Kuching

Kuching is the capital and largest city of the East Malaysian state of Sarawak and the district of Kuching, as well as the largest city on the island of Borneo.

Kuching riverfront at dusk

Understand

Once the capital of the White Rajahs of Sarawak, now with a population of some 600,000, Kuching is small enough to walk around but interesting enough to keep you there for several days, and a good base for exploring Sarawak. It's safe and relatively clean. The name of the city, Kuching, is thought to derive from the Malay word kucing, meaning cat. Many of the locals refer to Kuching as the "Cat City" but it more likely comes from the Chinese word for port ("cochin") coupled with the Malay name mata kucing (cat's-eye) for the longan fruit, a popular trade item. The people of Kuching take pride in being the cleanest city in Malaysia and their diverse cultures, so be prepared for a totally different experience from that of West Malaysia.

Kuching Skyline

History

Sarawak was a part of the Sultanate of Brunei 200 years ago but as a reward for help in putting down a rebellion, it was ceded to the British adventurer James Brooke who ruled it as his personal kingdom. Kuching was made his capital and headquarters. The Brooke Administration was given the status of Protectorate under Rajah Charles Brooke's rule and was placed behind the Indian Rajs and Princes. The Brooke family ruled Sarawak until the Japanese occupation in December 1941.

Kuching was surrendered to the Japanese forces on 24 December 1941, and Sarawak was part of the Japanese Empire for three years and eight months, until the official Japanese surrender on 11 September 1945 on board the Australian naval vessel HMAS Kapunda at Kuching. From March 1942 the Japanese operated a POW and civilian internee camp at Batu Lintang, 5 km (3 ml) outside Kuching.

After the end of World War II the third the last Rajah, Sir Charles Vyner Brooke ceded Sarawak to the British Crown in 1946. Sarawak and the British Commonwealth fought an "Undeclared War" with Indonesia to keep Sarawak from being absorbed into Sukarno's Indonesia. The British gave Sarawak independence in 1963 and together with North Borneo, Sabah and Singapore, helped form Malaysia on 16 September 1963. Singapore became an independent nation in 1965.

People

Kuching prides itself on being one of the most multi-racial cities in Malaysia. The Chinese speak Hokkien, Hakka and Foochow. Other notable "dialect" groups among the Chinese include the Cantonese, Teochew, Hainanese and Heng Hua. The Malays, who are comprised of Kuching's original inhabitants as well as migrants from neighboring Indonesia, form only slightly less of the population than the Chinese, while Ibans form about 5% of the population. There are also original Indian migrants who have lived in Kuching for many decades. The Indians are divided evenly between Tamils, Sikhs and Punjabis. The remainder are other indigenous races, most notably the Bidayuhs, Melanaus, Javanese and Orang Ulu settlers. What makes Kuching city unique from other towns in Sarawak is, Kuching city population does not reflect the true demography of the whole Sarawak.

Most people of Chinese descent live in South Kuching area, like Padungan and Pending. The Malay mostly live at North Kuching area, and are spread evenly throughout South Kuching area. Other races like Iban, Bidayuh, Melanau and Orang Ulu are spread evenly throughout Padawan and some at South and North Kuching. Indian communities of Tamil descent mostly live at Batu Lintang and Gita area, while Javanese communities mostly live at Mile 20 Kuching-Serian Road, Rantau Panjang (Batu Kawa) and Kg. Kolong at Matang.

Climate

Kuching enjoys sunshine throughout the year like any other tropical rainforest climate. There's no dry season and no pronounced summer or winter; it typically averages a degree or two around 26C, 80F and rainfall is both heavy and frequent. One day can be very similar to the next, in Kuching it is drier in July and August and wetter between November and February, the time of the Landas (monsoon). However, this does not hinder tourists' activities. Because Kuching is about 100 miles, 160 km, north of the equator hurricanes are most unlikely to occur. It is not on the "Ring of Fire" so earthquake tremors are rare.

