Chinese Tourists To Miri Awarded Special Entry

Sarawak will now be allowing Chinese tourists to pass through the Miri International Airport as well as the Immigration, Customs, Quarantine and Security (ICQS) facility in Sungai Tujuh border to Brunei using a Special Entry Pass, effective immediately.

Sarawak’s Deputy Chief Minister Amar Abang Johari Abang Openg has expressed his continued endorsement in the wake of an influx of Chinese tourists to the state and has announced that all ICQS facilities should be equipped with these Special Entry Passes for convenience.

The purpose of the passes is to ease the travel of tourists from China throughout the state, as currently Kuching is only entry point to Sarawak equipped with Visa-On-Arrival facilities.

These passes are mutually beneficial for Sarawak and Brunei as it coincides with Brunei’s current campaign to attract more tourists from China and tourists can now move easily between Miri and Brunei with little hassle.

Sarawak is expecting to see growing arrival and demands for chartered flights to and from China in the wake of these Special Entry Passes, eliminating the tediousness of pre-travel Visa applications.

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

Malaysia Airlines To Fly Direct Kuching-Penang-Kuching

The Malaysia Airlines direct Kuching – Penang –Kuching direct flight will be reinstated on November 18 and will continue until December 31.

According to Malaysia Airlines, further extension will be considered to cater for the Chinese New year.

It will be times weekly flight on Monday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday and will depart at 9.20 am and is expected to arrive in Penang at 11. 30 am.

The return flight from Penang is at 12.05 noon arriving Kuching at 3.00 pm.

The current the promotional fare is RM 150.00 per one way inclusive of taxes.

For further information please log on to www.malaysiaairlines.com

 

Imperial Riverbank Hotel Now Opens

Imperial Riverbank Hotel, 3-star hotel located at the iconic Kuching Waterfront is now open for business

The latest addition to the Imperial Group of Hotels the 109 room “boutique” setting offers Standard King, Superior King and Deluxe Twin rooms equipped with essential facilities and amenities for discerning travellers.

Located at the bank of the picturesque Sarawak River, visitors can be easily accessible to the Waterfront, handicrafts outlets at the Main Bazaar or leisurely taking a sampan ride across the river to the Malay villages for “kek lapis” shopping.

For bookings and enquiries contact them at Email: [email protected]

Photo credit to Imperial Riverbank Hotel
Photo credit to Imperial Riverbank Hotel

Sarawak To Participate At The Macau Food Festival

Sarawak’s favourite  delicacies like  Laksa, Manok Pansuh,  Kolo Mee and Kampua Mee are some of the dishes set to be featured at the upcoming 16th Macau Food Festival held at the Sai Van Lake Square from November 11th to 27th 2016.

The Sarawak delegation, to be led by Mr. Goh Ah Seng from the How Yu Kuching Chef Association, will take up 18 out of the 25 stalls allocated for Malaysia.

A Sarawak tourist information counter to provide information on Sarawak attractions will also be featured at the booth.

A Sarawak cultural troupe   will feature ethnic and traditional presentation at the stage show to be presented at the main stage during the duration of the food festival.

“Due to the close proximity of Macau from Hong Kong, this is a perfect platform for us to showcase our attractions to the people of Macau, as they can take the direct flights from Hong Kong to Kuching by Hongkong Airlines.” said the Assistant Minister for Tourism, Datuk Lee Kim Shin.

Photo shows Datuk Lee Kim Shin (third from left) during the press conference on 16th Macau Food Festival
Photo shows Datuk Lee Kim Shin (third from left) during the press conference on 16th Macau Food Festival

Sarawak Outshines At ITB Asia

Sarawak delegation comprising twelve industry partners has expressed satisfaction with the outcomes from the  recent outing at ITB Asia 2016, indicating they are most definitely going to participate again next year.

Satisfied with the buyers’ quality met during the set appointment by organisers, they expressed satisfaction with the overall organisation and Sarawak brand prominence at the three day fair. 

With a significant interest from eight industry members in which participated in the fair in 2015, this year additional four partners joined the Sarawak booth thus putting on the shelves for buyers a more diverse packages including the cycling and kayaking tours.

Sarawak also hosted a cocktail reception on Thursday, October 20 with the presence of the Assistant Minister of Tourism, Datuk Lee Kim Shin, who was present to extend support to the industry partners throughout the whole three day of the fair and at the same time joining the engagement sessions with Singaporean tourism partners.

