2007 Holiday Pictorials
This is a backpost of the short year end holidays I would like to share with fellow bloggers. Most of the time I get emails from tourists from outside Sarawak and Sarawakians who have never gone on a river adventure up the Rajang River. So if you have plans to ride on an Express Boat here's a few pictures on what its like. Water transport plays an important role in the everyday life of the rural folks whose homes (mainly longhouses) and riverine towns are not connected by road networks. The rivers become the lifeline for these settlements/towns. How does one go upriver especially from Sibu? Firstly what does a typical Express boat look like?
Most West Malaysians who have been to Langkawi will call it a Ferry as most of the boats that ply between Langkawi and the mainland Kedah (or Penang Island) looks similiar. I can say most of the 'Ferries' there are built in Sarawak. Sarawak especially Sibu is famous for its shipbuilding industry so its basic shape and design are almost similiar. But for most West Malaysians who are not so exposed to this mode of transport and if you talk to them about 'Express' they will immediately identify it with the Express Bus which plies along the West Malaysian highways.
The Ticket Counter with time, destination and the express boat pictures. During peak season or holidays do buy or book your tickets early
The advantage of sitting on the perabong is that you get to see the scenic views along the river. Something like the River Crusie along Sarawak River. Just pray that it does not rain.
The ultimate test for a good Express Boat Passenger is something like a Fear Factor episode. That is getting off a boat (or getting on) if you are stopping over at the nearby jetties. You will need both the skills and the courage to get on or off a rocking boat.
So this are just some of the experiences shared for your further exploration. The days of the express boats are numbered in a way because of the rapid infrastructure developments in the State. The recently completed Lanang Bridge and the improvement of the Sibu to Sarikei roads have reduced the number of express boats trips plying Sibu to Sarikei. Before the Express Boat rides become a romantic past - make a point to try it soon.