8 day Batang Ai Volunteer Programme with the Orang Utans

Diethelm Travel have created an eight day volunteer programme at the Batang Ai National Park, to enable participants to take part in the conservation works of the endangered flora and fauna.

Registration is open from now until October 31, 2017.

The programme will range from checking camera traps to maintenance of trails and infrastructure, as well as assisting local communities that live adjacent to the park who are vital first responders and informers in the conservation efforts of Batang Ai.

The unique twist of this volunteer programme is the planned trek to the areas where the wild Orang Utans and other protected wildlife live, being in their natural habitat.

At the end of the eight day programme, the volunteers will visit the Semenggoh Nature Reserve to gain awareness on the ongoing wildlife rehabilitation efforts of the Sarawak Forestry Corporation.

For more information, visit their website at www.diethelmtravel.com

Picture shows boy playing with an Orang Utan at Semenggoh Wildlife Center
Picture shows boy playing with an Orang Utan at Semenggoh Wildlife Center

Kuala Baram Wetlands to Be Turned Into Bird Sanctuary

The Kuala Baram Wetland will be turned into a bird conservation area where more than 132 species of migratory birds are known to frequent.

The Malaysia Nature Society (MNS) has confirmed that the area is vital to migratory birds from the northern hemisphere, with sightings of the very rare Chinese Tern have been seen in the area.

The protected are spans roughly 600 hectares just outside of Miri City, and will be monitored by the Sarawak Forestry Department (SFD) and MNS for future scientific research and publications.

Over time, the SFD is planning on turning it into a location like the Bako National Park, where visitors can come and see the wildlife in its natural and protected habitat.

Sarawak Forestry Department Director Sapuan Ahmad signs the plaque as a symbolic gesture to launch Kuala Baram Wetland as a bird conservation area. MNS Miri chairman, Musa Musbah is at second left, front row. Photo credit: Borneo Post
Sarawak Forestry Department Director Sapuan Ahmad signs the plaque as a symbolic gesture to launch Kuala Baram Wetland as a bird conservation area. MNS Miri chairman, Musa Musbah is at second left, front row. Photo credit: Borneo Post

BEACON Project at Similajau National Park

The annual reef and beach cleaning activities conducted by the Biodiversity, Environment and Conservation (BEACON) Project has now entered into its third year at the Similajau National Park.

It aims to turn the Park, located just outside of Bintulu, into the “Green Lung of Bintulu”.

The Project’s secondary component in Conservation, Education and Public Awareness (CEPA), where groups or programmes such as the Friends of Nature programme brings people into the national park to participate in the cleaning.

The Project is organized by the MLNG Group of Companies, a subsidiary company of Petronas and the Sarawak Forestry Corporation.

To date some 120 students from 21 secondary schools and 21 chaperon-teachers had participated in the Friends of Nature programme.

Entering the third year, the BEACON Project has proven to be effective in improving the marine wildlife and reefs in the area.

The Assistant Minister for Environment and Assistant Minister for Workforce Development and Training Sarawak, Datu Haji Len Talif Salleh, attended this year’s BEACON reef cleaning in September.

Picture shows coral reefs and a diver in Bintulu
Picture shows coral reefs and a diver in Bintulu

Sarawak and Chinese Media to Promote Sarawak Tourism

The Sarawak State Government will collaborate with different media agencies from China through Beijing AOWEI Media Sdn Bhd to promote Sarawak as the preferred tourist destination.

This coming year, new initiatives such as the Malaysia – China Chinese New Year Night and China Avenue of Stars Grand Convert will be held in Kuching, with the celebrities and popular social media influencers documenting their visit on social media to their fans throughout that time.

“Eight popular singers from China will be making their appearances as well at the concert. During the same period, there will also be film shoot at different locations in the state by producers from China,” said the Assistant Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Datuk Lee Kim, who met recently with the AOWEI Media group.

Datuk Lee disclosed that four of China’s top models, managed by Fashion TV, were in Kuching recently and visited various places in Kuching for Photo-shoot, proving that this avenue of advertising through popular spokespeople has a very wide viewership.

Datuk Lee Kim Shin, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Datu Ik Pahon Joyik and Acting CEO of STB, Mary Wan Mering were present during the meeting with the Beijing AOWEI officials to discuss the future of Sarawak’s promotion in China.

