Bidayuh tribesmen, Sarawak did not interest anyone very much until the rise of Singapore put a new market of trade in the area. In the 1820?s, some Brunei nobles moved to Kuching, planning to sell Sarawak?s gold and jungle produce to traders. Their policies soon provoked a rebellion.


There was also trouble between the Malay coastal settlers and the Land Dayaks (Bidayuh). Into this scenario stepped English adventurer James Brooke in 1839. Brooks had been with the East India Company?s army briefly. While visiting Singapore in his private yacht, he was asked to take a letter to the Brunei viceroy in Kuching. There he was persuaded by Rajah Muda Hassim, heir apparent to the Sultan of Brunei, to help quell the uprising. Brooke managed to persuade all sides into agreeing to a truce. As a token of gratitude he was given the title of governor and Rajah of Sarawak by the Brunei sultan.


Hence, in this strange fashion Sarawak came under the Brooke dynasty. His rule of  justice without favouritism augured well. His nephew Charles Brooke succeeded him and it was during Charles time that oil was found in Sarawak, rubber introduced as a cash crop and some of Kuching?s elegant old buildings came into being. Charles Brooke died in 1917 at the age of 86 and was succeeded by his eldest son Charles Vyner Brooke, whose rule was short-lived as the state was handed over to the British Crown in 1945. In 1963 Sarawak joined the Federated States of Malaysia.


On the whole, Sarawak has an equatorial climate. The temperature is relatively uniform within the range of 23?C to 32?C throughout the year. During the months of March to September, the weather is generally dry and warm. Humidity is consistently high on the lowlands ranging from 85 per cent to 95 per cent per annum. The average rainfall per year is between 3,300 mm and 4,600 mm, depending on locality, and the wettest months are from November to February.


Sarawak is presently divided into 11 administrative divisions - Kuching, Sri Aman, Sibu, Miri, Limbang, Sarikei, Kapit, Kota Samarahan, Bintulu, Mukah and Betong. Kuching is the seat of government for modern Sarawak and is home to some 458,300 people making it the highest populated city in Sarawak and the 7th highest populated city in Malaysia. Sarawak has a Chief Minister, which heads a Cabinet of Ministers. The Chief Minister is appointed by the Yang di-Pertuan Negeri (or Governor), from amongst members of the State's Legislative Council. Elections are held every five years. The present Chief Minister is YAB Pehin Sri Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri (Dr) Haji Abdul Taib Mahmud. Kuching is also where the Head of the State of Sarawak, the Yang di-Pertua Negeri (Governor) His Excellency Tun Abang Muhammad Salahuddin Abang Barieng resides.


The economic activity of Sarawak is mostly dominated by mining, agriculture and forestry sectors. Other sectors like manufacturing, wholesale, retail trading and construction also contributed to the State's income. The primary sectors (i.e., mining, agriculture, and forestry) make up about 40 per cent of the state's total real Gross Domestic Product (GDP), followed by the secondary sector (i.e., manufacturing and construction) with about slightly more than 30 per cent of total real GDP. Sarawak is blessed with an abundance of natural resources.


LNG and petroleum have provided the mainstay of the state's economy for decades. Sarawak is also one of the world's largest exporters of tropical hardwood timber. However, the state government has imposed strict log-production quotas over the recent years to ensure sustainable forestry management. Sarawak still, however, produces approximately 9 to 10 million cubic metres of logs annually. With such vast land expanse, Sarawak has large tracts of land suitable for commercial agricultural development. Approximately 32 per cent or about 4.0 million hectares of the state's total land area have been identified as suitable agricultural land.


Nevertheless, less than 9 per cent of this is planted with productive permanent crops, while the balance is still under shifting cultivation for hill paddy (rice) that is estimated at more than 1.6 million hectares. The main commercial crops are oil palm, which has been increasing steadily over the years as well as sago, and pepper. Since the 1980s, Sarawak has started to diversify and transform its economy into a more industrialised one. This endeavor has been seeing continuing success, with manufacturing and hi-tech industries now playing a significant role in shaping the economic expansion of the state.


