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Further Information

If you're interested in finding out more about Sarawak, it's national parks, its flora and fauna or other aspects covered in this website, then this section points you in the right direction - with links, books, journals, leaflets and some useful organisations. This is not a comprehensive bibliography, but most of the information in this website was drawn from the sources listed here.

Further Information
> Links
> Books
> Journals & Periodicals
> Booklets & Leaflets
> Organisations in Kuching
Trek Locations
> Bako NP
> Gunung Gading NP
> Kubah NP & Matang
> Lambir Hills NP
> Mulu NP
> Niah NP
> Santubong
> Tanjung Datu NP
Websites (Links)

Malaysia & Region

Sarawak General

Sarawak National Parks

Sarawak Culture

Sarawak Travel Agencies

We dealt with the following agencies, but there are a multitude of others, based in both in Kuching and Miri:

Travel Information/Forums

Travellerspoint

Travellerspoint is a free worldwide travel community with tools and services to help travellers before, during and after their trip.

Flora & Fauna Resources & Organisations (in no particular order)

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Books

Most of the books listed below are available from bookshops in Kuching; you may be able to find some in specialist bookshops at home.

    Abg. Kashim Abg. Morshidi and Hazebroek HP, National Parks of Sarawak, Natural History Publications (Borneo), 2001 This magnificent book was the primary source for a significant amount of the information in this website about the national parks and the flora and fauna of Sarawak.

    Beccari, O, Wanderings in the Great Forests of Borneo, Oxford University Press Reprint The great Italian botanist Odoardo Beccari spent a fair while in Sarawak in the late 19th Century, collecting, identifying and describing large numbers of new plants (and shooting way too many orang-utans!). He writes very engagingly of his time here.

    Bennett, E & Gombek, F, Proboscis Monkeys of Borneo, Natural History Publications (Borneo), 1993 All you could want to know about proboscis monkeys and more, with great pictures, from the leading experts.

    Briggs J, Mountains of Malaysia, Longman Malaysia, 1985 This book provides accounts of treks up a number of mountains throughout Malaysia, including Sarawak. Not all of these are still feasible, particularly for the inexperienced or the casual visitor.

    Briggs J, Parks of Malaysia, A Practical Guide and Manual, Longman Malaysia, 1997 This is a useful trekking guide, which covers a number of the treks in this website, as well as others in Sabah and Peninsular Malaysia.

    Christinsen, H, Ethnobotany of the Iban and the Kelabit, Forest Department Sarawak, Malaysia; NEPCon, Denmark; and University of Aarhus, Denmark, 2002 This is adapted from a PhD thesis, and is a very useful and interesting reference book, but not light reading.

    Clarke C, Nepenthes of Borneo, Natural History Publications, 1997 A fairly detailed book about nepenthes (pitcher plants), including detailed information on biology and ecology. Illustrated with beautiful photos. (See also Phillips below.)

    Cranbrook, Earl of, & Edwards D, Belalong - A Tropical Rain Forest, Royal Geographical Society and Sun Tree Publishing, 1994 Although it is a guide to Belalong National Park in Brunei, this great little book provides a fantastic introduction to the rainforests of northern Borneo. It packs in an amazing amount of information in a very accessible way.

    Department of Agriculture, Sarawak, Wild Fruits and Vegetables in Sarawak, 1992 This 100 page softcover book is an interesting if somewhat technical guide to wild fruits and vegetables in Sarawak. It also has an informative and tasty-looking set of recipies for dishes made using wild fruits and vegetables.

    Eliot J & Renshaw K, Footprint Malaysia Handbook, Footprint Handbooks The Footprint Handbook is for those who have grown out of Lonely Planet. It has excellent and informative information about the history, cultures and crafts of Sarawak, as well as all the usual things you expect from a guidebook.

    Francis, CM and Smythies BE, Pocket Guide to the Birds of Borneo, The Sabah Society, 1998 This is a handy little pocket-reference for bird-lovers, available quite cheaply in most bookshops in Kuching.

    Hanbury-Tenison R, Mulu: The Rainforest, Wiedenfield & Nicholson, 1980 This is an account of the Royal Geographical Society research expedition to Mulu in 1977-1978, which led to the establishment of the national park.

    Harrisson, T (ed), Borneo Jungle: An account of the Oxford Expedition to Sarawak, Lindsay Drummond Ltd, 1938 This book includes Shackleton's account of the first ascent of Mount Mulu. It has been reprinted by Oxford Asia books.

