Birders and Cultural Travelers Will Find It All in Borneo's Sarawak

May 13, 2011
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While many factors motivate nature travel, you can typically separate adventurers into two groups: those hoping to glimpse a unique foreign culture and those seeking to spot rare and exotic wildlife. Fortunately for travelers heading to Borneo, the state of Sarawak has plenty of both.

The region bears the cultural name Bumi Kenyalang, which translates to "Land of the Hornbills." As such, birders can glimpse the elegant Buceros rhinoceros, or rhinoceros hornbill. This unique and beautiful species is easily identified by its large protruding casque, which curves upwards not unlike the horn of a rhinoceros.

Travelers can also take in the native culture at the living museum that is the Sarawak Cultural Village. Located at the foot of Mount Santubong, this facility deftly recreates the traditional living arrangements of the region's seven native cultures – the Bidayuh, Iban, Penan, New Orang Ulu, Meanau, Malay and Chinese.

There are performances of sacred rituals and traditional dances, informational tours that teach visitors about the native cultures and artisans producing authentic handicrafts all across a 14-acre jungle that heightens the sensation of awe at this compelling attraction.

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creative commons image Image courtesy of Antoine Hubert & Creative Commons