Sitting at the northwest coastline of Borneo, bordering Brunei, Miri is the second largest city of the Malaysian state of Sarawak, with a population of over 230,000. Miri was once a little fishing village, but the discovery of an oil field in 1910 transformed it into one of Malaysia’s most important cities.
If you plan to visit Miri in the near future, continue reading this article to learn more about travelling in Miri, Sarawak.
Where to Stay
1. Pullman Miri Waterfront
This relatively new 5-star hotel has 328 rooms, each with a separate bath and shower, 24-hour room service, and free wireless internet connection. Guests can also enjoy recreational amenities such as the outdoor pool, sauna, and spa services such as hot stone massagers, facials, and body wraps.
2. Miri Marriot Resort & Spa
This magnificent hotel offers complete upmarket accommodations as well as stunning views of Miri’s iconic Tanjong Lobang coastline. A selection of local and foreign buffets, cocktails by the sea, and al fresco grilling are available as dining alternatives. Sarawak’s largest free-from swimming pool, in-house Mandara spa, fitness centre with complementary classes, outdoor tennis courts, and nine diverse event rooms are among the outstanding attractions.
3. Meritz Hotel
This 4-star business class hotel in a strategic position offers a comfortable stay with modern-designed spacious rooms furnished with basic facilities, the largest pillarless ballroom in Northern Sarawak that can accommodate up to 2500 guests, 9 flexible meeting rooms, and a gym. Meritz hotel is also connected to Bintang Megamall, which includes over 200 retail outlets for a seamless shopping experience.
4. Grand Palace Hotel
The Grand Palace Hotel is a four-star business class hotel with 125 exquisite rooms and suites, a wonderful poolside surrounded by landscaped gardens, function rooms ideal for meetings and conventions, and a variety of fine dining alternatives. The hotel is located in Pelita Commercial Centre, close to convenience stores, bistros, and local food outlets.
Things to Do
1. An equatorial sunset on Brighton Beach
Miri’s Brighton Beach, also known locally as Tanjung Lobang, spans along the South China Sea and features two distinctive piers. Families from the area play in the sand and swim in the warm, soothing waters. The real magic happens at 6:00 p.m., when the tropical sun sets. The far sky was engulfed in a haze of oranges, purples, and reds.
2. Learn about the crucial role of Miri at the Petroleum Museum
On Canada Hill, the Petroleum Museum depicts the story of oil in Miri. Miri was a modest fishing town before its discovery in 1910. The residents resided in wooden houses. They made their living from the South China Sea. Miri changed in a matter of decades. Affluent magnates relocated to the area. The demographics of China’s migrant labourers have shifted. The Petroleum Museum tells this story while also providing information on oil extraction processes.
3. Search for local craft at the Handicraft Center
Local artisans sell their handicraft at the Miri Handicraft Center. The little area on Jalan Brooke contains dozens of kiosks where artisans sell their handcrafted items. Some vendors sell traditional woven goods, such as mats manufactured by the indigenous Penan peoples. Others sell fabrics, purses, and ethnic clothing. Stroll through the passageways and encounter Sarawak’s indigenous communities, known collectively as ‘Dayak.’ Miri Handicraft Center is the best recommended spot to buy souvenirs in Miri. The centre is open everyday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Cultural shows sometimes take place in the evening.
4. Jungle trekking in Lambir Hills National Park
Lambir Hills offers guests the opportunity to do jungle trekking near Miri. Several defined pathways wind through the rainforest. Some travel across several environments to reach waterfalls. Others climb to gain access to observation points and natural ponds. Listen to their expertise as they detect distant gibbon screams and point out the occasional sun bear concealed among tree trunks. The most popular hikes lead to Pantu and Latak waterfalls.
Food Hunting Spots
1. Awang Mahyan
Awang Mahyan is a restaurant with numerous rows of hawker stands that is particularly popular among locals. Nasi Lalapan Ayam Panggang and their famous Mee Kolok are among the Malay dishes served here.
2. Meng Chai Seafood
Meng Chai Seafood serves a broad variety of fresh seafood including crabs, fish, calamari, clams, and much more. The BBQ garlic fried pomfret, tom yam, and cangkuk manis side veg are all worth a try.
3. Container City
Nights in Miri aren’t complete unless you visit Container City. The hipster ambiance contributes to the overall vibe as you have dinner or supper there. Geprek Chicken from Berbara’s booth, Persian naan, and Borneo Latte from The Brew Crew’s market are all good options.
4. Kent’s Garden
In a peaceful homey ambiance, Kent’s Garden serves a decent assortment of local and western cuisines. Some menus to try out are their signature Kent’s Kueh Teow, Assam Laksa or Chicken Chop, if you’re in the mood for some western flair.