Ngabang

Travel Guide Asia Indonesia Kalimantan West kalimantan Ngabang

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Introduction

Ngabang (population 65,000) is de capital of Landak Regency, which was established in 1999 as a split-off from Mempawah Regency. The area of Landak Regency coincides more or less with that of Landak kingdom which has been in existence since 1292 AD until it was abolished after Indonesia's independence. Ngabang town lies 185 kilometres by road from Pontianak. It has been the seat of the sultan of Landak since 1768. He had a gazebo on the bank of Pinyuh river (a tributary of Landak river), where his guests could moor their boats. Because there were no roads in the jungle, the river functioned as highway. Contemporary Ngabang has crowded in on Landak river, with houses and a mosque on stilts on the river banks. There are two bridges across Landak river, whence one can drive farther inland or to the Malaysian border.

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Sights and Activities

Mandor monument

Mandor monument

© theo1006

  • Mandor Cemetery - Mandor Cemetery commemorates over 20,000 victims of the Japanese occupation of West Kalimantan. About half way on the journey from Pontianak to Ngabang, it is a fitting place for a pause. This part of the war was almost forgotten when in 1971 a resident of Mandor brought it to the attention of the provincial governor. Six reliefs on the monument wall summarize what happened. But the wall is not the cemetery. That is the forest where the Japanese tried to hide their crimes. Follow the sealed road on the right of the monument to the ten actual mass grave sites. Number ten is where sultans and their families lie, the other sites contain mostly anonymous victims. Address: Mandor, Landak regency.
  • Keraton Ismahayana - The palace in Ngabang is thought to be the oldest in West Kalimantan, a renovation was done around the year 2000. A short history on a wall of this palace states that Landak kingdom was founded by the eldest son of Brawijaya, the first ruler of the great Hindu-Javanese kingdom Majapahit (1294-1478). Landak then had seven Hindu rulers, the last of which married a local woman, Putri Dara Hitam. Her son, Raden Ismahayana, who ruled from 1472 until 1542, converted to Islam and became the first sultan of Landak under the new name Raden Abdul Kahar. So we find that the palace is named after the Hindu ruler who converted to Islam. A later sultan, Pangeran Sanca Nata Kesuma, had his palace built in Ngabang on the present site of Keraton Ismahayana. The last sultan, Pangeran Raden Gusti Abdul Hamid, was executed by the Japanese in 1943 and buried in Mandor. Address: Jalan Pangeran Sanca Natakusuma, Raja village, Ngabang district. (About 1.5 kilometres north from the bus station.)
Saham Long House

Saham Long House

© theo1006

  • Rumah Betang Saham - There are not many Dayak longhouses still being used. The easiest to reach from Pontianak is in Saham. With a length of 180 metres it has room for 35 households. Longhouses are built of iron wood (kayu belian in the local language) and therefore last long. The Saham longhouse is at least 150 years old and has been renovated recently. There are modernizations of course. There is electricity and the stairs consisting of one tree trunk have been replaced by safer ones. When you climb the stairs you arrive at an elevated 'front yard' used for drying clothes, rice and other things. Enter through one of the doors and you find yourself in a covered common space. There each household has its own front door. All apartments are of the same width, but a family may add rooms to the back as needed. Best time for a visit is April 27th, when the villagers celebrate rice harvest . Address: Saham village, Sengah Temila district (150 kilometres or about 4 hours' drive from Pontianak. By bus you can get as far as Pahauman, there you have to charter an ojek to the longhouse for the last 11 kilometres.)

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Sleep

  • Hotel Dangau Landak - The best in town, both for quality and location, right in town centre next to the bus station. The compound is surprisingly large for town centre, it probably was just marshland when the owner bought it. Most rooms are on ground level and it is possible to park in front of one's room, partly even shaded. There is a bit of garden where you can have your meals lesehan-wise (sitting on the floor at low tables). Address: Jalan Pasar Baru. Phone: 0563-21095.
  • Hotel Hanura - Hotel Hanuara is not unlike Hotel Dangau Landak, but situated at 2 kilometres from the bus station on the border of town when coming from Pontianak. That should be no problem if you come with a car and take a room with garage. The hotel has a restaurant and if you want to eat out, there is a Javanese warung across the road. Address: Jalan Raya Ngabang. Phone: 0563 21282.
  • Hotel Hong Long - This hotel lies on the road to Sanggau, 750 metres from Landak river bridge. It consists of two blocks of two and three storeys with windowless rooms. There is a gazebo with view in the back yard. The best rooms come with hot water and a tub, cheaper ones with a shower next to the toilet. Address: Jalan Raya Pulau Bendu #99. Phone: 0563-22222.

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Keep Connected

Internet

Internet is becoming more widely used in Indonesia, and warung Internet (warnet) - Internet cafés - are emerging everywhere. A lot of restaurants and cafés in big cities normally have wireless internet available for free. Internet connection speed in Indonesia varies between ISP and location. Prices vary considerably, and as usual you tend to get what you pay for, but you'll usually be looking at around Rp3,000 to Rp5,000 per hour with faster access than from your own mobile phone. In large cities, there are free WiFi hotspots in many shopping malls, McDonald restaurants, Starbucks cafes, 7 Eleven convenience stores, and in some restaurants and bars. Some hotels provide free hotspots in the lobby and/or in their restaurants and even in your rooms.

Phone

See also: International Telephone Calls

You can use 112 as an emergency number through mobile phones. Other numbers include 110 (police), 113 (fire) and 118 (ambulance).
The international phone code is 62.

If you have GSM cellular phone, ask your local provider about "roaming agreement/facility" with local GSM operators in Indonesia (i.e.: PT Indosat, PT Telkomsel, PT XL Axiata). The cheapest way is buying a local SIM card, which would be much cheaper to call and especially use internet compared to your own cell phone's sim card.

The Indonesian mobile phone market is heavily competitive and prices are low: you can pick up a prepaid SIM card for less than Rp 10,000 and calls may cost as little as Rp 300 a minute to some other countries using certain carriers (subject to the usual host of restrictions). SMS (text message) service is generally very cheap, with local SMS as low as Rp129-165, and international SMS for Rp400-600. Indonesia is also the world's largest market for used phones, and basic models start from Rp 150,000, with used ones being even cheaper.

Post

Pos Indonesia provides the postal service in Indonesia. Pos Indonesia is government-owned and offers services ranging from sending letters and packages to money transfers (usually to remote areas which have no bank branch/ATM nearby) and selling postcards and stamps. Sending a postcards, letter or parcel is relatively expensive, but fairly reliable. It takes several days at least to send it within Indonesia, at least a week internationally. It is recommended to send letters from a Pos Indonesia branch, not by putting it inside orange mailbox (called Bis Surat) in the roadside, because some of the mailboxes are in very bad condition and aren't checked regularly by Pos Indonesia. Opening times of post offices usually tend to follow general business hours: Monday to Friday from 8:00am to 4:00pm (sometimes shorter hours on Fridays), Saturdays from 8:00am to 1:00pm, closed on Sundays. Bigger cities, tourist areas and central post offices tend to keep longer hours, into the evenings.

Private postal services based in Indonesia include CV Titipan Kilat (CV TIKI), Jalur Nugraha Ekaputra (JNE), Caraka, and RPX. There are also foreign postal services that have branches in Indonesia, including DHL, TNT, UPS, and FedEx.

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This is version 9. Last edited at 11:22 on Mar 19, 18 by Utrecht. 1 article links to this page.

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