Holidays

Kuching, and Sarawak as a whole celebrate all Federal holidays except Deepavali. Sarawak has also declared holiday for Good Friday (1 day) and Gawai Day (2 days). Unlike other states in Malaysia, not all Islamic events are declared as a holiday other than; Hari Raya Aidilfitri (2 days), Hari Raya Aidiladha (1 day), Maulud Nabi (1 day) and Awal Muharram (1 day).

Avoid touring to the Santubong area during first day of Hari Raya Aidilfitri as heavy traffic occurs at Petra Jaya. Tourists can expect a large local celebration for major holidays such as Chinese New Year, Hari Raya Aidilfitri and Gawai Day . Gawai is a local ritualistic celebration similar to a harvest celebration with proceedings commencing around sunset on the evening of 31 May. It is an officially recognised holiday only in Sarawak and the subsequent celebrations may last for several days.

Orientation

Kuching city can be divided into a few areas:

Talk

Kuching is a very multicultural place, and most locals speak at least Malay and their ethnic tongue, with quite a number able to speak a decent level of English as well. This is due to the fact all Kuchingnites take English as a second or third language. The ability to speak either Malay, English or Mandarin is usually enough for someone in Kuching to get by.

Speaking Malay in Kuching

Please notice some basic communication terms in Bahasa Melayu Sarawak.

  • Kamek - I
  • Kitak - You
  • Auk - Yes
  • Sik - No
  • Igek - Piece
  • Kamek Mauk Pergi Jamban Dolok - I Would Like To Go To The Toilet
  • Kitak Dari Siney? - Where Are You From?
  • Nyaman Juak Makanan Tok - This Food Is Quite Tasty
  • Kamek Ngupok/Mupok Dolok - I'd Like To Make A Move
  • Nama-Name
  • Maok-Want
  • Jamban-Toilet
  • Duit-Money

While standard Malay is well understood, the local dialect, known as "Bahasa Melayu Sarawak", is different enough to be officially categorized as its own language. Malays from coastal part of Sarawak, especially the one from Sebuyau, Kabong, Saratok, Betong, Sri Aman and the surrounding areas speak different dialect called "Bahasa Orang Laut". Malays from Sibu and Miri speak similar language with Kuchingites Malay, but they have some terms unique to their dialect, for example "Pia" in Sibu (in Kuching, they called it "Sia", which means "there"), "Cali" in Miri (in Kuching, they called it "Jenaka", which means "funny"). However, Bahasa Melayu spoken in Limbang and Lawas is a distant difference from Bahasa Melayu Sarawak spoken throughout Kuching-Miri.

Most Chinese in Kuching speak Hokkien (Minnan) as their native tongue, but Mandarin is the standard language of education and spoken by nearly all Chinese in Kuching.

The Iban language is spoken by some Iban people in Kuching, but almost all of them also understand Malay. You may also encounter speakers of other tribal languages like Bidayuh, Melanau and Orang Ulu.

The lack of homogeneous language used by the peoples is also clearly reflected around the city. Signs such as road names are written in Malay and Chinese. Street signs are in Malay. Shop names and other private signs are usually written in Malay, English or/and Chinese.

Get in

As Kuching is in Sarawak, which retains control of its own immigration procedures, some additional complications apply and an ordinary Malaysian visa may not suffice. Most visitors, though, can get visas on arrival at Kuching International Airport. See Sarawak for details.

By plane

Kuching International Airport (IATA: KCH) is Sarawak's main gateway. There are near-hourly connections to Kuala Lumpur as well as frequent flights to Singapore, Johor Bahru, Labuan, Kota Kinabalu and other cities in Sarawak like Sibu, Bintulu and Miri. MASwings links Kuching with Mukah. International connections are rather limited, although there are a few weekly services to Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Pontianak and Brunei. Flights to Kuching are also operated by AirAsia and Firefly. International airlines operating in Kuching includes SilkAir, Tiger Airways, and Batavia Air.

