Miri was the hometown of the Oil and Gas drilling operation in Sarawak. It’s a really built up and modern town.
Dillenia Guesthouse is the best budget place to stay. Mrs. Lee is the most delightful lady. She’s full of unbelievable knowledge on what to do and how to get around. She runs an awesome hostel – the type that made me love travelling in the first place. Best of all she runs most of the guesthouse using just home made sticky notes. Sticky notes everywhere. It’s not unusual for you to wake up and find a note for you from Mrs. Lee.
Miri is the main diving board into Mulu National Park. Mulu National Park is a very well preserved part of Sarawak’s jungle. There is a lot of wildlife to be found from birds, to insects, snakes and all. if you’re a pro hiker, you stand the chance of seeing some of the wild mammals.
Mulu is also home to a 107km long cave system, some of which is explorable by tourists. I did the Clear Water Connection Adventure Caving. It’s considered an advanced cave so you need to do one of the intermediate caves first to show you’re competent at caving. You enter through the wind cave – named so because in the tighter spaces you can feel a pretty strong breeze. After a few hours, you cross through narrow crevasses into the Clear Water Cave – usually you’ll have about 2 inches of space in front of your helmet, and 2 inches behind. Everyone feels the helmet prove its worth at least once.
Once in the caves you realise why it’s called an advanced cave. There’s very little help to climb up, over, down and across the cave. Some of the rocks are sharp and you have to have your wits about you. I didn’t take my camera into the caves because it’d involve no lights, tight spaces and lots of getting wet. In the Wind Cave you’re taken through a number of chambers, each with their own profile and character; they were beautiful. Some chambers had the most intricate stalactite and stalagmite formations (remember ‘-tites’ go down and ‘-mites’ go up). But this meant some of the rocks were wet. I unfortunately slipped on one of them and hit my ribs against the rocks. It was my right side. The same side that a few months ago I had bruised whilst motorbiking across Flores. I hit it pretty hard. And I felt it. It wasn’t bruised or broken but I knew they’d be sore for the next few days (and they were – every time I inhaled a deep breath it hurt).
In the Clear Water Cave you can either walk through it or let the current carry you. In the water, however, the rocks underneath were very sharp. Somebody a few days before had cut their leg. I had a moment where my foot got snagged on a sharp rock. The current pulled my body away so I was stuck. I had to pull my body closer to my foot, putting more pressure of the sharp rock against my foot. After I cleared myself free, I checked my foot. I had been lucky. I cut my Five Finger Shoes open but somehow avoided cutting my skin.
When the sun is setting in Mulu, you can see one end of the road become bright orange, whilst the other end regresses into dark blue. It was awesome to see, particularly with the large hills in the background. Here are some 180º panaromas.