    Harrisson, T, The World Within, Oxford University Press. This book is half beautiful ethnographic portrait of the Kelabit people of the Bario Highlands, and half autobiographical account of Harrisson's experience with the Kelabit fighting a guerilla war against the Japanese during the Second World War. An extraordinary book, by an extraordinary man. Harrisson later went on to become the Director of the Sarawak Museum, where he led the original Niah and Santubong excavations, along with a bewildering variety of other activities (sea turtle conservation, ornithology, anthropology and linguistics, etc, etc, etc.). Well worth a read.

    Lim, FLK and Lee, MLTM, Fascinating Snakes of Southeast Asia - An Introduction, 1990, Tropical Press, Kuala Lumpur The title says it all.

    Lonely Planet Malaysia Singapore & Brunei, Lonely Planet Publications. No need for much explanation - the classic backpackers' guide, with all essential information for getting around on a budget.

    Ng F, Tree Flora of Malaya (4 vols), Longman Malaysia 1972-1986 Subtitled "A Manual for Foresters", this is a technical work, and not for light reading - but a useful resource for those interested in the trees of Malaya (many of which also occur in Sarawak).

    Payne J, Cubbitt G, Lau D, Langub J, with WWF Malaysia This is Borneo - Sabah, Sarawak, Brunei and Kalimantan, New Holland Publishers 2000. This soft-cover picture-book is not only beautifully illustrated with the amazing photography of local photographer Dennis Lau, but it is also very informative about the history, cultures and environment of the whole of Borneo. An excellent introduction to Borneo, and a worthy addition to any coffee-table.

    Payne J, Francis CM, and Phillips K, A Field Guide to the Mammals of Borneo, the Sabah Society, 1998 Another very useful and beautifully illustrated little pocket field guide.

    Phillips A and Lamb A, Pitcher Plants of Borneo, Natural History Publications (Borneo), 1996 This book includes information about the history, biology and ecology of pitcher plants, and is illustrated with watercolours by Susan Phillips. (See also Clarke above)

    Polunin I, Plants and Flowers of Malaysia, Times Editions, Singapore, 1988 A well illustrated little book covering a whole range of Malaysian plants, plant types and vegetation types.

    Runciman S, The White Rajahs, A History of Sarawak from 1841 to 1846, Cambridge University Press, 1960 Renowned British historian Steven Runciman (famous for his histories of the Crusades) was commissioned to write a history of the White Rajahs, by the last one. A well written traditional-style history book, but not surprisingly with little juicy gossip or criticism.

    Smythies, BE, The Birds of Borneo¸ (4th ed), Natural History Publications (Borneo), 1999 The authoritative guide to Borneo's birds, this large and beautifully illustrated book is a must for serious bird-watchers who have extra cash and room in their baggage.

    Soepadmo E & Ors (eds), Tree Flora of Sabah & Sarawak, Volumes 1-4, Forest Research Institute Malaysia, Sabah Forestry Dept and Sarawak Forestry Dept, 1995-2002 These very technical works are the first of a planned 8 volume series covering most of the commercially significant tree species in Sarawak. Useful reference work for those interested in tropical trees and the tropical timber industry.

    Sutlive V and J (eds), The Encyclopaedia of Iban Studies (4 vols), Tun Jugah Foundation 2001 An amazing work containing everything you might need to know about the Iban, their history and culture, including their use of plants and animals of the forest.

    Wallace A.R., The Malay Archipelago, Oxford University Press Reprint, 1986 The original, from the great man who developed the theory of evolution with Darwin - and still one of the best.

Journals and Periodicals

    The Sarawak Museum Journal - The Sarawak Museum Journal has been the focus point for fascinating articles about the cultures, languages, peoples, history, prehistory, nature, and environment of Sarawak, for close to 100 years. Read about the original Niah digs in the late 1950s, or the latest digs in 2003. You can find copies in Kuching bookshops or at the Museum Library, where they can be purchased for as little as RM3, for older copies. The SMJ was also widely distributed to libraries and universities around the world, so you may be able to access copies near you.

    The Sarawak Gazette - The Sarawak Gazette was the official news publication of the Sarawak Government under the Brookes, with the earliest numbers dating back to the 1800s. Between official reports of annual pepper exports and "troubles with the natives" are amusing anecdotes and gossip of happenings around town. The Gazette can be accessed in the Sarawak Museum Library.

Booklets and Leaflets

    National Park Leaflets - There are small handouts, available from the VIC (see below) and at most National Park Headquarters, which provide brief introductory material about the parks and their trails.