The airport underwent a major facelift in 2005-2006 and is now modern and pleasant. When checking in, note that passengers onboard all flights leading out of Sarawak (including Peninsular Malaysia, Labuan and Sabah) must head through passport control. On the airside, all domestic flights (both within and outside Sarawak) are on the lower concourse (second floor, airside) and the few international flights are on the upper concourse (third floor, airside). The three gates on the upper concourse (H7, H8 and H9) lead to the holding rooms for gates 7, 8 and 9 below, respectively. There are neither shops nor restaurants on the upper concourse, so international passengers will not have the benefits of domestic ones (unless you are lucky enough to have a heavily delayed flight and the airport grants you access to the lower concourse).

Meanwhile the lower concourse has gates R1-R3 and 1-9. Gates R1-R3 on one end are used by MASwings flights (i.e. that requires passengers to walk on the taxiway to their plane), 1-4 are usually used by AirAsia, Firefly and other budget airlines, and the remaining gates (5-9) by other airlines. Shops, restaurants and makeshift shop stalls are found between gates 4 and 7, including Marrybrown fast food near gate 4 and Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf near the holding room for gate 7. Walking from gate R1 to gate 9 takes about 10 minutes.

In the arrival hall (ground floor, landside), there are several restaurants, including the kopitiam 'OldTown White Coffee' at one end and a McDonald's outlet beside the escalators. In the departure hall (second floor, landside), there are KFC and Starbucks outlets.

Getting there/away: Kuching city is about 20 min away by taxi, a fixed RM26 from the taxi coupon stand just outside arrivals. Ignore the touts, even if they show you price lists. From the city you can get a private vehicle for around RM20 or catch a mini bus (RM7.99 for Tune guests); RM10 for others. must be booked at least 1 day in advance leaving hourly from 8:30AM-evening.

The Sarawak Transport Company's (STC) bus 12A no longer serves the 5 daily trips between the airport and the city centre. There is a series of other buses which can drop you off or pick you up approximately 1 KM west of the Airport (turn left as you exit the airport and walk to the main T intersection, turn left again and walk until you reach the big roundabout and catch a bus heading north to town namely 3A, 6, 8G and 9. The most convenient place to catch these buses back to the airport intersection is at the main bus terminal located in the city.

On a list of available buses in Kuching published by the tourist information one can find bus K13 from / to airport (06:30, 09:15, 12:15, 15:00 / 08:00, 10:30, 13:30, 17:30) but also the statement that "public bus service in not reliable or accurate".

By boat

The Express Bahagia and Express Sejahtera express boats run an alternating once daily service from Kuching to Sibu, each boat returning the next day. RM55 one way and the journey takes 5.5 hr, with stops at Sarikei and Tanjung Manis. The boats depart from the Pending wharf to the east of the city at 8:30AM. You can usually buy tickets at the wharf. Getting there/away: Chin Lian Long buses No. 1A, 17 and 19 go to the express boat jetty. 60 sen one way. Taxis usually charge RM15.

The Express Bahagia boat from Sibu to Kuching leaves daily at 11h30 and costs RM55 (March 2016).

Check the official schedules.

By bus

Kuching's regional express bus terminal is located along Jl. Datuk Tawi Sli, also dubbed as "3 and a half miles", located south of the city, just before the Boulevard shopping mall. All long-distance express buses arrive from and leave for major Sarawak cities like Sibu, Bintulu and Miri, as well as Pontianak in Indonesia. Regional buses for some towns near Kuching such as Lundu (for the Gunung Gading National Park and Tanjung Datu National Park) and Sri Aman also arrive/depart from here. However, buses for some towns and destinations nearer Kuching, such as the Bako National Park, Bau and the Semenggoh Orang Utan Centre, leave from various locations in the city centre, depending on the bus company being used. See the individual destinations below for details.

