Underground wonder in Borneo's Mulu Caves
Deer Cave, in the heart of Gunung Mulu, Sarawak’s largest National Park, left our Borneo expert Simon lost for words when he first encountered it. The cave boasts the largest cave entrance and single cave passage in the world, and is so big that St Paul’s Cathedral would fit under its enormous archway. As the sun sets over the rainforest, visitors can witness the breathtaking sight of around 5 million bats leaving the cave in search of food, before returning to your hotel by torchlight – a trip to Mulu is not soon forgotten.
What to expect at Mulu's Caves...
You’ll start this experience with a 3km plank walk through the forest to Deer Cave and neighbouring Lang’s Cave, home to some of the most impressive limestone stalactites and stalagmites in the whole park. You’ll have the whole afternoon to explore Deer Cave’s stunning moon-like landscape, staying until sundown to witness the bat exodus, before heading back for dinner.
Day two is full of adventure, with a longboat trip up the Melinau River to Wind Cave, and a walk to Clearwater Cave, home to many rare and unique species of orchids and other plants. At nearly 200km long, Clearwater Cave system is one of the longest in the world and is almost certainly the largest cave in the world by volume.
The underground river flowing through Clearwater adds a sense of tranquillity - we find that a swim in the beautiful clear pool at the cave entrance, followed by a picnic lunch under the shade of the rainforest, is the perfect way to end the morning.
For guests who particularly enjoy climbing, a further trek can be organised to visit what are known as the 'Pinnacles' - imposing jagged limestone spires that jut out of the forest-covered flank of Mount Api, which rises 1,750 metres above the surrounding landscape.
There are several well-equipped climbing lodges in Mulu Park, and a variety of expeditions can be arranged to suit different abilities.
Accommodation on the trip has a similarly tranquil and relaxing feel, and is wonderful haven at the end of an adventurous day. Mulu Marriott Resort & Spa brings together the best of both worlds, combining traditional longhouse inspiration, lush vegetation and stunning views across the rainforest with modern amenities such as a spa and pool.
Location: Sarawak, Borneo
Duration: 2 nights
Accommodation: Mulu Marriott Resort & Spa provides comfortable contemporary accommodation in the heart of the jungle.
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'As if Borneo's rainforests and reefs weren't enough! There's a fascinating world underground here, too, and exploring it is an unforgettable experience - really exciting.'
Important to note...
This exciting experience involves a lot of cave exploration and travel by water, so make sure you pack your sense of adventure! All the caves are very accessible though, with wooden plank pathways and railings.