Kuching and the Monkeys



January 23, 2013 

My dear Mapheads, 

I thought I would take a moment and inform you of my progress as I travel in Malaysia and across Sarawak, from west to east.  Perhaps you can follow me on your map. 

On peninsular Malaysia, I attended a wedding in Malacca and I visited with my friends in Seremban. Then I flew from Kuala Lumpur to Kuching, the capital city of Sarawak (pop 600,000) (2 hours).  Kuching lies on the Sarawak River, about 20km south of the South China Sea. 

Sarawak is a state of Malaysia on the northern coast of the island of Borneo.  Borneo is the third largest island in the world (748,000 sq km or 289,000 sq mi).  Only Greenland and New Guinea are larger. 

From Kuching I took an express boat down the river, across a section of the sea and then up the Rejang River to the central Borneo city of Sibu (pop 255,000) (5 hours).  From Sibu I continued up the river to Kapit (pop 14,000) (3 hours upstream). I returned to Sibu (2.5 hours downstream). 

(You will notice on the map that there is no road from Sibu to Kapit.  The river is the only connection between the two cities.   You will also notice that rivers in this part of Borneo arise in the mountains in the south and flow north to the sea.) 

From Sibu I took an express bus to my present location, Bintulu (pop 120,000) (4 hours). 

My plan is to continue by bus eastbound to visit the caves at the Niah National Park and then to Miri (pop 295,000).  I have already booked the round trip flight from Miri east southeast to Bario (pop 800), in the Kelabit Highlands. (A one hour flight on a De Havilland Twin Otter – seats 19.) 

Unfortunately I will not have time to cross the border and visit Brunei or to see Sabah, the other state of Borneo Malaysia.

On February 1, I fly from Miri to Kuala Lumpur, change planes and fly home to Bangkok. 

One of my friends in the USA wrote to tell me that she is anticipating the photos of my adventures here in Sarawak.  So, if you like monkeys in the jungle, “up close and personal,” please click on the thumbnail photo for the day trip from Kuching to the Bako National Park.


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