Kuching Riverside Esplanade
Kuching - Cat City - that is the nick name of the city. I read that Kuching means cat in Malay. It is the capital of the Malaysian state of Sawarak, largest city on Borneo and the fourth largest city in Malaysia. We were staying in the city center and it did not feel like the 4th largest city.
Our home for the next few days was the Singgahsana Lodge. It is a very clean and a very well run hostel. We have a single bedroom. The lodge is located just steps from the waterfront and not more than a block from the more upscale Hilton which was our second choice. Our room was on the bottom floor. It doesn't have any windows except for the small windows on the loft above the hall way. We have our own bathroom and it is clean. I am not crazy about having a cement floor in the room but it has air conditioning and is just over 100rm (~33USD) so we are not complaining. We are trying to balance our expenses by taking this hostel after staying at the luxury lodge in Danum Valley.
There is something about the city that I really like. It was not destroyed during WWII unlike KK which was heavily bombed. It has a colonial feel to the central business district - a little bit old a little bit modern. We both love the river esplanade. Everyone is very friendly. I also love the diversity of cultures; Muslim, Chinese and Hindu. I feel at home.
Old Courthouse building
We started off late since our morning flight was canceled. We didn't arrive until 1PM. The airport is very efficient and we easily found the taxi window, paid and and are on our way into town. It was 23RM as expected. We whip by the suburbs and soon (15 minutes) we are in the center of Kuching. We check in, drop our bags and head for the tourist office which was about to close at 3PM. We wanted to know how to get to the Orchid and Pitcher plant garden in Padawan and also how to get to Semenggoh Wildlife Center so we can see more Orangutans. We went next door to the National Park office to pay for our room at Bako but they are close to closing and asked us to come back the next day. We headed out and started to explore the city. Our goal - the Sunday Market which starts on Saturday afternoon.
Here are some scenes of Kuching.
Chinese Temples and Streets
Tua Pek Kong Temple
Views Around the City
Chin Lian Long Bus Station - one of two stations in Kuching
Cats - lots of cat status around the city