The 18th Rainforest World Music Festival

  • Alaverdi
  • Son DM
  • Karinthalakoottam
  • Lindigo
  • Shooglenifty
  • Le Blanc Bros
  • geng wak long
  • Bargou 08
  • Ndima
  • Rainforest World Music Festival banner
  • Kapela M
  • Driss M
  • Korrontzi
  • Epi
  • Kobagi Kecak

In August 2015, the city of Kuching, in Sarawak Borneo, will resonate once again with the entrancing sounds of the sape. Yes! the Rainforest World Music Festival is here again and it will not be what it is today without the sape, the boat-shaped lute that has become the symbol of the Rainforest World Music Festival.

geng wak long

geng wak long

Exotic music from across the globe will be presented. A thousand harmonies seemingly at odds and yet in unison, a world apart but here, one world, together…… a real adventure in Borneo!

Every year, thousands and thousands of music lovers travel across the globe for that annual pilgrimage to Sarawak on the island of Borneo. The event has found its home in Santubong, a 45 minute drive from Kuching, the capital city of Sarawak. It has once again been voted among the top 25 international festivals for the 6th consecutive year by Songlines, a renowned world music magazine. This annual event, now in its 18th year, is organized by the Sarawak Tourism Board and is a 3 day celebration of music workshops and action-packed stage shows. The event this year will be held from the 7 to 9 August 2015.

Under the imposing shadow of Mount Santubong, and in the midst of a virgin rainforest at the edge of the South China Sea, the Rainforest World Music Festival is a unique festival that brings together on the same stage renowned world musicians from all continents and indigenous musicians from the interiors of the mythical island of Borneo.

The kinship and spirit among music makers and music lovers alike as they celebrate one another in the cradle of Mother Nature is unique to the green haven where thousand-year old trees reign.  An annual communion whose spirit is as timeless as the intricate ecosystem that celebrates the diversity of life. This year, concurrent with workshops, there will be shows beginning in the afternoon at 2 pm in the ‘Theatre Stage’, making it a total of 3 stages throughout the festival days. For festival-goers who wish to interact with the musicians and experience the music and dance of the different cultures up close, the workshops will continue at the same time at various ‘houses’ at the venue. The nights are five-hour concerts that take place on a main ‘Jungle Stage’ and smaller “Tree Stage” that carries on past midnight.



Nighttime concerts are held on a stage built by the lake, under the open sky and in an informal ambiance, sitting on the grass lawns and dancing to entrancing world beats. The festival then culminates in a huge finale on the final night, where all performers are invited to play onstage as one.

Line-up for 2015 is to be announced soon. Around twenty bands line-up representing many countries across the globe, a mix of the exotic, unknown and well loved, will be on both day and night festival program this year.

Sarawak – The Land of Adventure

Sarawak is a place for history, mystery, romance and exotic adventures, the land of the fabled white Rajahs, the Hornbills and the Orang Utans. Its rainforest houses the world’s richest and most diverse ecosystem. The ancient virgin forest is also home to 27 ethnic groups with their own distinct languages, culture and lifestyle. Their ancient cultures may differ but they have one thing in common, their warmth and hospitality.

Aerial view of Damai and Santubong

Aerial view of Damai and Santubong

Arrive in Sarawak and you step into adventure. Opt for a morning stroll in the national park near your hotel, trek through pristine jungle featuring breathtaking landscapes and the world’s longest rainforest-canopy walk or spend days exploring the world’s most extensive cave system. Visit caves that were inhabited 40,000 years ago, learn how Indian and Chinese merchants traded for Sarawak’s exotica centuries before the first Europeans came here, with tales of princes and pirates, of headhunters and explorers. Or simply relax on our beaches on the South China Sea, scuba dive off dramatic reefs or just enjoy a round of golf on one of our excellent courses. Sarawak has something for everyone and all are welcome.

What to expect at the Rainforest World Music Festival

Apart from the music, there will also be a smorgasbord of delectable delights at the Food and Village Mart set against the talismanic Orang Ulu and Iban longhouses which encircle the venue for the whole duration of the festival.  Take back with you a variety of arts and craft, event memorabilia as well as CD and recordings of the performing artistes. There will be a showcase of the culture of Sarawak for you to experience and to bring back wonderful memories.

Music is not all about sound; it is an art-form, and with it comes culture, diversity, creativity, talent, and spellbinding performances.  The Rainforest World Music Festival is a not-to-be-missed occasion in the heart of the Borneo Jungle. This is where people regardless of their ethnicity, cultural backgrounds and music interests come together for three magical days for a fun filled, wholesome festival experience with a country fair atmosphere amidst lush greenery. Come experience a truly memorable musical extravaganza amidst the lush green paradise that is the mythical land of Sarawak.   We bid you, “Selamat Datai”! (Welcome!)

More updates on the Rainforest World Music Festival 2015 are available online at

Entry Tickets to RWMF:



Early-bird is available for sale until Sunday, May 31 and and Pre-Sale promo ticket offers will be available from June 1 to August 6, 2015. The offers will also available through ticketing agencies as listed at For rainforest music lovers, the early bird tickets will be priced at RM180.00 for family package of 2 adults and 2 children (7-12 years of age), RM85.00 for 3-day child pass and RM30.00 for 1-day child pass. The adult pass for early bird is RM250.00 for 3-day pass and RM90.00 for 1-day pass. The early bird sales will end on May 31, 2015.

Tips for an enjoyable Rainforest World Music Festival experience:

  • Be there early. There are usually long queues at the gate for tickets or access to the venue due to ticket verification and other security measures.
  • Please do not bring non-permitted items (knives, sharp items) as they will be confiscated
  • No food & drink and animals are allowed to be brought inside the venue.
  • Food, beverage, CDs, souvenirs and crafts will be on sale at the event. All items are sold on CASH Terms except where indicated and there is no ATM machine at the venue so please prepare accordingly.
  • Limited car-parking facilities are available near the festival site. However, to avoid any inconvenience, you are encouraged to catch the shuttle buses which will operate at regular intervals during the event.
  • You can bring your own lawn chairs or mats.
  • Bring along a desire to be at one with nature and a yearning to celebrate and unite with kindred spirits from around the globe.
Share This

About the author

Thomas has a university background in the UK and in Latin America, with studies in Languages and Humanities, Culture, Literature and Economics. He started his Asian experience as a publisher in Krabi in 2005. Thomas has been editing local newspapers and magazines in England, Spain and Thailand for more than fifteen years. He is currently working on several projects in Thailand and abroad. Apart from Thailand, Thomas has lived in Italy, England, Venezuela, Cuba, Spain and Bali. He spends most of his time in Asia. During the years Thomas has developed a great understanding of several Asian cultures and people. He is also working freelance, writing short travel stories and articles for travel magazines. Follow Thomas on

View all articles by Thomas Gennaro