For an insight into tribal traditions that still live on today, experiencing an authentic longhouse is a must. These wooden structures offer a home to locals in the community – yes, everyone – usually putting a roof over multiple families. Most longhouse visits offer more than just a tour of the building, but involve education from the tribespeople, dancing to traditional music and evenings listening to folklore and legends.
There are more than 1,000 longhouses in Sarawak, which each one having their own individual character and history. The Kelabit community are the smallest ethnic group in Sarawak, but a have centuries-old longhouses located in their village in the Bario Highlands. Elsewhere, around 180 Iban people live in the 35-door Nanga Ukom longhouse, perched on the banks of Engkari river, only accessible by river boat. The most authentic longhouses are usually further away, so be prepared for the journey.