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Kurakura Homestay
Ranked #6 of 82 Kuching B&B and Inns
Reviewed August 29, 2011

Stayed with Lars, Liza, Freya and Phyllis for 2 nights in August - what a wonderful stay, Kurakura was one of the highlights of the entire trip. Simply reaching the house is an adventure in itself, with Lars steering the longtail boat upstream along the narrow Sarawak River. Remote and cut-off from the outside world (though only 90 minutes total from Kuching), Kurakura Homestay is the perfect antidote to city stresses - the nearest road and neighbour are a few kms away, so the only sounds are those of the jungle !

Spotlessly clean, with lush tropical gardens growing every manner of plants - from durians to peppercorns, coffee beans to bananas, papaya to ginger.

The meals prepared by Liza were sumptuous and delicious - and the young family were a pleasure to spend time with - we felt instantly more like friends than house-guests.
Our 3 little ones (8,7 and 3) loved their time at Kurakura, and we were content to spend our hours down wallowing at the river or in the garden / on the verandah. Another time we will join Lars on his jungle trek for sure....

Yes it was hot and humid, and the lack of fan/air-con might not suit everyone, but we were perfectly OK - and you do get some breeze through the open windows. Surprisingly, hardly any mosquitos but do bring repellent as there are some sandflies down at the river.

On an earlier review someone mentioned the bathrooms - if that review was stopping you, you'll be pleased to hear there's a brand-spanking new western-style toilet in place !

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled with family
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2  Thank CharmingSpice
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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73 - 79 of 123 reviews

Reviewed August 26, 2011

Very nice couple. Lars is Norwegian and Liza, his wife, is from the local tribe (sorry I forget the name). They have a cute little girl, and her cousin helps with childcare and so on. Lars built the house with his own hands and the place is still only accessible by boat from a local village. So it's all very authentic and away from the throngs of tourists. Food is great, although the portions were sometimes too small for my partner who ended up hungry in the middle of the night. The rooms are small and don't have AC, it was cool enough at night so you don't need it for temp, but it was very humid, so I had trouble sleeping. Also the beds are small and too short for taller people who are used to king sized beds. However, for a few days it's ok. I'd definetely recommend it as a unique and genuine homestay experience.

Room Tip: All rooms are the same, 4 in a row.
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  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank MaxiMax1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 14, 2011

We recently stayed with Lars and Liza for the first 3 nights of our two week holiday in the Kuching area. Lars and Liza are the most welcoming hosts, and all the previous reviews are spot on, Kurakura is wonderful.

What I can add is a review from a family perspective. We have 3 children 12,10 and 8 and as a family we had the type of experience that will go into family folk lore. From the moment Lars picked us up,we were confident we would have a great time. Lars spoke to the children with enthusiasm and respect, they really felt part of the family.

Meals were all eaten together on the beautiful deck and were absolute feasts. Liza's cooking really is incredible and she clearly loves making local produce into exquisite food. On our final day Liza was up before dawn making pancakes for breakfast, she had promised the kids the day before, unaware we were leaving early. That's dedication and just a small example of how lovely she is!

We went caving on our second day, and Lars was very aware of what cave would be suitable for our children. It was such a joy to see them traipsing through the jungle full of enthusiasm and adventure. The caves were beautiful and we had an amazing day. We felt very safe in Lars' capable hands and enjoyed his company and local knowledge.

On our 3rd day, Lars arranged a kayaking trip for us and transported us to the meeting place. We had great day which was topped off by another superb meal, including the river snails we had helped collect the day before. There was plenty of other delicious food if snails weren't your cup of tea.

Our say at Kurakura was all that we hoped it would be. It was remote enough to feel wild but also comfortable and safe. Lars, Liza and Freya will feature in our memories of a brilliant family adventure. We wish them every success for their special jungle homestay.

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank daviesfamily100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 13, 2011

Kurakura Homestay and The Kebun are definitely the best places to stay near Kuching. We were lucky to visit both. Lars and Liza built the Kurakura Homestay in the middle of the jungle, only reachable by boat. They created their own paradise and we were lucky to spend three nights there during our holiday in Sarawak. On our first day we were picked up by Lars in Kuching, visited a local market and drove to the village which is closest to their home, from which we took a small boat to Kurakura. The house is located on a small hill near te river. The rooms are basic, but nice and clean and you can relax on the verandah and look out over the lovely garden and the jungle. In the afternoon Liza showed us the garden and the jungle around it. We learned about all the plants and herbs you can find in the jungle. Later that day (and all the subsequent days) she turned out to be a wonderful cook too.
The following days we made a hike with Lars through the jungle (incl caves!) and went for a kayaking trip on the river (luckily no crocodiles here). If you want to stay even longer you might want to go to the Serengoh Wildlife Centre or visit one of the longhouses in the neighbourhood. But simply reading your book on the verandah with one of the cats on your lap can be just as nice.
We feel your visit to Sarawak is not complete without a stay at Lars and Liza's.

