Kuching is the main gateway for travelers visiting Sarawak. While many visitors pass straight through on the way to more adventurous destinations, a few know that Kuching itself is well worth spending some time in. Kuching’s Waterfront Promenade in particular is a great place to visit, even if you only have an afternoon or evening to spend there.
Standing on the banks of the Penampang River, the Monsopiad Cultural Village is just a half hour drive from Sabah’s capital city, Kota Kinabalu. It’s an accessible day trip from the city and an interesting taste of traditional local culture and history.
If the hustle and bustle of Georgetown become too much, visitors to Penang have the luxury of escaping to two peaceful sanctuaries not far from town. Penang’s Butterfly Garden and Spice Garden are both popular attractions in their own right, yet both can be visited in just one morning.
Galeria Perdana in Langkawi proudly displays the gifts, awards and souvenirs received by the former Malaysian Prime Minister, Tun Dr. Mahathir and his wife, Dr. Siti Hasmah Mohd Ali. Located in Kilim to the north east of the island, this unique museum opened in 1955.
Situated 25 kilometers from Kota Kinabalu, The Lok Kawi Wildlife Park is one of the largest wildlife parks in Malaysia, covering an area of 280 acres. The park is managed by the Sabah Wildlife Department and the emphasis is on raising awareness and the conservation of Malaysia’s natural environment and wildlife.
Located just 22 kilometers from Kuching in the old gold-mining town of Bau, a visit to Wind Cave and Fairy Cave makes for the perfect day trip from the city. These limestone caves were created by water gradually carving out a series of tunnels and both are filled with dazzling stalagmites and stalactites.
Mashuri’s Tomb (also known as Makam Mahsuri) is the shrine dedicated to a Langkawi born girl said to be the most beautiful girl on the island. Many versions of the legend of Mashuri exist but what is known is that Mashuri’s Thai parents immigrated to Langkawi from Phuket, perhaps in the 18th century. While some accounts maintain that Mashuri was born into a farmer’s family, others claim she was a princess.
Every Sunday morning in the center of Kota Kinabalu, the roads are shut off to traffic and the streets are instead filled with market stalls offering fresh food, souvenirs, arts and crafts and much more besides. The Gaya Street Market runs from early in the morning until lunchtime, but as there is so much to see and do it’s wise to get there as early as possible.