Niah National Park (Gua Niah) is one of the smallest national parks in Sarawak, yet it has attracted many tourists from different countries and areas due to its speciality. Niah National Park is an important prehistoric site as many prehistoric human remains from 40, 000 years ago have been found.Thus, in 2010 and 2019, Sarawak nominated Niah National Park for UNESCO’s World Heritage Site title. Besides, Niah National Park is a 3,138 hectares of forest and limestone karst areas. Hence, Niah National Park is the best place for caving and trekking. 

According to the information from Sarawak Forestry Corporation, Niah National Park is open daily including public holidays from 8am to 5pm. However, day trip visitors are only allowed to stay until 3pm. There are three methods to getting there which are by car, taxi or bus. It is about a two hours drive from Miri or Bintulu to Niah Cave. There are two popular activities in Niah National Park which are caving and trekking.

 

There are four major caving roads in Niah National Park, which are:

The Walk to Great Cave 

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There is approximately 3.1km of plank walk to reach the Great Cave. During the plank walk, you will be fascinated by benuang trees with their huge buttressed root and well formed orchid and fungi. Besides, you may see some of the wildlife including squirrels, flying lizards, butterflies, and colourful birds. The cave entrance is over 60m high and 250m wide, making it one of the world’s most spectacular cave entrances. 

 

The Walk to Moon Cave

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Before reaching the dark passage of Moon Cave (Gan Kira), you will reach Padang first, which is a passage at the back of the Great Cave that leads to a large chamber. This is where the shafts of sunlight stream down from large holes in the cave roof to illuminate the bizarre rock formations in the cave. In Moon Cave, you will need a torch to find your way and to witness the stunning rock shapes and weathering effects.

 

The Walk to Painted Cave

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After the Moon Cave (Gan Kira), you will walk through a forest to reach Painted Cave where famous Niah cave paintings and the ‘death-ships’ were discovered. The paintings portray spread-angled human figures, some of the animals from the surroundings and longboats that carry dead souls. It shows a clearer insight of the development of traditional religions of Borneo. Besides, the contents of the death-ships were transferred to the Sarawak Museum. However, some of the empty death-ships can still be viewed on the wall behind the fenced-off burial site.

 

The Walk to Traders’ Cave

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Traders’ Cave is the first cave to enter before you reach the Great Cave. Around 70 years ago, Traders’ Cave was a market where bird nests collected in the cave were traded by locals in exchange for food. In this cave, you can observe structural remains of ancient – roofless huts which are made of ironwood.

 

There are 5 well-kept and marked mountain trails that range from easy to tough, which make it suitable for first time trekkers and experienced trekkers. The 5 mountain trail are:

Madu Trail

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Madu Trail takes one and a half hours to walk and is marked with red and white colours. This trail is close to the banks of Sungai Subis. Along the trail, you can view plenty of wild orchids, strange mushrooms and huge pandanus plants.

 

Bukit Kasut Trail

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Bukit Kasut Trail is a little steep trail, but you can view some amazing cliff vegetation clinging in the limestone slopes. This trail is one hour walk and is marked with green and white markings.  

 

Great Cave Trail

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There is approximately 3.1km of plank walk to reach the Great Cave. During the plank walk, you will be fascinated by benuang trees with their huge buttressed root and well formed orchid and fungi. Besides, you may see some of the wildlife including squirrels, flying lizards, butterflies, and colourful birds. The cave entrance is over 60m high and 250m wide, making it one of the world’s most spectacular cave entrances. 

 

Painted Cave Trail

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Painted Cave Trail is a plank walk that lead to Painted Cave. This cave is the place where famous Niah cave paintings and the ‘death-ships’ were discovered. The paintings portray spread-angled human figures, some of the animals from the surroundings and longboats that carry dead souls. It shows a clearer insight of the development of traditional religions of Borneo. Besides, the contents of the death-ships were transferred to the Sarawak Museum. However, some of the empty death-ships can still be viewed on the wall behind the fenced-off burial site.

 

Tangap Trail

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Tangap Trail is a trail with some local souvenir stalls beside it where you will be able to know more about Iban’s culture. This trail is about 900m long to RH. Panjang Patrick Libau.