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Kuching – Chinese New Year 2021 is just around the corner, as this year is the year of Ox, Sarawak Tourism Board (STB) is taking the opportunity to celebrate this Chinese New Year by promoting Bisaya’s iconic festival, Pesta Babulang.

Babulang is the largest festival of the Bisaya community of Limbang, Sarawak. The festival showcases various music, songs, dances, colourful traditional costumes, decorations and handicrafts from the Bisaya community. One of the major highlights of the Babulang Festival is the Water Buffalo race which is exclusive to this festival.

The Ox, Buffalo and Cattle come from the family of Bovidae. Traditionally used on farmland to prepare paddy fields. These animals are significant to Pesta Babulang, A celebration to mark the end of a bountiful harvesting season.

Ang pau’s or red envelopes are commonly given out to youngsters by the elders during Chinese New Year. This tradition dated back thousands of years ago where the elders would thread coins through a red string for the younger generation. It was believed that this would protect them from sickness and death. Hence, today, the practice of giving ang pau’s still carries important significance for the Chinese community around the world.

Distribution of ang pau’s is one of the efforts to promote Sarawak tourism continuously and remind people of Sarawak.

The ang pau’s packets will be shared with STB’s tourism industry partners and visitors, as well as Tourism Malaysia offices in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, West Malaysia and Sarawak Trade and Tourism Office Singapore (STATOS) in promoting Sarawak.

“As Chinese New Year is coming soon, we want to take this opportunity to highlight Sarawak’s uniqueness, in this case our rich Chinese culture as well as our diverse and unique cultural festival, such as Pesta Babulang that is celebrated by the Orang Ulu community, Bisaya,” said CEO of Sarawak Tourism Board, Sharzede Datu Haji Salleh Askor.

Visitors can get the limited edition of ang pau’s or red packet after January 15th at Visitor Information Centre (VIC) at

Kuching: Sarawak Tourism Complex, Old Court House

Sibu: Sublot 3A & 3B, Sibu Heritage Centre, Jalan Central, 96000 Sibu, Sarawak

Miri: Lot 1648, Jalan Raja, MCLD, 98000, Miri, Sarawak


Photo shows Sharzede Datu Haji Salleh Askor, Chief Executive Officer of Sarawak Tourism Board (from left), holding the new design of Chinese New Year Ang Pau’s or Red Packets featuring Water buffalo from Bisaya iconic festival, Pesta Babulang, together with Head of Division STB, Mary Wan Mering, Barbara Benjamin Atan and Maurice Balang


 About Sarawak 

A kaleidoscope of culture, adventure, nature, food and festivals: is the best description for Sarawak. Sarawak comprises 27 ethnic tribes with their own unique traditions, lifestyles, music and food, while sharing their warm hospitality. Malaysia’s largest state, Sarawak, endowed with some of the oldest rainforests on Earth. Its vast landscape spans over 120,000 sq kms, with towering mountains and cool highlands, jagged limestone formations and mysterious cave systems, winding rivers and quiet beaches; where adventures are waiting to happen. Festivals are hosted throughout the year celebrate the eclectic blend of modern and traditional culture, food, music and religious practices that can be found nowhere else. In Sarawak, there is always ‘More to Discover’. 

About Sarawak Tourism Board 

Sarawak Tourism Board is the key promoter for Sarawak. STB is a winner of the Asia Pacific Excellence Awards 2016 by Asia-Pacific Association of Communications Directors (APACD) and has received the ASEAN PR Excellence Award 2015 Gold Award. The Rainforest World Music Festival is a five-time Top 25 Best International Festivals recognised by Songlines World Music Magazine (2011 – 2015) and won the Golden City Gate 2019 five-star award for the Rainforest World Music Festival’s (RWMF) promotional video.


For media enquiries, please contact:

Communication Division
Marketing Department
Sarawak Tourism Board
Email: [email protected] / [email protected]