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Notes on the Geography of Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching

We're headed north to the coast, an hour's drive north or down-river from Kuching. Any idea what to expect?

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Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching picture 1

The Santubong River, a distributary of the Sarawak, breasts its way past Santubong Mountain, to whose far slope we're headed.

Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching picture 2

A boat heads out to sea.

Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching picture 3

The boat came from a village called Santubong.

Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching picture 4

The village accommodates the tide.

Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching picture 5

Some houses have lots of elbow room.

Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching picture 6

One way or another, almost everyone is ready for rising water.

Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching picture 7

Here's an exception: some villagers on higher land are free to indulge their inner gardener.

Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching picture 8

A cemetery is also put on land that generally stays above the water, but the homeowners behind it aren't taking any chances.

Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching picture 9

The village's commercial center.

Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching picture 10

Interior of the store.

Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching picture 11

Clinic.

Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching picture 12

A mile down the road, the sandy beachfront belongs to someone with money.

Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching picture 13

Don't want the hassles of a beach-front home? No problem.

Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching picture 14

Targeting locals, not.

Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching picture 15

What have we here?

Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching picture 16

You'd be forgiven for guessing a gated community, but it's just a hotel, with security.

Malaysia: Santubong: Down River from Kuching picture 17

So here you have it, the tropical beach of international tourist brochures. It's barely on the same planet as Santubong.



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