By car

From Indonesia

To travel by car from Indonesia is pretty straight forward. As a member of Asean, an Indonesian driving license is legal and accepted in Malaysia.

Please see the Pontianak to Kuching for travel itinerary on this route.

Within Malaysia and From Brunei Darussalam

Sarawak is a huge state. The road networks connecting towns and places in Sarawak including Kuching are somehow quite satisfactorily maintained. However, long and winding roads with sometimes no rest stops in between might bore you or scare you. Here are the distance chart from Kuching to other towns:

Distance Table from Kuching to other towns in Sarawak
From To Distance/Accumulative Distance From Kuching (in Kilometre) Rest Stops
Kuching Sri Aman 193/193 Siburan, Tapah, Beratok, Tarat, Serian, Balai Ringin, Lachau
Sri Aman Sarikei 179/372 Engkilili, Betong, Saratok
Sarikei Sibu 90/462 Meradong, Julau, Pakan, Jakar
Sibu Bintulu 202/644 Stapang, Selangau, Tatau
Bintulu Miri 198/842 Suai, Batu Niah, Sibuti, Bekenu, Bakam
Miri Limbang 230/1072 Sg. Tujuh, Kuala Belait (Brunei), Seria (Brunei), Tutong (Brunei), Bandar Seri Begawan (Brunei)
Limbang Lawas 128/1200 Bangar, Temburong (Brunei), Sundar, Trusan

Sabahan people as well as from Brunei can also commute freely to Kuching using Pan Borneo Highway network. However, it is subject to a lot of stopover at immigration checkpoints. Therefore, travelling to Kuching from Sabah is not advisable. Bruneian commuters should produce driving permit which is simply by filling a form at the Malaysian border checkpoint. Bruneian driving license is a valid, legal and accepted form of document in Sarawak/Malaysia.

By helicopter

In case you are in a hurry or desire a bit of luxury, helicopters and other method of air transports are available from Hornbill Skyways.

By cruises

There are some cruise liners operating daily between Kuching and Singapore. One of them is StarCruise.

Get around

By bus

The old bus company 'Chin Lian Long' has been taken over by City Public Link. You wouldn't miss it because it is bright green and you notice it frequently plying around Kuching city. The old rickety stage buses has been wiped out by the government in 2009. With these new buses, traveling around Kuching city has become more comfortable now. Perhaps, the only downside would be the waiting time for a bus. Frequency is about 30 mins and the fare ranges from RM1.80 to RM2.30 depends on the number of stops you are taking and you paid on the bus.

Nonetheless, the stage buses between Kuching and its outskirts like Petra Jaya, Serian, Bau and so forth, has not been replaced with new buses.

The main bus terminal in Kuching is located opposite the Old Mosque near the old city center. All the buses listed below leaves from here.

However, there is another bus terminal for inter-state departure which is located at 3rd Mile Bus Terminal. You should take your bus to Sibu, Bintulu and Miri from this terminal. Check BUS ASIA for online booking.

Local stage buses are run by 4 companies of colourful assortments, but there's a reasonably logical route numbering system and bus stops usually have some signage indicating bus route numbers.

Bus drivers and conductors do not actually have Public Relations and Tourist Guiding as part of their training syllabi. Should the bus conductor exist, kindly demand for the ticket because some bus inspectors might just walk inside and do a surprise inspection of passengers' tickets. There are some OMO (One Man Operation) buses that are equipped with a big coin box beside the driver's seat. Ask for the fare first before inserting the exact change into the box. Sit in the front half of the bus so you have easy access to the driver or conductor. Cheating, pickpocketing and sexual harassment might sometimes occur in public buses, so be watchful of your surroundings.

Inconsistent passenger load along certain routes can lead to drops in frequency and thus, bus operators cannot comply to a fixed timetable and that results in frustrating delays.

