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China Town of Kuching
Carpenter Street
 

82 Ewe Hai Street, Kuching

1 Kwong Wai Siew Association  
2 Teo Chew Association  
3 Hing Ann Association  
4 Hai Nan Association  
5 Tai Poo Association  
6 Kaying Association  
7 Liu Chiu Association  

1 Hiang Thian Siang Ti Temple  
2 Tokong Hin Ho Bio  
3 Bishop Gate  
4 Hong San Si  
5 Tua Pek Kong Temple 大伯公廟

  Main Bazaar 海唇街
   Ewe Hai Street 友海街
  Carpenter Street 亞答街 (木匠街)
  Jalan Bishop Gate 下横街
  Sarawak River 沙撈越河
  Chinese red archway 亞答街牌坊

Tua Pek Kong Temple 大伯公廟

LOCATION:
The main entrance is at the eastern end of Carpenter Street opposite the Old Courthouse (Kuching's Visitor Information Centre) compound. Otherwise, you can find the Chinatown in the Main Bazaar area along Jalan Tunku Abdul Rahman opposite the Kuching Waterfront and Leboh Cina (Upper China Street).

DESCRIPTION:
Kuching Chinatown is marked with a grandiose Chinese-inspired red archway that certainly indicates the entry point of this popular shopping and eating place. The refurbished old shophouses are surprisingly nice to look at, with brightly painted walls and windows, garbage-free streets (yes, most parts of Kuching are surprisingly clean!) with no moving vehicles crowding the alley ways.



Most of the shops along Carpenter Street are selling mostly non-touristy stuff. Note that this is a real Chinatown which is frequently by locals, not necessarily just for tourists. Hence you will find bicycle shops, book stores, hardware stores, antique furniture stores and quaint coffee shops (locally known as kopitiam) where you can witness the city dwellers go about their daily life. There are a number of establishments catered for tourist here, namely the Carpenter Guesthouse which seems like a decent backpacking place, Century Café which provides a great cocktail bar, and an exquisite looking Chinese restaurant.

There are also many Chinese temples in the precinct. Along Carpenter Street alone, there are two of them, with delicate stone carvings, pagoda and prayer places. Nonetheless, the most popular temple has to be the Tua Pek Kong temple along Jalan Tunku Abdul Rahman which is the oldest tokong cina in the city. The temple is believed to be built back in 1843 although the city's official records show its came into existence only in 1876. Opposite the old temple is the Chinese History Museum (Muzium Sejarah Cina) which is also located along Jalan Tunku Abdul Rahman. The museum displays some history of the Chinese community in Kuching and Sarawak in general, tracing their heritage from various migration origins in mainland China. The museum is opened daily from 0900hrs to 1800hrs except on Friday.

The last but not least, the Main Bazaar along Jalan Tunku Abdul Rahman is considered a must-visit in many travel itineraries. In general, the Main Bazaar showcases almost similar characteristics of the old shophouses on Carpenter Street and Leboh Cina, with fancy souvenir outlets are a norm rather than an exception.

MY VERDICT:
A great stroll along the Chinatown neighbourhood. It offers everything, from bare necessities to the much-expected tourist trappings. (And, I hope other cities in Malaysia can learn how Kuching keeps its streets extremely clean and spotless!)

One of the oldest streets in Kuching is Ewe Hai Street.

Ewe Hai Street together with Carpenter Street formed the "Old China Town" of Kuching.

Ewe Hai Street was built in 1885 by a Chinese businessman, Ong Ewe Hai (1830-1889).

This street is connected with another old street – Carpenter Street, at the junction of the remains of Bishop Gate, as well as a gateway to one of

Parallel to Ewe Hai Street  is another Kuching’s oldest street – Main Bazaar’s Bishop Gate Road.

At the other end of this Ewe Hai Street  is the Hong San Si Temple, which is an incense flourishing old temple, full of myth. And next to the temple is Life Café.
 


Life Cafe @ Ewe Hai Street 人间茶坊
108 Jalan Ewe Hai, Kuching.  +60 82-425 707

 

Opposite Life Cafe is Black Bean Coffee & Tea Company 黑豆食品咖啡茶叶贸易公司
87, Ewe Hai Street,  Kuching


Kuching’s old neighborhood, in fact is Sarawak’s first neighborhood. In the early years, a large number of Chinese immigrants came from the province of Guangdong, Fujian as well as other coastal areas and slowly developed this area into prosperity.

The Chinese emigration brought various cultures and handcrafts skills, blended with the old neighborhoods to create the current unique multi-cultural characteristic.

There are numerous furniture shops on Ewe Hai Street, one of the world’s famous Shanghai carpenter also ran a carpentry business here in the early days.

Jing Fong Foh, Shanghai Carpenter

There are dental clinic, bookstores, coffee shops, herbal shops, incense store, etc., which added much colors and liveliness to the lives on the streets.

British colonial style building.

Ewe Hai Street

Carpenter Street

 

LEK TAU SUAN LEK TAU SUAN
BIG BOWL Rm 2.00 (Takeaway big box Rm 2.30)
SMALL BOWL Rm 1.50 (Takeaway small box Rm 1.80)