Destination Guide

The Village House by Singgahsana is located in Santubong Village, 31 kilometers from Kuching, the capital city of the Malaysian state of Sarawak, the perfect gateway to the island of Borneo.

Santubong Village boasts of a rich cultural and historical legacy; from 9th to 13th centuries, during the Tang and Sung dynasties, Santubong was one of the premium trading centers in the region and was the first capital of Sarawak.

The village boasts of beautiful untouched beaches and numerous archeological sites including Bongkissam, Bukit Maras, Sungai Jaong, Makam Sultan Tengah.
Santubong is in fact the largest archaeological site in Malaysia, in comparison with Lembah Bujang in the Peninsular Malaysia. Thousands of ceramic shards were excavated in 1949 under the curatorship of Tom Harrison.

Other than Chinese ceramics, about 40,000 tons of iron slag formed another salient discovery. It is believed that this area was once an important centre of trade and iron mining during the period between 11th Century A.D. to 13th Century A.D. (extracted from Sarawak Museum Department website under collections)
Archaeological digs in this area just a mere kilometer from The Village House unearthed gold objects and semi precious stones in raised platform (ancient Buddhist ritual deposit). Other associated finds are ceramics of T’ang and Sung Dynasties. (extracted from the Sarawak Museum Department website under collections)
Bukit Maras
Also in the vicinity of Santubong, Bukit Maras is a hilltop site with ancient Guptama Buddha figure, associated with heads and elephant figures and several pieces of soft pottery probably of local made for domestic or funerary uses but finished and shaped often in distinctly Indian style. (extracted from the Sarawak Museum Department website under collections)
Singai Jaong, ‘Batu Bergambar’
Situated next to a small creek named Sungai Jaong some 3 km from The Village House is a significant archeological site with rock carvings (petroglyphs) the most impressive of which is a stone carved shape of a humanlike figure. Other finds in the area include gold objects and T’ang Dynasty ceramics.
Sultan Tengah Mausoleum
The Mausoleum of Sultan Tengah is located just before the junction to Santubong fishing village. Sultan Tengah was the son of the third Sultan of Brunei. He died in 1641 and was the first and only Sultan of Sarawak. When Sultan Tengah passed away, he was buried together with his family members, the location of which is the Tomb of Sultan Tengah.
Mount Santubong National Park
Spanning an area of 1,410 hectares comprising the upper rim of this majestic mountainous peninsula, Mount Santubong National Park was gazetted on the 28 February 2007.

Numerous jungle trails starting from the main road afford visitors wonderful nature walks complete with waterfalls, gargantuan trees and interesting wildlife. These trails link up to the main one that leads up to the 810m summit, a grueling 3 to 5 hours climb.
Kuching Wetlands National Park
Located just 15 km from Kuching and approximately 5 km from Damai Beach, the Kuching Wetlands National Park covers an area of 6,610 hectares on the estuarine reaches of the Sibu Laut and Salak rivers. The park is mostly comprised of a saline mangrove system that includes an extensive network of marine waterways and tidal creeks interconnecting the two major rivers that form the boundaries of the park.

Small patches of heath forest are found in the interior of the park. The park is an important spawning and nursery ground for fish and prawn species and contains a wide diversity of wildlife, including proboscis monkeys, long tailed macaque monkeys, silver-leaf monkeys, monitor lizards, estuarine crocodiles and a range of birdlife, including kingfishers, white-bellied sea eagles and shore birds, including the rare lesser adjutant stork.

Gazetted as a national park in July 2002, the site is one of the last remnants of the formerly extensive Sarawak Mangrove Forest Reserve, which previously covered approximately 17,000 hectares and was first protected in 1924. Recognising the ecological significance and tourism potential of the area, the Sarawak State Government is currently formulating a management plan for Kuching Wetlands. In November 2005 Malaysia designated the park as a Ramsar site, a wetland of international importance.

Whilst the park is relatively new, the area has long attracted nature enthusiasts owing to its fascinating ecosystem and excellent wildlife viewing opportunities. For the visitor, Kuching Wetlands offers an excellent introduction to the mangrove environment, and a chance to see a range of wildlife and spend some time soaking up the sights and sounds of one of the most interesting stretches of coastline in the whole of Sarawak.

To explore the park you have to take to the river. Borneo Experiences by Singgahsana Lodge Adventures takes you there with their Wetlands Wonders cruise. Crossing from Santubong Village onto the Pasir Pandak and Panjang Coastline, you will commence your search for the Irrawaddy dolphins as they barrel roll on the surface. Passing by the Malay fishing village on Salak Island, which lies just outside the park’s boundary, you gradually meander up the Salak River before entering the smaller rivers and creeks in the park to spot wildlife at dusk such as proboscis, silver leaf and macaque monkeys and possibly even crocodiles at low tide. As the sun sets to an orange glow and darkness eventually sets in, you slowly drift through the small tributaries amidst the twinkle of millions of fireflies before heading across the estuary back to Santubong. 
Satang Islands
Sarawak’s first marine national park, Talang-Satang was established with the primary aim of conserving Sarawak’s marine turtle population. The park comprises the coastline and sea surrounding four islands of the southwest coast of Sarawak; Pulau Talang Besar (Greater Talang Island) and Pulau Talang Kecil (Lesser Talang Island) off Sematan, and Pulau Satang Besar (Greater Satang Island) and Pulau Satang Kecil (Lesser Satang Island) off Santubong, near Kuching. These four “Turtle Islands” are responsible for 95% of all the turtle landings in Sarawak. The park also includes the Pulau Tukong Ara-Banun Wildlife Sanctuary, two tiny islets which are important nesting sites for colonies of Bridled Terns and Black-Naped Terns.

