Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Part 2: Rustic Telok Melano

(This post was first written for www.worldisround.com in 2004. Time has passed, and what was true then may no longer be so. For example, the bridge across the Kayan River in Lundu has now been completed. The bus station in front of Kuching General Post Office is also no longer there. So read this as a travelogue from a time past. Some amendments have also been made.)

So where do tourists visiting Telok Melano and Tanjung Datu stay? Actually, the villagers (not all of them) are involved in the home-stay programme. Tourists can book their accommodation through the village head or directly with villagers who are involved in the programme. Tourists can also just go to Telok Melano and then approach any of the houses to ask about the home-stay programme.

At Telok Melano, drinking and bathing water is obtained from the mountain. Electricity is from the generators. Usually, a few families would share a generator and electricity comes on from about 6:00 p.m. to 12:00 midnight. According to our host, the government actually spent a large sum of money to build a mini-hydro station to provide electricity. However, water to turn the turbine was strong enough for one or two hours only each day. It was eventually abandoned.

The beach and sea of Telok Melano is beautiful too. It is definitely much more beautiful than Tanjung Aru Beach of Sabah or Sematan Beach, especially to the west of the village. Arriving from Sematan during high tide, the boat that took us there berthed in the sea about a hundred foot from land. The water that greeted us was clean and clear and the beach sandy and beautiful. It was a big different from the beaches at Sematan. I would have jump into the water for a swim had we not go for the trip to Tanjung Datu immediately afterwards.

At low tide, the beach stretches far out to the sea. It's gentle slope and clean sand is so much more beautiful in the evening sun. There is a small stream to the west of the beach where a Chinese family lived. The reflection of coconut trees in the calm stream brings out a beautiful scene. Looking at the village across the wide expanse of beautiful, sloping beach really takes your breath away.

Telok Melano is also an excellent place to collect sea shells. They are not exactly very big but they are certainly varied, colourful and beautiful. My wife did not seem to have had enough of sea shells at Sematan. She was picking more sea-shells here and she was telling me the sea shells at Telok Melano were so much more colourful and beautiful. We were told that larger shells could be collected at very low tide. Unfortunately, very low tide was in the night when it was too dark to see. There seemed to be more shells on the eastern shore.

(We put up at this lodging house at Sematan, before leaving for Telok Melano the next day)

(Leaving Sematan bazaar for Telok Melano)

(View on the way to Telok Melano from Sematan)

(Pulau Talang-Talang Besar and Talang-Talang Kecil)

(Kampung Telok Melano - the modern building in the centre was a school)

(Coming in to land at Kampung Telok Melano on our arrival)

(View of Kampung Telok Melano in the evening - I love the emerald green sea)

(We stayed here)

(Our host living room)

(Our homestay room)

(If you love collecting sea shells, you can find plenty of them at Kampung Telok Melano)

(Chit-chatting with our host when it was too dark to stroll around)

(Sunrise at Telok Melano)


  1. I never knew you were married!

  2. Can i have number of homestay?

    1. Kelly, it was such a long time ago ... at that time, only the Penghulu has the phone. Try calling Sematan Lodging Hotel. The boss may be able to help.

  3. you can search facebook fananora homestay telok melano too

  4. https://www.facebook.com/fanoramahomestay/
    its actually fanorama homestay telok melano