Location/Culture Reports

Location Report - Malaysia (Pt 2) and Seoul, Korea

Sandakan, Malaysia
Sandakan was founded in 1879, after an earlier settlement accidentally burnt down. Sandakan was the capital of British North Borneo (now Sabah) until 1947, when it was supplanted by Kota Kinabalu. The region had been known for centuries for its pearls, camphor, bees' wax, sea cucumbers and edible birds' nests, attracting traders from the nearby Sulu Sultanate and from as far away as China.

Sepilok Orangutan Sanctuary
The Sepilok Orangutan Sanctuary is located 25 kilometers from Sandakan and set in 43 square kilometers in the rainforest. The Sanctuary was begun in 1964 to help once captive orangutans learn to fend for themselves in the wild. Besides the orangutans, the Sanctuary also is also home to a couple of highly endangered Sumatran rhinos, and occasionally other animals such as elephants. If you would like to go on one of the tours, here is a link to the information: http://www.jaring.my/sts/tours.htm#SOE

Seoul, Korea
Korea has a population of 48 million. The capital is Seoul. The system of government is a Republic, the President is Roh Moo-hyun and the Prime Minister is Goh Kun. Most of Seoul has been rebuilt since the 1950s and the Korean War. Seoul is very famous for its palaces. The most famous one is the Gyeongbokgung Palace, which was built at the beginning of the Joseon dynasty (1392-1910). The palace is 5.4 million square feet and is actually made up of several buildings, including one of the most exquisite pagodas in the country and an enormous two-story throne room. Most of the 500 buildings in the palace grounds were destroyed when the Japanese invaded. Reconstructed in the late 19th century, the Palace was destroyed again in the Korean War. Since then, the palace and its grounds have now been entirely restored once more.

Korea Tourism Website: http://english.tour2korea.com/