Sarawak and Chinese Media to Promote Sarawak Tourism
Datuk Lee (fifth from left) receives souvenir from Beijing AOWEI media Sdn Bhd Director, Luo Jing on his right with Datu Ik on his left. Mary Wan stands third from left, with other AOWEI members. Photo credit: New Sarawak Tribune

Sarawak Tourism Board Celebrates 21st Anniversary

The Sarawak Tourism Board (STB) celebrated its 21st Anniversary on November 18, with their Staff Appreciation Night as a highlight of the celebration

The night was attended by members of the Tourism Industry including the Minister and Assistant Ministers of the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, current and former Board of Directors, current and former-chairmen as well as the local media.

During the celebration, the Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Sarawak, Datuk Amar Abang Haji Abdul Rahman Zohari Bin Tun Datuk Abang Haji Openg gave Long Service Award to eight members of staff, as well as the Excellent Service Award, for their tireless loyalty and service to the Board and the tourism industry.

Assisting him in handing out the awards are Assistant Minister for Tourism Sarawak, Datuk Dr. Lee Kim Shin, Assistant Minister for Arts and Culture Sarawak, Datuk John Sikie ak Tayai, the Assistant Minister of Infrastructure and Urbanisation Sarawak and former chairman, Datuk Haji Talib Bin Zulpilip as well as current Chairman, Datuk Haji Abdul Wahab Bin Aziz

 The Long Service Awardees include Mdm. Mary Wan Mering, Puan Mastura Morshidi, Mr. Luan Jenggi, Mr. Yusup Labo, Mr. Jessie Mengka, Mr. Jefri Marsit, Puan Nujaimi Laudin and Puan Angela Linsam.

The Excellent Service Award was awarded to Mdm. Mary Wan Mering, Mr. Maurice Balang, Mr. Michael Lu and Pn. Suria Bt. Mohd. Razali for their outstanding service to the Board.

Picture shows Datuk Amar (fifth from left) with Datuk Lee on his right and from his left are Datuk Sikie, Datuk Abdul Wahab and Datuk Talib, and the recipients of the Excellent Service Award.
Picture shows Datuk Amar (fifth from left) with Datuk Lee on his right and from his left are Datuk Sikie, Datuk Abdul Wahab and Datuk Talib, and the recipients of the Excellent Service Award.

 

UNWTO Honorary General Secretary Visits Mulu National Park

The Honorary Secretary-General to the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), Francesco Frangialli arrived in Mulu for a visit to Mulu National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site on November 15 to 17.

His trip was initiated by the Assistant Minister for Tourism Sarawak, Datuk Lee Kim Shin.

During his stay, which was hosted by the Sarawak Tourism Board, Frangialli took a guided tour of the Park’s rainforest and the four show caves, which are the Deer Cave, Lang Cave, Wind Cave and the Clearwater Cave.

“I’ve been to many caves in my life, but none as impressive as this” Said Frangialli as he expressed his awe when he was presented to the Deer Cave’s main passage.

Mulu National Park obtained its status as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2000, becoming one of the few sites displaying four ‘World Heritage’ with an outstanding example of major changes in the earth’s history, a scene of exceptional natural beauty, a site that supports one of the richest congregations of flora to be found in any area of comparable size in the world, it has provided significant scientific opportunities for research on the flora of the site, specifically the origins of over 200 recorded species of cave fauna in Mulu National Park’s caves.

The Mulu National Park remains one of Sarawak’s prime tourist destination as it displays the three core traits of Sarawak tourism: culture, adventure and nature.

Picture shows Mr. Frangialli at the mouth of the Deer Cave in Mulu National Park.
Picture shows Mr. Frangialli at the mouth of the Deer Cave in Mulu National Park.
Picture shows a National Park guide giving elaborations on the local flora of the Mulu National Park Mr. Frangialli (left)
Picture shows a National Park guide giving elaborations on the local flora of the Mulu National Park Mr. Frangialli (left)

Sarawak Regatta 2016

The annual Sarawak Regatta will begin on November 18 to November 20 this year, promising a grand event with participating teams hailing from both government and private sectors, local and abroad, though the most numerous competitors remain the local villages that pepper the banks of the Rajang river.

The regattas have a special place in the hearts of local villages of all races, as it dates back to 1872 during the James Brooke era, when it was first introduced with the intention of stopping racial wars among local tribes where headhunting was largely practiced.

James Brooke called all tribes to challenge each other not in violence, but instead in sportsmanship, by having boat races to prove their power, strength and speed; a call that has since continued to bring peaceful competitiveness between the tribes along the Rajang.

