Sunday, February 12, 2012
Bawang Assan Iban Longhouse
A trip to the Sibu area is incomplete without taking the opportunity to visit an Iban longhouse. Although the Ibans in the Sibu area are modern people who have fully embraced the 20th century, they still practise many traditional customs and retain their 'adat' or traditional law. The Ibans are a warm and hospitable people, and this hospitality, coupled with their rich and colourful customs and traditions, can be a memorable experience.
I am not too sure if the normal Iban house is open for visiting but if you have any Iban friends, make sure you request them for a tour to their house.
There is one homestay at Bawang Assan, you can experience the tradition there. Bawang Assan Iban Longhouse Stay Program is the first homestay program develop by Ministry of Urban Development and Tourism. If you are driving at your own, do get the address or ask the local people for the direction, I followed the big sign board but it is lost somewhere. You will reach Bawang Assan River, drive straight you will see the Iban long house. if you want to go to the homestay, you have to turn right just after you cross the bridge of Bawang Assan River.
To get to Bawang Assan, take a taxi (RM50), a van from outside the Sibu Central Market (every 2 hours, RM 2) or an express boat (every 2 hours from the Kapit Wharf, RM 2.50) or liaise with local travel agent to arrange the whole tour. ***Information from Sarawak Tourism Board
For more information on homestay, please visit the Iban Longhouse Stay.
Mr Marcathy Gindau
c/o Rh James Semilan
Bawang Assan, 96000 Sibu