3-Day Batang Ai Longhouse Homestay

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Tour type

Tour Level: Moderate

Tour Comfort: Budget

Tour Period: 3 Days

tour highlights

  • Ride on native longboats across Batang Ai Lake
  • Explore a pepper market and a local market
  • Meet the friendly people of the Iban tribe
  • See a traditional war dance of the fomer headhunters
  • Trek deep into the forest with the option of jungle camping

tour details

Explore Batang Ai, close to Kalimantan and once the setting of tribal wars when the Iban expanded into Sarawak. Today, Batang Ai is the peaceful home to about 30 Iban longhouses set amidst lush tropical rainforest along the Batang Ai river and its tributaries. After leaving Kuching, your adventure begins with stops at a pepper farm and a local market in Serian. Arriviving at beautiful Batang Ai Lake, you’ll a board native longboat and head to a longhouse to meet the Ibans & their families. You’ll later watch as the Ibans sound their gongs & perform their war dance in full ceremonial regalia. After another ride on a longboat upriver, you’ll trek deep into the forest and enjoy a typical native picnic lunch. For the adventurous, you’ll also be able to choose to spend one night in the jungle.

Pick-up from your hotel in Kuching for a 290 km journey with en-route stops at the local market in the town of Serian, a stop to observe wild orchids and pitcher plants at the roadside and also a visit of a pepper farm. Lunch will be provided in Lachau, a small upcountry Chinese village.
After lunch you will proceed to beautiful Batang Ai lake. Here, you will board native longboats for about 45 minutes on the lake. After arrival you will be taken up to the longhouse to meet the Ibans and their families and have a tea break.
In the evening, you may choose to join your guide when preparing the dinner. See how, with simple cooking utensils and local ingredients, a delicious meal can be prepared.
After dinner the Ibans will sound their gongs and perform their war dance in full ceremonial regalia.

Overnight at the longhouse (very simple accommodation).

Basic accommodation in the communal hall of the longhouse with mosquito net, mattress, pillows and blanket provided.

Meals included:Lunch
Today, you decide with your guide what you wish to do and see: for example you can choose to relax with the natives in the longhouse, learn to weave baskets, knit fishing nets, make traps and/or join them at the rice fields and pepper farms.
Besides that, you can venture on a ride by longboat further upriver and trek deep into the forest. Learn how the Ibans collect bamboo and leaves to prepare a typical native picnic lunch.
After your sumptuous lunch you will return back to the same longhouse for overnight.
For the adventurous, you can also choose to spend one night in the jungle (if weather permits)! Please inform your guide in the morning before your boat trip whether you wish to spend a night in the jungle.

Overnight at the longhouse or jungle camping (very simple accommodation).

Very basic jungle tent made of canvas sheets as roof and on the ground, with mosquito net and sleeping bag provided.

Meals included:Breakfast
After breakfast, longboat ride and transfer back to Kuching with lunch included en-route.

Meals included:Breakfast


  • 2 nights accommodation in the communal room of a longhouse with shared sanitary facilities or alternatively 1 night jungle camping
  • Meals as stated in the programme B= breakfast, L= lunch, D= dinner
  • Transfers and tours with local English-speaking driver guides in air-conditioned vehicles
  • Entrance fees and/or boat fees as stated in the programme
  • Drinking water available on the vehicles


  • Domestic airfare and/or International airfare to/from Malaysia (quoted separately, if requested)
  • Optional tours
  • Surcharges for other language guides
  • Personal travel insurance
  • Personal expenditure, such as drinks, souvenirs, laundry, camera fees, communications, postage, gratuities etc.
  • Meals and services other than mentioned in the programme
  • Drinks with meals
  • Early check-in and late check-out at hotels, if not mentioned in the programme
  • Gifts for the longhouse


  • This tour can be combined with a visit of Semenggok Orang Utan Centre at an additional surcharge.
  • Even if the package is booked on private basis, the boat transfers & activities in the longhouse may be on shared basis in order to minimise impacts on the natural environment or if other circumstances require so.
  • Please travel light for the overnights at the longhouse. Suitcases can be stored at your hotel in Kuching.
  • Due to primitive conditions in the longhouse, be prepared for some discomfort. You will be accommodated in the community area of the longhouse with no privacy. A mattress, mosquito net, pillow, blanket and clean line will be provided. Simple sanitary facilities are available. Pets like cats and dogs might be encountered in the communal hall of the longhouse and livestock such as chicken or pigs are roaming freely within the
    longhouse compound.
  • It is customary to bring some gifts for the Iban longhouse people, which can be divided by the number of families. Our guide can assist you during one of the stops en-route to buy some suitable presents.
  • This custom is only applicable to Iban longhouse tours.
  • What to Bring
    Loose-fitting summer clothing
     Long pants and long-sleeve shirt for the camping
     Sun hat/ cap
     Sun block
    Insect repellent
    Personal toiletries
     Flat walking shoes with good grip
    Torch or flashlight
    Leech socks (optional; the species of leeches that do occur occasionally cause harmless bites)
Tour code: KCHDSBAL3P19

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