Kaul Festival in Mukah Sarawak

Mukah, located in Central Sarawak is slowly emerging into an important coastal town with a bright future. Its population are mainly Melanau where they are know as the sago-eating tribe. Kuching city on the other hand is located at the Western tip of Sarawak. There are many ways to go to Mukah and one can go to Mukah either by car, plane from or by boat from Sibu. It takes over 5 hours to reach Mukah from Sibu.

The local Melanaus in Mukah, alugueldecacambassp Sarawak recently celebrated the Kaul Festival (Pesta Kaul). It was a myriad of events with more than 10,000 people attending it. This festival is unique to the Melanaus is held every year around the month of March to April. Kaul Festival is a thanksgiving festival to appease the spirits of the farms, forests, land and sea. The Melanaus would express their gratitude to the spirits for keeping them safe through the monsoon season. They are also expressing their desire for an abundance of fishes caught on their fishing journeys.

The main highlights in the event is the “tibau”, a traditional giant swing 20 feet high. Young people would daringly dive down to catch a swinging rope. This is obviously not for the faint hearted. Graceful dancers also performed at the event with their traditional alu-alu dance. Sri Ritma won the first prize with rm2,000 prize money. Other activities included martial arts demonstrations and parade by local community leaders. It is at this event that you get to witness the many facets of the Melanau community.

The most famous dish from Mukah would be the umai dish, which is a raw fish delicacy prepared out of raw fish and consumed in the form of salad. Several different types of raw fishes are used for preparing Umai. You can either have it plain, sliced fish with spicy chili sauce or raw fish mixed with lime juice, sliced onions, chilies, sugar and salt. The other popular dish would be the sago pellet.

Come visit Mukah and learn about culture and their uniqueness.

Sandy K, a local sarawakian wants to introduce Sarawak to the whole world. Though legally trained, her first love has always been in writing, traveling, internet and entrepreneurship. She wants to use her expertise to help expose the mystical beauty of her homeland to the world at large with the power of internet media. For more information about Sarawak, do visit She may be reached at or follow her at Twitter – BorneoExplorer.


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