Friday, September 05, 2014

Mystical caves of Gunung Mulu National Park

To some people, the exodus of millions of bats from the cave may send chills down their spines, but for nature lovers, it is a sight to behold. If that is not enough, how about a cave that is so big until it can accommodate forty Boeing 747 airplanes or five times the size of London’s St. Paul’s Cathedral?

Yes, we are talking about the caves of Gunung Mulu National Park, renowned for their natural splendor and mystical charms. The Gunung Mulu National Park is one of two UNESCO World Heritage Sites in East Malaysia. The Park, covering 338 square miles is the largest national park in Sarawak.

It is also home to the world’s largest cave chamber (Sarawak Chamber), the world’s largest cave passage (Deer Cave), Asia’s longest cave (Clearwater Cave) and a treasure trove of 2,000 varieties of plants and animals, from 8 types of hornbills, 170 species of orchids to 10 species of pitcher plants. The Gunung Mulu National Park also covers the world’s longest tree-based walkway – a 480-metre rainforest canopy skywalk and the spectacular razor-sharp limestone Pinnacle.

Godzilla-sized caves. Spellbinding adventures.

Imagine forty Boeing 747 airplanes fitting into a cave chamber. That is what the Sarawak Chamber, measuring at 1,968 feet by 415-metre and 1,361 feet high can do. Located in the Good Luck Cave (Gua Nasib Bagus) of Gunung Mulu National Park, the Sarawak Chamber is the world’s largest underground cave chamber.

The interesting fact about the Sarawak Chamber is one must follow a river upstream from the cave entrance to reach the chamber. Taking a journey along the passage with a roof up to 196 feet is truly as adventurous as the cave itself!

Another fascinating huge creation of Mother Nature is the Deer Cave. It is the world’s largest cave passage – so huge to the extent that it can hold five times the size of London’s St. Paul’s Cathedral!

This is also where you will find about 3 million bats forming clouds circling higher and higher up the cliff like a tornado, leaving the cave and spiraling into the rainforests in the evening. Best of all, you can catch this natural phenomenon at the bat observatory deck. It has been reported that there are twelve species of bats in the Deer Cave, including the colony of wrinkled-lipped bats. Other animals in the cave include swiftlets, earwigs, centipedes, crickets, spiders, white crabs and scorpions.

To further thrill visitors, it is not just in Mount Rushmore National Memorial in the United States that has the famous rock sculptures of four US Presidents. Be surprised to discover Deer Cave’s very own limestone shape has the side profile of America’s 16th President, Abraham Lincoln.

Continue reading (Incl. Pic) at: Mystical caves of Gunung Mulu National Park