Get Your Muscles Ready (And Cameras!) at Gunung Mulu National Park
Highlighting its high biodiversity and karst features, Gunung Mulu National Park is one of the listed UNESCO World Heritage Site.
It encompasses stunning karst and limestone formation thousands of meters thick peppered with diverse flora and fauna over an equatorial rainforest backdrop.
Lying in Sarawak, this place is a jewel in Southeast Asia you wouldn’t want to pass up.
Gunung Mulu National Park is located at Sarawak, a Malaysian State on the island of Borneo, which is also known as the Bumi Kenyalang or “Land of the Hornbills.”
Located at the northwest of Borneo, Sarawak has a total land area of 124, 450 square kilometer to which Gunung Mulu is only a small part of.
Near the park are the divisions of Marudi and Miri on the borders of Brunei.
The climate in this area was driven by its equatorial position. The hottest months is usually in April with an absolute maximum temperature of 42 degrees Celsius; however during March it starts to heat up forgetting the coolness from December to February.
But you can also start feeling the coolness from June or July where an absolute minimum temperature was recorded at 18 degrees Celsius. Sarawak follows a general trend of seasons: the dry and wet months, but higher elevation means cooler temperature.
Highest precipitation starts at November and lasts ‘til February with millimeters peaking 668. Lowest precipitation happens in July at 195 mm. This is also the same for the number of rainy days. The peak is at the months of December and January with 26 rainy days and falling at July with 17.
It is possible to travel by land, river, or plane. Travelling through river is the longest that can take from one to several days. Arriving at Miri Airport, you need to travel to Kuala Baram (by road) in order to take the ferry that will carry you to Marudi.
From Marudi, another ferry ride will take you to Long Terawan stopping at Tutoh River to get a boat that will take you to Mulu. However, the Marudi to Long Terawan ferry ride does not operate daily.
If you’re planning to get as much of adventure, you can travel by land in which you will not just travel through roads, but by boats and a little bit of muscle stretching through hiking as well.
This also starts from the Miri Airport travelling by road until you reach the Kuala Baram to take you in a boat ride through Baram river to Marudi division. From here, it is the same as travelling by river in order to get to Mulu.
The Miri-Marudi route can be also covered by plane; on the other hand, if you want to go by plane all the way to the park, you can book a flight from Miri to Mulu which takes around 30 to 35 minutes of travel time. Yet keep in mind that there may be some delayed or cancelled flights due to visibility issues.
Caves at Gunung Mulu National Park
The park boasts a number of caves: Clearwater and Wind Caves, Turtle Cave, Dear and Langs Caves, and The Garden of Eden.
It involves walking around these vast cave networks featuring limestone karst formation, that, if illuminated will give you a fantastic view of lights reflecting back and forth from the river hinting to highlighted strips of light and dark shades of cave walls.
These caves are also famous for their offers of adventure such as the Racer Cave, Lagang Cave, Clearwater Connection, Stone Horse Cave, and the Sarawak Chamber – the largest known cave chamber – in which some require certain levels of fitness in order to proceed to activity like trekking.
Flora and Fauna
Flora and fauna also thrives in this region. The park boasts eight species of hornbills such as the rhinoceros hornbill, white-crowned hornbill, and helmeted hornbill.
There are also seven species of bats living in its vast network of caves such as the wrinkle-lipped bat. Mammals include tarsiers, three types of deers, sun bear, moon rats, and squirrels.
There are also several flowering plants to sate your appetite for. Most of them include unidentified orchid species and other fuchsia-colored flowers.
If you’re looking for something more extreme, Mount Mulu will deliver the challenge.
It is the second highest peak in Sarawak which will not only offer you something to gaze at, but also a 4-day and 3-night climb to the summit.
A 480-meter long skywalk – It is the world’s longest, tree-based skywalk that will set your muscles aching and your eyes bulging for fascinating sights that is sure to accompany you. (Be sure to ready your cameras!)
Gunung Mulu National Park
Mary Grace Valdez