For ITB Asia 2017 which  will be from 25th to 27th October, interested industry members are encourage to prebook their participation with information may be obtainable from  Gustino Basuan at  email: [email protected]

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Photo shows STB’s booth at ITB Asia

Rainforest World Music Festival Presented At World Music [email protected]

Sarawak Tourism Board (STB) was invited to be part of the 2016 World Music [email protected] which was a government-supported event by the Ministry of Culture’s Bureau of Audiovisual and Music Industry Development, Taiwan from October 21-23, 2016.

STB was represented by the Director of Events & Corporate Relations, Angelina Patricia Bateman. Angelina together with two speakers, Eunha Kim of Asia Culture Centre, Korea and Franki Raden, prominent Indonesian composer, ethnomusicologist, cultural critic and festival organizer were given the opportunity to present about ‘The Practical Details of Presenting a Music Festival’.

 “This was an inaugural festival and it was a great opportunity for us to share our experience in organizing the Rainforest World Music Festival,” said Angelina.

Besides presentations, there were showcase musician performance from Taiwan, USA, Portugal, Japan and China.

“There will be a small committee of Asian World Music Forum to be set-up to share ideas and bands exchange for the festival within the region,” added Angelina.

Photo shows Angelina Bateman (left) with 2016 World Music - Festival@Taiwan presenters - Photo credit to WMF@Taiwan Facebook
Photo shows Angelina Bateman (left) with 2016 World Music – [email protected] presenters – Photo credit to [email protected] Facebook

20th Rainforest World Music Festival At WOMEX 2016

Sarawak Tourism Board (STB) is presenting the 20th installment of its annual event, the Rainforest World Music Festival (RWMF) in World Music Expo (WOMEX) in Santiago de Compostela, Spain from October 20-23.

The RWMF will be celebrating its 20th edition next year at the Sarawak Cultural Village in Damai, on the 14-16 July, with plans on making the Festival celebration bigger than ever.

With the interactive afternoon workshops, the audience has the opportunity to learn, understand and play the indigenous musical instruments from the performers during the day and later on witness and appreciate its beauty during the nightly performances.

As a supporter of all ethnic arts, including the culinary arts, festival-goers are able to taste a variety of local and fusion cuisine from the Village Food Mart.

They will also be able to buy local beaded, woven, painted or carved handicrafts or witness their creation, or even get a traditional hand-tap tattoo at the nearby Tattoo Expo.

The festival, one of its kind in the region, has attracted over 20,000 returning foreign and domestic attendees and has been awarded Songlines’ Top 25 Best International Festivals award six years in a row since 2010.

Datuk Haji Abdul Wahab Bin Aziz, Chairman of Sarawak Tourism Board (STB) said, “We want to stage the uniqueness of world music by bringing in performers from other parts of the world and also to showcase our own ethnic music and to provide them with an opportunity to perform amidst international bands.”

“More innovative ideas are already in the works for our coming 20th Rainforest World Music Festival next year.” said Angelina Bateman, Director of Events & Corporate Relations of Sarawak Tourism Board (STB).

While the performance plans remain a surprise, the Board’s efforts in publicising the Festival are not, with promotions happening at various tourism and travel trade fairs around the world such as ITB Asia in Singapore, World Travel Mart in London, Taipei International Travel Fair in Taiwan and the Asian MICE Forum in Taiwan.

The Festival encourages the appreciation of ethnic art and music from around the world, as well as new interpretations and integration of those arts within modern expression, and it is now brining these values to the world stage.

Updates on the Festival as well as tickets can be found online at the Rainforest World Music Festival official website, www.rwmf.net.

This event is supported by the Ministry of Tourism and Culture Malaysia, Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture Sarawak (MTAC) and endorsed by Tourism Malaysia with Malaysia Airlines Berhad as the presenting sponsor.

Photo shows Maurice Balang (middle) and Sarren Michael (right) of STB having discussion with one of the bands manager
Photo shows Maurice Balang (middle) and Sarren Michael (right) of STB having discussion with one of the bands manager

 

Buso To Be A Heritage Town

The century old Buso bazaar and its surrounding village will be another heritage attraction for the State.

Located about 45 minutes’ drive from the city centre, the attractions include wooden structure shop houses and a typical river boat ride connecting the town from the main road.

Buso town is of historical significance, of which among others, it was a place of refuge during World War II.

The town is mainly populated by a mixed racial composition of Chinese, Malays and Bidayuh communities.

Photo shows Kampung Seberang Buso – a Malay village across Sungai Sarawak Kanan.

Photo credit to Borneo Post.

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