    The Official Kuching City Guide - This excellent booklet by Wayne Tarman and Mike Reed tells you everything you need to know about getting out and about in Kuching. It contains more useful information about Kuching than any of the standard guidebooks, and is much lighter to carry around with you! Pick one up from the VIC, or from your hotel. The authors are also online at BorneoTravel.com.

Useful & Interesting Organisations

A random selection of interesting and potentially useful organisations in Kuching. The authors have not received any incentives, favours, or gifts from any of these organisations.

    Cycling & Mountain Biking - Power Action Cycles is located at 64 Carpenter St, right in the middle of town. It is run by a lovely young couple, Chin and Kwon. They rent out bicycles for use around town from RM30 per day - cycling in the open green spaces of Petra Jaya (across the river) is a really nice way to see the place (RM1 each way to take a bike on a tambang (boat) across the river) For the more adventurous, they can also arrange mountain biking day-trips to Bau, Matang, and Pangkalan Empat (Borneo Highlands area). These trails are all of-road, single-tracks, and range from beginners level to hard-core. Prices range from RM150 to RM250 per day, including bike hire. Occasionally, they organise multi-day biking/trekking expeditions in the interior. They can organise mountain biking packages including accommodation, airport transfers, breakfast and lunch. E-mail vgmon@tm.net.my. Phone: Chong Poh Chin on 013 808 6820 or Chang Jong Kwon on 013 894 5123, or just drop into the shop.

    Dolphin Watching - CPH Travel organises trips to the mouth of the Santubong River, near Damai, to spot the rare and endangered Irrawaddy dolphin. Tel: (082) 243 708

    Gear and Outdoor Shops -

    • Kuching

      Dura-Lite Marketing, on the top floor (Level 2) of Sarawak Plaza (next to the Holiday Inn) specialises in bags and backpacks, but also has a range of other camping equipment, including compasses, knives, torches (flashlights), cookers and butane camping canisters, basic tents, basic sleeping bags and basic sleeping mats. Tel: 082 413 217

      Siong Sports Trading, on the ground floor of the same building (towards the back on the right entering from the street) is a fishing equipment specialist. However, they also have a small range of other gear including compasses, knives, and ice-boxes.Tel: 082 413 609

      Some of the larger department stores (Parkson Grand, Nguikee, Everrise) may also have some very basic (and cheap) equipment.

    • Miri

      X-Gear Equipment is probably the best specialist outdoor gear shop in Sarawak, offering a good range of camping, climbing, and even some scuba equipment. Unfortunately, it is a little hard to find. The address is Lot 2475, Ground Floor, Block 5, Boulevard Commercial Centre. Tel: 085 413 680

      Some of the larger department stores may also have some very basic (and cheap) equipment.

    Malaysian Nature Society - MNS has a very active branch in Sarawak. Call (082) 428 004; e-mail mnskuching@po.jaring.my. (See also link to MNS Malaysia website above.)

    Sarakraf - Sarakraf was established by the SEDC  (see link above), and produces a range of handicrafts. It is located in the Sarawak Plaza building, at the end closest to the Holiday Inn.

    Sarawak Atelier Society - The Atelier Society is dedicated to arts and literature in Sarawak. It produces a newsletter, and occasional publications (available in many shops in Kuching). The Atelier Society is housed in a beautiful old colonial mansion just off Lake Park, on the roundabout facing the amphitheatre on the corner of Jalan Budaya and Jalan Taman Budaya. Tel: (082) 243 222

    Tun Jugah Foundation - The Tun Jugah Foundation (located on the 4th floor of the Tun Jugah Building, right in the centre of town) is dedicated to the preservation of Iban crafts and culture. It has put out some wonderful publications, and also has a beautiful private gallery of pua kumbu and other traditional Iban treasures. Visits strictly by appointment only. Call (082) 239 672. (See also link to website above.)

    Visitors Information Centre - This is where you have to do all your bookings for national park accommodation. It also has a wealth of information about a whole range of activities and places to see, plus information about accommodation, car hire and transport, as well as free city maps.

    The Kuching VIC is moving to the newly restored Courthouse Complex, right on the Kuching Waterfront - you can't miss it. Tel: (082) 410 944; National Parks & Wildlife Booking Office (082) 248 088.

    The Miri VIC is located at Lot 452 Jalan Melayu, in a single-storey stand-along building on the south end of town. Tel: (085) 434 180

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