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.

2nd Sarawak Energy Siol International MTB Challenge Set On Nov 4 To 6

Some 300 local and foreign riders from Japan, Singapore, Brunei, Thailand, Philippines and Kazakhstan will take part in the 2nd Sarawak Energy Siol International MTB Challenge (SIMBC) to be held at Bukit Siol from November 4 to 6, 2016.

To be organised by the Kuching North City Council, it offers a RM 78,000.00 worth of prizes for this off road cycling skills featuring the Downhill, Cross Country and Team Relay categories.

In July last year, the council applied to the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) to seek sanction of the event under Category 3 Classification and was accepted in December 2015.  For more information, please log in at https://sarawaktourism.com/event/dbku-mountain-bike-challenge/  

Photo credit to New Sarawak Tribune
Photo credit to New Sarawak Tribune

Saratok Regatta

Saratok located about 310km away from Kuching will be a busy town as it will be having its major event, Saratok Regatta which will be taking place on December 3 to 4 this year. It was formerly known as Sungai Krian Water Festival which was last held in 2014.

The Saratok Regatta will have two races for Men’s and Women’s categories. For Men’s categories, it will be divided into 10, 15, 20, 25 and 30 ‘sakai’ (rowers) events and Women’s categories, it will have the 10, 15 and 20 ‘sakai’ events.

Aside from the races, the two-day event will include the ‘Battle of the Bands’, Saratok Regatta Beauty Queen, photography, sports (basketball, sepak takraw and football) matches, sales of local food and handicraft and many more.

“This will be a major event for the town, where we expect thousands of people of all races to converge at the town square” according the Datuk Abdul Wahab Aziz, Chairman of Sarawak Tourism Board. 

Interested participants may obtain the registration forms for the regatta from the Saratok District Council Office with minimal charges of participation fees ranging between RM30.00 and RM200.00.

Photo credit to Pusat Internet 1Malaysia Fort Renee, Pejabat Daerah Lama Saratok
Photo credit to Pusat Internet 1Malaysia Fort Renee, Pejabat Daerah Lama Saratok

Kuching Waterfront Festival 2016

This year, Jalan Carpenter and Jalan Gambier all the way down to Kuching Waterfront will be transformed into a hive of activity from 11-13 November.

This event is held in conjunction with the Sarawak Regatta and Dragon Boat Competition, and hosts a variety of attractions in itself such as the ASEAN Kitchen, where traditional cooks from around the ASEAN countries will demonstrate and sell their traditional cuisines.

There will also be a handicraft bazaar set up, featuring local traditional wares such as jewelry, clothes, carvings and beads, as well as the Gambier Street Flea Market will also be taking place along Jalan Gambier, featuring over 100 stalls selling various products.

The Kuching Waterfront Management, with the combined effort of Ministry of Tourism and Culture (MTAC), are organising the event with the goal of expanding it to a broader international audience base.

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Sarawak International Dragonboat Regatta

Sarawak’s famous Dragon Boat Regatta at the Kuching Waterfront will be taking place on November 11 to 13 this year, with teams of 20 or 12 boatmen and women from 11 countries, creating an event of astounding competitors and lively audiences.

Aside from the boat races themselves, the three day cultural event boasts local food and handicraft exhibitions as well as side events such as a mooncake festival, duck catching competition, tug-of-war, singing competitions and many more.

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A jewel in the international Dragon Boat racing arena, the Sarawak International Dragon Boat Regatta has attracted huge global participation over the years, particularly from countries with similar dragon-boat racing cultural, and has become a trademark tourist attraction of Kuching.

The International Dragon Boat Federation (IDBF), Asian Dragon Boat Federation (ADBF) and Ministry of Tourism and Culture (MTAC), as organisers of the event, have recorded a staggering 50 million participants in Asia alone, especially from China and Southeast Asia, with representatives from 70 countries around the world.

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Pesta Benak 2016

Pesta Benak, or the Benak Festival, takes place in Sri Aman just a two and a half hour’s drive from Kuching city on October 14-16.

