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Sungai Mas Archaeological Site (Sites 32 & 33)

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Sungai Mas Archaeological SiteSungai Mas Archaeological Site (11 March, 2008)

Sungai Mas Archaeological Site (GPS: 5.59136, 100.37513) is a Bujang Valley archaeological site in the county (mukim) of Kota, in Kuala Muda, Kedah. It covers an area of 102.59 hectares (253.5 acres) near Sungai Mas, a tributary of the Muda River, within the Bujang Valley. Other rivers in the area includes the Terus River and the Merbok River.

Archaeological excavations were carried out at Sungai Mas from November 1992 until May 2001. This was carried out by the archaeological departments of various local universities including UKM Bangi, UM Kuala Lumpur, UTM Skudai, UPM Serdang, in cooperation with the Bujang Valley Archaeological Museum, Johor Heritage Foundation and foreign universities including Udayana University of Bali, Gadjah Mada University of Yogyakarta, Kan Sai University of Okoyama, Japan, the National University of Singapore, and the University of York in the United Kingdom.

Sungai Mas Archaeological SiteSungai Mas Stone Inscription (31 January, 2006)

The above is known today as the Buddha-Gupta Stone Inscription, or Batu Bersurat Buddha Gupta. Found at the Sungai Mas Archaeological Site, it is now on display at the Bujang Valley Archaeological Museum. The stone has inscriptions in the Pallava script using the Sanskrit language. As this form of writing dates to the 4th to 5th centuries AD, it offers an insight to the age of the Sungai Mas archaeoligical site.

The excavation site of Sungai MasThe excavation site of Sungai Mas (11 March 2008)

The excavation yielded close to two hundred thousand pieces of artifacts (191,506 recorded pieces) including ceramics, tiles, bricks, stones, metal, beads, pots, kitchenware and other objects. Some of the ceramics have been dated to Tang Dynasty (AD 618-906) and Sung Dynasty (AD 960-1279), pointing to the existence of trade links with ancient China. There are also blue-and-green ceramics that have been identified as of West Asian origin, dating to between AD 800 and 1000.

The Sungai Mas Archaeological Site provides evidence of human habitation in the Bujang Valley Area going back over a thousand years. The findings predate the establishment of Kota Kuala Muda and subsequent settlements of the Kingdom of Kedah.

Sungai Mas Archaeological SiteExcavated stones at Sungai Mas Archaeological Site (11 March, 2008)

Sungai Mas Archaeological SiteHalf buried artifact at Sungai Mas Archaeological Site (11 March, 2008)


1 August, 2015: When I returned to the Sungai Mas Archaeological Site, I saw that it was gone. In fact, I had difficulties finding the site that I saw back in 2008. Only when I returned home and checked on Google Maps was I able to retrace where it was. This I knew by the red fence, which you can see in the street view below. By the way, my GPS was able to pinpoint the right place, but I couldn't find it because it was gone in 2015.

Explore Kuala Muda District

Kuala Muda District

Kuala Muda District is a district in southern Kedah with many lovely places to explore. I describe them to you right here.


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