Every person entering Malaysia must possess a valid national Passport or internationally recognised Travel Document valid for travel to Malaysia. Any person not in possession of a Passport or Travel Document that is recognised by the Malaysian Government must obtain a Document in lieu of Passport. Application for the Document in lieu of Passport can be made at any Malaysian Representative Office abroad. Holders of Travel Documents like a Certificate of Identity, Laisser Passer, Titre de Voyage or a Country's Certificate of Permanent Residence must ensure that their return to the country that issued the document or the country of residence is guaranteed. The documents shall be valid, for more than six (6) months from the date of entry into Malaysia.


Foreign nationals who require a Visa to enter Malaysia must apply and obtain a Visa in advance at the Malaysian Representative Office before entering the country. A visa is an endorsement in a passport or other recognised travel document of foreigner indicating that the holder has applied for permission to enter Malaysia and that permission has been granted. Foreign nationals who require a Visa to enter Malaysia must apply and obtain a Visa in advance at any Malaysian Representative Office abroad before entering the country. Visa that has been granted is not absolute guarantee that the holder will be allowed to enter Malaysia. The final decision lies with the Immigration Officer at the entry point.


The Visa On Arrival (VOA) service is now available at the Kuching International Airport. The service which was introduced nationwide on September 1, 2006, was in line with Malaysia?s effort to encourage more tourists particularly from China and India. The service was also introduced to cater for the anticipated tourist influx during Visit Malaysia Year 2007. Apart from Kuching International Airport, the VOA service is also available at Kuala Lumpur International Airport, Penang International Airport, Kota Kinabalu International Airport, Senai International Airport and Tanjung Kupang in Johor.


Application for VOA can be made at the Immigration Check Point at the Arrival Hall in KIA. At the moment there is no special counter set up to process the VOA application. However, plan is in the pipeline to set up a special counter to handle VOA service. A Mandarin speaking translator is also available the Immigration Counter to assist Mandarin speaking tourists with the VOA application.


The processing fee for VOA at KIA is RM100 per person and at the moment payment is in cash only. No payment in foreign currency and credit card will be accepted. The VOA application is for a single entry visa and will only be issued for social visit only. Those intending to apply for multiple entry visas should do so with their respective consulate. The visa will only valid for 30 days and applicants must possess a confirmed return ticket as well as a valid passport. Applicant intending to apply for the VOA should not be listed on Malaysia?s ?Suspect List?.


VOA service is only eligible for tourist coming from Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, Hong Kong, India, Myanmar (ordinary passport), Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Taiwan. VOA is not available to tourists from the following countries unless they possess work permit issued in Singapore. The countries are Angola, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central Africa Republic, Cote D?lvoire, Republic of Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Djiboufi, Equatorial Guinea, Eritea, Ethiopia, Guinea- Bissau, Ghana, Liberia, Mali, Mozambique, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda and Western Sahara.


The service is strictly not available for tourists coming from Isreal, Republic of Serbia, Republic of Montenegro and Colombia.




A visitor is also required to present proof of his financial ability to finance his/her stay in Malaysia together with a confirmed return ticket to another destination.


Any person classified under Section 8 of Immigration Act 1959/63 will not be allowed to enter Malaysia even though he/she is in possession of a valid Passport or Travel Document, Visa, travel ticket and sufficient funds.


A visitor is required to complete the Arrival/Departure Card (Imm.26) upon arrival at the gazette entry points. This card is obtainable at any entry point, Malaysian Representative office abroad or travel agencies. A visitor must present his/her passport together with the duly completed arrival / departure card to the Immigration officer on duty and he/she must ensure that the passport or travel document is endorsed with the appropriate pass before leaving the immigration counter.

WELCOME TO SARAWAK - The Land Of Hornbills