This festival takes the opportunity of the tidal bore phenomenon of the Batang Lupar River, where large waves are formed due to the funnelling of a flood tide from the ocean through the river’s narrow inlet.

This phenomenon attracts tidal bore surfers from around the world to surf the turbulent waters of the Batang Lupar.

Aside from surfing, there are speedboat and longboat races, stage shows, cultural exhibitions and food stalls along the river, and at the end of the day the Kings of the Water or Raja Air will be named from the winners of the different competitions.

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Sarawak Business Session at ITB Asia 2016

15 representatives of the travel agents and hoteliers from Sarawak will be making their presence at this year’s ITB Asia to be held at the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore on October 19 to 21.

ITB Asia is the largest B2B event in the region and has become the premier meeting place for the travel trade industry and also the forum for establishing high-quality customer contacts and conducting travel businesses.

The Sarawak Travel Agents will be actively taking part in the exhibitions, workshops and seminars, in an effort towards creating positive exposure and awareness in the international sphere on the relevance of Sarawak’s tourism products and destinations.

At ITB Asia, international exhibitors from all sectors within the travel businesses and Asia Pacific’s leading travel companies and emerging small and medium-sized enterprises will meet with top international buyers from the MICE, Leisure and Corporate Travel markets.

The event is open to registered trade partners from 10:00am to 6:00pm daily. Sarawak booth is located Hall F, booth number C15.

 For more information: http://www.itb-asia.com/

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Sarawak Festivals of 2017

The 20th edition of the Rainforest World Music Festival 2017 will be taking place on 14-16 July 2017.

The festival will be held at its home in Santubong, the Sarawak Cultural Village, just 45 minutes from Kuching City Center.

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As for the 12th edition of Borneo Jazz, it will be held on 12-13 May at ParkCityEverly Hotel in Miri.

Both are Sarawak’s iconic festivals of international standards and has attracted audience worldwide.

More updates and information on the Rainforest World Music Festival and Borneo Jazz can be found at the websites: www.rwmf.net and www.jazzborneo.com, respectively.

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Trade and Consumer events

CHINA

Heibei Tourism Conference

The Board is participating in Heibei Tourism Conference from 21 – 27 September and will see the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between Sarawak Tourism Board and Heibei Tourism Authority.

This Memorandum of Understanding between both tourism agencies are desirous to promote and develop the tourism co-operation and regional tourism for mutual interest. The areas covered in the memorandum includes the development of an integrated and better tourism linkages between the State of Sarawak and Heibei Province; the development of cultural and educational exchanges between the two agencies and the promotion and development of health and education

 

SINGAPORE

Malaysia Day Reception

Sarawak will be the highlight of this year’s Malaysia Day Reception co-hosted by the High Commission of Malaysia in Singapore and Tourism Malaysia Singapore this coming September 14, 2016.

Sarawak will be provided with a tourism platform during this night and about 250 dignitaries consisting of various diplomats and foreign embassies will be treated with a multi-cultural show from Sarawak during the dinner.

Sarawak will be participating in two of the major tourism trade shows towards the end of 2016. These two events are platforms for the industry members to extend the business networks and consumer outreach.

ITB Asia

This will be from October 19 -21, 2016 and will be held at the Marina Bay Sands. ITB Asia is annually held three-day business to business trade show and convention for the travel industry.

As one of the leading trade shows around Asia, this is a fine platform for industry members to be hooked up with top international buyers from the MICE, Leisure and Corporate Travel Markets.

UNITED KINGDOM

World Travel Market, London

Sarawak will be exhibiting at WTM Londonand will be from November 7-9 at the ExCel London; an exhibition and international convention center.

WTM London, one of the tourism tradeshows in the world and is attended by over 50, 000 senior travel industry professionals, government ministers and international press.

Travel trade professionals attend to meet new and existing contacts, gain industry insights and keep up to date with the latest travel trends whilst the 3,000 members of the international press come to report the latest stories and keep up to date with the Industry.

 

See you at ITB Asia in Singapore and World Travel Mart in London