borneo malesia

03 JUNE 2016


A modern and traditional Iban Longhouse, built with innovative materials, maintains those characteristics suitable for a Malaysian family lifestyle . More than 40 ethnic groups live in Sarawak ( Malaysia) , each has its own language, culture and life style. Cities and big towns are inhabited by Malaysian , Melanesian , Chinese and a small percentage of Iban and Bidayuh emigrated from their villages searching for a job elsewhere. Sarawak distinguishes itself from the rest of Malaysia because of low presence of Indians. Iban population includes the biggest percentage ( nearly the 34%) of Sarawak inhabitants. Iban are well known as the headhunters from Borneo island but are today very generous, warm and quite people. Because of their history connected to piracy and fishing , they have been called in a conventional way “ Sea Dayak”. First Iban settlers migrated from Kalimantan ( Indonesian part of Borneo and south of Sarawak) . Traditionally Iban live in “ longhouses” , a structure made of many big rooms which can host many families all together. It might even still be possible to see some head as trophy or antu pala in some of these traditional Iban houses.. These hanging heads remind a victory of the tribe and are a sign of distinction for the family. The Iban Dayak stopped hunting heads back in 1930.