Bako National Park
Nanga Sumpa and Iban
Kuala Lumpur
Flora and Fauna of Borneo
Malaysia miscellany

SLN geography@Malaysia2005

All photographs were taken by members of the group and can be used in any teaching and learning context in a school but cannot be used for any other purposes without prior permission of kate.russell@staffordshire.gov.uk 

Nanga Sumpa Lodge and Longhouse and the Iban people

The Nanga Sumpa longhouse is home to 30 families of the Iban tribe. We travelled up the river Batang Ai; there are two wooden buildings, separated by a wooden bridge over a small stream. 

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Speeding in the Iban longboats across the lake, the banks covered in dense forest, was like a journey into the unknown - what was round the corner? (RW and RGJ)

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The lodge at Nanga Sumpa is built along the same principles as the longhouse, although it is in a square, built around an open area with large tree in the middle (CC)

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Iban tribesman fishing from his longboat. (RW and RGJ)

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"Rambo" (we were never sure that this was his real name!) is an Iban farmer who showed us how they survive from the forest (CS)

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River crossing at Nanga Sumpa as Rives and Rambo led us to the farming areas. (RW and RGJ)

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Having seen it countless times in text books, it was wonderful to see latex being tapped from a rubber tree. (RW, RGJ, CC and CS) 

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Scooping out flesh from the palm for us to try (CC)

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Rives explained the process of shifting cultivation. Here tapioca and dry rice are being grown. (RW and RGJ) 

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A newly wed girl; she was helping her husband gather leaves from the forest. (CS)

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During our walk in the forest, our guide showed us some of the ways in which the Iban people use the forest for their sustenance. This is one method of fishing in the small stream. Why is the fishing net pointing down stream? (CS)

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One of the small huts in a forest clearing, used by the farmers to store goods (CC)

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Gathering bamboo at the side of a stream (CC)

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Put another bamboo stick on the barby! Cooking jungle style, fresh meat and bamboo stuffed with rice and vegetables. (RW and RGJ and CC) 

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Lunch! This tasty array is the result of finds in the forest; carefully prepared by the Iban ladies. (CC and CS)

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Small tributary of Batang Ai river, near Nanga Sumpa (CC)

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A longhouse settlement as seen from the river. This is quite a modern one. (CS)

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Hanging out the washing! Clothes do not take long to dry in the heat (unless it rains of course!) (CC)

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Steps leading to the longhouse; they are carved into the trunk of a tree; quite perilous climbing these, especially in the dark and wet! (CS)

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The interior of the village chairman's house; note the 3 piece suite, family photos on the wall, Christmas decorations, and hi fi system. (CS)

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An Iban girl making mats which will be used for sitting on; they might also be sold to tourists. (CS)

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An Iban family at the door of their home. (CS)

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The Iban people entertained us with their traditional dances; they invited us to join in too! (CS)
Waterfall 2.JPG (1118906 bytes)Waterfall.JPG (754026 bytes) A longboat trip upstream from the longhouse was very eventful; we were rewarded with this waterfall and plunge pool which make a great swimming pool for the group! (CC)

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Mosquito net, mattress, what more do you need for a good night's sleep? Morning alarm call from the cockerel too! (RW and RGJ)
Timber being seasoned.JPG (837592 bytes)Timber for new longhouse.JPG (928346 bytes) The longhouse was about 26 years old and has reached the end of its life and is not large enough for all the families. They are busy preparing timber to build the new longhouse. (CC)
Palm tree.JPG (1467357 bytes)Palm kernel.JPG (887734 bytes) A palm kernel from the palm tree; although once a very important cash crop, is declining now although there are still many plantations throughout Malaysia. The oil from the palm kernel is used in make products such as soap and shampoo. (CC_

Thanks to Discover the Living Planet and Borneo Adventure for their splendid organisation and a great trip.

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Questions or problems regarding this web site should be directed to kate.russell@staffordshire.gov.uk
Copyright 2007 [QLS Staffordshire County Council]

This page last updated 22 April 2005



This page was last updated 22/04/05