A day in Kuching and the Semenggoh Nature Reserve

If you’re planning a trip to Malaysia, you should definitely not skip Borneo. It’s a beautiful piece of Malaysia which covers magnificent nature, all kinds of animal species and nice towns. During my trip, I’ve been to the Malaysian state Sarawak where I’ve visited, among other places, the Semenggoh Nature Reserve and the city Kuching. In this article I will tell you some more about these two places, which are easily to combine as a visit in one day.

Would you like to read more about Malaysia and Borneo? You can find all my articles by clicking here.


Kuching is, next to the capital of the Malaysian state Sarawak, the city of the cats. Literally, the name of the city also means ‘cat’. On diverse places around the city you can find statues of cats, but you can also find them all around the souvenir shops. Kuching is a very clean and safe city full of nice eateries and awesome street art.

The waterfront

The waterfront promenade is one of the highlights of Kuching, as it’s the perfect place to wander around and enjoy the nice environment. Here you can also find several places where you can eat or drink something. On your way walking along the waterfront, you come across a beautiful bridge which leads you to the characteristic parliament building. In the evening, you can also find here street musicians, which creates a nice vibe.


If you’re interested in the history of Sarawak, the Sarawak Museum is definitely a recommendation. If you’re a cat lover, the Cat Museum will definitely be your thing where you can find anything what has to do with cats. For both museums you don’t have to pay an entrance fee.

Food markets

There are so many eateries around Kuching where you can have a delicious dinner: from cheap meals to expensive restaurants, there is something for everyone. It’s recommended to visit one of the food markets, which offer nice meals and have a cosy atmosphere.

Shopping centres

Just as Kuala Lumpur and George Town on Penang, Kuching also has many shopping centres around the city. So.. if you are a shopping lover, this city also is the place to be. In these shopping centres you can find food courts where you can have a nice, local lunch or dinner. Most of the time you can find these food courts at the highest floor of the shopping centres.

Semenggoh Nature Reserve

On a driving distance of 30 minutes from Kuching, you can find the Semenggoh Nature Reserve. This reserve is the best place in Sarawak to spot orang-utans in their natural habitat. Two times a day, there is a possibility to visit the reserve and to look at how the orang-utans get feed. Such an unique experience!


The feeding times of the orang-utans take place in the morning, from 09:00 AM to 10:00 AM, and in the afternoon, from 03:00 PM to 04:00 PM.

Entrance fees

In Malaysia, when it comes to entrance fees to sights, they make a difference between the locals and the foreigners. Normally, the entrance fees for the locals is lower compared to the entrance fees for the foreigners.

Adults pay RM 10,- as entrance fee to Semenggoh Nature Reserve. Children between the age of 6 and 18 years old pay RM 5,- and children under the age of 6 years old can enter the reserve for free.

How to reach Semenggoh Nature Reserve

The best way to reach the Semenggoh Nature Reserve will probably be by Grab Taxi. If you don’t know this organisation: it’s actually the same as Uber Taxi, but then in South-East Asia. You can easily download the app on your mobile phone and the payment goes through credit card. I’ve had very good experiences with Grab during my time in Malaysia. The other way to get to Semenggoh Nature Reserve will probably be by rental car.

Take into account that the orang-utans live in the (semi-)wild. That’s also why sometimes they won’t come to the feeding platforms during the specific times.

Where to stay

Most people probably stay in Kuching during their time in Sarawak, as it’s a city and you can easily go to a restaurant or café. Also, Kuching has a central location, which makes it easy to reach other places in Sarawak in a short time.

If you would like to stay in an unique accommodation and you don’t mind that you’ve to drive a bit for the lively city, I can definitely recommend The Culvert: an accommodation which provides concrete silo’s as rooms. How cool is that! I wrote an extensive review about The Culvert which you can find by clicking here.

Is Malaysian Borneo already on your bucket list?

Author: Tamara

This article is part of the GPSmyCity iOS app. You can download it, read this article offline and obtain travel directions (by foot, car or bicycle) to the places mentioned in this article. Click here to download it.

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