By shuttle van

Caution-Van sapu

Unlicensed shuttle vans also ply the main roads in Kuching, offering lower (if not the same) fares than their legal counterparts. If you are coaxed to board these vans, please do so at your own risk. Due to its illegal operations, van sapu passengers are not covered by insurance should an accident occur.

Yellow roofed kereta sewa or shuttle vans fill the void left by stage bus operators, offering somewhat more frequent trips throughout Kuching to as far as Tebedu and Bau. Each shuttle van has their own commuting routes so watch out the routes by reading the destination on the body of the van. Minimum fare for each trip is RM1 and increases with respect to distance. Fares also differ from one shuttle van to another plying the same route by commuting frequency, peak and off-peak periods and passenger load. If in doubt, ask the passengers, not the driver.

By taxi

Taxis are somewhat expensive in Kuching. Although taxis are metered, the drivers seldom use it and normally they will try to charge you any fare they like. They may also hide the meter behind a rudimentary cover and claim to have no meter. Take your time an appraise the honesty of the driver before proceeding. A reasonable taxi fare from Kuching city centre to Santubong is RM42. Some hotels provide their own shuttle vans or buses to designated tourism spots and city centre. Check with your hotel should they provide this kind of service.

By car

All major roads in Kuching city and suburban areas are well tarred and fairly maintained. Driving orientation is on the left and is generally slow-paced. Speed limits on dual-carriageway roads can reach a maximum of 90 km/h and can be reduced to 80km/h or 70 km/h during festival seasons.

Tourists from cosmopolitan cities may not appreciate the driving attitude of local road users. Some drivers tend to make a turn or overtake without using indicators, and others drive beyond the speed limit. You may also find a handful of road hoggers (cars, lorries and even motorcycles alike). Honk car horns and flash high beams with careful discretion.

Self-driving in and around Kuching can be challengingly fun. Directional signs in Kuching are so inadequate and it takes a good road map and a good sense of direction to get you around. For those who use wisely their smartphone though, there are many cheap and efficient apps that can be used as GPS: here by nokia is free, has a pretty good downloadable database for borneo (for free) and warns user about speed limits. googlampas is almost as good but you need a mobile internet connection (prepaid prices from 50RM/month).

Car rental

By motorcycle

By bicycle

It is possible to see the sights of Kuching City by bicycle. You don't have to be Lance Armstrong to take a full day bicycle tour of the city. Roads in Kuching are adequate for moving around by bicycle, though it is definitely not bicycle friendly. Bicycling is a healthy and budget conscious way to explore the city and it enables you to explore and see things you simply cannot achieve by walking or by taking the bus.

By river taxi

Tambangs or river taxis provide easy and cheap transport across the Sarawak River in the heart of Kuching.

For a leisurely commute across the Sarawak River, river taxis locally known as tambang or penambang offers daily services at various points along the Kuching Waterfront, with a one-way fare at RM0.40. The fare hikes up to RM1 from 10PM-6AM the next day. Kindly place the exact change on the designated plate instead of giving it to the operator, as you disembark the river taxi at your destination.

By boats

Boats are sometimes available for visitors who wish to travel from one place to another along the Sarawak River.

By speedboats

Speedboats are available for people who wish to go to Taman Negara Bako, Satang Island and Talang-Talang Island from Santubong. Rate differs according to hotels, and in regards to public holidays and peak hours. Check schedule and rates at the respective hotels, such as Damai Lagoon.

By helicopter

In case you are in hurry or in the event to experience luxuriousness, helicopter and other method of air transports are available by using Hornbill Skyways.

By cruises

Cruises might not be available at the posting date. Previously, it was available for tourists who wish to go for sightseeing along the Sarawak River.

On foot

Kuching is unusually pedestrian-friendly for a Malaysian city, with tree-lined sidewalks and pedestrian crossings, and the city core is compact enough to cover on foot. Good walks include the Kuching Waterfront and the pedestrian shopping street of Jalan India (Kuching's Little India).

