Mulu National Park
Gunung Mulu National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage site famous for the limestone caves and karst rock formations. It is for most tourists, a highlight of their Borneo travels.....without a doubt a truly fascinating travel destination not to be missed.
With a few days spare in between an event in Kuching and the Permai Rainforest Music Festival, we flew via Miri.
As with all the Borneo National Parks it is usually a requirement to have a guide. Gunung Mulu World Heritage Area allows only qualified guides to work in the area.
If you are arranging your own guide be sure they have this certification. Our guide Ricky ...a Penan from the area, was excellent. He arranged each day’s activities and accompanied us with interesting information about the flora and fauna in the rainforest, the history of the area etc.
Activities in Gunung Mulu National Park
There is a lot to do in this lovely National Park including
- Rainforest Walks
- Visit to the Penan Long house
- Canopy Walk – (subject to weather)
- Visits to many different caves
- Climb up Tree Top Tower for views
- Climb The Pinnacles
- Walk the Head hunter Trail
Those looking for a challenge will want to climb the Pinnacles and/or do the Head hunters trail which starts from Camp 5 going through to Limbang.
We had decided we weren’t fit enough to climb the Pinnacles and it was also difficult to get bookings for Camp 5 where you need to start the climb from.Book early as places are limited.
There are four main
most tourists get to visit within the National Park
- Lang Cave – the smallest but very beautiful
- Deer Cave – the largest cave...in fact considered the largest n the world
- Cave of the Winds
- Clearwater Cave
Niah Caves in Niah National Park near Miri are nearby and also very interesting with archaeological sites and wall paintings.
SEE MULU CAVES
Camp 5 and Royal Mulu Lodge
At Camp 5 there is sleeping accommodation for a maximum of 50 persons and fully equipped kitchens. Camp 5 is often fully booked so reservations are essential. We could get one night only rather than the 2 we would have needed. We considered doing the walk into Camp 5 and back, but due to other accommodation hiccups flagged this and stayed at the
Royal Mulu Resort
....which had been held for us. Had it not been held, we would have missed out on accommodation there too. This was a good 6 weeks before we were due to go! So do book early.... and do not bank on getting accommodation when you arrive as one couple did when we were there...unsuccessfully!
Head Hunter Trail
– You can do it with or without a Guide
A longboat takes you down the river to Wind and Clearwater Caves en route to Kuala Litut which is the head of the 8km (3 hours) walking trail to Camp 5. It is not necessary to have a guide for this walk.
You begin the walk along the Head Hunter’s Trail, from Camp 5. Or if you plan to do the Pinnacles with a Park Guide you should do this first.
While the 11.3km trail from Camp 5 to Kuala Terikan can be done without a guide.... this is a 5 hour walk through an isolated area of Borneo. A guide is not essential but you should organise a Long boat operator who will walk down the trail towards Luban China from Kuala Terikan to meet you.
He will pick you up at Kuala Terikan and take you downstream to a local longhouse for an over-night stay. The long boat trip is about 3 hours depending on river levels but expect to push the boat at least a few times. The next morning another 1 – 2 hour ride takes you to Medamit where you catch the van or bus to Limbang (1 hour). You should arrive around lunch time.
While these are only 1.2 kilometres....they are very steep and really for those with a high level of fitness, and preferably some climbing experience. The views from the top are well worth the effort.
Setting out from Camp 5 the 1200m rise is 2.4 kms long with a very steep section near the top. You need to be fit enough to pull yourself up the near vertical slope on ropes and climb ladders. Some people actually find the descent more difficult. It will take anywhere from 2-3 hours for the very fit to 4-5 hours for the less fit.
This walk along bridges slung between trees in the rainforest is a wonderful experience for all ages with amazing views of the tree tops and the river and activities below. Have a look at
MULU CANOPY WALK HERE.
More Useful Borneo Information
Mulu Canopy Walk
Kinabalu National Park
Orangutans in Borneo
Permai Rainforest Music Festival
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