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank AldeCoole
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 1, 2011

Our stay at Kurakura was one of our highlights during our 2 weeks trip in the Kuching-area. Lisa and Lars are the most fantastic hosts and they really went out of their way to make our stay enjoyable and memorable. Lisa dished up the most amazing dinners and she is really a very good chef! Thank you so much for the Jungle Shopping and sharing your knowledge with us how to survive in a jungle. We also had a wonderful day excursion to the Borneo border, Longhouse village and had a relaxing picnic and swim at a waterfall. Lars transported us up and down the river in his boat and we really enjoyed the beautiful nature and surroundings. We will treasure this place in our hearts forever and hope to see this wonderful family again in future. We arrived as guests, but said goodbye as friends.

  • Stayed: June 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank ElmarieM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 16, 2011

I don't think there is much else I can add to the reviews before me, except to reiterate the fact that we also had a fabulous time. Lars and Liza and warm and welcoming, and full of knowledge. A great start to our holiday in Borneo!

  • Stayed: June 2011, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Aussie_abroad1984
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 21, 2011

Kura Kura Homestay was a wonderful experience. There are not a lot of opportunities to head deep into the Borneo jungle and stay at a beautiful fully self-sustained house with a friendly, inviting family.

The highlight really is the hospitality – Lars and Liza are simply wonderful. From the moment Lars picks you up from Kuching he makes you feel comfortable and at ease and talking to him is like chatting to an old friend. Liza is such a fun loving spirit, so welcoming and happy and it was a privilege to be able to experience openly talking to someone who was born and raised on the very land you are staying on. Their little daughter was a wonder to interact with too!

Our experience began as soon as Lars picked us up – he took us to a fresh local market to buy dinner supplies for that night and explained all the interesting sorts of food. The boat ride along the river to their house was amazing, such beautiful scenery. Following lunch, which was great, we went ‘shopping’ in the surrounding jungle with Liza to collect more dinner supplies. We collected vegetables, fruit and herbs and everything was explained to us. It was a lot of fun and especially satisfying to eat freshly picked pineapple and enjoy the herbs and vegetable added to the dinner.

We went for a dip in the river to cool off, which was really refreshing. After this we just relaxed on the decking until dinner. Perhaps it would have been good to have another activity to do during this time, but it was relaxing. Dinner was absolutely delicious, in fact one of the best we had in Malaysia! Liza is a wonderful cook. The conversations over dinner were great and the sounds of the jungle were so pleasing to listen to.

The rooms are small but really lovely and the beds have mosquito nets over them, but there aren’t too many bugs around anyway. There is only a squat toilet provided, and although it’s very clean, it would be nice to have a conventional toilet.

After a hearty breakfast the next day Lars took us to Semengoh to see the orang-utans and to a traditional Long House, and as always he provided us with lots of interesting information. On the way back he made a special point of stopping off to enjoy a great Sarawak Laksa, as we expressed how much we were looking forward to trying one. It’s these little efforts that make the whole experience so enjoyable.

We only stayed one night but I would recommend staying for at least 2 to really make the most out of Kura Kura Homestay. I would love to do some trekking to caves and other activities to fully experience jungle living.

A fantastic experience that really is a once-in-a-lifetime thing! Thank you Lars and Liza!

  • Stayed: June 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank barbedwirestar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Kurakura Homestay

Address: Kampung Semadang | Q325 Jalan Kampung Semadang, Kuching 93250, Malaysia
Location: Malaysia > Sarawak > Kuching
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 82 B&Bs / Inns in Kuching
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Kurakura Jungle Homestay is a place to explore the wildlife surrounding and to escape from the city stress. You'll find us next to the Sarawak river, a paradise surrounded by the rainforest of Borneo. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Kurakura Homestay Hotel Kuching
Kurakura Homestay Kuching, Sarawak

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