See

Jalan India

Kuching is a haven for tourists. It is one of the main tourist destinations in Sarawak.

In Kuching, you can enjoy various sightseeing activities. Among them are visiting museums, sightseeing of Kuching city and sightseeing for nature lovers.

Kuching is quite the sunset spot, often regarded as "one of the most memorable". Take your shots, and enjoy the sunsets from the Waterfront, Santubong Peninsula or Bako Peninsula.

One can enjoy sightseeing of Kuching City at various locations. What is unique of Kuching city in sightseers' eyes is how the skycrapers built in the vicinity of lush green jungles.

Please observe religious conventions

Visitors to mosques are requested to dress respectfully and remove their shoes. Non-Muslims should avoid entering during prayer times so as not to disrupt people during periods of religious observance, especially on Friday afternoons.

Museums

Kuching's major sights are its museums. Clustered just south of the centre, a program of refurbishment started in 2002 is shuffling up the exhibits.

Nearby

Do

Kuching is a great home-base for jungle trekking and exploring Borneo.

Buy

There's some interesting shopping in Kuching. For a wide selection of tribal handicrafts and touristy gewgaws, head down to the aptly named Main Bazaar street on the Kuching waterfront. It's worth going inside for a look, as many shops have larger and more authentic collections hidden away upstairs or in a back room.

Note that, in this mostly Christian city, some shops close on Sundays.

Markets

Fancy a banana at the Sunday Market?

Shopping centres

Eat

Coffee, see, and tea, oh!

Coffee and tea in hawker centres and kopitiam goes from 60 cents to RM3 per cup/glass, a steep discount on Starbucks prices (not to mention an immeasurable improvement on their flavours), but you'll need to learn the lingo to get what you want. If you order just kopi (the Malay word for "coffee") or teh (Hokkien for "tea") in Kuching, it will definitely be served with a heaped spoonful of sugar, and more often than not with a squirt of sweet condensed milk. Kopi-C or teh-C substitutes unsweetened evaporated milk, while kopi-O or teh-O makes sure it's served with no milk. To get rid of the sugar, you need to ask for it kosong ("plain"), but if you want a cup of thick black coffee, you need to ask for kopi-O kaw! If you want your drink cold, just add a peng to the end of the drink name, eg. kopi-O-peng, teh-peng, teh-C-peng, Milo-peng etc. and it will be served with ice. There's a special thing about Teh-C. If you request for teh-C-special, you'll get a Teh-C with 'gula apong' (coconut sugar) or sometimes with a little bit of honey. Some eating place come with different portion of drinks, such as Small, Big/Large and Jumbo. Choose based on your appetite. The bigger the portion, the more expensive the drinks.

Umei

Eating out is the major pastime, with a huge variety of eateries and food available. Most places are pretty cheap with excellent service but the more "local", the less English spoken. Be sure to sample some Sarawak laksa, but beware - it's considered a breakfast dish here and the popular places sell out fast. For the local Chinese, kolo mee, a noodle dish served with slices of roasted pork, is also a daily staple. Although most places are quite clean, there are some which are not. A rule of thumb is if you're not comfortable with it, then walk somewhere else. There are plenty to choose from.

Sarawakian dishes

Unlike fellow Malaysians in Peninsular Malaysia and Sabah, the range of food and drinks in Sarawak, particularly Kuching is somewhat different. Here are the food you might never heard of when you browse through the food menu:

Linut

Kuching has also absorbed Thai favourites such as tom yam, nasi paprik and pattaya. Bakso and soto originally from Indonesia, and nasi ayam Singapura (from Singapore) have moved onto restaurant and other menus. Chinese restaurants have also been daring to try more exquisite cuisine from North China, Korea and Vietnam. Western food has also been widely accepted in Sarawak, especially Kuching. Fast food chains such as KFC, McDonalds, Kenny Roger's Roasters, Secret Recipe and Marrybrown, America's buffet has also taken place in Sarawakian's heart such as Hartz Chicken Buffet are also growing in presence. However, traditional nasi campur and traditional breakfast, high tea and dinner are always part of Sarawakian food ritual. It is however becoming common to see more modernised Kuchingites slowly adapting to Western food culture such as eating pasta or pizza for dinner.

