If you are a visiting botanist or horticulturalist to Kuching, the number one place you must visit is DBKU Orchid Park.
Constructed in November 2007, the park was finally opened to the public on May 5, 2009. The garden is made up of two areas – the nursery and the display area and houses a collection of more than 75,000 plants!
The entrance sign may say ‘Orchid Garden’ but it was upgraded to Orchid Park back in 2013.
If you are familiar with the names Lady’s Slipper (Paphiopedilum Sanderianum), Coelogyne Pandurata, Bulbophyllum Beccarii and the Vandal Dearei, then you have to visit this garden.
But if you come with almost zero knowledge on orchids like yours truly, you might need to squeeze some effort to appreciate the place.
My biggest disappointment after visiting the garden was the lack of information and signage. While not all plants came with a sign, those that did only displayed the names of the plants without any extra information, leaving me with more questions than answers after my visit.
For instance, was this orchid endangered? Where could this particular orchid be found? Is this orchid endemic to Borneo?
These were just some of the questions that popped up in my mind while I was going around the garden.
Nonetheless, the park is strategically located within the vicinity of the Astana and Fort Margherita, making it a good place for a quick visit, especially for tourists.
Plus, admission is free and it is open to the public every day from 9.30am to 6pm, except on Mondays.
Don’t forget to bring an umbrella or a sunhat. If you have a DSLR camera, the garden is perfect for macro photography – I brought mine and I was happy how the photos turned out in the end.
But I need help to identify these beautiful orchids so drop some names in the comment box if you recognise some of these beauties!