Talang-Satang National Park covers a total area of approximately 19,400 hectares (19.4 sq km), and comprises all lands below the high tide marks on the respective islands, and the surrounding seas for a radius of 4.8 km from the highest point on each island. Beautiful shallow reef areas surround all the four islands. The reefs generally consist of several species of hard coral and colonies of soft coral. They provide shelter and resting grounds for sea turtles, and are also important fish breeding areas.
Sarawak Cultural Village
The Sarawak Cultural Village was set up to showcase Sarawak's cultural heritage. Located just 4 km from The Village House, it is the perfect place for an introduction to the local cultures and lifestyles.

Sprawled across 17 acres with the majestic Mount Santubong as its backdrop, the village comprises of many beautifully constructed traditional dwellings of the different peoples of Sarawak.

A ‘living museum’, approximately 150 staff members live in the village, demonstrating typical traditional activities from Sarawak's diverse tribes like the processing of sago palm and the making of handicrafts. Adorned with traditional costumes, residents also put on dances for visitors. Take some time to listen to their great insights on the various traditional cultures and lifestyles and you will gain an even greater appreciation of Sarawak’s great cultural diversity.

Daily multicultural dance performances are held at 11.00 a.m. and 4.00 p.m. at the theatre.
Damai Golf & Country Club
Established in April 1996, the Damai Golf and Country Club just 3 km from The Village House boasts the true elegance of an international standard 18-hole, par 72 golf course. The first Arnold Palmer-designed golf course in Malaysia, it features a Mountain Nine and an Ocean Nine, which are remarkably different in character. The setting is truly spectacular, bordering the foothill of Mount Santubong and hugging the beaches, rocky outcrops and mangrove forests of the South China Sea.
The Club offers modern conveniences and facilities such as buggies, café, retail outlets and many more to ensure a memorable golfing experience.
Damai Central
Situated outside the gates of The Sarawak Cultural Village, Damai Central aims to transform Damai Bay and the Santubong Peninsular into an oasis of life by providing facilities and services in the domain of shopping, sports, entertainment, recreation, and other leisure activities. Taking full advantage of the natural ambiance of sea, sand, jungle greenery and mountain landscape to create and provide a priceless stress-free environment that is open to all.
Buntal Fishing Village
Located 4 km from The Village House, neighbouring Buntal Village is typical Malay Fishing Village. The majority of residents of Buntal Village are still active fishermen although a large segment have taken up employment at the many seafood restaurants dotting the village.

Buntal Village also has another claim to fame; facing the Bako-Buntal Bay, this area is one of Malaysia’s most important sites for migratory waterbirds. Citing information by Aonyx Consultancy (, a total of 61 species of 15 families have been recorded, with a single day maximum count of 5,363 birds. The site supports 13% of the world’s entire population of the endangered Chinese Egret Egretta eulophotes, and thousands of sandpipers, plovers, knots and stints.
Pasir Panjang & Pandak Villages
Pasir Panjang is perhaps the best swimming beach near the Santubong Peninsular. Located approximately 15km from The Village House towards Kuching City, it is a hotspot for weekend and holiday local picnickers but remain very quiet on working weekdays.

Adjacent to this pretty cove is the quaint fishing village of Pasir Pandak. With her residents eking their living from the sea, an interesting time to visit is when these fishermen bring their boats back to shore with their catches from mid afternoon.

Tanjung Kubur or Graves Point, a Malay cemetery situated on one end of the bay at Pasir Pandak offers one great vistas over Santubong Village and Mountain across the estuary as well as the Pasir Panjang coastline alongside and the Satang Islands out to sea, a great spot for sunset photography. 
Damai Beach
Accessible via Damai Central, there is a small section of beach adjacent to the Damai Beach Resort that is free for use by the public and gets rather busy at weekends.
Batu Buaya or Crocodile Rock
A single large rock formation resembling a crocodile’s head on the beach at the far end of Santubong Beach. Local legend of ‘Batu Buaya’ (the Cursed Crocodile Rock) tells the story of inhabitants of a village called Kampung Landeh, who enjoyed peace and harmonious living, until the arrival of a crocodile from an area called Ulu Landeh. The crocodile was a mystical creature and very fierce. Its presence disrupted the peaceful lives of the villagers as it terrorised the villagers and killed many in the process. There were many attempts to kill the crocodile but failed as it had mystical powers.

One day, a brave warrior by the name of Panglima Merpati Jepang arrived at the village. Sensing that he was able to help, the villagers promptly appealed for him to destroy the mystical crocodile. Seeing the carnage caused, Panglima Merpati Jepang agreed. A great fight and struggle ensued between the courageous warrior and the mystical crocodile, which ended in the successful inhalation of the mystical creature. During the fight, Panglima Merpati Jepang severed the crocodile’s large head from its body. The head subsequently drifted to the river mouth of Santubong River and was washed ashore. As the head was large, it remained ashore forever until it became a rock. Subsequently, the inhabitants of Santubong named it Batu Buaya as it resembled the head of a crocodile.