Gunung Mulu National Park
Gunung Mulu National Park is Sarawak’s largest at 544 sq km in area. It is also Malaysia’s first World Heritage Area, a status awarded in 2000. The national park is most famous for its limestone cave systems. They are the world’s largest natural chamber (the Sarawak Chamber), the world’s largest cave passage (Deer Cave) and the longest cave in Southeast Asia (Clearwater Cave).
Activities at the National Park
The park’s main attractions are the four show caves (Wind, Clearwater, Deer and Lang Caves). These caves are all readily accessible by wooden walkways and paths. Other fascinating sights and activities include; a bat observatory, a 480m rainforest canopy skywalk (the world’s longest tree-based walkway) and adventure caving trips to some of Mulu’s less accessible caves. Or hike the historic Headhunter’s trail passing through remote rainforest scenery.
Mountains of Gunung Mulu National Park
The Park is dominated by three mountains; Gunung Mulu (2,376m), Gunung Api (1,750m), and the as yet unconquered Gunung Benarat (1,585m). Gunung Mulu is sandstone, whilst Gunung Api and Gunung Benarat are formed from limestone and therefore have different geographical features. The summit of Gunung Mulu is covered by moss forests and stunted montane vegetation, whilst razor-sharp limestone pinnacles, some as high as 50 metres, are found on the upper slopes of Gunung Api.
For climbers, they have the option of the challenging Mulu Summit climb and the spectacular Pinnacles trail.
The park’s forest ecosystems include peatswamp, heath, mixed dipterocarp, moss forest and montane vegetation; home to thousands of species of ferns, fungi, mosses and flowering plants, including 170 species of orchid and 10 species of pitcher plants, an impressive variety of mammals, birds (including 8 species of hornbill), frogs, fish and insects.
Mulu’s wildlife is often heard but not seen, but visitors are almost certain to encounter bats, swiftlets, cave dwelling insects, snakes, lizards, tree frogs and an abundance of beautiful butterflies.
Visitors may not enter any of the caves or the Mulu Canopy Skywalk without a Park Guide. In addition, a park guide is mandatory for most trails. These include the Mulu Summit climb, the Pinnacles trail and the Headhunter’s trail. Bookings and payment of fees can be made at the park office. If you require a Park Guide you need to book the day before. During peak season, guides for popular activities such as the Pinnacles trail may be fully booked weeks in advance.
The easier way to reach Mulu is by air. There are daily flights from Miri to Mulu and also connections from Kuching and Kota Kinabalu by MASWings. Alternatively, you can travel by boats. Express boat from Kuala Baram takes you up to Baram river arriving in Marudi and connects to Long Terawan in a smaller boat to eventually reach the park. It is also possible to hike into Mulu via the "Head Hunter's Trail" from Limbang by trekking down through Camp 5 and then onto Mulu Park headquarters.