Kaput in Kapit
Trip Start Mar 27, 2012
84Trip End Oct 18, 2012
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Along the route, we saw a number of longhouses and the industry seemed to be primarily based around logging or woodchipping. Our first stop was a small town called Song, which was about 2 hours from Sibu. We then travelled on to Kapit, which is quite a small town, which is the commercial and administrative centre of an area comprising some 39,000 sq.km, so it does boast some District Council Offices, as well as a State and Government Government Complex.
We were rather surprised at how many cars were in the town, given it is a really small town, with only a few roads running parallel to the river, and we asked if there was now a road from Sibu
To our great disappointment, we were unable to go further up the river to Belaga because of the low water levels. Interestingly, there is now a road from Belaga to Bintulu, because of the dam that has been built in the area - a distance of some 100ks. however, you can only get from Kapit to Belaga by boat..... ah well!
We spent overnight in Kapit and had a good time with the very friendly locals. We enjoyed a great meal in one of the Chinese restaurants. The owner insisted on us trying one the local delicacies (on the house) which is olives, which are soaked in hot water in a sugary substance. They are quite soft and have the consistency of a date. The nut inside is about the same length as our olives, although it is twice the depth. Like our olives, they are a bit of an acquired taste. Needless to say, Arthur wouldn't even try it! I also had to try another local delicacy in Sibu (again, on the house) which was some fishy looking substance which I had to place on a green vegetable (which looked like some kind of cucumber)
We enjoyed a trip to the local Kapit Museum, which gave a good history of the area and the measures taken to unite all the local tribes, including the headhunters. There used to be a fort at Kapit, Fort Sylvia, named after the wife of Rajah Vyner Brooke, a member of the Brooke dynasty, which reigned in the area for more than 100 years. Not much left of the fort but a plaque these days. A trip to the local market was fun, with some interesting fruit and vegetables on display. I did get some very nice local woven cloth.
Back to Sibu late tomorrow.