The villages throughout Sarawak will be sending their representatives to compete in the regatta for the coveted ‘Raja Sungai’ title, making a grand occasion of comradery, teamwork and healthy rivalry.

Each longboat carries thirty paddlers and this category is always a closely fought affair and a major crowd puller, while the programme also includes the “Brooke Swim”, Raft Tug-of-war, and duck catching as well as various exhibitions and markets along the waterfront selling cultural crafts, wares and food.

The Sarawak Regatta takes place along the Sarawak River.  The 1.3 km Kuching Waterfront provides ample vantage points to watch the action on the water.

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Photo of Sarawak Regatta 2015.
Photo of Sarawak Regatta 2015.

Sibu Big Bike Week 2016

Taking place on December 2 to 4 this year, the sixth edition of the Sibu Bike Week has already attracted 200 bike clubs and 2,000 bikers from across the globe.

Among them were bikers from Sabah, Sarawak, Brunei and Kalimantan in the Borneo island, Peninsular Malaysia, Germany, Spain, the Philippines, Holland, Australia, Abu Dhabi, Indonesia and Thailand.

The event will kick off with a bike and car exhibitions, tattoo shows, as well as the Miss Sibu Bike Week competition and the Ride Sibu Town event.

There will also be band, scooter, skateboard and BMX competitions, as well as car drifting shows and slow ride competitions, throughout the course of the event, ending in true Sarawakian fashion with a fireworks show and a karaoke competition. 

Contact person : Helen 019 855 7171

District Police Chief ACP Mohd Kamal (left), Event organiser  Abdul Razak Abdul Salam, Sibu Municipal Council deputy chairman Datuk Andrew Wong (second from right) standing in front of three big bikes. Photo credit: Borneo Post Online.
District Police Chief ACP Mohd Kamal (left), Event organiser Abdul Razak Abdul Salam, Sibu Municipal Council deputy chairman Datuk Andrew Wong (second from right) standing in front of three big bikes. Photo credit: Borneo Post Online.

Emphasis On ‘Nature’ Aspect Of Sarawak

Sarawak’s Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Adenan Satem’s recent open policy towards foreign scientists and institution collaborations for Research and Development in Sarawak’s rainforests has yielded promising results for the future of Nature tourism in Sarawak.

In the short time proceeding the open policy, the Sarawak Forestry Corporation have announced the discovery of 12 new plant and animal species in the Totally Protected Areas (TPAs) of Sarawak’s prime rainforests, with encouraging possibilities of more species yet to be found.

The Chief Minister has been pressing for a crack-down on illegal logging for the past year, which has resulted in the accelerated gazettement of TPAs and protection of wildlife within the state.

With the increase of National Parks and TPAs, as well as the increasing discovery of endemic flora and fauna, the viability and sustainability of Nature tourism within the state are increasing exponentially.

Since July this year, 903,769 ha of areas have been gazetted as TPAs that consisted of 35 national parks (694,770 ha), 14 nature reserves (2.539 ha) and six wildlife sanctuaries (206,460 ha), nearing the state’s target of 1.2 million ha as TPAs.

The Best Resort Experience At Mulu Marriott Resort & Spa

The Mulu Marriott Resort & Spa has become the first rainforest resort in Asia to be awarded the Best of Malaysia Top 5 – Best Resort Experience and Excellence Award by Expatriate Lifestyle.

The Resorts that receive this annual award are voted on by Expatriate Lifestyle readers who have experienced the various Resorts for themselves.

After recent renovations throughout the resort over the past few years to better the facilities of the chalets, this looks to be a very encouraging and deserved rebound for Mulu Marriott Resort & Spa, and this award will hopefully bounce it back to the forefront of local and international travel markets.

The resort boasts 101 rooms and is just minutes away from the Mulu National Park, which is Sarawak’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site with the world’s largest natural cave chamber (Sarawak Chamber), the world’s largest cave passage (Deer Cave), the world’s largest limestone cave system (Gunung Benarat) and the longest cave in Southeast Asia (Clearwater Cave).

For more information on the Excellence Award:

http://www.expatriatelifestyle.com/bomawards/Best-of-Malaysia/2016/Best-Resort-Experience/Mulu-Marriott-Resort-and-Spa

For more information on Mulu National Park:

http://mulupark.com/about-us/mulu-world-heritage-area/

Mulu Marriott Resort & Spa refurbished lobby. Photo Credit: Expatriate Lifestyle.
Mulu Marriott Resort & Spa refurbished lobby. Photo Credit: Expatriate Lifestyle.