Thursday, August 25, 2011

Tourists bask in Sarawak's culture and nature


KUCHING: Borneo’s rainforest and its beauty are the attractive features that draw tourists to Sarawak and make it their favourite holiday destination.

“We love Borneo Island. This is my third time coming here. Twice Kuching, once to Kota Kinabalu and Sandakan,” said Rhonda Laffar from Busselton, Western Australia when met here yesterday.

The 51-year-old is here with her husband Mike. The couple has been here for a few days after their trip to the peninsula.

“It is interesting. Here, we saw the State Legislative Assembly building by the river side. We visited the orchid farm, it’s beautiful. We love nature, the greens, everything,” said Rhonda.

She said she and her husband had a great experience at Bako National Park. They enjoyed jungle trekking, and the spectacular sceneries of the rocks and the blue ocean amazed them.

“It’s magnificent. But one thing saddened us. We saw a lot of rubbish on the beach. We were thinking of how we could help to clear it all.”

She said when they travelled here they did not just sit inside the hotel and wonder around the bar and the pool.

She added that she likes the culture here, noting that people of different races live together in perfect harmony.

“It’s a very good thing. Actually it is the people that make the place so good. This place is so nice. I enjoy going out mixing with the locals. We go to places where locals go,” she said further.

On food, she said they loved to select from the array of different types of food which reflected the multi-ethnicity of the state.

“We had tried seafood and some vegetables at a seafood centre at Jalan Bukit Mata Kucing. Delicious! This is the best food I have ever eaten in my whole life,” said Rhonda.

Mike added that they loved to eat in places where there is a crowd.

“If that shop has less people, the food might be not so great.”

Besides the food, the couple also likes the warm weather.

Mike, a 57-year-old real estate agent said: “It is a bit hot but better than cold.”

They said they knew about this place from a hairdresser in Australia, prompting them to come to Sabah for the first time four years ago. They made their first visit to Kuching last year.

Rhonda said they felt safe walking around in town as they had prepared themselves to face incidents like snatching.

Rhonda bought some jewellery and accessories as gifts for her family.

“I hate shopping in Australia but I enjoy shopping here. We bought anything we like – clothes, shoes, bags and so on. Definitely we will come again,” she said.

Mike added: “Almost everything is good here. There is only one, the Tourism Information Centre should provide us information about tours in Kuching.

“They should be proactive organising some tours for tourists.”

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