Kuching My Hometown
Kuching Travel Blog› entry 1 of 1 › view all entries
January 3rd, 2009 – by: borneoboy
The first Rajah was James Brooke, a British adventurer who first landed in Kuching in 1839. He was made Rajah after helping the then Governor of Sarawak – Pengiran Muda Hashim to quash a rebellion. Unlike the colonialists in other parts of Asia who were mostly interested in exploiting the colonies for economic gains, the White Rajahs made Sarawak their home, and set up administration systems which helped to develop the state. It was only until the 2nd World War, after Sarawak was occupied by the Japanese, that the Brooke family decided to cede Sarawak to become a Crown Colony.
Due to this unique history, Kuching has some interesting built heritage, in the form of buildings built during the Brooke era, and later on the Colonial era.
The Main Bazaar is one of the oldest streets in Kuching. It was here that the earliest shophouses were built - as a base for the traders and wholesalers. Early traders were mainly Chinese, but there were also Indians and others. Today, the traders and wholesalers are slowly making way for souvenir shops and lodging houses, due to the advent of tourism.
Next to the Main Bazaar is the Kuching Waterfront, a redevelopment of the old waterfront which was controversial at the time, as many lamented the change of character. Today this is a popular public space where many open air events are held - most recently the Kuching Regatta, a popular rowing contest.
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