Dietary restriction guides

As a guide to Muslim visitors, some of the restaurants serving Chinese food are non-halal, unless stated halal or appear to handover the food preparation to Muslim cooks or sellers. Restaurants who clearly stated pork or/and non-halal substances in their food menu (like using wine for cooking, frogs and snakes) are ones you should avoid. The easiest way to look for halal restaurants are by looking at their halal certificate. Ensure that they display halal certificate produced by JAIS Sarawak, JAKIM or HDC Malaysia. Sometimes the restaurant owners choose not to display it, so please demand the certificate if they claimed that they serve halal food.

For vegetarian visitors, always look for the restaurant clearly stating vegetarian food only. Some vegetarian meals served can still contain non-vegetarian substances like anchovies, chicken stock and lard. Please check with the restaurant owners for confirmation on their ingredients.

Budget

Tomato Noodles

Mid-range

Splurge

Drink

Be sure to try Sarawak coffee - it is delicious and can be found in any local 'Kopi-tiam' (coffee shop). Also, try a drink called "White Lady". It usually consists of evaporated milk and a syrup base with fruit and a slice of lemon within. The colors vary from yellow to pink.

The local favourite of "White Lady" is made by Ah Meng's stall at Hui Sing Hawker Centre at Hui Sing Garden. Another of the stall's signature drink is "Metahorn", made with jellies, syrup and local fruits. There are various knock-offs in Kuching but the taste is different.

There are plenty of good bars and are usually grouped together in areas around Kuching.

Bars

Kuching has a large number of clubbing districts.

Padungan Road is in the city centre, in the Chinatown area. There are a handful of bars along this stretch that mainly cater to the working-class Yuppie crowd.

Jalan McDougall, adjacent to Wayang Street, a hotel building away from the Main Bazaar. This is the area where the two relatively new main bars attract a new generation of the Yuppie crowd:

Travillion in Petanak, just after Padungan Rd, is home to many newer bars and mainly caters to the young college crowd. It has bright signage, cheap alcohol, and Techno music. This area used to be infamous for gang-related brawls and other trouble - however the number of incidences have decreased significantly and while its generally considered safe now, it still pays to be a bit careful.

Taman Sri Sarawak is opposite the Hilton Hotel. This area is the closest to the Kuching Waterfront and mainly caters to the Tourist Crowd.

And a few more scattered elsewhere:

Cafes

Sleep

Budget

Mid-range

Splurge

Stay safe

Kuching is practically safe from natural disasters: no earthquakes, typhoons, hurricanes or volcanoes. Aside from the very occasional flood the biggest hazard is haze during the dry season, caused by fires in Sarawak and neighboring Indonesia.

Stay healthy

Kuching has often been declared as one of the cleanest cities in Asia and still can hold the record for the cleanest city in Malaysia. The air pollution is minimum, while the Sarawak River is constantly being cleared from rubbish. Some part of the city might be a little bit dirty and messy. However, tourists spots are always being maintained clean.

Public toilets are easily available throughout Kuching with entrance fee of 20 cents. The public toilets are generally sanitized and clean. However, some public toilets might be lightly vandalized with graffiti and cigarette burns.

Public smoking is still allowed, except for areas like hospitals, government offices, public bus stops and supermarkets. Although the streets are clean and well-maintained, some Kuchingites are prone to litter their cigarette butts and candy wrapping once in a while. However, litter bins are available at most of the places.

Connect

Consulates

Go next


This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Saturday, March 19, 2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.