Sunday, November 16, 2008

Kuala Tatau Water Festival

Today I went to Kuala Tatau to watch the 'Kuala Tatau Water Festival' held in conjunction with the celebration of 45 years of Sarawak Independence through Malaysia .
Kuala Tatau is a tiny fishing village which to my knowledge has no road links for the last one hundred years to any nearby town or village even within a one (1)  kilometer radius. However about 3 years ago when a coastal link road was completed to make it accessible from the main town of Bintulu by a 20 minutes drive, it has become a popular place for people of Bintulu to see the nostagia of living in an isolated village away from the hustle and bustle of life in booming Bintulu.
The above signboard is a good idea of how small  the village is. There are two reinforced concrete fisherman jetties, a football field, a row of wooden shophouses, a Mosque, a Primary School,  a Water Treatment plant, some signs of government like a Forestry Office, a Rural clinic, an Agriculture office, an Electricity Board office, a Kindergarten, Government Quarters , about a few hundred of 'kampung' or village houses and interestingly an Esplanade. 
To go to the main village of Kuala Tatau we have to cross the Tatau River using this boat powered by a small Mariner outboard engine . The carges for a one way trip was RM1.50 per adult.
The grand stand for the boat race is the jetty farthest in the picture towards the left. I could see spectators on both sides of the river banks. Toward the top right hand corner of the picture is the general coastline with the mouth of the river seen in the far horizon. It was through this river mouth that people from Kuala Tatau was able to travel to  Bintulu and other coastal towns by long boats, fishing boats or coastal launches for the last 100 years.
The Esplanade equipped with a children's playground, some park furniture and greenery, with a view of the Tatau River and the great open sea beyond ( i.e the South China Sea). More pictures of the day can be seen here, at Bintulu Clicks.

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