Adventures in East Asia

Kuching Part 2 - The Streets and Markets of Kuching

Our first full day in Kuching, in contrast to our arrival the previous day, was a pleasure! With brighter skies and bustling stores along colourful streets, Linh and I spent part of the day sifting through shops and markets as well as explore the streets.


I'd made a mental note to return to Kuching in the future purely to get wooden ethnic crafts, furniture and decoration for my home. The best place for this appeared to be Jalan Main Bazaar (photo above), which was historically the centre of town and is the oldest street in Kuching dating back to 1864.


The shophouse architecture best seen from across the street (almost from the Sarawak River) is just superb with many blocks hosting excellent antique and handicraft shops.


Along the way, there were stalls selling packets of this stuff, which is supposed to be a rich, dense kind of cake. We wanted to try some, but they were all sold in big portions. We felt it was too cheeky to ask to try a little.


Further along where Jalan Main Bazaar becomes Jalan Gambier, we found that the covered street became a pavement market of sorts.


The goods from shops lining the street were on display as other vendors made every possible use of the floor space to sell all kinds of meat, fish and vegetables. Clearly a market aimed at locals.




We had no idea what these hairy things were. Anyone know?


These bowls of colourful paste were intriguing.



These packets of pickled fruit made my mouth water and we got some red dyed plums, that didn't end up tasting that good..




We also popped into the nearby Jalan India, an artificially covered street that hosted another market underneath, selling clothes and snacks.




That's alot of dungarees on offer below...


Not forgetting Carpenter Street which was marked with a Chinese archway. This seemed to be as close to a Chinatown that we could find in Kuching, although it actually contained many carpenters and furniture shops along with goldsmiths and a hawker centre.


We ended up eating at the guide map recommended Lao Ya Keng Hawker Centre twice trying noodles and laksa, although we watch nonchalantly as birds flew in from outside to pick up some scraps and a large rat frequently popped up from a hole near the wall.



Parts of the building work around Carpenter Street clearly could do with a bit of a scrub, but sometimes even dirt has its own charms.



A Chinese grocerers.


We popped into the Kuching Waterfront Bazaar which hosts a small collection of stalls selling handicrafts. But compared to the other older shops along Jalan Main Bazaar, this was quieter, with clean, modern interiors and consequently seemed lifeless as a result.


We passed the Kuching Mosque at dusk.


With our hotel in the background (on the left) a colourfully lit, multi-storey car park towers over a nearby ground floor hawker centre.


Next : Kuching Part 3 - The Sarawak Museum

This entry posted in : Culture. Malaysian Borneo. Shopping.

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