Pleasant end to Express Boat Ride from Kuching

Trip Start Feb 01, 2011
Trip End Mar 31, 2011

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Where I stayed
Hua Yin Hotel, Sibu

Flag of Malaysia  , Sarawak,
Monday, March 7, 2011

7th March -

I arrived at Sibu at 1.30 pm and had missed the onward connection to Bintulu, so decided to stay overnight in Sibu.  Just to backtrack - the original plan A was as follows:

Express Boat to Sibu - change to another express boat to Song - stay overnight there
A regular boat up the Rejang River to Kapit - stay 3 nights there
A long-tail boat up the Rejang River to Belaga

There is NO BOAT to Belaga because there is not enough water in the river to take the boats due to a new Dam being built further up - no boats until next May!!  Luckily, I found this out when I rang my guide in Belaga, who gave me alternative directions.

Plan B - Get off boat in Sibu - stay overnight - get a bus to Bintulu - 3.5 hours - have lunch - take a 4WD to Belaga - another 3 hours.

OK - having my original plans blown out of the water, I will now continue with my trip entry.  Sibu, I found to be a very nice place.  There is a thriving market with fish, meat, vegetables, hardware, clothes - in fact, everything you would need.  I met Christian (an Austrian who has been travelling for 10 years) on the Express Boat from Kuching.  He also got off the boat at Sibu and we found a place to stay.  We then went to the market where he persuaded me to try Durian fruit for the very first time - apparently, it has the worst smell possible but a great taste - I can confirm that, but the smell was OK too.  We also bought Kompian rolls - they are a local bread and taste really good.  I had fresh ginger tea, brewed by Christian - also a big difference from Twinings ginger teabags.  He was a most interesting person and told me a lot about his travels all over India, and how his life had changed as a result of his travels.

We went to visit a Taoist temple and Christian got the keys and we were allowed to go to the very top - about 8 flights of stairs but it was worth it for the view and I got some good sunset pics.  We had to get up early the next morning to catch the bus to Bintulu and there we parted company - he was going to a National Park near Bintulu and I was being picked up for a drive........ of a lifetime.  Thank you Christian for your company on this part of my trip.
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