Malaysia has some of the biggest and longest caves in the world, some caves are archaeological sites, others are beautiful with stalagmites and stalactites, and maybe underground rivers. Some caves are home to a wide variety of cave fauna such as bats, swiftlets, snakes, and invertebrates. These include insects, spiders, beetles, cockroaches, centipedes and millipedes. Amongst the most famous caves in the world are the caves in Gunung Mulu National Park, Sarawak, which was inscribed as a World Heritage site in 2001. The seven top caves in Malaysia which recommended by Malaysia tourist guide that worth you to explore are as follow:
- Mulu Caves
Gunung Mulu National Park is famous for its limestone karst formations. Features include enormous caves, vast cave networks, rock pinnacles, cliffs and gorges. Mount Mulu is a sandstone mountain rising to 7,795 ft. Gunung Mulu National Park has the largest known natural chamber or room – Sarawak Chamber, found in Gua Nasib Bagus. It has been said that the chamber is so big that it could accommodate about 40 Boeing 747s, without overlapping their wings. The nearby Deer Cave is one of the largest single cave passages in the world. Mulu Caves has been listed as the Eighth Wonder of the World.
Mulu National Park is a very remote access area; the only practical way of getting to and from it is by air, through Mulu Airport. Alternatively, it is possible to travel by river from Miri, which is about 100 km away, using a riverboat, then a chartered long boat, which in total takes around 12 hours. Malaysia Airlines has opened up the route from Miri to Mulu, the journey only take 30 minutes.
The Mulu Caves is a system of 44 explored caves, of which only 4 are open to the public：
- Clearwater Cave – The longest cave in Southeast Asia, the distance has explored to 103km. According to the native people, who washed in the river ‘would feel a year younger,’ the older members in the group couldn’t wait their turn to get at the refreshing and rejuvenating water as if it was the elixir of the youth.
- Lang Cave – Discovered in 1976 by a local Barawan named Lang, the cave is so low in some parts that the ceiling almost touches the head. The limestone formations found here are simply breathtaking. The stalactites, stalagmites and curtains are like works of art.
- Deer Cave – It is the largest cave passage in the world with a length of 1.4km, 120m wide and 120m high. It is home to some one million bats whose dropping and lies caked on the cave floor. In the cave all you can make out of the bats are several dark blotches on the ceiling. The time to catch them is at the bat observatory between 5.30 -6.30pm when they leave their roost in formation to forage for food. You can view the moving mass of black as the bats cross the evening sky to begin their daily search for food.
- Wind Cave – There is a narrow passage in the cave where you can feel the cool breeze gushing through, and that is how it got its name.
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- Gomantong Cave
The Gomantong Caves are 32 km south of Sandakan Bay. Can be reached in two ways:
- By yacht through Sandakan around 32km
- By roadwithfour-wheel drivevehiclethroughthe forest is about16 km
The Gomantong Cave is divided into two caves: the Simud Hitam and the Simud Putih. Swiftlets, who make the valuable nests, and bats share the caves with thousands of insects which live in the rich guano on the floor. The Simud Hitam (Black Nest Cave) is the more accessible. It has a huge grotto-like opening with a circular boardwalk to keep you off the guano-covered ground crawling with bugs and cockroaches. This cave is just a 5 minutes walk from the Registration Centre. It has a large chamber 30m wide and 100m high. The swiftlets produce the ‘black’ nests. The nests are made of the swiftlets’ hardened saliva mixed with feathers. The Simud Putih is larger (White Nest Cave) and less accessible. It’s located on a limestone cliff above the Simud Hitam. This is the cave, where the valuable white birds’ nest is harvested, made of pure saliva. For centuries the birds nest harvested here and formed an important source of supplies to China where it had been and still is, a prized delicacy. This cave was discovered by a chief of the village Gomand Kiman and his dog Siod Riput. To explore the entire cave it takes approximately one day. It is inaccessible during rainy season, which is in September to December. There are also cottages to be rented out for guests to stay here for one or two nights. In order to visit the cave firstly need to register to the administration department of the Sabah Forestry Department or Sabah Park in Sandakan.
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- Perak Cave
The Perak Cave is one of Ipoh’s most nostalgic landmarks located in the city center. Sprinkled all over the mining valley, there are more than a dozen Chinese Cave temples in Ipoh and one of the most marvellous one is perak caves. At a height of 122m, it is a natural limestone cave with stalagmite and stalactites. In 1972, through donations from the Chinese Community, the Chinese temple was built. Perak cave houses temples and structures that closely resemble architecture from the tang dynasty and also delicately craved buddha statues. To get to the top to enjoy the magnificent view, one has to first climb 385 steps but it is definitely worth it.
Opening hours: 8am-5pm
Hiking hours: 9am-4pm
- Batu Caves
Located 15km north of the heart of Malaysia’s capital, Kuala Lumpur, batu caves is the nation’s religious site for Hindus. The limestone cave, formed more than 1 billion years ago, is the oldest cave on the malaysian peninsular. One has to climb a total of 272 steps to reach the top. Batu caves consist of three main caves, the Cathedral Cave,Ramayana Cave and
Art Gallery Cave. The cave houses a large number of rare animals with more than 150 species of snakes and bats in the cave. Besides that, batu caves is also well known for its numerous macaques(monkeys). The walkway leading into the cave might seem steep and narrow, but inside the cave its shady and cooling, with a stream flowing through. It is definitely worth exploring. Visitors who wish to visit will need to be accompanied by a guide.
Cathedral Cave Opening hours: 6am-9pm
Ramayana Cave Opening hours: 10am-5pm（Tuesday – Friday），10.30am to 5.30pm（Weekend）[Closed on Monday]
* Visitors are advice to make a booking one week in advance
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- Kelam Caves
Kelam caves is a natural limestone cave with the world’s second longest wooden suspension bridge. The Malaysian government has lined the walls of the caves with lamps to help tourist view and appreciate the different shape and sizes of naturally formed rocks, stalagmite and stalactites. The only path to the cave is via an eight-foot wide wooden suspension bridge. The government also converted a “water hole” into a small scale recreational swimming pool. For tourist’s convenience, there are many food stalls and souvenir shops located within walking distance from the cave. A small fee of one ringgit is collect by the perlis state forestry department is order to help maintain the cave. Children under the age of twelve are entitled to a 50% discount. Visitors are not advised to visit on rainy days because the slippery ground may pose a treat to the safety of visitors.